Tracy Draco vs. Xenia Onatopp

I feel these are the two best Bond girls of the series, but it's hard to pick which one is better. Does Xenia count as a Bond girl since she is a henchwoman, or does that not count?

Tracy is the best in the sense of the best developed character and performance, where as Xenia is the best for just raw sexiness and guilty pleasure, if that counts? What do you think?

Comments

  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,802Chief of Staff
    I think it's comparing apples to oranges, ironpony. They are completely different characters both in characterisation and plot function. Only being female links them.
    Tracy's best comparison is Vesper, and Xenia's is Fatima Blush.
  • ironponyironpony Posts: 56MI6 Agent
    Barbel wrote:
    I think it's comparing apples to oranges, ironpony. They are completely different characters both in characterisation and plot function. Only being female links them.
    Tracy's best comparison is Vesper, and Xenia's is Fatima Blush.

    That's true, but I guess that's what makes them the best Bond girls is I am comparing the best orange to the best apple of all the apples and oranges if that makes sense?

    I think I would have to say that Tracy is slightly better than Vesper and Xenia is slightly better tham Fatima though.
  • Shady TreeShady Tree London, UKPosts: 2,237MI6 Agent

    Glancing at the thread title got me imagining a girl fight! I'm not sure who'd win... Xenia is the pro but Tracy has some moves: just ask Grunther!

    Critics and material I don't need. I haven't changed my act in 50 years.
  • GymkataGymkata Minnesota, USAPosts: 2,941MI6 Agent

    If we're talking sheer competence and contribution to story, I respectfully submit that Dr. Holly Goodhead is the best of the lot. She's the only one of any of the Bond women to actually be vital to the third act of the film and never require rescuing. She's a true partner to Bond in most of the film and he honestly would not have succeeded in the mission without her.

    So there.

    Current rankings:
    OHMSS>FRWL>CR>TSWLM>YOLT>MR>SF>FYEO>GE>OP>DN>
    TWINE>TND>QOS>TB>TMWTGG>GF>LALD>TLD>AVTAK>SP>DAF>LTK>DAD
    Bond rankings: Lazenby>Moore>Connery>Craig>Brosnan>Dalton
  • Shady TreeShady Tree London, UKPosts: 2,237MI6 Agent
    edited April 11

    #Gymkata. I'd agree with your point in terms of Holly Goodhead's structural role in the story of MR, although, in terms of acting and performance, other Bond women whose competencies matter to plot outcomes, such as Pussy Galore or Wai Lin, are played more energetically and memorably, imho. (Both of my examples admittedly need rescuing.) That said, I'm always appreciative of love of MR!

    Critics and material I don't need. I haven't changed my act in 50 years.
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,546MI6 Agent

    I too think Xenia and Tracy are too different to say who's the "best". I'd say Tracy together with Vesper are the best Bond girls (but both die. Does that say anything about me or the series?). Xenia is the best henchwoman.

  • GymkataGymkata Minnesota, USAPosts: 2,941MI6 Agent
    edited April 11


    I'll absolutely agree that Lois Chiles turns in rather a duff performance as Dr. Goodhead. It's possible that she was directed to be a bit more 'flat' than usual so as not to rise above supporting status when she's clearly the 'co-lead' of the film in the third act...it is a James Bond film after all, not a James Bond/Holly Goodhead film.


    And I'll always, always, always defend MOONRAKER. I love the movie. It's also one of the very best directed of the films in terms of managing tone and allowing actors to play their roles just right. The only mistake in the film is the gondola sequence, complete with the hovercraft gondola through St. Peters Square and the double taking bird. It's completely tonally off from the film at that time, along with being completely extraneous to the proceedings overall. Remove that entire sequence (it has no impact on the plot at all) and the movie would probably go up in estimation by many people.

    Current rankings:
    OHMSS>FRWL>CR>TSWLM>YOLT>MR>SF>FYEO>GE>OP>DN>
    TWINE>TND>QOS>TB>TMWTGG>GF>LALD>TLD>AVTAK>SP>DAF>LTK>DAD
    Bond rankings: Lazenby>Moore>Connery>Craig>Brosnan>Dalton
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,546MI6 Agent

    There is also the laser fight in space. And Jaws and his girlfriend. 😏

  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 2,186MI6 Agent
    edited April 11

    They are completely different types of characters, not directly comparable.


    Tracy is so good as she is for two reasons:

    1 - Fleming wrote her that way. She probably gets more pages devoted to her character than any other FlemingGirl except Vivienne and maybe Tiffany. She was the definitive exploration of his concept of the "bird with one wing down", and why Fleming's Bond is attracted to such types.

    2 - Diana Rigg played her. We were very lucky such a competent and charming actor played the character, as other than Honor Blackman, up to this point it was mostly models and/or non-English speakers cast as lead BondGirl. But she is better as Emma Peel. If you like this performance, and 60s spyfilms in general, its time to start watching seasons 4 and 5 of the Avengers.


    Xenia is not a Fleming character, and very shallowly written, basically a gimmick character. But Famke Jannsen gives an all-time great scenery chewing villain performance. I always give bonus points to a scenery chewing villain. But I think Barbara Carrera's performance as Fatima Blush was even more outrageous, she was the best part of that movie by far. Either one of them could have been a Batman TV villain except for the sexual innuendos.

    Luciana Paluzzi's performance as Fiona Volpe should also be compared to Xenia, she is the prototype. She played a very similar character in the first Man from UNCLE film, before Thunderball.


    Holly Goodhead, as mentioned by Gymkata, is most impressive as co-leads go. She too is a Fleming character in all but name, filling exactly the same plot functions as Gala Brand. Once they are in space, Bond in fact contributes nothing useful except as muscle, while Goodhead is qualified to do all the important work. Doesn't Bond look heroic pulling those plugs out of the wall in the Orbital Communications room while she reprograms the camouflage unit? Then of course only James Bond can aim and hit those evil globes while Holly Goodhead flies the shuttle and reenters the atmosphere. But Lois Chile's performance is quite bland.


    Madeleine Swann is also more comparable to Tracy in terms of plot function. But we haven't seen her character in Bond25 yet, so it's too early to say for sure what she's all about, except that Bond has quit his job to be with her.

  • GymkataGymkata Minnesota, USAPosts: 2,941MI6 Agent

    Sorry for derailing this conversation. The thread is clearly a comparison between Tracy and Xenia and I should not have introduced Dr. Goodhead into the conversation.

    Current rankings:
    OHMSS>FRWL>CR>TSWLM>YOLT>MR>SF>FYEO>GE>OP>DN>
    TWINE>TND>QOS>TB>TMWTGG>GF>LALD>TLD>AVTAK>SP>DAF>LTK>DAD
    Bond rankings: Lazenby>Moore>Connery>Craig>Brosnan>Dalton
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,546MI6 Agent

    We may forgive you one day....

  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,000MI6 Agent

    True, but a great series of comments resulted.

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