On Thursday, the Australian Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS) announced it was looking for recruits, and made the unusual decision of posting a "virtual interview" for potential applicants online, opening up their highly classified gates to the public.
Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop told Fairfax Media that not many people knew of ASIS's work, making it hard for the agency to find, well, spies.
"Applicants are invited to take what will be the most interesting job interview they are likely to face, which will identify those smart, perceptive, empathetic individuals with the 'human intelligence' to work for ASIS," she said.
Smart. Perceptive. Empathetic. That makes sense. But if my understanding of lady spies in TV and movies is anything to go by, I am pretty sure they left out a number of other requirements.
For example, where in the virtual interview did it mention that the applicant must be sexy to the point of dangerous?
Exactly how are you going to get an otherwise rational Russian spy to forget everything he's been taught by the KGB and fall into dramatic lust with you? Didn't these people see Atomic Blonde? What about Mr & Mrs Smith? OK, fine. Whatever. It's not my place to shame ASIS.
It's just a little bit curious they didn't ask for women who were adept at wearing thigh-high boots and leather bustiers under trench coats? How else are they going to be able to lure in the target, tie him up with their whip under the pretense of a "bondage" game of "role play" and promptly kill him by strangulation?
How are they expected to stand on his chest with one leg, if that leg is not nestled snugly within a latex boot or spiky high heel? This is not a game - it's high stakes espionage! (ASIS, if you're reading, you can use that one.)
But seriously, where is the professionalism? The least we can do is have a questionnaire about push-up bras.
All right then. So ASIS don't care about the age-old game of seduction (which is really weird), but OK.
Let's talk wigs. Because ASIS didn't and they need to. They need to ask applicants if they look hot in a jet-black bob wig, complete with fringe. That is the only way to disguise a woman spy, as anyone who has seen Salt or Alias or even the trailer for Jennifer Lawrence's latest film, Red Sparrow, will gladly tell you.
If they are already brunette, the bob wig should be blonde, a la Lawrence. I hate to nit-pick, but I just don't understand how else they are going to be able to walk stealthily away from the car bomb they just planted as it blows up behind them? With ordinary hair, I suppose? Oh ASIS, how did you get this so wrong?
On the topic of disguise, I noticed in the virtual interview there weren't any questions on accents, specifically, dodgy English or Russian ones. It's a small matter, but it's important. Perhaps not as important as being able to identify which eyepatch-wearing, square-jawed hottie is going to betray you the second you fall in love with him, but it's up there.
Quick tangent, because ASIS are probably already across this, but I also noticed there were no questions on whether the applicant can analyse green maps on a computer screen, and if they can adequately point to a flashing red orb, zoom in with their bare hand, (like they would an iphone, but sexier) and say "There. That's him" in the right combination of English-American posh twang?
It's not all life-or-death, of course. For example, there's no reason to put a silencer on your gun because there is guaranteed to be a really soft linen napkin you can wrap around it at the hotel where you're staying at, seducing that Russian. There's also no need to worry about being beaten by men twice your size because with a few graceful kicks from your high-heeled self, they will fall completely unconscious and might even die. But, listen, they will probably fall for your dangerously hot self first, so it's fine.
Final note for the good people at ASIS: can you please make sure that there is some sort of shadowy father figure to train the lady spy? He needs to be the only guy she has ever trusted, so preferably known to her from birth. I'm not sure how you're going to manage that --I'll leave you guys to nut out the details.
But Father Figure should have the aura of a Romanian gym coach, the quiet rage of Mandy Patinkin in Homeland, and the grumpy weariness of Harrison Ford at the end of Raiders. And, he should be highly skilled at taking off his bifocals to pinch the bridge of his nose when he finds out you've vanished into thin air and gone officially rogue ...