Henry Cavill and Idris Elba have been going neck-to-neck (in the fandom’s mind) for the coveted role of 007 ever since the franchise rolled out the casting roster in the aftermath of No Time to Die. But seldom has the audience considered pitching Luther against Bond in a fight for the title of the more superior spy. If one takes out the factors of seniority and historical and literary significance, Luther might as well be just as sophisticated as the renowned sleuth conceived by Ian Fleming himself. And the character’s maker seems to know it too.
Also read: Luther: The Fallen Sun Review – Who Needs 007 When You Have Luther?
Idris Elba Gives a Nod to the Bond Franchise via Luther Film
The role of DCI Luther was made specifically for Idris Elba, or so it’s assumed when one witnesses the evolutionary rise of the actor and his on-screen alter ego over the past handful of years. The concept of an actor being born to play a certain role has become wildly popular in recent times and Luther, it seems, was similarly tailored for the British actor. And to embody the role of a recklessly ambitious sleuth in his search for justice who doesn’t mind coloring outside the lines and looking suave while doing it, isn’t essentially centric only to the international super-spy James Bond.
Elba has recently claimed while drawing inferences between both the characters, that:
“Not ‘better’ [than Bond], no. Luther’s equally engaging, equally s*xy, and great to see visually. But Bond is from a universe where espionage was the way to capture. Luther is from the world where you bang on the door, ‘Are you in there? I’m coming in.’ I think Luther fits with a bit more of a modern-day bad guy as opposed to someone from the taking-over-the-world style.”
Also read: As Henry Cavill James Bond Rumors Intensify, Idris Elba Rules Himself Out of the Race as First Black Actor to Play 007: “I’m going to be John Luther. That’s who I am”
And even though the actor may be right in pointing out the crucial difference, it still remains to be noted how Luther is more gritty and personal in its take than the internationally expansive Bond. The Daniel Craig era has been the only one to unflinchingly dive in-depth into the personal and emotional side of the spy’s life – something that was never attempted before. And in that, Luther already stands ahead in its exploration of the dark and gritty merged with the ugliness of a haunted personality.
Luther Series Creator Steps All Over James Bond
For Neil Cross, James Bond doesn’t hold a candle to John Luther. The latter is his creation and that essentially qualifies him to put his own above all the rest, so to speak. And so, there is a moment in the new Luther film, The Fallen Sun, where the audience finds Elba’s character turning down a martini: the infamous drink that 007 made famous. Speaking to Radio Times, he claimed that the scene was “an extended middle finger and a wink” to Bond.
When asked whether this was an attempt at getting himself recognized as a favorable candidate for the 007 franchise, Idris Elba cries out, “Oh my God, no! I’ve been saying for years, no!” and thus throwing out the remainder of the fandom’s hopes for getting to witness the Thor actor driving around in the Aston Martin.
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Nonetheless, Idris Elba is definitely happier in his role as the more contained and unsaturated John Luther than he would have been in the extremely exploited franchise. Moreover, it’s now common knowledge that Luther is inching toward a more expansive future with other actors taking up the role – someone who could “step in to play John” – when Elba is done with it. That sets up the Luther IP for a future where it can be just as coveted and in demand creatively as the widely popular James Bond himself.
Luther: The Fallen Sun is now available for streaming on Netflix.
Source: Radio Times