TV Cream

A bit of business

“Ah, list o’ Bond, I’ve been expecting you” – part five: 0010-001

TV Cream concludes its countdown of the 50 greatest moments from the James Bond films…

0010: Bond listens to a performance of a Bond theme

Linda McCartney not pictured

Great that they managed to get Linda McCartney to appear in person. (Live and Let Die, 1973)

Linda McCartney pictured

009: Bond meets a smart Alec

Bean counting

The only people who should ever call attention to Bond’s life outside MI6 are those who would have reason to have read up on him (agent XXX, Tiffany Case, Robbie Coltrane) or secret service staff who have been petitioned in person by outraged chefs and humiliated tailors. 007’s treacherous ex-colleague Alec Trevelyan (Sean Bean) falls into the second category when he delivers a brilliantly bitchy prediction of Bond’s funeral: “A small memorial service, with only Moneypenny and a few tearful restauranteurs in attendance.” (Goldeneye, 1995)

008: A pigeon does a double-take in time to a Viennese polka while Bond drives through St Mark’s Square in a motorised gondola

Fowl play BLINK!


What do you mean it’s not in the book? (Moonraker, 1979)

007: “…close, but no cigar!”

Close, but no cigar

“James!” exclaims the best Moneypenny of them all, as 007 walks into her office. “Have you brought me a souvenir from your trip? Chocolates? An engagement ring?” Bond sidles over to her desk. “I thought you might enjoy one of these,” he declares, producing what can only be described as a tumescent metal tube. “How romantic,” observes Moneypenny, suggestively. “I know EXACTLY where to put that.” She promptly throws the container into her waste paper basket. “The story of our relationship,” sighs Bond. “Close – but no cigar.”  (The World is Not Enough, 1999)

006: Bond gives a driving lesson

The eyes still have it Some men don't like being taken for a ride

007 and XXX are in a van being methodically chewed to pieces by Jaws. Bond decides to pass the time by methodically chewing the scenery, settling back into the passenger seat and rifling through his repertoire of gags about women drivers. “Try the big one,” he informs Mrs Ringo Starr. “Can you play any other tune?…Let’s try reverse, that’s backwards… Would you like me to drive?” Of course, he’s not just being a sexist pig. Oh no. His jibes contrive to whip up XXX into a spot of Jaws-baiting road rage, while setting up the perfect retort once out of harm’s way. “Shaken,” she informs her companion coolly, “but not stirred” – at which Bond rolls his eyes, wonderfully. (The Spy Who Loved Me, 1977)

005: Bond considers a couple of points

Bond considers a couple of points

While posing as a businessman in the office of petrochemical megalomaniac Mr Osato (Teru Shimada), 007 finds talk turning to matters anatomical. After his host cautions him on the dangers of smoking, his host’s assistant Helga (Karin Dor) decides to reinforce her support of this position by referencing her own reinforced position. “Mr Osata believes in a healthy chest,” she flexes. “Really,” digests Bond, pointedly. (You Only Live Twice, 1967)

004: “It’s late, I’m tired, and there’s so much left to do.”

No rest for the wicked

Blofeld (Charles Gray) bemoans the lot of diabolical masterminds everywhere. (Diamonds are Forever, 1971)

003: The definition of safe sex

The definition of safe sex

It’s wise of our hero to remain armed in what appears to be a Russian leisure centre. It’s even wiser of him when it turns out the facilities are being shared by Xenia Onatopp, the Esther Rantzen of the anarcho-erotic underworld. “You don’t need the gun, commander,” she purrs. “That depends on your definition of safe sex!” retorts Bond, conscious of her predilection for swapping a pout for a bout. Sure enough, much verbal and physical petting ensues, until 007 has had enough. “No, no, no!” he states triumphantly. “No more foreplay!” (Goldeneye, 1995)

002: “Your problems are all behind you now!”

A little more cheek than usual

It’s the scene that always got cut out of ITV’s bowdlerised daytime versions of Bond, and one that has helped get the entire film bumped up from a PG to a 12. Both of these decisions were and are as ludicrous as the sequence itself, which is the second most flippantly yet amusingly outrageous moment in the whole of the official 007 canon. There is nothing suggestive here; just silliness. Heavens, it’s pure Carry On Bond, with our man pretending to call someone a bitch before slipping a cassette down their pants then making a joke about bottoms. Loose Women is a thousand times more offensive. (Diamonds are Forever, 1971)

001: The James Bond all-male close-harmony singers

Nobody does it wetter

“Do you think there’s a danger of the bends?” wonders Sir Frederick Gray, as the capsule containing Bond and Amasova bobs its way casually into the ledgers of cinematic legend. As the 007 “family” cluster round for a peek, somewhere off camera, clearing their collective throats, are the James Bond all-male close harmony singers, waiting for Roger Moore to deliver one of the greatest innuendos of them all. And waiting in line next to them, there’s only bloody Carly Simon and the greatest Bond theme of them all…

Baby's got the bends

Two minutes of (double 0) heaven ensues. (The Spy Who Loved Me, 1977)

Heroes one and all




  1. Mike

    October 6, 2012 at 11:36 am

    This has been a fantastic series and thanks so much for picking up on the ‘little moments’ – I still think the rooftop fight scene from You Only Live Twice is about as artistically brilliant as these films got, helped by Barry’s supposedly eastern influenced score. For me, The Living Daylights is the one stuffed with great bits – probably the scene where Bond’s chasing a baddie and thinks he’s caught him, only to find he’s pulled his gun on a little kid, is note perfect, especially the look of shock and humiliation on Dalton’s face.

