Daniel Craig recently laughed off the popular fan theory that his five James Bond movies are all prequels set before Dr. No, but another line of inquiry related to Sean Connery’s 007 is now gaining some traction online. Reddit user Apprehensive-Test-26 has put forward a thoroughly detailed argument suggesting that Michael Bay’s The Rock is actually the late actor’s final outing as cinema’s most famous secret agent.
The theory uses plot points from the 1996 blockbuster, Connery’s six official outings as Bond and real-world history to make a case. It’s available to either read in its 3000-word entirety or watch as a seventeen-minute video, but we’ll do our best to condense it down as much as possible for your perusal.
Connery plays imprisoned convict John Mason in The Rock, the only man to ever escape from Alcatraz. The theory posits that this is a code name used by Bond, who was captured during a covert mission and held captive under an alias, which is supported by government officials in the film saying his name didn’t bring up any results when they ran it through every system at their disposal; because he’s a spy working under a false moniker.
Bond/Mason was held without trial because it would have been too risky for MI6 to reveal what they were up to when he was caught, which could have had dire consequences for international relations. Mason escaped Alcatraz in 1963, one year after Dr. No, with the theory explaining that he was acting as James Bond between then and his eventual imprisonment almost a decade later, which is lend further credence by The Rock establishing he was on the run until at least 1972, one year after Connery’s final outing in Diamonds Are Forever was released.
While it’s never going to be regarded as official James Bond canon, a lot of the evidence stacks up, painting Connery’s turn in The Rock in an entirely different light.