You see, I did a run-through of all the Bond films leading up to the Bond issue of JP (which, if you haven't read it yet, it's up at (http://efanzines.com/JourneyPlanet/JourneyPlanet14.pdf)
and I finally watched Skyfall a couple of times, and had a lovely chat with John The Rock Coxon (and you should be reading him at Chickensinenvelopes.net now, as he does AWESOME stuff!) and he pointed out that it was no less sexist a movie than any of its predecessors. He pointed out that the female agent couldn't hack it, was put out to pasture as an office worker to be there for Bond to hit on in the future as Miss Moneypenny. I thought for a moment and found that I both agreed and disagreed.
You see, yeah, I can see where John's coming from, that the only two strong female characters in this movie are M and Moneypenny. You know what happens to M if you've seen it, but we lose Moneypenny to the trill of the Office. This is after she performs both admirably, and less-than-admirably, in the field. Does choosing to not be a field agent make her any less of a important figure? I don't see it that way. She settled down, and I think this talks more and more to Bond's inability to settle down; his deathwish. She's smarter than Bond and knows when to get out with her life. M said it long ago: Double-0s have a short life expectancy. It is not unreasonable to leave that, no matter what gender you are, and Bond doesn't have that option, largely out of his own sense of duty. And Moneypenny stands as almost as tough an agent as Bond, especially when she tracks him down, obviously without his knowledge.
Now, what interests me the most is that we finally have a reason for the Moneypenney-Bond flirtation. Watch Skyfall and see all the points where she takes the lead, grabs Bond by the sensual short-and-curlies, and then apply that to the back-and-forth that the two shared in the various other films. It finally makes sense. The two work beautifully together in the film, and my guess is that the two of them in the future will see Moneypenny taking more of the lead. I can't wait to see what they do with it, but there are so many options!