General Gogol’s Grey Suit in The Spy Who Loved Me


James Bond’s ultimate “frenemy” is the KGB general Anatol Alexis Gogol, who appears in six Bond films as an unlikely ally to Bond or as someone from the opposing side who has an amicable relationship with Bond. General Gogol is played by Walter Gotell, who first appears in the Bond series as SPECTRE member Morzeny in From Russia Love. With seven appearances in the Bond series, Gotell is tied with Roger Moore for acting in the fifth most number of Bond films. Gotell’s first appearance as General Gogol is in The Spy Who Loved Me, and when Bond meets him at his Egyptian field headquarters he is wearing clothes that contrast him with his new British allies. This grey suit is part of the second outfit Gogol wears in his first Bond film.

To represent the Soviet Union and communism, General Gogol is dressed in a simple manner to contrast James Bond’s more flamboyant fashions. Gogol wears bland clothes in comparison to Roger Moore’s Bond’s clothes. Gogol’s cool-toned grey suit contrasts Bond’s warm earth tones in The Spy Who Loved Me, representing his cold—though unexpectedly likeable—Soviet manner and the cold weather of Russia.

Gogol dresses similarly to how Sean Connery formerly dressed as James Bond, in a light grey suit, cream shirt and black tie, all without much interest to demonstrate a lack of individuality in communism. His outfit looks as minimalist as his Russian office. Because minimalism was no longer Bond’s style in 1977, Gogol is able to take on something reminiscent in colour palate of Bond’s former wardrobe and use it to contrast with the current James Bond. Gogol’s look also reminds us of the past, showing that the Soviets are not so concerned with current fashions. Today, Gogol’s outfit is less dated than much of what Roger Moore wears in The Spy Who Loved Me, but overall it is less refined and more pedestrian

General Gogol not only contrasts with Bond’s look but also with Bond’s boss M, who looks much more relaxed in a navy blazer and taupe slacks with brown suede shoes. M’s light blue shirt also paints him as friendlier than the Soviet general.

Gogol’s lightweight light blue-grey wool suit looks plain from a distance, but close up it reveals a subtle fancy-stripe pattern. Because the film’s production was based in England, the suit is most likely made by an English tailor or costumer.

A full-fitting button three suit jacket with its high-button stance is used to make him look more old-fashioned and uptight than others’ button-two jackets, though by only fastening the middle button it helps him to look more at ease. The medium-width lapels roll just below the top button, which means the top button shows but is not designed to be fastened. The jacket is cut with soft shoulders and gently roped sleeve heads. It has has a fairly straight cut through the body, with a lean chest and little waist suppression to give him a more mature and old-fashioned look. The jacket is detailed with a long single vent, straight flap hip pockets and three-button cuffs. The suit has black buttons.

The suit trousers bring Gogol halfway into the 1970s, with a medium-wide straight leg. The trousers look less fashion-forward than what James Bond wears and are similar to what M wears. The trousers are supported with a belt.

General Gogol and M wear the same clothes again for their brief appearance in the final scene of The Spy Who Loved Me

Bond-series shirtmaker Frank Foster made Gogol’s cream cotton voile shirt, which has a long semi-spread collar and mitred button cuffs. Gogol’s black ribbed silk tie is most likely tied in a half-Windsor knot. He prominently wears a large Russian red star tie pin to represent the Soviet Union.

Gogol’s shoes are well-shined black high-vamp slip-ons with moccasin toes. His beige socks coordinate with his cream shirt, though grey socks that match the suit would have been a more elegant choice.


  1. General Gogol’s suit looks pretty accurate for late 1970s Soviet Union. I found this clip of the 1977 Soviet Congress. The quality is not the best but from what you can make out the suits look very similar to what Gotell wears in this scene, including the 3-roll-1 suit jacket you catch a glimpse of 8 seconds into the video.

  2. Looks like M has committed the same faux pas as early Connery Bond by fastening both buttons of a two-button jacket. For shame M, for shame!

  3. It looks like in the later scene he was wearing a different tie. It’s still black, but it has a tessellated pattern of gray diamonds with spots in their centers.


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