The (Female) Force Awakens

It’s happening, finally. The importance of heroines isn’t being cast away and seen as something that’s not worth film-makers, comic book creators and TV producers time.

It’s a new year, and a new hope.

Alongside the blockbuster of the year, where Charlize Theron stole the throne from Tom Hardy’s Mad Max, we had some killer television.

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At the end of 2015 we saw Marvel’s Jessica Jones bring a harrowing, female-focused storyline to screens, where sexual and emotional abuse is shown at it’s most potent and it’s the male characters who go nameless.

Supergirl also hit screens, and even though it’s popularity has seemed to dwindle – it’s a shame. Supergirl was integral to my interest in superheroes. She was the attainable heroine, the one I could most relate to as a child.

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Lesser known, but still important were the Scream Queens and Scream series’. As a horror fan, these stand out. Dispite Scream Queen’s tongue and cheek look at slasher flicks and use of movie tropes, the cast is heavily female, and they are all very well fleshed out, with both heroines and villains.

Scream was perhaps one of my personal favourites, with the Scream series yet again warping perceptions and proving that it’s still well ahead on the horror trend, still relevant and cleverly self-aware.

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Then came Star Wars, and thank the universe. Rey gives little girls the hope we have been waiting for – the proof that you don’t have to ever be the damsel in distress, be sexualised, be provocative. That a female character can be just as universal as a male. Let’s teach little boys and girls not to worry about gender, to relate to the character and not the sex – young girls have to do this a lot more, as the hero of a blockbuster is very rarely a girl, so finding yourself in the shoes of a boy is common in our imagination.

Here’s an interesting article that illustrates this point beautifully and adds to our cause – we don’t need another hero, let their be more heroines.

New Statesman Article: What to do when you’re not a hero anymore

And another brilliant piece from Mary Sue: The Importance of Rey

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