Bond Girl: Mary Goodnight

Mary Goodnight is a fictional inexperienced field operative and the leading Bond Girl in the 1974 James Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun. Portrayed by Swedish actress Britt Ekland, Goodnight is based on the literary character who appeared in several of Ian Fleming’s novels.

Biography

Mary Goodnight is a Secret Service staffer who is ditzier than in the novels and assists James Bond when following Andrea Anders in Hong Kong. Very quickly, it is established that she has as-yet unfulfilled desires toward Bond.

After Goodnight shows Bond where Miss Anders is staying, she hopes to spend the evening with Bond, but 007 declines, as he has his meeting with Hai Fat. Goodnight later avoids Bond’s advances, as she sees that he pities her.

Playing hard to get doesn’t last long, and she goes to meet Bond in his room anyway. She is then embarrassingly pushed into the wardrobe of Bond’s hotel room when Miss Anders enters Bond’s bedroom. Goodnight falls asleep in the closet as Anders and Bond have sex; after Anders leaves, Bond wakes Goodnight and condescendingly tells her, “Your turn will come, I promise.” After this event, Goodnight becomes cold in her attitude towards Bond, particularly when interacting with him in Scaramanga’s presence.

At the meeting point with Miss Anders, Goodnight takes control of the Solex, but whilst placing a homer on Francisco Scaramanga’s AMC Matador, she is spotted by Scaramanga himself and pushed into the car’s boot (trunk). Upon reaching Scaramanga’s island, Goodnight becomes Scaramanga’s new mistress and is forced to wear a bikini at all times to prevent her from carrying concealed weapons to bypass Q’s trackers that had been sewn into all of Goodnight’s clothing. She is offered all the island’s luxuries as she spends the next few days sunbathing, swimming, and dining with Scaramanga. Despite her new luxurious lifestyle, her will is not quickly broken by her new master, and she maintains hope that she will be rescued. One day she is ordered to eat lunch with Scaramanga, and Bond has arrived on the island to her surprise and delight. During the meal, Goodnight compliments Scaramanga’s hospitality with a bitter tone while glaring at Bond, hinting to him that she blames him for her imprisonment. She then quickly becomes worried when Scaramanga challenges Bond to a duel.

During the two duels, Goodnight is guarded by Scaramanga’s maintenance man, Kra. Goodnight immediately starts to feel uncomfortable having her half-naked body exposed to Kra, who delightfully observes the young woman’s beauty and makes a few moves on her. Eventually, she senses an opportunity to escape and knocks him into a pool of liquid helium. Bond retrieves the Solex, and the two manage to escape, and after dealing with Nick Nack, Goodnight manages to finish what she ted with Bond aboard Scaramanga’s personal Chinese Dhow (slow boat from China). Following Scaramanga’s defeat, Bond and Goodnight are reunited.

Personality

As a British Secret Service liaison, Mary Goodnight is a courageous woman who can hold her own even with men. However, due to her inexperience, she is often insecure and unsure of herself, resulting in her being clumsy in many areas, to the point of being more of a nuisance than an asset to the agents she assists, like Bond. Goodnight is also na├»ve, inexperienced, and lacking in general knowledge; for example, she does not know how a solar power plant works. Goodnight seems to like to joke around on her missions, but her sense of humor is quite sarcastic as she uses it primarily when she is angry. Despite this, her dedication makes up for her clumsiness, making her a funny and endearing person. She has also shown to be strong-willed, being able to resist Scaramanga’s attempts to break her will as she became his captive and maintaining hope that MI6 will come for her. She is also known to be feisty and carries grudges, as evidenced by how she blames Bond for her imprisonment on Scaramanga’s island.