San Monique is a fictional island country in the Caribbean Sea. The ruthless Dr. Kananga served as its head of government and Prime Minister until his death at the hands of James Bond. The location first appeared in the 1973 James Bond film Live and Let Die, and was subsequently re-imagined for the 1984 tabletop role-playing game James Bond 007, and was mentioned in the accompanying novelization of Die Another Day (2002).
The last part of the pre-title sequence of the film shows the ritualistic murder of MI6 Agent Baines. Highly influenced by voodoo, Baines has blood thrown at him, and is then bitten by a poisonous snake, dying instantly.
James Bond is later sent out there to aid CIA double agent Rosie Carver with investigating Kananga. James easily eliminates a snake sent into his bathroom to kill him with an improvised flamethrower (he burns it to death with his cigar and a jet of fire from his deodorant).
Located in the Golf of Mexico, 175 miles away from Cuba, the thirty-eight square miles island was discovered by Columbus in 1493. 300 years later, in the 18th century, British settlers arrived, but never claimed the island. They were supplanted in the 19th century by Spanish and French settlers who gave the island its name and architecture. Some American tourism began in the 1960s, followed by a move by the government to modernize and industrialize the country. In 1976, San Monique proclaimed its independence and joined the United Nations.
Officially, five years prior to the game's events, Dr. Emman Kananga was elected premier of the island. In reality, Kananga seized power and made himself absolute dictator; he acquired and now maintains his position by means of Solitaire's predictive powers and Baron Samedi's and High Priest Dambala's voodoo. All opposition to his rule has been ruthlessly exterminated, and the general populace holds the voodoo figures in a combination of awe and terror. Aside from their fear of voodoo, the islanders are fairly happy, if economically depressed. Although considerable financial aid has poured into San Monique, it has been used instead to build Kananga's palace, opium fields, and underground base. Kananga met American gangster Mr. Big several years prior, and both men developed their plan to take over drug operations in the United States. Kananga is in charge of growing poppies in San Monique and distilling the opium paste. The paste will be mixed in with shipments of molasses (a famous export of San Monique) and will be imported into the United States through New Orleans.
The island's capital, The Quarter, is located in the north-east of the island, and is where much of the Old World charm and ornate architecture of the French settlers still remains. It contains the only major tourist accommodation, the Hotel Cabaret. Other notable locations include Fort Adkins, built by the British in 1769 and Crocus Bay, with its natural harbor. Snake Point, on the north-east corner of the island, is the personal property of the Premier and access is prohibited. Kananga constructed his palace on the northern tip of Snake Point. A convenient location because of the natural cave system underneath the cliffs; which were made into his underground base. Solitaire's house, Dambala's village and the poppy fields are all located on Snake Point. The molasses processing plant is located on Scrub Island. The Island's currency is the San Monique (SM) dollar, with an exchange rate of $6 SM to $1 US. Principal official sources of income for the island include fishing, sugar cane, and lobster spearing. At Port Linda is a salt industry, providing seasoning to several Caribbean islands.
Die Another Day (novelisation)
In the novelisation of Die Another Day, James Bond meets with a Cuban sleeper contact named Raoul at his cigar factory. Next to an old copy of the Field Guide to Birds of the West Indies is a faded map of the nearby island of San Monique.
Behind the scenes
The name "San Monique" could be a linguistic error, as "San" is short for "Santo", a Spanish or Italian masculine word for "Saint", while "Monique" is a French feminine name, so the correct spelling of the name could actually be "Sainte Monique" or "St. Monique", with "Sainte" being the French feminine word for "Saint".
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Klug, Gerard Christopher  (1984). "Supplemental material: Tourist information on San Monique", James Bond 007 RPG: Live and Let Die. Victory Games.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 Klug, Gerard Christopher  (1984). "San Monique", James Bond 007 RPG: Live and Let Die. Victory Games, p.46.
- ↑ Klug, Gerard Christopher  (1984). James Bond 007 RPG: Live and Let Die. Victory Games, p.6.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Klug, Gerard Christopher  (1984). "O: Kananga's Palace", James Bond 007 RPG: Live and Let Die. Victory Games, p.52.
- ↑ Benson, Raymond (7 November 2002). "Chapter 7: Jinxed", Die Another Day.