(The opinions in this article reflect those of a pedantic wretch who, if asked later, probably has already changed his mind, so don’t bother asking in the first place).
There have been tall ones and short-ish ones; there have been brown hairs, black, and blonde. Some were ruthless and emotionless, others criers and wits.
In total, there have been six actors that played the legendary spy hero, James Bond, for the EON Films. From the tall, suave, and sexy Sean Connery to the built like a Greek god Daniel Craig, all the Bonds have all their own individual takes on the character Fleming created in his novels. Yet there can only be one ultimate Bond (according to this opinion writer).
Who is it then (if you care)?
6. George Lazenby- The only actor to have played Bond outside of the British Isles, and the only one to act in only one single film: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
Although Lazenby gifted us with a Bond that is more human than any of the others, his is also the least ruthless. He cries at the end of the film, and is visibly scared in parts. Bond is meant to be ruthless, a mere utensil of the state to achieve its ends, not a man with much emotions.
5. Pierce Brosnan- He is Irish and did indeed exude charm. If you’re like me, growing up in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, in your mind every single time you hear of the name ‘James Bond’ you think of Brosnan. He brought back the film franchise from its slump after Dalton’s run in 1995 with Goldeneye, and ever since then he has been a Bond fanatics favourite. His films were flashy, edgy, and new; the villains were individuals instead of nations.
He was smooth and polite, risky and risqué. Yet he cannot be said to be in the top three. His Bond is much too polite, too politically correct and too far away from the character that Fleming envisioned in his novels.
4. Daniel Craig- The only buff Bond, yet he is too blonde. Yes he is ruthless, humourless, tough, a misogynist, and has all the classical elements of physicality that we all love from Connery; however, he is too buff. All the other Bonds were relatively un-buff individuals, who were tough from experience and not from conditioning. His films are, however, masterpieces. They are aesthetically pleasing (“ladykiller”, no?), the girls are gorgeous, Bond’s card playing skills typically remarkable, and the opening theme songs (Chris Cornell!) are the best since The Living Daylights. All in all, Craig is a tremendous actor and a tremendous Bond, but not tremendous enough.
3. Roger Moore- Moore’s portrayal of Bond was as bit as ruthless as Connery’s, every bit as tough, and every bit a womanizer. However, he didn’t take the role seriously; he was too humorous; and, he always had a way to get out of a sticky situation seemingly up his sleeves. He was, moreover, too old by the time he stepped down (he was 58!). However, from the beginning of his tenure till the last, his films are some of the most lovable and watchable ever created for the Bond franchise. Never is there a dull moment and, though the special effects are old and often unbearable, the effects of Moore’s raised eyebrow still chokes up the women, and some men too.
2. Timothy Dalton- Dalton gets a bad rep amongst Bondians because, during his two memorable times in movie screens as Bond, the viewings of the films and the earnings garnered from those viewings went down. Perhaps this was because his Bond was too real. There is almost no humour at all in Timothy Dalton’s two Bond Films. In his 1987 The Living Daylights, his Bond is the most ruthless of all Bonds: he uses the Bond girl of the film as a means to his ends, and lies to her throughout the majority of the film. In his second film, 1989’s License to Kill, the violence is intense, and almost every other scene in the movie has either ass whooping or asses being blown to smithereens. Where the virtues of the films lie, however, is that his Bond is the most realistic portrayal of Bond in all of the 20+ films. He is a tool of the state who uses others as tools; and, unlike, he does in fact rebel against the authority of M when he thinks that his orders are fallacious and redundant.
1. Sean Connery- Its Sean Connery after all. What more has to be said?