too close to call

Would Bond Make a Better Lincoln or Would Lincoln Make a Better Bond?

Photo: Columbia Pictures, Dreamworks

This week, many Americans will choose between two great men: James Bond and Abraham Lincoln. Both cultural icons have movies coming out this weekend (Skyfall in wide release and Lincoln in limited) and both were famously awesome at their respective jobs. But which one is so awesome that they could excel in the other’s line of work? Would Abraham Lincoln make a better James Bond than Bond would make a Lincoln, or vice versa? (Think of it like Trading Places but with less frozen concentrated orange juice.) We have supplied the pros and cons for each. And since it is the season, cast your vote below!

Abraham Lincoln As James Bond


  • A completely surprising voice that would strike confusion and fear into all villains’ hearts, especially those with goat phobias.
  • An intense nationalism means he’d be willing to risk life and limb for his country.
  • Incredibly driven in accomplishing his goals.
  • Experience with unpredictable women.
  • Able to hide gadgets in his hat (and/or beard).
  • Does what it takes to get the job done. 625,000 civilians died because of the Civil War; the man doesn’t need a license to kill.
  • To quote Tyler Durden: “Big guy, big reach. Skinny guys fight till they’re burger.”


  • Won’t know how to drive an Aston Martin. Or, really, any car.
  • Famously ugly and a bit socially awkward, so there go all the ladies.
  • Not a big drinker or gambler. (Not to mention, martinis weren’t invented until the 1910s.)
  • A proclivity for long speeches won’t help matters. If he were playing baccarat and slipped into one of his hours-long orations, he’d be so distracted that a villain could just come up and shoot him in the leg.
  • Lets his guard down at the theater.
  • “Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln” is a mouthful.

James Bond As Abraham Lincoln


  • Handsomeness will allow him to avoid all the times political opponents ragged on Abe’s looks. (Also, he could probably seduce Jefferson Davis’s wife, just to show who’s boss.)
  • Just try to assassinate this guy.
  • An intense nationalism means he’d be willing to do whatever it took to keep the country together.
  • Would not stop until the mission was accomplished.
  • Could use that Bond-ian charm to sway Congressional opposition.
  • Modern clothes and incredible gadgets could make the public see him as a man-god.


  • It would be difficult for a bachelor to win a presidential election. (Especially one with a drinking problem. Especially one with a foreign accent.)
  • Too much of a go-it-alone type to be a Lincoln-level consensus builder.
  • Not fond of being cooped up behind a desk.
  • Being a blunt instrument doesn’t really correlate with political savvy.
  • Regardless of accent, the people demanded speeches in Lincoln’s time. A few short, quippy sentences could never inspire a nation or end slavery.

Now you make the call …

Lincoln vs. Bond: Who’d Be Better As the Other?