Reuben Wakeman explains how he started his Bond collection, talks about his favourite item and shares tips on collecting.
When and how did you first get bitten by the Bond bug?
Around 1995 with the release of GoldenEye in cinemas. At the time I was 15 and I had just been given The Spy Who Loved Me soundtrack on LP by a friend of my brothers and really enjoyed listening to it. I’d seen many of the Bond films on TV growing up, but it wasn’t until GoldenEye that I really got an appreciation for it. My collection started from there, mainly with paperback books and more soundtrack LPs and grew into toys and other things over the years.
What’s your favourite item in your collection and why?
One of my favourite items in my collection is an original 1960s packaging box for Swell James Bond bubble gum cartons. It came with a Multiple Toys S.A. Special Pistol as well as part of a promotional deal. It’s something that was meant to be thrown away, so I guess not many were ever kept, so it will be quite rare. I just love it because of the graphics on it.
What item would you most like to add?
Some of the toys produced in the 1960s are beautiful objects, they seemed to just package everything well back then, none of the more generic boxes you get things in these days. So, I’d love to own some more of the Multiple Toys range of toys from America or the Imai Thunderball inspired kits from Japan.
What’s your biggest obstacle to collecting, or is there a tip you’d like to share?
Money, lack of items and the realisation that you can’t own it all! No, seriously, the best tip is to always have a budget, do your research and collect what you like and enjoy. You can’t be a completist as there are just too many Bond related items out there, so go for the things you’d like to own, be it books, LPs, toys, posters, props – there is something for everyone and it doesn’t have to be an expensive hobby.
Try and hunt out other collectors. I’ve made some good friends worldwide by collecting, and it’s great to be able to help them out getting items that may only be available in your country. They are also a good source to buy and trade with. Most importantly though – just enjoy whatever you collect.