A great Bond opening sequence is like a great Bond film in miniature: it has fast cars, beautiful women and sexy gadgets, all wrapped up in a jawdropping action set-piece and tied off with a nice little one-liner bow.
The opening scene of Dr. No has none of these things. To be honest, it’s barely even a James Bond opening. (Although it still beats out the 1967 spy spoof Casino Royale, which despite its wonderful Herb Alpert theme tune is left off this list for lack of any other redeeming features.) The trademark view-down-the-barrel-of-a-gun is in place, but instead of the signature Bond guitar riff — bum da da da dum dum — we hear a series of strange clicks and bloops. And when the gun-barrel fades to a white dot, instead of a new scene, we get… more dots. Really, quite a lot of dots. In fact, the whole thing starts to look very much like the intro to an Archer episode, probably not by coincidence. Then suddenly the music shifts and, just as in every subsequent Bond film, we are confronted with the silhouettes of suggestively dancing figures. Unlike in other Bond films, one of them is a guy.
The classic elements of a Bond credit sequence are there — the girls, the graphics, the threat of violence — but they’re not put together in any coherent way. It’s a franchise-setting opener for a film that doesn’t know it’s a franchise yet.