Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

Thread: Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

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  1. #1
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    Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

    As an avid fan of both the James Bond and Travis McGee characters, it is interesting that both have worn Pulsar P2 watches on their wrists, at exactly the same time.

    McGee is in many ways the American James Bond, coming into his own as a literary character in the 1960s. In "The Turquoise Lament," Travis goes into detail about his Pulsar, given to him by a lady friend. As a side note, Trav seems more like a dive watch kind of man -- a Marathon would fit perfectly - but he's also somewhat cheap, so wearing a free watch fits his personality.

    Travis makes this observation about the watch:

    "In gentler eras, if a man wished to know the time, he took out his gold pocket watch and snapped it open and looked at the hands. If he did not want to know the time, it never intruded. Time served man. The Hamilton Pulsar does not intrude either, until you want to know the time, and you push the stud, and it tells you, then keeps its peace until next time." The Turquoise Lament, Chapter Four.
    Clearly, author John D. MacDonald had done some thinking about it and was probably a watch enthusiast himself.

    Interestingly, "Turquoise" came out in 1973 -- the exact same year that Roger Moore's James Bond wore the brand-new Pulsar P2 on his wrist as well. Did one character steal from the other, or is it simply a case of timekeeping coincidence?

    Last edited by Binyamin_Delta; June 11th, 2010 at 22:10.

  2. #2
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    Re: Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

    Quote Originally Posted by Binyamin_Delta View Post
    Did one character steal from the other, or is it simply a case of timekeeping coincidence?
    If Jason Bourne and John McClane both drink a Pepsi, did one steal that idea from the other? The watch you refer to was a novelty for the time period. It was surely a coincidence that both cutting edge characters had the same futuristic watch.

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    Re: Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

    I'm not saying one idea was stolen -- but I am saying it's interesting. Bond's Pulsar is the only one I've ever seen in a movie, and McGee's the only one I've ever come across in a book. A bit interesting for directly competing characters, yes?

    On 24 Jack Bauer wears the cutting-edge MTM Special Ops rechargeable LED watch. That's a unique watch. If next week James Bond or Jason Bourne appeared with the same watch, you might wonder if it was more than a coincidence. Same idea.

    A specifically-chosen watch on a starring character, featured as a set piece on screen or in a book, is definitely more significant than a brand of soda. In both cases, the creators specifically focused on the Pulsar. Just trivia, I suppose, but watch enthusiasts tend to enjoy trivia.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Travis McGee vs. James Bond: Pulsar P2

    These days, if a starring character wears a specific watch and the script draws attention to it, it means the watch maker paid a hefty sum of money for the advertising spot.
    My growing collection of "affordable" vintages: http://www.abslomrob.com

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