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A graphic that needs more design

This interactive graphic was published by the Telegraph on Oct. 26 after the new James Bond movie, Skyfall, made its debut.

I chose it simply because it’s a break from many recent interactive graphics on Hurricane Sandy. It’s simple and not very important, but it’s lighthearted. I like it because it refreshes my memory of some Bond movies I’ve seen.

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However, I am not very impressed by the first part, Bond Box Office, either the format or the color. The graphic is basically a big bar chart showing the box offices of all the 22 Bond movies. The background is a black gradient and other elements are in white. If you move your mouse over the bar charts or the pictures of the six actors, the white color turns into yellow.

Sounds like the “least interactive graphic ever,” as one of the comments read.

By the way there’s a typo in the chatter. Box office, not bof office.

I’d like to add more interactive components to this part. Looks like Thunderball of 1965 earned the most money, while License to Kill of 1989 had the least. I might point out one or two major reasons why these two movies had different performance, just to give viewers more context. People who haven’t seen these Bond movies would know what to expect, and might start watching the most popular one. People who are longtime fans of Bond movies may get a recap of some classic or bad movies.

This plain first part reminds me of the question I would think every time before I start doing a graphic. If I am looking at the data on the box office, what can I do to make it visually appealing? I have to admit that a bar chart would probably be the first thing that comes to my mind. It’s no denying that a bar chart is simple yet effective.

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Then the second part gives me an inspiration.

The centerpiece of the second part, Ultimate Bond is the swirling shape in the middle. I think they have symbolic meanings. The circles and the cross inside the innermost circle mimic the gun target. And the swirling shape represents a “bond.”  For example, Pierce Brosnan’s curve is the closest to a circle, so he’s the most “bonded.” The criteria for being “bonded,” include “number of kills, women bedded, vodka martinis ordered, and ‘Bond, James Bond’ introductions made for each 007.”

Then I am thinking, for the first part, maybe we could use a bubble chart to show the different box offices, and make the bubbles resemble the gun targets just like the one in the second part.

I think it’s a good interactive graphic overall. The idea is interesting, and the second part looks cool. But just as the comment read, it’s not interactive enough. More complicated data could be added to convey more information.

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