The news that producers have coined in £30m in product placement deals for the new James Bond film does not surprise me at all.
Bond movies are product placement incarnate, from ill-adivsed deals with BMW, wrist watches, computers, even the clothes on 007's back.
What is surprising - if reports are to be believed - are the deals being lined up allowing Chinese companies to display their wares alongside MI6's top fictional agent.
Unless, of course, it's all a great double-bluff:
Q: "Now, pay attention 007. In these tough times, even our intelligence agencies have got to make ends meet, so we're kitting you out with some of this new stuff. Can't say I'm entirely pleased, mind you"The new Bond film: "Our Good Friends in China, Especially Those at the Guangzhou No.1 Plastics and Engineering Concern" is released into cinemas on 9 November 2012.
Bond: "You mean I've got to hand back the Aston?"
Q: Worse than that, Bond. We've just bought in a job lot of these attractive, reasonably-priced James Bond action figures from our new pals at the Guangzhou No.1 Plastics and Engineering Concern in China. Just give them to your foe and we can guarantee that he'll no longer be a problem."
Bond: "You mean it'll explode the minute he tries to use it?"
Q: "Don't be stupid, 007. He'll be poisoned quite to death by the lead in the paint"