I enjoyed the review, thanks. You obviously put some time and thought into it.
A few points I wanted to respond to:
I’d never heard complaints Caroline Bliss was too beautiful to be Moneypenny. I think she’s attractive certainly, but no more so than the young Lois Maxwell. She’s not “exotic” or glamorous in the traditional “Bond girl” sense; it’s not like they stuck glasses on Ursula Andress and tried to pass her off as a “nerd.” Then again, Kara Milovy isn’t a conventional Bond girl, either. She’s cute, but in a “girl next door” way. Until Madeline Swann, she’s the most “against type” casting of a Bond girl ever. So maybe people just object to Moneypenny being on equal footing with “the main girl.”
Also, I don’t know that it’s fair to call Lois Maxwell’s replacement “sexist.” Moneypenny’s " character" at this point begins and ends with her flirting with Bond, and that would have been uncomfortable to watch with Lois and Tim, to say the least. Poor Dalton had already been down that road with Mae West in “Sextet.”
Interesting observation that Dalton throws away the “Bond, James Bond” line but plays up the " shaken not stirred" bit. I think it fits with his approach to Bond as Fleming wrote him: not pretentious about who he is but very opinionated about what he wants, and how he wants it. Despite the way the filmic Tiffany Case or Hugo Drax react to the name, there’s no reason for the outside world to know or care who James Bond is, so playing up the intro line is something done for the benefit of us, the audience. It’s breaking the fourth wall. We like it, so we forgive it, but it’s not that different from Oberhauser’s ridiculous reveal that his new name is…tada!..one that no one else in the film has ever heard, and can only have meaning to the audience. Dalton’s disinterested delivery may be frustrating, but it’s logical. When Roger, for instance, said “My name is Bond, James Bond,” the unspoken part was, “… so the jig is up! " or maybe, “…so you might as well take off that dress right now.” When Dalton says it, the attitude is, " …Not that it would mean anything to you” or “Now let’s can the chit chat so I can do my job.”
I agree the fights are a highlight in the Dalton entries. They’re not as stagey and rehearsed-looking as Roger’s and unlike Craig, Dalton doesn’t come off like a Marvel superhero. He’s very human, not especially “mighty” and not, it seems, a martial arts master. He is ruthless, though, which is key. This again is true to Fleming: Bond in the novels has a slim build, is no muscleman and often has a tough go of it in hand to hand combat. He doesn’t pick up sofas to hit people or crash through drywall in a foot chase.
TLD is always a fun watch. Hard to believe the “25th Anniversary” is now less than the half-way point in the series. Time goes too quickly.