Image: YouTube/Matthew Harkin
Let’s face it: James Bond has a lot on his plate. Sure, he wears great suits, has a killer tan and sips martinis with beautiful women (shaken, not stirred, for you novices out there), but in between all that fun stuff, he’s busy protecting the world from all sorts of evil geniuses. No big deal. But just to make his job that bit harder, not all evil geniuses are created equal. We’re talking guys (and at least one girl) who want to cause massive earthquakes, kidnap, steal, murder and, occasionally, spark nuclear world war. So throw on your favorite tux or ball gown, grab a cocktail, and enter James Bond’s world of evil. Spoiler alert! Some of these entries contain information crucial to the outcome of the plot, so if you’ve not seen the movie, it might be best to skip onto the next one.
Image: YouTube/Matt Triplett
10. Emilio Largo – Thunderball (1965)
Emilio Largo is pretty unique: we certainly can’t name anyone else who has both an eye patch and a pool full of sharks. Largo, played by Italian actor Adolfo Celi, is Bond’s nemesis in 1965 movie Thunderball and a prominent member of fictional terrorist group SPECTRE – which stands for the less catchy but more evil-sounding Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Revenge and Extortion. Largo’s dastardly scheme is to use two stolen NATO nuclear weapons to hold the planet hostage, detonating them unless he’s paid a cool £100 million ($152 million). However, he ultimately ends up on the wrong end of a harpoon. Amusingly, Largo’s threat was a joke in the Austin Powers movies; and Largo himself is parodied in them, as Robert Wagner’s eye patch-wearing right-hand man to Dr. Evil, “Number Two.”
9. Max Zorin – A View to a Kill (1985)
Max Zorin is a psychopath, which might be due to the fact that he was the result of a Nazi experiment that involved injecting pregnant women with steroids. And you thought your childhood was rough. Still, despite occasionally flying off the rails, Zorin is a very smart man; so smart, in fact, that he became an important businessman in the microchip market (yes, there is a microchip market). Played by Christopher Walken in 1985’s A View to a Kill, this KGB-trained villain wants nothing more than to destroy his main competition in Silicon Valley by sparking a super-earthquake along the San Andreas Fault. Executed at high tide, this deed would effectively cause the whole region to flood, killing millions. It’s perhaps interesting to note that David Bowie was originally in line for the role of Zorin. However, the rock star refused the part, saying, “I didn’t want to spend five months watching my stunt double fall off cliffs.” Zorin himself meets his fate with a long plunge from the Golden Gate Bridge into the San Francisco Bay.