Originally Posted by The Inflicted
It's not just about expectations, it's about functionality.
Bond movies work because they're escapism in a very literal sense. They're about a man who leaves his home and boss behind and goes on dangerous adventures. The tone of the movies has changed greatly over the years, at various times campy, fantastic, and now gritty, but the purpose of the movies has always been the same, which is for the audience, usually men, to have an adventure vicariously through Bond. Some variance from what has become the "Bond formula" has been good, but too much of it, like making M some kind of deuteragonist instead of an exposition cipher, was starting to interfere with the core function of the films.
you realize that in itself is already an expectation of what a bond film "should" be? m having a larger role isn't the problem, otherwise every other escapist film sharing the same supposed "function" in existence with a supporting character would have received bad reviews with this point as a direct problem as well.