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James Bond Movie Retrospective: The Bond Girls

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
They’re just as critical to the success of the long-running James Bond franchise as expensive cars, incredible gadgets and explosive action. In fact, they have been a staple since the first ever bond novel, 1953’s “Casino Royale.” Known for their sexually suggestive names filled with double entendres, these leading women are critical to the success of Bond's mission. Larger than life and irresistible, these characters have given countless actresses a major career boost, while making them a part of cinematic history. Join http://www.WatchMojo.com as we take a look back at the history of the Bond Girls.
Transcript
James Bond Movie Retrospective: The Bond Girls

Some are good, some are bad, but none of them have ever been ugly! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re taking a look back at the history of the Bond Girls.

They’re just as critical to the success of the long-running James Bond franchise as expensive cars, incredible gadgets and explosive action. In fact, they have been a staple since the first ever bond novel, 1953’s “Casino Royale.”

Interestingly, they are inspired by a real-life love interest of Fleming, named Muriel Wright. An exceptionally beautiful model and sports enthusiast, she was unique for being tough, yet vulnerable and remarkably independent. Unfortunately, she died in an air raid during the Second World War. This tragedy would mark an ongoing theme that would characterize many of Bond’s women, namely an untimely death and a grief-ridden protagonist.

Aside from this, Bond girls have also become well recognized for their young age, usually being in their early to mid-twenties. Despite Bond having been written as a 30 year-old, older Bond actors such as Roger Moore have widened the age gap between the hero and his love interest, sometimes to uncomfortable extremes.

While the first ever Bond girl written was Vesper Lynd in “Casino Royale”, the first official one to appear on the silver screen was the stunning Honey Rider, played by Ursula Andress in 1962’s Dr. No.

Interestingly, not all of Bond’s sexual liaisons become major characters. In fact, only the larger-than-life women become major players within the story, with some switching allegiances, or turning out to be villains.

Nevertheless, Miss Moneypenny remains his most loyal admirer from the sidelines, showcasing some degree of restraint to the Bond character, who is regularly blending business and pleasure.

Despite love interests usually limited to one story each, there are a few exceptions. Among these is the character Sylvia Trench. While not an official Bond girl, she appeared in both “Dr. No.” and “From Russia with Love” as his reoccurring girlfriend. Remarkably, she even encouraged Bond’s preferred method of introducing himself.

Bond girls also tend to dress assertively. This consists of a masculine styling, often complete with wide leather belts and square-toed shoes and little make-up.

They also possess sexually suggestive names. These range from Moonraker’s Holly Goodhead to GoldenEye’s Xenia Onatopp, to the aforementioned Pussy Galore and Octopussy. These double entendres are thought to have begun with the first Bond girl’s name Vesper Lynd being a pun on the name “West Berlin.” In this instance, it signified her split loyalties, as she was written as a Soviet double agent.

In addition, most of these women tend to be already sexually experienced, however there is a catch. They usually have a torrid history with men, causing them to withdraw from the hero until he earns their trust and affection.

To date, only two girls have ever captured 007’s heart. These include Tracey di Vicenzo, whom he married, and Vesper Lynd. Sadly, they and many others were doomed, while the rest always seem to disappear without any explanation.

Despite this trend, most actresses who take on the roles receive a major career boost from the portrayals and become part of cinematic history.
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