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Spies Are Lecherous

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"Oh, James!"

I have my way with women! After I'm done, I skip town! As I get old, I'm thinking... do guys like me settle down?
Goldentusk, James Bond Theme Song

The life of a spy can be quite a romanticized profession in fiction. Nice suits, slick cars, neat guns, and one stylish adventure after another. But how would any of that be complete without a pretty lady by your side? Maybe this particular girl is in league with the Big Bad and the agent must woo information out of her. If she isn't another fellow agent trying to complete the mission alongside the hero as she's subject to the whims of his seductive tendencies, she could be an innocent bystander caught up in the danger and must be soothed by the dashing agent's masculine charms. Regardless, the secret agent will flaunt his womanizing to the audience and the woman will probably never be heard from again to make room for the next Girl of the Week.

Mocking parodies will portray the spy as a pathetic Casanova Wannabe or a predatory rapist at worst.

A Sub-Trope of The Casanova. The Femme Fatale Spy may serve as an example of a gender-inversion of this trope.


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    Comic Books 
  • Deconstructed in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with that series' version of James Bond, who is presented as a boorish, misogynistic rapist whose obsession with sex often makes him incompetent and ultimately results in MI6 forcing him into a quiet retirement when he becomes riddled with venereal diseases. Alan Moore is rather notorious for his hatred of the character.
  • Jimmys Bastards:
    • The premise is secret agent Jimmy Regent's many, many bastard children (of all ethnicities) rising up to attack him for not having been present in their lives (or so they're told by the mastermind, a Psychopathic Manchild who looks exactly like Jimmy and hates being called "Junior"). While Jimmy isn't really fazed by it at first, he suffers a complete mental breakdown on realizing some of his daughters slept with him as part of the plan.
    • It turns out that all secret agents of this type eventually go mad, and the government keeps them in a special wing of a mental hospital (all of which look like the various James Bond actors).
      Doctor: It's all that shooting and shagging, eventually it gets to them.
  • Wonder Woman (1942): The Holliday Girls are Wonder Woman allies who aid the military in counter-espionage, most of their members fawn over and flirt with men on the regular with Bobby and Glamora in particular going with different men to every event and being known within the group for their bedroom conquests. They also use their flirtations to distract and get close to Axis spies. Etta, their leader, has herself had five different named paramours including and enemy spy and a foreign prince.

    Fan Works 
  • All Guardsmen Party: Bane Johns, Interplanetary Man of Mystery, is an obvious send-up of James Bond and has the requisite charm. In his introduction, he manages to convince the entire female assassin team on Oak's ship to attend a party, and during the mission he manages to seduce Ivana Krushyu, the enemy's right-hand woman. It's actually a facet of his nascent psyker power, warping the minds of women to make them obsess over him.