  2. Calnert

    October 6, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    For the sake of posterity:

    7 entries
    Diamonds Are Forever
    The Spy Who Loved Me

    6 entries

    5 entries

    4 entries
    Live and Let Die
    The World Is Not Enough

    3 entries

    2 entries
    From Russia with Love
    You Only Live Twice
    Tomorrow Never Dies

    1 entry
    On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
    The Man with the Golden Gun
    A View to a Kill

    0 entries
    Dr. No
    For Your Eyes Only
    The Living Daylights
    Licence to Kill
    Die Another Day

    Casino Royale
    Quantum of Solace

    All in all a splendid list!

    • David Smith

      October 5, 2022 at 6:34 pm

      I’m sure I once saw, on the subtitles for one of ITV’s airings of The Spy Who Loved Me, the James Bond all-male close harmony singers credited as “SAILORS:” Maybe it said so in the screenplay?

  3. THX 1139

    October 7, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    No room for the For Your Eyes Only “MEEESTER BOOOOOND!!!” fit of pique where they they went, well, we didn’t like Blofeld anyway so ner?

  4. The Haj

    November 19, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    The Spy Who Loved Me, also starring HMS Fearless as herself. Which was very like Battle of the River Plate with Ancillies, Ajax and Cumberland all doing the same thing.

  5. Sidney Balmoral James

    October 5, 2022 at 7:31 pm

    Wonderful list – although a little harsh on Mr. Dalton, as there are some good moments in both of his films. License to Kill is actually quite a good film. A good Arnold Schwarzengger film that is rather than a Bond film. Also this list is unforgivably missing the sequence in Octopussy with a watch with the latest liquid crystal display and a big pair of knockers, which may well be the finest moment in cinema history. Well, that and the bit in Casino Royale when Peter Sellers puts his head around the door wearing a camp hat and says ‘Hello Sailor!’

  6. David Smith

    October 5, 2022 at 7:38 pm

    Surely worthy of a mention in dispatches are the various attempts at topical gags in the Bonds, ranging from the inspired (Dr No having nicked Goya’s missing portrait of the Duke of Wellington) to the (even then) slightly more head-scratching (the speedboat chase in TWINE soaking a bunch of car clampers, played by a bunch of car clampers from a contemporaneous BBC One docusoap).

  7. Sandy

    October 6, 2022 at 10:07 pm

    Fantastic list, shows what an incredible collection Bond movies are, never taking themselves too seriously (until lately perhaps).

    Double-take pigeon reminds me of the wonderful Creamguide Films commentary for Moonraker. Made all the more poignant by the loss of the incomparable Sir Roger Moore just before it’s release, but made more special by an absolutely beautiful tribute to Sir Roger Moore by Chris Diamond.

  8. Glenn Aylett

    October 9, 2022 at 2:27 pm

    Diamonds Are Forever seems to have done very well on this list of Bond moments probably because it’s a load of camped up fun, which after the brutal teaser and the fight in the lift, it lets its hair down once 007 reaches America. I still think the wedgie at the end is a classic moment, along with Blofeld in drag and Bambi and Thumper’s fight in the penthouse. ( Neither were credited and the actress who played Bambi was never seen in anything else).

  9. Richardpd

    October 9, 2022 at 10:04 pm

    Diamonds Are Forever has a lot of interesting set pieces dotted through the film, see the main entry for a bit list of them.

  10. Sidney Balmoral James

    October 10, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    I think those memorable set pieces must account for the popularity of what is all-in-all, a pretty duff film. Connery tired and bored; naff US locations which might be from any 70s film; unremarkable female lead; leering, innuendo-laden dialogue (even by the standards of Bond films); Charles Gray – who could be quite frightening in other roles – too suave and genial to be Blofeld; unresolved ending (we don’t see Blofeld die, and the oil-rig doesn’t blow up) and a meandering plot (Bond farting about in the desert, and that long sequence at Circus Circus, which doesn’t seem to advance the plot at all). Only real plus points are the John Barry score, and the quite sinister duo of Wint and Kidd, who happily kill old ladies, although it is characteristic of this cartoonish film that the fact they are gay is really laid on with a trowel, rather than being only suggested.

  11. Glenn Aylett

    October 10, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    You can look at DAF from two angles: it could have been a brutal revenge film starring George Lazenby out to find and kill Blofeld for having his wife murdered( indeed it starts like this when Bond forces information out of people about Blofeld), but Cubby Broccoli decided on a camped up, lighter movie that set the tone for later Bonds in the seventies and bringing back Connery ensured excellent box office. I find DAF so so, but it has its moments: Blofeld in drag, Kidd and Wint, Bambi and Thumper beating up Bond, the silly chase in the desert and the classic Connery style fight in the lift early on make it watchable.

  12. Richardpd

    October 10, 2022 at 10:40 pm

    Yes it’s a bit hit & miss but I think the hits outweigh the misses.

    The voice changing device & Q’s gadget to reverse it are another high point, as it Bond in a coffin being cremated.

  13. Sidney Balmoral James

    October 11, 2022 at 10:19 pm

    There is also the bit when Connery shoots the (wrong) Blofeld in the head with his piton gun, another glimpse of the vengeful Bond otherwise submerged in camp. I believe that originally the film was supposed to end with Bond chasing Blofeld in his little escape boat, making land, and then him falling into some sort of industrial crusher. None of which seems to have even been filmed. Perhaps they hoped to be able to use Blofeld again (this would however have been dependent on them persuading Kevin McClory to let them use the character – they had only licensed it for three films after Thunderball).

  14. Richardpd

    October 11, 2022 at 10:38 pm

    Quite a few scenes were films for Diamonds Are Forever but not used, like a cameo by Sammy Davis Jr.

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