I think we have all noticed over the years that there have been a series of comic book movies which have all been rather male-centric, with less focus on female characters. It seems that the industry doesn’t appreciate the power of greater distribution and marketing to women; a lot of women are demanding to have more female comic book heroes on our screens who demonstrate strength and authority.
Female characters in comic books have been unpredictable due to poor writing and even worse art, and they are often over-sexualised for their predominantly male readers. I’ve come up with a few of the women who do exist in superhero comics, who deserve both our recognition and some screen time for the female comic book fans out there.
Ms. Marvel, also known as Carol Danvers, is a character with looks, strength and a heroic attitude. A former officer in the United States Air Force, she gained superpowers after she was caught in a blast of radioactive energy and the original Captain Marvel stepped in to shield her, resulting in her absorbing his genetic template. A film starring her character, titled Captain Marvel, is scheduled to be released in 2018.
If you’ve only heard of one female comic book hero over the years, it’s probably Wonder Woman. She has remained a symbol of feminine power and might not be stronger than Superman, but she is the better warrior and you can’t deny her good looks. This feminist icon is probably the most important female character in comics, but she’s often been given short shrift; she is frequently demoted to menial status and has been depowered and repowered more often than all the X-Men combined. Wonder Woman fans will be thrilled to know that actress Gal Gadot will portray Wonder Woman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which is scheduled to be released in 2016.
If anyone could do high-stake thefts in black heels, it’s Catwoman. She knows how to be a sexy supervillain (or often an anti-heroine) wearing a black latex costume, red lipstick and carrying a whip as a weapon. Also known as Selina Kyle, an orphan who lived on the streets when she was little, she turned to thieving to survive and used her fighting skills to fend for herself. She is also known for having a love-hate relationship with Batman. Catwoman has appeared in several films, most recently The Dark Knight Rises, in which she was played by Anne Hathaway. A young Selina Kyle is played by Camren Bicondova in the ongoing TV show Gotham.
When I first saw superhero Black Widow in the Iron Man films, I couldn’t help but wonder who this woman doing all these amazing martial arts stunts was. Black Widow, aka Natasha Romanoff, is a secret agent who works for S.H.I.E.L.D., and she’s also a part of The Avengers team. Her flexible moves, black costume and red hair match her dark attitude, which I think makes her one of the fiercest femme fatales in comic books and on our screens. Her character is played by Scarlett Johansson in Iron Man 2, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Marvel’s The Avengers, and she is also set to appear in Avengers: Age of Ultron in 2015 and Captain America: Civil War in 2016.
Elektra is a secret ninja assassin who’s never tolerated any crap from anyone in the comic universe, and her trademark red costume and pair of bladed sai show how much of a badass she is. With her martial arts skills and her “Don’t mess with me” attitude, Elektra is one of the most deadly heroines of our time. Her character is portrayed by Jennifer Garner in the 2003 film Daredevil and its 2005 spin-off film, Elektra.
Did your favourites make the list? Is there anybody else who deserves recognition? Let us know in the comments below.