There are few people in TV & movies with whom their talent, personality and natural charm, can stay deeply engraved on your memory many years after their finest hour has long passed. And for me; Sir Roger Moore, is just such a memory.
By Andy Simon @AndySimon55
There are few people in TV & movies with whom their talent, personality and natural charm, can stay deeply engraved on your memory many years after their finest hour has long passed.
And for me; Sir Roger Moore, is just such a memory.
Sir Roger George Moore, was an English actor who was best known for playing Ian Flemming's secret agent James Bond between 1973 and 1985.
He also played Simon Templar in the classic television series The Saint between 1962 and 1969, and also played the charismatic Lord Brett Sinclair, in The Persuaders, in 1971.
Sir Roger's film appearances were numerous to say the least. But for me, aside from his James Bond films, one film in particular stood out and to this day, still remains one of his best ever.
That film, was The Wild Geese. (1978)
Sir Roger played Lieutenant Shawn Fynn, a mercenary and former currency smuggler for the London mafia, hired by Colonel Allen Faulkner, played by acting legend Richard Burton, to help him on a mission to go to Africa, and rescue a political prisoner named Julius Limbani, who was due to be executed by General Ndofa, the man who had deposed him.
Limbani was being held in a remote prison in Zembala, and was guarded by a unit of Ndofa's most feared troops; the "Simbas".
Faulkner and his crack team of mercenaries, succeeds in rescuing Limbani, and at a specified secret airfield, and with the Simba troops not too far away behind them, Faulkner and his team await the aircraft that will swiftly fly them out of Africa.
However, back in London, Sir Edward Matheson, the ruthless merchant banker who hired Faulkner, cancels the extraction flight at the last moment, after having secretly secured a mining deal from Ndofa in exchange for Limbani.
The plane takes off as soon as it has landed, without explanation.
Now stranded deep inside hostile territory, the mercenaries are forced to fight their way through the bush country, ruthlessly pursued by the Simba soldiers.
Faulkner eventually escapes Africa, but not after many of his team have died, including Limbani, the man he came to rescue.
For me The Wild Geese was as much of a classic as any of the 007 films Sir Roger had starred in. If you ever get a chance to watch it, then don't hesitate, watch it.
But before the Wild Geese flew, Sir Roger was Simon Templar aka, The Saint. (1962 - 1969)
I was just a kid (10 or 11) when I first saw The Saint.
And Mum would let me watch it when it was on the telly however, she never allowed me to watch The Avengers, as I was considered "Too young for that sort of programme", as she would say.
Boo hiss Mum!
Simon Templar was basically a very charming, suave Robin Hood type character from the books by Leslie Charteris, who literally stole from criminals, and then kept the money for himself.
His only real nemesis was Inspector Claude Teale, played by Ivor Dean. Inspector Teale; or just plain Claude as Templar often preferred to call him, regarded Templar as nothing more than a common criminal, regardless from whom he stole from.
So from an early age, Sir Roger Moore was having a positive influence on a young boy who in later years, would enjoy seeing one of his TV heroes as Lord Brett Sinclair in yet another TV classic, "The Persuaders."
Only one series of Persuaders was ever made which had only 24 episodes. The action/adventure/comedy series chronicled the antics and adventures of two of the most unlikely people ever to be brought together as investigators, Danny Wilde (Tony Curtis) and Lord Brett Sinclair. (Sir Roger Moore)
The Persuaders were two equally matched men from different backgrounds who were reluctantly teamed up to solve a variety of cases that the police nor the courts could solve.
As I said earlier; the show ran for only one season, but the impact it had on both sides of the Atlantic would last for generations. In fact; I still on occasion watch an episode or two, just to see Roger play this toffee nosed lordly aristocrat.
As you can see there are many ways I can remember Sir Roger Moore. Funny enough; he always reminded me a bit of my Dad, as Dad was similar in looks, a bit.
Thing is; I never saw Dad much after he divorced my Mum. Couples eh? That's life I suppose.
But without doubt, Sir Roger has left us with some wonderful material to remember him by.
And what better way to remember a kind, intellectual, suave, articulate, charismatic gentleman, actor, film & TV hero, than through his many films and TV shows.
It's the best way I think, to keep an already ingrained memory, alive.
Rest in peace Sir Roger Moore.
(1927 - 2017)
Saint, lord, secret agent, legend.
Thanks for reading.