Mr Bond, James Bond, is a serious Fire Bug. In 1969 he went to an acting workshop where he ran into a fire eating instructor who was teaching trailing tricks to women. He used the fire manipulation skills he learned to create a circle show and do a little busking; this got him noticed by a circus agent who picked him up for a three year run. It may have been his first real push into show biz.
Brosnan later ate fire on two television shows; Remington Steele (1984) in an episode called “High Flying Steele” and, more importantly, on the Muppet Show (Episode 204).
The terrible fire eating mix up Brosnan made on the Muppet show is a great cautionary tale about about fuel safety.
Brosnan normally did his tricks with kerosene, which is what we all did before we smartened up and learned that white gas is far better. Now as any good fire bug knows, it’s important to use kerosene for “The Blow” because it is a fuel that require a good amount of wicking to burn and it is far less likely to burn back into your mouth.
When Pierce was preparing to go on with his act, the stage hand suggested he try this new, less awful tasting fuel. Pierce remembers:
“I was in the tuxedo. The prop guy was there and he said, ‘This (other) stuff is great. It doesn’t taste of anything, you don’t smell it.’ I went, ‘This is good. I’ll try this.” It was like rocket fuel. I blew it, it all came back into my mouth and my mouth blew up. I had blisters for the rest of the show.” – Quotation Credit
The fuel he ended up using was white gas. If you watch the clip below it clearly shows the flame burning back into his mouth, but Mr Bond takes it like a man and shows little sign of being injured. Because of that avoidable accident Brosnan rarely eats fire now, which is sad because it’s so damn cool.
Lesson: Always use the proper fuel for the proper tricks. For the Blow it is safest to use Kerosine, so just deal with the bad taste rather than the 2nd degree burns.