The Golden Eye 007 Mystery
Few things in pop culture are as iconic as James Bond's golden eye. The eye, which is actually a blue contact lens with a yellow center, has appeared in the films since the first one, Dr. No.
The eye serves as a reminder of Bond's mission as well as a symbol of his inhumanity in each film. But how did Bond's eye become associated with him?
The answer can be found in the books. Bond is described in Ian Fleming's original novels as having "very cold blue eyes" that "looked indifferently out from under long lashes."
However, in order for the audience to see Bond's emotionlessness, Fleming decided that Bond needed to have some sort of physical feature that distinguished him from other characters. As a result, the author gave Bond blue-gray contact lenses that made his eyes appear "much larger and brighter."
While Fleming's descriptions may not appear to be all that different from what we see on screen today, there is one important detail that he included in his books that was never included in the films: the contact lenses were supposed to be gold-colored.
This was most likely due to the fact that yellow was one of the most popular contact lens colors at the time. It wasn't until years later, when Timothy Dalton took over as Bond, that his eyes were changed to blue to make him appear more menacing.
It wasn't until Pierce Brosnan took over the role in 1995's GoldenEye that audiences saw Bond's original eye color returned. We learn in the film that Brosnan's character was given blue-gray contact lenses after losing his sight in an accident. After months of painful rehabilitation, he is finally able to remove his glasses and reveal his now-iconic golden eyes.
While it may appear to be a minor change, the change in Bond's eye color has had a significant impact on how audiences perceive him. Fleming's original use of gold was most likely intended to convey Bond's inhumanity, but it wasn't until Dalton's interpretation of the character that this trait became clear.
And, while Brosnan's return to Fleming's original vision may appear to be a step back at first, it ultimately allows audiences to see Bond as more than just a cold-hearted killer; we see him as a human being who has experienced great pain and loss.