JAMES BOND 007 CHEWING GUM (Somportex)
Scene Series”, issued by “Somportex of London” in
1964 and simply named “James Bond 007 Chewing Gum”. A
series of sixty black and white trading cards depicting on the front
side a still from one of the first three James Bond movies, Dr. No”,
“From Russia With Love” and “Goldfinger”.
The cards were issued as a tie-in with the third James Bond adventure
“Goldfinger”. They where manufactured in Denmark by a
company named “Dandy Factories”. As for every UK/ USA
movie tie-in, the cards were announced in the official movie press
book. This kind of announcements went on until the release of “Moonraker”
Just as we have with the present trading cards, this first series of bubble gum cards showed several errors or misprints. Card N° 25; has two different versions, one that shows a picture of Shirley Eaton looking down and another, were she is looking up. The caption on card N° 55 displayed “Nadja Regin in Goldfinger” but actually the card shows a picture from the second James Bond movie “From Russia With Love”. Card N° 58 depicting another still of “Nadja Regin in Goldfinger” shows us a very rare error. On some cards you may find the number 27 displayed in the lower right corner of the bathtub. The “Goldfinger” campaign book announced that a total of 10 million cards will be distributed in packs through 75000 retail outlets. Ten million cards on the move and still there was a big disappointment among the young collectors. For many youngsters card N° 59 became the hardest one to get your hands on. The difficulty in obtaining card N° 59 was probably a set-up from the manufacturers to enhance their card sales. The counter display box is also a highly wanted piece of 007 memorabilia. A very simple design created out of black cardboard with an orange coloured lady that represented the world famous Golden Girl. In the movie Shirley Eaton was covered in gold paint, for titles and advertisements, it was actually Margaret Nolan. The text on the display box was very simple, and read as:
"Counter Display Box"
The pictures displaying the beautiful pin-up girls were not accepted by everyone. Some frustrated parents claimed it was a disgrace that children could purchase pictures with half naked women in a candy shop on the street corner. This issue went so far that it reached the national press and was actually discussed in the British House of Commons by MP's. As a result of the news coverage, the offending cards where shown in the late night magazine style show “The Braden Beat”. In 1965 the cards were withdrawn from sale after front page headlines in the Daily Mirror displayed the following text:
Nevertheless all these cards showed innocent pictures. I remember when the first James Bond movies where screened at the Belgian theatres, the window at the ticket counter displayed “KNT”. Meaning children not allowed. Everybody knows now that a James Bond movie never shows nudity on the screen. But that was the sixties. A reproduction card set of these first James Bond bubble gum cards was issued in 1997 by “Daleon Ltd.” The printing of this reproduction set was limited to only 5000 sets. On eBay these reproduction sets pop-up from time to time. When lucky at a very reasonable price. When looking at the whole series, you may discover here and there some little errors or misprints. Mostly the edge of the card has been cut of in a non straight way or the picture on the card yields a bit more to the front or to the back. Let’s have a look on all the original cards and their errors.
Card N° 9 displays Daniela Bianchi. This card can be found displaying the whole of Daniela her left foot or her left foot touching the card border.
Card N° 22 displays one of the bathing beauties. This card can be found displaying the whole left shoe or just a part of it.
Notice the two variations on card N° 25, Shirley Eaton looking up and the other where she looks down. A combination of these two cards was sold on eBay the 23rd March 2008 for a staggering 106€.
Card N° 34 shows Honor Blackman sitting in the grass after enjoying some Judo practice with Sean Connery. The card can be found showing more grass at the bottom than in the card pictured on the left side. Because of this error, the cardnumber is printed to the bottom edge of the card.
Another well know variation is the picture of Ursula Andress as Honey Ryder shown on Card N° 35. The picture is more cropped and shows a little more of Honey’s bikini.
Card N° 39 displays a picture of Margaret Nolan. Again two variations slept into the packs, one showing Margaret's knee in full and another only showing half of her knee.
Card N° 44 displays a picture of Nadja Regin. In the left side picture her shoes are completly visible, the right one only displays half of her shoes. Just a slight detail, but for completist a must have.
Card N° 45 displays a picture of Margaret Nolan. The left picture is more cropped than the picture on the right. Again just a small detail, but a must have for completist.
Card N° 49 is clearly showing Sean Connery's hand on Zena Marchall's bottom. In the card on the left, the hand has been removed, probably it was also disgracefull for the young ones. This card is extremely rare.
Card N° 53 again displaying Nadja Regin with or without a full visible shoe.
Card N° 58 shown here below displays a very rare misprint. Not very clear but on the lower right side of the bathtub you can see the number “27”. The card is very rare and highly collectable.
(Special thanks to Jelle Vis for card variations N°9, N°22 & N°34.)