35 Awesome Female Characters

Since I didn’t get to post anything for National Women’s Day, (which was forever ago, I know), I figured it would be nice if some awesome female characters got some recognition for being badass, (all in their own way, of course).

1. Arya Stark

  • Appears on HBO’s Game of Thrones & in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice & Fire book series.
  • “Leave one wolf alive and the sheep are never safe”.

Damn, Arya Stark, arguably the most badass female character in the Game of Thrones series on HBO for many reasons – reasons that would bring on spoilers. Her character development, in both the books and the TV series has been nothing short of totally amazing. Her journey has been epic, (to say the least), and she is a young woman who proves that no matter how hard you fall down, you can always get back up. 🙂

2. Beatrix Kiddo (The Bride)

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  • Appears in Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2
  • “Those of you lucky enough to have your lives, take them with you. However, leave the limbs you lost. They belong to me.”

Uma Thurman did an excellent job in showing the many sides of this character’s pure badassness. After being royally screwed over by her dude, (Bill), she takes a vow of vengeance and boy, does it get bloody. She’s not only a badass because of her sword skills, but also because of her perseverance. She is one woman not to f*ck with.

3. Carol Peletier

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  • Appears on AMC’s The Walking Dead
  • “Look at the flowers Lizzie.” 

Once an abused housewife, Carol has come a very long way, (even though the show has been plummeting downhill for some time now). I just couldn’t leave her off the list. She’s not only a brilliant badass, she’s able to conceal that, making her that much more dangerous. She’ll do the dirty work others won’t for the benefit of the group – a true team player.

4. Brienne of Tarth

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  • Appears in HBO’s Game of Thrones and in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice & Fire book series.
  • “All my life men like you have sneered at me and all my life, I’ve been knocking men like you into the dust.”

Loyalty means everything to Brienne of Tarth. She takes her vows seriously and her sword skills even more so. She knows the good lords from the bad and is honorable, strong one of the truest knights in all the seven kingdoms – even though, she’s technically never been knighted. (Brienne is easily one of my favorite female characters of all time).

5. Quinn King

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  • Appears on Lifetime’s Unreal
  • “I am the queen of the freaking fairies and I need you to get the hell out of my fairy fort.”

Quinn is a total boss. She runs her show and doesn’t let anyone or anything get in her way. She owns that she is completely ruthless. Her ability to micromanage essentially every person around her takes some serious skills. Yeah, she’s on the ‘heartless’ side but that doesn’t make her any less of an amazing female character.

6. Annalise Keating

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  • Appears on How to get Away with Murder
  • “We’ve all done terrible things. The worst things, all of us.”

Who doesn’t love Viola Davis? She always plays vital, interesting roles, even when she is only a minor character. Annalise Keating is one woman whose bad side you would never want to be on. However, when it comes to her squad – she’ll do whatever she can to protect them – often crossing lines other lawyers wouldn’t dream of.

7. Mary Winchester

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  • Appears on CW’s Supernatural
  • “I may be your mother but I’m more than just a mom.”

Mary has a had a rough go of things, for those of you who watch Supernatural but her character ends up being quite surprising. I won’t give away any spoilers, but this mama-bear isn’t one to be f*cked with.

8. Gamora

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  • Appears on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 1 & 2
  • “I’m going to die surrounded by the biggest idiots in the galaxy.”

Although her upbringing was clearly tough as hell, she came out of it as a total badass. As one of the more serious characters in the hilarious franchise – Gamora is often times the voice of reason and has some serious skills when it comes to fighting.

9. Clarke Griffin

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  • Appears on CW’s “The 100”
  •  “Hey, you saved my life today. And you may be a total ass sometimes but I need you. We all need you.”

Oh, Clarke. If you don’t watch “The 100”, it’s a series about 100 so-named ‘delinquent’ children sent to earth, post apocalypse to ensure that it’s habitable. Once there, these kids are pretty much on their own. Clarke steps up to the plate and keeps everyone in line, often having to make the tough calls. She’s selfless, brave and her character never fails to send a few surprises to the viewers.

10. Wonderwoman

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  • Appears in: “Batman Vs. Superman”, “Wonderwoman”, “Justice League”
  • “A promise is unbreakable.”

We all know Wonderwoman is tough, and comes with a shit ton of some pretty awesome weapons. But, more than that – she provides hope and always believes that there is good in humanity while many others often question it. Physically, she’s strong as shit, (being an Amazonian and all), but she has a huge heart. Overall, Wonderwoman is an inspiration. (I love Gal Gadot in the role and feels like she steals the show in every film she shows up in). 

11. Daenerys Targaryen

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  • Appears on HBO’s Game of Thrones & in George R. R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice & Fire”
  • “Yes, all men must die. But, we are not men.”

