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|Character from the James Bond film series|
|Portrayed by||Ursula Andress|
Honeychile Rider is a fictional character in Ian Fleming's James Bond novel Dr. No. In the 1962 Bond film of the same name, her name was shortened and changed to Honey Ryder. In the film she is played by Swiss actress Ursula Andress and due to her heavy accent was dubbed by Nikki van der Zyl. In typical Bond fashion, her name was a double entendre for the sexual position of the woman riding on top.
In the film series, Ryder is widely regarded as the first Bond Girl, although she is not the first woman in the film to be with Bond (that distinction belongs to Sylvia Trench, while Miss Taro was Bond's first mission-related "conquest"). Her entrance in the film, emerging from the ocean in a white bikini with two large sea shells, while the sun shines on her wet blonde hair, is considered a classic James Bond moment and is one of the most popular scenes in cinematic history. As an homage, Halle Berry performed a similar scene in an orange bikini in the 20th James Bond film, Die Another Day. Mariah Carey also refers to this scene in the music video for her song "Honey."
Ursula Andress was later mentioned by name in the novel On Her Majesty's Secret Service, and described as a "beautiful movie star." Andress is the first of only two entertainers that have actually starred in a Bond film to be mentioned by Fleming in his James Bond novels. The other is David Niven who co-starred as James Bond in the 1967 film adaptation of Casino Royale along with Andress. Andress referred to the Dr. No bikini as the "secret of her success".
Rider is a Jamaican shell diver, descended from an old-established colonial family. She was orphaned at the age of five when her parents' house was burned down. She then lived with her black nanny in a cellar until she was 15, when her nanny died. Rider reveals that she was also raped as a young girl by the overseer of the property on which she lives. She later avenged her rape by killing the man.
Rider is an independent and very beautiful woman, with the minor imperfection of a broken nose, a lasting memory of the time the overseer punched her in the face to subdue her before sexually assaulting her. She became a shell diver near Crab Key in order to make enough money by selling the shells to American collectors, so that she can then have plastic surgery performed on her nose. While on Crab Key, she meets James Bond and is later captured by Dr. Julius No, who attempts to kill her by tying her to some rocks and allowing crabs to eat her alive. However, she is aware that the crabs do not like human flesh and they won't attack her. She escapes, meets up with a badly injured Bond and, together, they leave the island. Honey then single-handedly sails them back to Jamaica while Bond is unconscious in the bottom of the canoe. She then tends his wounds until he can get to a hospital the next day. It is implied in the book that she and Bond will later travel to New York City where Honey will get her nose fixed; and that on her return, she will work at the Jamaican natural history museum.
In later novels, Bond divulges that Honey Rider moved to Philadelphia, where she married a doctor by the name of Wilder and had two children by him.
As in the novel, Ryder is a very independent woman claiming to not need help from anyone. She is a beachcomber making a living selling seashells in Miami. Resourceful and courageous, she states that she can defend herself against any hostile when she first meets Bond. Although she is at first wary of Bond, he is allowed to get closer when he comments that his intentions are honourable.
Like Pussy Galore in Goldfinger, Honey doesn't appear until half way through the movie. She comes out of the ocean singing "Under the Mango Tree", Bond startles her when he joins in singing. She pulls her dagger out, wary of Bond's position but grows to trust him. Honey shows Quarrel and Bond a way to evade No's men when caught. After they escape, she tells Bond how her father died when on Crab Key, and that she was raped by a local landlord. Honey relates how she got her revenge by putting a black widow spider in his mosquito net and causing his lingering death. When in a marshy region of the island, Quarrel, Bond, and Honey have a close encounter with No's "dragon". Quarrel dies and the remaining two get captured. No's men wash away radiation that Honey and Bond got on their clothes and they get rooms of luxury. The next day, they meet Doctor No. When in conversation, No has Honey taken away. After Bond kills No, he saves her from the island and they make love in a towed boat.
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In a UK survey conducted in 2003 by Channel 4, the character's entrance in Dr. No was voted number one in "the 100 Greatest Sexy Moments" (BBC 2003). Honey Ryder was voted the best Bond Girl by Entertainment Weekly.
See also