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6 Classic Bond Girls

The Glamorous, Cunning and Unforgettable Women of James Bond

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Whether glamorous and sophisticated or deadly and cunning, Bond girls have always been undeniably beautiful. A regular feature of every Bond movie since Dr. No (1962), Bond girls typically wind up being 007’s primary love interest and often helps him complete his mission, though on occasion they have been enemies or merely just eye candy. And the most memorable have names that serve as sexually-tinged double entendres.

Outside of Bond himself, the role has typically been high profile and has often given a boost to a young actress’ career, though more than one has fallen off the radar. While some have been forgettable or merely competent, there are quite a few that are ingrained in our minds forever. Here are six classic Bond girls from the classic spy movie franchise.

1. Honey Ryder – ‘Dr. No’ (1962)

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The original and still the best, Ursula Andress has been the quintessential Bond girl ever since she emerged from the Caribbean Sea in a white bikini. Though she doesn’t make her first appearance until halfway into Dr. No, Honey Ryder – her name being the first of several double entendres throughout the franchise – helps 007 (Sean Connery) infiltrate Dr. No’s hideout after he gains her trust. Andress won the Golden Globe for New Star of the Year, even though her voice was dubbed over by another actress, and later played another Bond girl, Vesper Lynd, in the James Bond spoof, Casino Royale (1967), starring Peter Sellers, Orson Welles and David Niven. She spent the remainder of her career appearing in European productions.
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2. Pussy Galore – ‘Goldfinger’ (1964)

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Played by Honor Blackman, Pussy Galore ranks second only behind Honey Ryder as the greatest of all Bond girls, while her infamous name – a double entendre if there ever was one – has been part of the cultural zeitgeist ever since. An expert pilot, judo master and ally of would-be thief Auric Goldfiner (Gert Fröbe), Galore exemplified the glamour and sophistication of other Bond girls, while also displaying considerable skill, independence and surprising immunity to 007’s initial advances. Of course, Bond manages to seduce her in the end and turn Galore against her boss, leading to a happy consummation beneath a parachute. At 39 years old, Blackman was the oldest actress to be a Bond girl. Prior to Goldfinger, she was Cathy Gale on The Avengers (1962-64), and followed her famed role with a long career on stage and screen that lasted well into the next century.
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3. Plenty O’Toole – ‘Diamonds Are Forever’ (1971)

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Another one with a great double entendre for a name, Plenty O’Toole is actually the second tier Bond girl in Diamonds Are Forever to Jill St. John’s diamond smuggling Tiffany Case. Played by Lana Wood, sister Natalie Wood, O’Toole was Bond’s opportunistic would-be girlfriend who makes his acquaintance at a Las Vegas casino, only to be thrown from a window into a pool after being mistaken for Case. Though her time on screen was short, Wood made the most of it and lived on as one of the more memorable Bond girls of any era. Wood’s career was overshadowed by her more famous sister, though she continued to act on television and in film well into the 1980s.
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4. Anya Amasova – ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ (1977)

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A KGB spy provocatively known as Agent XXX, Anya Amasova was as dangerous as she was beautiful, and was one of the first Bond girls who was seen as 007’s equal. Played by American actress Barbara Bach, Amasova spends most of The Spy Who Loved Me trying to one-up Bond, as both try to stop Karl Stromberg (Curd Jürgens) from turning the world into an underwater paradise. Of course, the two eventually fall into bed together – literally and figuratively – and work together to take down Stromberg despite being on opposite sides. Bach went on to appear in Force 10 from Navarone (1978) and married Beatle Ringo Starr, but ultimately left acting in the mid-1980s.
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5. Dr. Holly Goodhead – ‘Moonraker’ (1979)

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Sure, she was a little dull. But she did have the second best double entendre name behind Pussy Galore. Played by veteran actress, Lois Chiles, Dr. Goodhead is an astronaut working for villain, Hugo Drax, a wealthy industrialist who plans on poisoning humans on Earth and repopulating the planet with genetically perfect young men and women. Turns out, however, that she’s really a CIA agent who winds up helping Bond (Roger Moore) stop Drax’s diabolical plot. Chiles was originally approached to be the Bond girl in The Spy Who Loved Me, but turned down the role since she was taking a break from acting at the time. She has appeared frequently on TV and in films since Moonraker and remains one of the few Bond girls who enjoys being remembered for the role.
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6. Melina Havelock – ‘For Your Eyes Only’ (1981)

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Certainly one of the more complicated Bond girls and, depending on who you ask, the one whose receives the most mixed reviews – either you love her or you hate her. Played by French actress, Carole Bouquet, Havelock first meets Bond outside Madrid after she assassinates a Cuban hitman who killed her marine salvage operator parents. After fleeing his men in a bright yellow Citroën, she continues her quest for vengeance and narrowly escapes an undersea death while dragged with 007 through the coral reefs in Greece by a speedboat. Bouquet originally auditioned for Dr. Holly Goodhead in Moonraker, but lost out to Lois Chiles, which proved fortuitous since she was far more memorable as the revenge-minded Havelock.
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