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What surveys say about James Bond's evil adversaries
This past weekend the 24th James Bond film, "Spectre," opened in theaters worldwide. Of course, with the new Bond movie comes a new villain: Ernst Stavro Blofeld, leader of the shadowy Spectre organization.
Over the years, a number of memorable villains have tormented Bond to the delight of audiences. And recently, FiveThirtyEight asked fans to rank them.
1. Auric Goldfinger, "Goldfinger" (1964)
Approximately 88 percent of fans said Auric Goldfinger, the golf-obsessed gold smuggler at the center of the 1964 film "Goldfinger," was the top Bond villain. Goldfinger sought to boost the value of his personal metallurgical magazine by rendering the gold within Fort Knox unusable with a radioactive device. He also attempted to bisect our favorite British spy using a strategically placed laser and, in doing so, set the stage for arguably the greatest line of dialogue ever spoken in a Bond film.
Goldfinger is the second-wealthiest Bond baddie with a net worth of around $6.5 billion, reported Forbes.
2. Dr. Julius No, "Dr. No" (1962)
Known for his Napoleon complex, prim Nehru jacket and bionic fists, Dr. Julius No tussled with 007 in the first film adaptation of writer Ian Fleming's book series. No, an atomic materials expert, attempted to prevent a NASA launch at Cape Canaveral via radioactive radio waves. The villain carried out this despicable agenda from his evil lair: Crab Key, a fortified island off the coast of Jamaica. According to Mental Floss, the villain's private island probably cost him anywhere from $200,000 to well over $100 million.
3. Tiago Rodriguez, "Skyfall" (2012)
Ex-British intelligence agent and cyber-terrorist Tiago Rodriguez destroys MI6 headquarters and uses 007's background against him in "Skyfall," the 23rd Bond film. Like many villains, Silva has a physical deformity that makes him particularly intimidating. While imprisoned by the Chinese during his MI6 career, Silva attempted to commit suicide by biting into a hydrogen cyanide capsule concealed within his molar. The attempt failed and left him with grotesque facial scarring. While compelling, this scenario is, however, lacking in the science department, reported Wired.
4. Francisco Scaramanga, "The Man with the Golden Gun" (1974)
Freelance gunman Francisco Scaramanga was James Bond's primary adversary in "The Man with the Golden Gun," a slightly comical cinematic take on the famous spy series. In the film, Bond tracks down Scaramanga using shell casings from the assassin's infamous handgun: a gold-plated pistol that shoots distinctive golden bullets. According to Wired, Scaramanga's golden gun found its way into the gaming world when game engineers made it the most deadly weapon in the 1997 Bond video game "GoldenEye 007."
5. Rosa Klebb, "From Russia with Love" (1963)
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Wielding the organizational might of Spectre and a poison-tipped, retractable shoe knife, the ex-Russian intelligence officer Rosa Klebb nearly got the best of Bond. According to a study conducted by researchers from Warwick University in Great Britain, the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency took a cue from Klebb when it attempted to equip agents with shoe knives during the 1950s and 60s, reported The Telegraph.