Top and bottom 5 female fictional characters =)
Asked by cabaline
Ooh, tough one!
Top five, in no particular order:
- Katniss Everdeen: Men are contextually relevant to her life, but she is not validated by them. When she has to make the choice with the Nightlock berries, she’s not doing it because she believes she’d be nothing without Peeta, she’s doing it because she knows she would be dead if not for his actions, and because if she killed someone to whom she owed her life, it would be giving up the last shred of her former self that the Capitol had not taken away from her. The Hunger Games is brilliant feminist literature, by the way.
- Hermione Granger: She is the smartest girl in her class, but she is not without fault. Her character is brilliant, but she does not need to be exceptional among men to be validated as a woman. She is, in other words, a female character who is defined by her own traits and merits, not how great she is compared to other women.
- Martha Jones (voice of a nightingale): Martha Jones saves the world singlehandedly. Sure, she restored the Doctor to his original age, but if you watch that episode again, that’s more or less irrelevant to the “saved the world” bit. She’s giving the commands. She’s in charge. She falls in love, but refuses to let it define her. When she realizes she has no chance, and realizes she’s not being treated correctly, she walks away. She leaves the door open for future contact with the Doctor, but makes it clear he missed his shot. And when she does walk away, it’s not an ultimatum. It’s “I’m leaving because I’m needed more on Earth than I am on the TARDIS.” Even if the Doctor confessed his love for her on the spot, she would have still walked away because she acted on her own agency, not the Doctor’s. You know, like an actual person would do in real life.
- Selina Kyle AKA Catwoman: She’s not a villain. She’s a criminal, but then again, so is Batman. She looks out for herself and those she loves. Often, she’ll steal things that do not rightfully belong to the owners anyway. She looks out for number one. Now, if only people could draw her in a practical burglar’s outfit instead of skintight leather unzipped past the boobs (which would be loud, hot, offer no protection, and make you super-visible in the dark).
- Deb Morgan: She gets a lot of shit no matter what she’s doing. Deb’s got a boyfriend? People call her a slut. Deb got promoted over Angel? People say she’s a bitch who stole his job. Deb has Post-traumatic stress disorder because her fiancee tried to serial kill her? People call her weak. She performs well as a cop? People say she’s just trying to live up to her father. If a male character did these same things, people would admire him for being so ambitious, yet troubled. Deb gets shit she doesn’t deserve, but if she were a real person, I’d respect the hell out of her.
- Bella Swan: Obvious, I know, but I’ve read that series and in all honesty, that character is written to be inconsequential to them men around her. Literally any random person could be put in her shoes. That doesn’t make a character easy to identify with, it makes them hollow.
- Maria LaGuerta: To clarify, I like LaGuerta. I hate the way she’s portrayed. She’ll cut your throat to get ahead, sure, but she’s shown as a manipulative snake in the grass. Every mistake she makes paints her as incompetent, yet still somehow a scheming mastermind. Yet Dexter has literally cut people’s throats on screen, but it is, again, praised for being such a troubled, complex character. The difference between LaGuerta and Deb is that Deb’s got all this hate thrown her way by fans, but LaGuerta is written to be hated even though, for the most part, she’s not a bad person. (She did sleep with her replacement’s fiancee to get her old job back, but that’s a whole different can of problematic worms from Dexter season 2)
- Jess from “New Girl”: The whole premise of the show revolves around how she’s unable to function without a man in her life. The only joke about her is how quirky and awkward she is. I like Zooey Deschanel. I hate characters written specifically for Zooey Deschanel.
- Kate Saunders: You may remember her as the girl who hates Lizzie in Lizzie McGuire, and who is inexplicably more popular despite the fact that she doesn’t seem to be nice to anyone and is bad at making jokes. She’s a character archetype that’s very popular in teen movies and shows, and pretty much every variation on it bothers me because it’s such a flimsy character. “Mean Girls” inverts it by giving a backstory as to why Regina and Janis hate each other, but other than that, it’s like this weird “we need to have a villain so here’s one for no reason” phenomenon.
- GLaDOS: She’s an amazing character, she just scares the shit out of me. I don’t like being around her. She can’t be trusted.