March is Women’s History Month. With much respect to real historical figures that made an impact on women’s rights, there are fictional female characters that are just as inspiring. These women can be admired for fighting prowess, brains, and independence. The following is a tribute to Women’s History Month, with a geeky twist. These leading ladies have been enjoying the spotlight, but as female role models, they will stand the test of time.
What if your little sister was randomly chosen to participate in a televised fight to the death, sponsored by the ruling government of a dystopian world? If you’re Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, the answer is simple: volunteer to take your sister’s place, and then stay alive. Despite the futuristic setting, Katniss’s situation is relatable to readers: she is a normal teen who works to provide for her family and loves her younger sister. While expert archery skills help, what makes Katniss a distinct female protagonist is her strength; the will to stay alive despite horrific and unpredictable situations. The film based on the first book in Suzanne Collins’ trilogy will premiere March 23rd, finally ending the suspense for the large fanbase of The Hunger Games.
Spring is just around the corner, except in the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. Season 2 of HBO’s Game of Thrones is approaching, and exciting new female characters are anticipated. Fans of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire are already familiar with the abundance of strong females in the fantasy series; Arya, Catelyn and Daenerys, to name a few. A new character debuting this season is sure to capture viewers: Brienne, a brave and skilled female knight. She is renowned for her honor and loyalty to her king, but infamous for her homely appearance. Brienne will appeal to viewers who enjoy women unafraid to break the mold on traditional female roles. Not much more can be said about her respective storyline without giving away spoilers, but catch the season premiere on April 1st to see how awesome Brienne truly is.
The term “animated female characters” is sometimes synonymous with “Disney princesses.” While there’s nothing wrong with loving classic characters like Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, they leave something to be desired. Though the Disney princesses have improved steadily by being more independent or ambitious, we have yet to see one where falling in love is not the main focus. But from the looks of Disney Pixar’s Brave that will premiere June 22nd, main character Merida will change that. According to Disney’s website, princess Merida desires freedom and seeks to break the old traditions of male-dominated Scotland. While embarking on her own adventurous journey, Merida is cursed by a witch. She must utilize all of her skills and resources to undo the curse before it is too late. As Pixar’s first female protagonist, it will be interesting to see how Brave stacks up against its successful predecessors. Judging from the trailers, Merida is a wild-haired redhead with a desire to prove herself, and has the archery skills and determined attitude to do it.
Can’t wait for these movies and episodes to premiere? Other notable characters available in book and movie format include genius computer hacker Lisbeth Salander from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and courageous, brainy witch Hermione in the Harry Potter series.