I wanted to make a post about OO7 for quite some time, but wanted it to be something more than just “Favourite OO7 actor”. So, I decided to make a comparison to these two films. OHMSS was George Lazenby’s only outing as the legendary superspy James Bond. And the tale too is rather an unconventional one by Bond standards: in order to locate the criminal mastermind Blofeld, Bond must ally himself with underworld kingpin Draco - the catch is that he must bond himself to Draco’s daughter Teresa. So the two of them shack up, Bond locates and takes on Blofeld... and here is the interesting part: Bond and Teresa fall in love. This makes Bond a vulnerable human with fallacies and depth, very unlike most Bonds seen before/since (till Craig anyway). “This never happened to the other fellow,” he remarks – and while this truism probably didn’t go down well with audiences back then, today it makes for an interesting exploration at the man behind the image, at the truth behind the fantasy. And more interestingly is what happens in the end: Bond and Teresa depart for a happily-ever-after tale... then BANG! Blofeld appears and kills Teresa. This was not the fantasy OO7 where he wins the day and gets the girl, no this was a realistic look at the world of espionage, where you can never turn your back on your enemies, where allies/loved ones can turn on you or worse end up dead, and where there can never be permanent happy endings. It’s more real, more painful and more bittersweet (because that’s how life truly is). CASINO ROYALE moved along parallel lines (NOT A REMAKE, as some critics claimed): Bond is allied with the sensual and smart accountant Vesper Lynd to capture a criminal with links to an international cartel. Bond wins, the two fall in love... then the cartel makes its deadly strike, leaving Vesper dead and Bond bereft. I must say this is the superior film of the two, due to it handling the concept in a more contemporary manner: Bond is more thuggish and less suave as he comes into his own as the spy god, there is no evil organization but rather a cartel with people EVERYWHERE, and of course, Le Chiffre is a magnificent adversary. But on the other hand, the love story doesn’t really work too well: the two DO get together but there is a definite lack of emotional sentiment (to be fair this is OO7, it can’t possibly be mushy melodrama) and the fact that this is a proto-Bond and not the final Bond that we all know and love is a little disappointing. I don’t know which one is better, I can’t decide. Nor will I make a poll, because unless it was Craig or Lazenby in both films it’s not a proper comparison. But what are your opinions?