One of the greatest contenders for The Iron Throne, Dany has entirely too many nicknames to list. However, she earned those names. Without giving away spoilers, she is strong and knows what it means to be a good leader.

12. Jessica Jones

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  • Appears on Netflix’s “Jessica Jones”, “The Defenders”
  • “I don’t get asked on a lot of second dates.”

Okay, she may have a drinking problem…but hey, who doesn’t have issues, right? Jessica Jones is the only female hero to join up in “The Defenders”. With super-strength, a give-em-hell attitude and a bottle of whiskey, she’s pretty much unstoppable.

13. Raven “Mystique”

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  • X-Men Franchise
  • “Mutant and proud.”

Even though it isn’t rare to see Mystique go full-on rouge, she does it with epic agility. It doesn’t hurt that she’s able to appear to be whomever she chooses, either.

14. Debra Morgan

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  • Appears in Showtime’s Dexter
  • “Are you a Serial Killer?”

Debra is a detective who really does have that “Joe Kenda sense” about her. Even when it gets her in trouble, she always follows her gut – sometimes unveiling truths she may not have wanted to know. Either way, Deb can always cuss her way through an argument or shoot her way out of a sticky situation. Even though her bro is a serial killer, Debra Morgan shines as the epitome of a badass detective.

15. Lagertha

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  • Appears on History Channel’s “Vikings”
  • “You couldn’t kill me if you tried for a hundred years.”

She’s a shield maiden who fights right alongside her male counterparts – often times outdoing them on the battlefield. She’s witty and takes no shit.

16. Kristin Ortega

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  • Appears on Netflix’s “Altered Carbon”
  • “Are you a believer, mother-f*cker?”

This chick kicks some serious ass and has no qualms about pissing people off while doing what she thinks is right. As a detective, Kristin has to not only deal with the average, run-of-the-mill criminals, but also a group of nearly immortal rich people who never take responsibility for their crimes. Her character is complex, strong and incredibly perceptive.

17. Fiona Goode

  • Appears on American Horror Story: Coven
  • “Who’s the baddest witch in town?”

Firstly, I adore Jessica Lange, (and Angela Bassett) – I wish both gals would PLEASE return to AHS! Anyway, Fiona Goode is the baddest witch in town, in more ways than one. As the reigning ‘supreme’ in this very underrated season of AHS, there are very few lines Fiona won’t cross to remain strong, young and in charge.

18. Margo

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  • Appears on Syfy’s “The Magicians”
  • “I’ll go full 2000 Britney in this bitch.”

What is there to say about Margo other than she has some serious style, class and a “don’t-f*ck-with-me” attitude. I adore her in this series. She tends to have some really wicked comebacks and knows her enemies are.

19. Gemma Teller

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  • Appears on “Sons of Anarchy”
  • “Only men need to be loved. Women need to be wanted.”

Yeah, she certainly has a wicked streak in her but, out of all the characters in “Sons of Anarchy”, Gemma is the one who truly knows all the dirty deeds that have gone down over the years. At one point she’s referred to as “the queen of the bikers”, and she certainly is. In fact, she will take out anyone who is in her way. Fierce and pretty crazy; she is really a gem of a female character. (Pun totally intended).

20. Clarice Starling

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  • Appears in “Silence of the Lambs” & “Hannibal”

It’s no wonder Hannibal Lector became so undeniably intrigued by the charming Starling (rhyme intended). She’s a determined agent who is there to prove herself – and she does – mainly by outshining any male detective she works with. Both of the actresses that portrayed her, did a fantastic job of showcasing her determination, intelligence and bravery.

21. Lucretia

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  • Appears in “Spartacus”
  • “I am far worse.”

Lucy Lawless played this character in Starz’s Spartacus series and damn, did she nail the very manipulative, charming and sometimes downright monstrous character. For the most part, she’s a villain. However, seeing her in the prequel season sheds new light on what made Lucretia so villainous.

22. Tris

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  • Appears in the Divergent trilogy
  • “I’m Divergent.”

This girl proved that it can be a good thing to step compeltely outside of one’s comfort zone. She learns to walk the walk against all who doubt her and inevitably becomes one of the best “teen movie” heroines of all time, (in my opinion). She proves to the society that she lives in, that a person isn’t only one thing – they are many. She embodies all of those traits and fights against the oppression of this very dystopian world.

23. “Sarah”

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  • Appears in “The Descent”

Basically, all the women in this movie are complete badasses. Me and my friends like to hang out, have some drinks and when we are feelings really “edgy”, we might sing a round of “Backstreet’s Back” karaoke. These women spend their time white water rafting and cave diving. However, none of the woman truly rise to the challenges faced in that particular cave more than Sarah. She quickly learns how to kill the cave creatures and gives zero f*cks about swimming around in their blood. A true survivor, through and through.

24. Mira

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  • Appears in “Spartacus”
  • “Seize it with your own hands, not with what’s between your legs.”

