James Bond Has a 'Severe' Drinking Problem, Exhibits Most Criteria for Alcohol Use Disorder, Experts Say

james bond
In this undated handout photo from Eon Productions, actor Daniel Craig poses as James Bond. A team of researchers have suggested that the fictional spy suffers from "severe alcohol use disorder." Greg Williams/Eon Productions via Getty Images

James Bond, the fictional British spy known for his love of "shaken, not stirred" martinis, has been working for the U.K.'s secret service all while harboring a potentially fatal drinking problem, according to academics.

A team of researchers who have examined Bond's drinking habits for the past six decades ruled he has "severe alcohol use disorder," drinking on average 4.5 times per movie.

The article, titled License to Swill, published in the Medical Journal of Australia, suggests there is evidence that Ian Fleming's creation has a "chronic alcohol consumption problem at the 'severe' end of the spectrum," after analyzing all 24 movies in the franchise, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

Lead author Professor Nick Wilson, of Australia's University of Otago, Wellington, said Bond's most worrying moment of drinking occurred during 2008's Quantum of Solace, where he drank six "vesper" martinis, a gin and vodka-based cocktail which substitutes Kina Lillet for vermouth.

That particular binge-drinking session amounted to 24 units of alcohol, enough to produce a blood alcohol level that can prove fatal. However, in one of the James Bond novels, researchers noted that Bond drank 50 units of alcohol in one day—"a level of consumption which would kill nearly everyone."

"Other notable features include a medical scan that showed his liver was 'not too good' and a MI6 report on Bond that stated, 'alcohol and substance addiction indicated,'" Wilson added.

As well as the amount of drinking Bond does, the activities he performs while apparently under the influence are also potentially hazardous. These include getting into fights, driving vehicles, operating complex machinery and having "sex with enemies, sometimes with guns or knives in the bed," Wilson said.

While the article recommends Bond seeks medical help for his problem, it also suggests some best practices for his employers.

"To start with, M should no longer offer Bond drinks in workplace settings," the researchers said.

"Further, MI6 management needs to redefine Bond's job to reduce his stress levels. More field support and a stronger team approach are needed so that his duties do not weigh as heavily upon him.

"His workplace (MI6) needs to become a responsible employer and to refer him to support services, and to change its own workplace drinking culture."

The article won joint first prize in the Medical Journal of Australia'sChristmas competition, in which academics put forward their nomination for quirkiest piece of research.