  • Popular history holds that Catherine de' Medici ran a spy network of young ladies (the "flying squadron") sleeping with noblemen to obtain information from them. It's most likely a Historical Villain Upgrade / one-handed fantasy by later historians and writers, as while Catherine did use young ladies of her court for diplomatic purposes, she was also noted for her strict morals.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Austin Powers: Austin is an extremely promiscuous super-spy who is in his prime during the sexual revolution of the 1960s, and really lives by it. Despite being a homely man with Nerd Glasses and British Teeth, he's extremely popular with the ladies. In his second movie, his "mojo" gets stolen, making him temporarily lose his sexual prowess.
  • James Bond: Bond is obviously the Trope Codifier, to the point where "Bond Girl" has become synonymous with Girl of the Week. James will often have several throwaway love interests per film, or seduce a female henchwoman to betray her boss. It is played with occasionally — he genuinely falls in love with Tracy in On Her Majesty's Secret Service, even marrying her near the end and willing to settle down with her, but Blofeld murders her on their wedding day. In GoldenEye, his Evil Former Friend Alec Trevelyan even mocks Bond over being something of a Fatal Attractor, which seriously struck a nerve with James.
  • Inverted with Eggsy in Kingsman: The Golden Circle, who's loyal to his girlfriend. One time, his mission required him to have sex with the target (in order to secretly implant a tracking device); he feels the need to inform his girlfriend first, making their relationship sour.
  • Zigzagged in the Mission: Impossible Film Series. Ethan Hunt has a rotating list of love interests, but unusually for a spy action franchise, they actually reappear in later movies. Hunt's first lover in the original film, Sarah, is murdered by The Mole, and he has Unresolved Sexual Tension with Jim's wife Claire, but doesn't consummate it when he realizes she's a traitor. He marries Jules, a civilian, at the end of the third film, before being drawn back into the world of espionage and becoming Amicable Exes with her. He then has even more Unresolved Sexual Tension with rogue spy Ilsa Faust, but they prioritize their missions over any potential romance. By the sixth film, it's clear that all these women are important people in Ethan's life, not just casual flings.
  • Our Man Flint: Exaggerated; Derek Flint makes Bond himself look like a Casanova Wannabe. He starts the film with four female lovers, then later seduces the villain's love slave and adds her to his harem.
  • True Lies:
    • Subverted Trope. Harry Tasker is a spy whose cover identity on his latest Black-Tie Infiltration mission is a rich lothario, with the villainess even falling for his charms (and an intense tango). However, in his civilian life he's been married to the same woman for over a decade, and is completely loyal to her. The B-plot of the film is about Harry discovering that his wife Helen is very unhappy with her boring life and making efforts to rekindle their marriage.
    • At one point, Harry's friend and fellow spy Albert tries to talk him out of using agency resources to follow his wife (because he thinks she's going out with another man, who is pretending to be a spy) and says he may need to warn their boss about this mismanagement, only for Harry to threaten him with information of an operation Albert botched because "he was busy getting a blowjob". Albert instantly starts helping Harry.
  • Wild Wild West: It's shown early on that Jim West is a man with "a girl in every port", so to speak, and the Love Triangle between West, Gordon and Rita Escobar has several scenes that show both men are perfectly okay with perving on Rita in their own way (Gordon compares Rita's (that is Salma Hayek's) bosom with that of a Boticelli painting at one point without having noticed that Rita was tossed into the room by one of his inventions and is hearing everything), while part of the Running Gag between West and Loveless (of constantly tossing racist and ableist insults at each other) includes pointing out that Jim can still please a woman the natural way while Loveless requires "mechanical aides", so to speak.
  • Justified in xXx. Xander Cage proves himself a lovin' machine while infiltrating the terrorist organization Anarchy 99, but Xander isn't a normal agent at all and was abruptly recruited from the streets, so he's already familiar with a Hookers and Blow lifestyle. Partaking in the orgy enjoyed by Yorgi and his gang also helps maintain his cover.
    Xander: The things I gotta do for my country...
  • Subverted in xXx: State of the Union. Darius Stone is recruited by the agency out of a military prison to save the country from a sinister conspiracy, but he routinely ignores pursuing women to focus on his real vice: food. When a bored Trophy Wife takes him back to her villa for some hanky panky, he asks for fries and a shake when she offers him "anything you want". While it's implied that Darius and Lola used to be lovers, they are not so in the present, and their interactions never go beyond mild flirting.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Parodied in a sketch on Important Things with Demetri Martin where Agent 009 is fine with getting seduced and killed — as long as it happens in that order.
  • The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Our Man Bashir" allows Dr. Bashir to live out a James Bond-esque holo-fantasy; our first view of it has him seducing a rather buxom blond French woman. His valet is also rather sexily dressed, and he seems to have some kind of close relationship with a female KGB officer. The program's reappearance in "A Simple Investigation" has Bashir charming yet another lady.
  • The Wild Wild West: Whilst both remain perfect gentlemen, both secret service members Jim West and Artemus Gordon regularly seduce and end up with a lot of different women. Jim in particular often succeeds in causing the villain's female associates to switch sides, at least partially through seduction. Though occasionally it will turn out the Girl of the Week already has a lover, who she'll go off with or a goal she intends to do, causing her to leave at the end.

    Video Games 
  • The Spy from Team Fortress 2 is perhaps the biggest ladies' man of all the mercs, who's introduced in his official Meet the Team short to have bedded the Scout's mom and later shown in "Expiration Date" teaching him how to talk to women, Hilarity Ensues.
  • Red Alert 3: The Spy is a walking James Bond reference, whose character bio involves meeting with a beautiful Russian woman and mentioning Tanya (the Allies' Action Girl) as "intriguing" him.

    Web Comics 
  • Niels: Agent 300 is a prolific womanizer and also, despite his denials, develops a heavy Foe Romance Subtext with the titular Gayngster. Zig-zagged when he settles into a committed, exclusive relationship with Agent 250 instead.
  • Parodied in the Irregular Webcomic! Espionage theme, in which James Stud is a Casanova Wannabe, and every woman in the strip feels nothing but contempt for him. In the strip's version of the scene in Dr. No with the tarantula, Dent laments that even a female spider doesn't want to be in bed with Stud.

    Western Animation 
  • Archer: Sterling Archer is highly capable in terms of being lethal, but has a well-deserved reputation as a man-whore who cannot stop trying to seduce girls even at his nicest, has constantly ruined missions because he won't stop thinking with his dick, and he only outright refuses their advancements when he considers them underage.
  • Inside Job (2021): Rafe Masters is a corrupt version of James Bond, specifically in relation to Bond's love life. Bond hooks up with women on the regular, and such relationships tend not to last beyond the film. This is true of Rafe, but in Rafe's case it's because he's a clingy, misogynistic, narcissistic Jerkass to whom an actual conversation with a woman is literal torture. Reagan even tells him right to his face that he's an outdated stereotype who doesn't know how to deal with women.
  • Subverted For Laughs in Milo Murphy's Law with partnered Time Police Brick and Savannah. They're trying to have the Belligerent Sexual Tension their roles would seem to demand of them, but there are No Sparks.


Video Example(s):


Dr. Havoc's Diary

Not only is Secret Agent Brock Mason successful with so many women (which includes the titular villain's wife), but he also apparently has no qualms about hitting on teenage girls! Yechhh!

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