She goes from slave to warrior, becoming an epic archer and encouraging hand for Spartacus. Her character development is amazing. Mira spent most of her life “knocked down” – so to speak – and, in epic fashion, gets back up again, becoming one of the most skilled warriors to fight alongside the rebel gladiators.

25. Killer Frost/Caitlyn

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  • Appears in CW’s “The Flash” & other Crossover shows
  • “You did this to me. You made me cold-hearted, Barry.”

She’s more like two awesome female characters within the same person. You have Caitlyn – the brilliant scientist on team Flash and her alter ego – Killer Frost, a villain turned vigilante who eventually ends up on team Flash – helping to fight against Central City’s bad guys.

26. Cersei Lannister

  • Appears in “Game of Thrones”
  • “Power is Power.”

Yes, I’m well aware she’s a bad bitch, (in the worst way). However, when it comes to playing “the great game” – as Tyrion calls it – Cersei is a top contender. Without giving away too much, let’s just say that Cersei Lannister is not a queen you want to mess with. She basically has no conscience and no love for anyone but herself, her children and maybe one or two others.

27. Sarah Lance/ White Canary

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  • Appears in “Legends of Tomorrow”

She becomes team leader of “the Legends” and has mad skills. She was trained by the League of Assassins and is known as one of their best. Sarah kicks some serious ass and is able to pull the team together when they are on the brink of falling apart.

28. Jean Grey

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  • Appears in the “X-Men” Franchise

Jean is one of the most powerful mutants on the team. So does have a little problem involving an alter-ego. I can’t wait for the new movie to explore “Dark Phoenix.” 

29. Claire Temple

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  • Appears in Marvel’s Netflix Universe

Claire is a nurse who gives aid to the city’s vigilantes when they are most in need. She’s trustworthy, knows her medicine and as her character develops, learns how to protect herself when her “super” friends aren’t around. She’s a healer, and one who sees the good the vigilantes do for the city. She winds up being one of the most important characters, in my opinion, in Netflix’s Marvel universe. If she wasn’t there – there would be no one to patch up Daredevil and the others when they get in over  their heads.

30. Reileen

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  • Appears in Netflix’s Altered Carbon
  • “We always come back for each other.”

So, Reileen is a bit obsessed with her brother but that doesn’t take away from how much of a bad ass she is. Money, power and her brother, Kovacs are all that seem to matter to her and there are likely no lines she wouldn’t cross.

31. Michonne

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  • Appears in AMC’s “The Walking Dead”

Michonne simply couldn’t be left off of this list, (even the TWD is pretty annoying to even watch anymore.) With a katana, some skills and a lot of determination, Michonne would never back down from a fight or hesitate to protect the people she loves.

32. Gorgo

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  • Appears in “300”
  • Come back with your shield, or on it.”

Another Lena Headly character. What can I say, she plays a great character – and a great queen for that matter. Gorgo is Leonititus’s Queen and she takes her role very seriously. Spartans aren’t supposed to show any weakness and she lives by those standards through and through. And…you should probably not harm her. Like her husband, she knows how to handle a blade.

33. Harley Quinn

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  • Appears in “Suicide Squad”
  • “I’m known to be quite vexing.”

Love can make us crazy but Harley takes it to a whole other level when it comes to the Joker. There isn’t anything she wouldn’t do for her dude. Once a psychiatrist – Dr. Harleen Quinzel transformed into Harley Quinn during the course of a very twisted romance with the joker. That doesn’t make her any less of a memorable female villain turned hero. All she needs is a bat, a revolver and one of her signature outfits to take out bad guys in style. (Margot Robbie portrayed Harley to perfection).

34. Hogarth

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  • Appears in Netflix’s Marvel Universe

What is there to say about Hogarth? Her actions really speak for themselves. For one, she gets laid – a lot! On top of that, she knows how to handle buisness. In a world with “super” people, Hogarth is still able to stand out. A lawyer and a great manipulator; she knows how to move all the pieces on a chess board with class.

35. Eleven

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  • Appears in Netflix’s “Stranger Things”
  • “Friends don’t lie.”

“She’s our friend and she’s crazy!” Well, he isn’t wrong, really. Eleven is no average kid and once she makes friends, she does whatever she can to protect them. Without giving too much away, Eleven has a troubled background, but quickly sees that she can be of help to a world she barely knows and friends she can’t help but love.


I’m sure there’s TONS of awesome female characters I left out but these are the top ones that came to mind.

Every one of these characters is awesome in their own way.

(I’ll be posting a fan video soon for these incredible female characters).

What do you think? Am I leaving out anyone? Let me know in the comments & please – don’t forget to share. 🙂




Krissy October is a professional freelance writer, aspiring novelist and knowledge nerd who is dedicated to consistent self-improvement and finding clever ways to solve everyday problems.

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