This week the United States finally gets to see Skyfall, the new James Bond film that's been universally praised for what feels like months, and which many are calling the best Bond movie ever (most of us around here agree). The movie has inspired all kind of conversations among movie-lovers about Bond, from listing the characters best films and gadgets and babes to simply wondering how a character so clearly born from the Cold War has managed to stay relevant so long.

We don't really have answers to any of those questions (though if you're curious about all that ranking, click here). We just want to celebrate a character who's captured all of our imaginations over the year, a guy we've all grown up with and who never really forced us to think about just why we found him so appealing… until now, that is. Below are four reasons we love James Bond, and why his glorious return to Skyfall is hopefully just the beginning of many more great films to come.

His Patriotism
England doesn’t have a big-screen, mainstream superhero quite like Batman, Spider-Man or Superman just yet, but they will always have James Bond. His missions regularly take him on a globetrotting adventure and he’s usually trying to do more than save just his tiny island home, but 007’s devotion to Queen and country is more than just a fun character quirk – it’s actually something that’s rather important.

To understand why, one doesn’t have to look much further than this year’s London Olympic Games, when director Danny Boyle created a short film where Bond (played by Daniel Craig, of course) goes to Buckingham Palace in order to bring her majesty to the Games’ opening ceremony. Superspy 007 is more than just a guy with a gun and a martini to England: he’s a pop culture icon who means more to the country than any regular action hero. Even right now, as Skyfall is establishing itself as a huge hit, London is catching Bond fever, as everywhere you look there is some reminder of the Ian Fleming-created legend. Every culture needs their model – the equivalent of the perfect, patriotic citizen who stands up for his or her people in the time of any crisis. For England, that is unquestionably James Bond.

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