Licence to Critique

Episode 007 - The Return of Women Villains in the 1990s and 2000s

November 05, 2020 Dr. Lisa Funnell Season 1 Episode 7
Licence to Critique
Episode 007 - The Return of Women Villains in the 1990s and 2000s
Chapters
Licence to Critique
Episode 007 - The Return of Women Villains in the 1990s and 2000s
Nov 05, 2020 Season 1 Episode 7
Dr. Lisa Funnell

In this episode, I discuss the return of women villains in Bond films of the 1990s and 2000s. The Pierce Brosnan era features the highest concentration with antagonists who challenge the phallic masculinity of Bond. Their return coincides with the rise of postfeminism which had a strong influence on the depiction of women in American and British films of the time. By comparison, there has only been one woman villain in the Daniel Craig era - Valenka featured in Casino Royale (2006). While she is one of Bond's most threatening adversaries, her depiction and narrative treatment are both limited and limiting. She lacks the autonomy, competency, and agency that defined women villains like Fiona Volpe and Rosa Klebb in the 1960s. 

Show Notes

In this episode, I discuss the return of women villains in Bond films of the 1990s and 2000s. The Pierce Brosnan era features the highest concentration with antagonists who challenge the phallic masculinity of Bond. Their return coincides with the rise of postfeminism which had a strong influence on the depiction of women in American and British films of the time. By comparison, there has only been one woman villain in the Daniel Craig era - Valenka featured in Casino Royale (2006). While she is one of Bond's most threatening adversaries, her depiction and narrative treatment are both limited and limiting. She lacks the autonomy, competency, and agency that defined women villains like Fiona Volpe and Rosa Klebb in the 1960s.