With Roger Moore’s departure, EON set about casting the new James Bond. Pierce Brosnan was very nearly cast when his television series Remington Steele was renewed to take advantage of the news, thus preventing Brosnan from playing 007. (The revived series subsequently was very short-lived, but Pierce would have another shot in the next decade.) THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS eventually starred Timothy Dalton, who saw Sean Connery as his role model for the part. This new version of Bond was much grittier, and his adventures based more firmly in present day events. Here, our hero gets entangled in a plot involving a false defector in union with an arms dealer hoping to escalate the Afghanistan war. The defector even dupes his trusting sweetheart, with whom Bond joins up to track his quarry down. London-born actress Maryam D’Abo is the beautiful Russian girl, Kara Milovy, a more petite sort of Bond girl than we’re used to seeing, but an absolute knockout all the same. Joe Don Baker (no relation) puts in a fine performance as an arms dealer who fancies himself a soldier -despite his never really being in an actual military service. I saw this movie again after some years had passed and I’d largely forgotten it. I really enjoyed it! A fine adventure film, and Dalton’s more layered characterization as Bond is quite riveting. Interestingly, one of the names suggested before Dalton’s casting was Sam Neil. Neil would’ve been a very good choice, I think, but Dalton is certainly fitting for the late 80’s Bond. John Barry provides his final 007 soundtrack, and the results are impressive as ever. THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS did extremely well, and the next film, LICENSE TO KILL, was short in coming.