When the James Bond reboot film series brought back the character of Moneypenny, formerly an agent known as Eve and played by Naomie Harris, it felt like something happened between the two after meeting in Skyfall. Yet by the time Spectre rolled around, Moneypenny was out of active service and had a boyfriend in the picture.
And if that wasn’t enough information to confirm that James and Moneypenny hadn’t taken the time to become closer than work associates, Harris made it perfectly clear that, in her opinion below, the two legendary operatives aren’t going to change history in Bond 25:
People always ask me if they slept together. I don’t think they did. I think Moneypenny and Bond can’t ever cross that line because they’re both so professional. There’s definitely something that’s been bubbling underneath but the question is, ‘Will it bubble over?'
The modern era of James Bond under Daniel Craig gave more than a casual suggestion that the two were about to sleep together. That shaving scene in Skyfall, with Moneypenny and James skirting the edge of their office relationship oh so carefully, certainly did a lot to hint that history would be changed yet again in the 007 franchise. And with Bond 25 currently set to see Daniel Craig return to shooting, and James in a relationship with Lea Seydoux’s Dr. Madeline Swann since the end of Spectre, that taboo won’t be broken in the near future.
Naomie Harris’ hypothesis has a lot of history on its side, as James Bond has always flirted with Moneypenny, but never consummated that flirtation. And as we see in that scene mentioned above, as well as in Harris’ interview with EW, the tension has always come from the two characters bantering right up to the edge of actually doing something.
In fact, it was pretty much a tradition for the original Bond franchise to see the two characters meet before Bond’s mission briefing, volley some wishful thoughts of romantic splendor and then go their separate ways. Though we haven’t seen this as of late, considering Spectre saw Bond’s big interaction with Moneypenny being over the phone, as he was investigating the antics of Blofeld and his SPECTRE associates.
As James Bond is lured back into action by Jeffrey Wright’s Felix Leiter in Bond 25, we probably won’t see that sort of scene in Daniel Craig’s presumably final turn in the role. Which means we may have to wait for a new Bond, and possible a new Moneypenny, to see those familiar sparks fly again.
Whatever happens between 007 and Moneypenny, in Bond 25 and beyond, Naomie Harris has left her own mark on the role as she’s been the first Moneypenny to be seen in the field, and the first to actually shoot James Bond. It's a level of behavior that will undoubtedly raise the bar for whomever steps into this character’s position in the future.