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The razor-rimmed hat is a fictional steel-rimmed throwing-weapon worn by Oddjob, the Korean manservant of Auric Goldfinger. Oddjob's iconic weapon first appeared Ian Fleming's 1959 novel Goldfinger and was subsequently featured in EON Productions' 1964 James Bond film of the same name, as well as numerous spin-off and video-game appearances prompted by its popularity.

Appearances

Literary

"A light but very strong alloy, Mr Bond. I fear that will have damaged the felt covering, but Oddjob will put on another. He’s surprisingly quick with a needle and thread. As you can imagine, that blow would have smashed a man’s skull or half severed his neck."
― Goldfinger describes how the weapon works.[src]

Cinematic

In the film, Oddjob wears a Sandringham hat (unlike in the novel, where he wore a Bowler) lined with a sharpened steel rim, using it as a lethal weapon in the style of a chakram or a flying guillotine. It was shown to be very powerful, capable of cutting through steel and decapitating a stone statue.[1] He later uses it to kill Tilly Masterson, who was attempting to assassinate Goldfinger to avenge the death of her sister Jill. During the climax of the film Bond attempts to use Oddjob's own hat against him. When thrown at him, however, he simply dodges the hat with ease, causing it to get stuck between a pair of metal bars. When he goes to retrieve his hat and tries to pull it free, Bond grabs a sparking wire severed by the hat earlier on and thrusts the open end onto the bars. The electric current transfers to the bars and then to the metal in the hat's rim, which electrocutes Oddjob.[2]

The prop used in Goldfinger by Oddjob was made by British hat makers, Lock & Co.[3] The bowler hat was then adapted by inserting a chakram into the brim.[4] John Stears was responsible for making the hat fly. After Goldfinger, the hat came into the possession of the James Bond Fan Club. In 1998, the hat was auctioned at Christie's in a sale of James Bond memorabilia. The hat sold for £62,000.[5] In 2002, the hat was lent out for an exhibition at the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television in Bradford, commemorating the 40th anniversary of the release of Dr. No.[6] The hat was then auctioned again in 2006, when the final price was $36,000.[7] Replicas of the hat are sought after by collectors and replicas have been used as centrepieces for some exhibitions.[8] In 2008, one replica joined Bond exhibition at the National Motor Museum.[9]

Other appearances

In the 1991 animated series James Bond Jr. Oddjob wears a similarly weaponized hat, although it has been re-imagined as a purple top hat in a similar colour-scheme to his new hip-hop style clothes.

Video games

Due to its popularity, the hat has been featured in many 007 games which feature Oddjob as a character. Its earliest appearance was in the 1986 interactive fiction game, James Bond 007: Goldfinger, which was based loosely on the 1964 film. The 1993 action platformer, The Duel, featured a cloned Oddjob boss character with his throwing-hat. The weapon is easily avoidable by ducking, as Oddjob cannot throw it lower than head-height. Although Oddjob would return as a multiplayer character in 1997's iconic GoldenEye 007, his signature weapon would not feature until the 1998 Game Boy adventure, James Bond 007. In Nightfire (2002), the hat can kill an enemy in one hit and returns after being thrown for 30 seconds. In the 2010 re-make of Goldeneye 007, the Oddjob multiplayer character uses his instant-kill hat instead of grenades. 2012's 007 Legends re-imagined the Goldfinger plot for Daniel Craig's 007 and featured quick time events with Oddjob and his lethal hat. The throwing-hat returned most recently in the mobile menu-based role-playing game, James Bond: World of Espionage (2015), as collectible agency equipment.

Images

Trivia

  • Oddjob's lethal hat was ranked tenth in a 2008 20th Century Fox poll for the most popular movie weapon, which surveyed approximately 2,000 films fans.[10]

References

  1. Oddjob's killer bowler at Beaulieu. This is Hampshire (23 January 2008). Retrieved on 22 July 2012.
  2. Guy Hamilton (Director). Goldfinger [Film]. United Kingdom: Eon Productions.
  3. Bei Londons ältestem Hutmacher kaufen Madonna, Prinz Charles und 007-Bei Londons ältestem Hutmacher kaufen Madonna, Prinz Charles und 007. Glaubeaktuell (in German). Retrieved on 22 July 2012.
  4. Chakram.
  5. "Oddjob's hat bowls them over", BBC News, 17 September 1998. Retrieved on 22 July 2012. 
  6. "Bond show licensed to thrill", BBC News, 10 March 2002. Retrieved on 22 July 2012. 
  7. James Bond News :: MI6 :: Oddjob's deadly hat auctioned for $36,000. Mi6-hq.com. Retrieved on 2013-10-06.
  8. Oddjob's killer bowler at Beaulieu. Daily Echo (23 January 2008). Retrieved on 22 July 2012.
  9. James Bond News :: MI6 :: Oddjob`s killer bowler hat joins Bond exhibition at Beaulieu. Mi6-hq.com. Retrieved on 2013-10-06.
  10. Sophie Borland. "Lightsabre wins the battle of movie weapons", The Daily Telegraph, 2008-01-21. Retrieved on 2008-01-26. 
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