“All men must die, but we are not men.”
If there a consistent component I love in movies, television, and books is when the story is lead by a strong female. Not only as a woman can I obviously relate to the character more, but I love seeing a badass woman taking charge and often throwing a big F-U to the patriarchy. So in honor of International Women’s Day last week and that this month is Women’s History Month, I have compiled a list of my favorite badass female characters from television, film, and books. So check out the list and get ready to say “YASS GIRL!”, because girls truly run the world.
Warning: Spoilers Ahead!
1. Katniss Everdeen
Played By: Jennifer Lawrence in Hunger Games, Catching Fire, & Mockingjay Part 1 and 2.
Why She’s A Badass: Katniss is a boss with a bow and arrow. She is the face of the rebellion against the totalitarian dystopian Capitol and literally saves the world.
2. Hermione Granger
Played By: Emma Watson in all eight Harry Potter films.
Why She’s A Badass: Hermione really is the greatest witch of her age. She’s smart, sassy, and also can be a badass in a wand battle.
Played By: Charlize Theron in Max Max: Fury Road
Why She’s A Badass: Furiosa risks her life to save the Wives who have been imprisoned and strives to bring them to safety. Plus, she pulls off a buzzcut.
4. Elle Woods
Played By: Reese Witherspoon in Legally Blonde
Why She’s A Badass: Elle might not be your typical female badass, but she proves to the world that you can be blonde and also win a case in court. She smashes those stereotypes, just like she owns the bend and snap.
5. Princess Leia
Played By: Carrie Fisher (R.I.P) in Star Wars episodes four to present.
Why She’s A Badass: Princess Leia is one of the OG movie badasses. She is the ultimate princess who is ready to save the galaxy. She’s smart, she’s fierce, and she’s great battle.
6. Olivia Benson
Played By: Mariska Hargitay in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Why She’s A Badass: Detective Benson is out to save the victims and catch the suspects that have convicted heinous crimes. She is willing to do whatever it takes for justice.
Played By: Millie Bobby Brown from Stranger Things
Why She’s A Badass: Homegirl has telekinetic powers, does everything to protect her friends, and loves Eggos. Enough said.
Played By: Sarah Michelle Gellar in Buffy The Vampire Slayer TV series
Why She’s A Badass: Buffy kills vampires, duh. No damsel in distress here folks.
Played By: Daisy Ridley in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the upcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Why She’s A Badass: She’s a independent woman who doesn’t need a man. Rey has fended for herself her whole life, and plays a key part in saving the galaxy. Most importantly, she’s the first female jedi. #casual.
10. Tris Prior
Played By: Shailene Woodley in Divergent, Insurgent, and Allegiant. Btw pissed that they are making Ascendant a TV movie and that the full cast (including Shailene) aren’t returning.
Why She’s A Badass: Tris is the first of her kind, she’s Divergent and 100% genetically pure. She doesn’t fit in a category, but doesn’t think they should exist either. Tris is willing to do whatever it takes to do what is right.
11. Meredith Grey
Played By: Ellen Pompeo in Grey’s Anatomy
Why She’s A Badass: The ultimate badass, Dr. Meredith Grey saves lives on the reg.
12. Olivia Pope
Played By: Kerry Washington in Scandal
Why She’s A Badass: Olivia Pope is the definition of “kicking ass and taking names.” She’s the ultimate fix it girl, but you don’t want to get on her bad side. Plus, she has the best swagger and style.
13. Jessica Jones
Played By: Krysten Ritter in Jessica Jones
Why She’s A Badass: She’s a former female superhero, who now is a private investigator. She uses her powers to solve crimes and battle demons for those in need.
14. Black Mamba aka The Bride
Played By: Uma Thurman in Kill Bill: Vol 1 and Vol 2.
Why She’s A Badass: She’s a female assassin who is out for revenge. You don’t want to mess with the Black Mamba.
15. Katherine Johnson
Played By: Taraji P. Henson in Hidden Figures
Why She’s A Badass: Although she’s a character based off a real life woman, Katherine Johnson is the first female African-American mathematician at NASA and helped the US go to space. Without her, the space program wouldn’t be what it is today.
16. Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow
Played By: Scarlett Johansson in The Avengers, Iron Man 2, Captain America and much more!
Why She’s A Badass: Natasha is a former Russian spy that uses her superwoman assassin skills to help superheroes.
17. Annalise Keating
Played By: Viola Davis in How To Get Away With Murder
Why She’s A Badass: Annalise Keating isn’t your average professor and criminal law attorney. She’s ruthless, she’s vicious, and she’s a badass.
18. Daenerys Targaryen
Played By: Emilia Clarke in Game of Thrones.
Why She’s A Badass: The true heir (I believe) to the throne of Westeros. Daenerys is willing to do whatever it takes to reach her goals. Dany gives Cersei a run for her money when it comes to being the baddest bitch of Game of Thrones. Plus, she has three dragons.