Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Character Ramblings

.....The Strong Lead Female.

I read and watch a lot of different things. My tastes range from sweet and funny to action packed and even all the way into the depths of horror. There is one thing that any book, comic, movie or TV show needs for me to really get into it. It needs a strong lead female (or male depending). I just can't stand the weak, helpless lead that has to have the "knight in shinning armor" come save her all the time. Don't get me wrong I like a strong male character that doesn't mind riding in to save the day, even if it is at the last minute and after a lot of thought. But the female lead should be at least trying a little on her own to save herself.

When I start working on new characters I have a tendency to make them strong willed at least. I don't mind creating a weak character if I know they're going to toughen up once the story gets rolling along. It happens and it can make a great transformation for the character, but that transformation needs to occur if you start off with a weak character.

I'll reveal my inner geek a little and use Star Wars as an example. Princess Leia was a strong female lead. Han Solo, her love interest, was a strong male lead. Han argues with himself several times through the movies about saving Leia. He even leaves once and comes back to save the day. In each day saving moment Leia isn't just sitting ideally by waiting. She takes the opportunities she can to get the upper hand and at least attempt to save herself. Admittedly she does have to be rescued a lot, but at least she's trying to escape.
Zoey from Firefly

Another example is Zoey from Firefly.  Zoey is a character that I love. She's married to a funny, lovable pilot and has no problem busting out of trouble. She also has no problem with being saved. Zoey is a nice balance of tough as nails and sensitive. She went through a war and is now helping run a smuggling business. When her man went down in the movie, Serenity, she went going to kill ever last reaver out there crazy, and it cost her some heavy injuries. But she has that loving sensitive side that only those closest to her sees and I love it.

A weaker female lead leaves me wanting to shake her and yell "Stand Up! Fight!" While this does help a person remember a story, it's not a favorable remembrance and it's unlikely I'll read/watch it again. I know there are others out there that enjoy the sensitive, meek lead character and to each their own. As for me I can only see myself writing about and enjoying those strong willed lead females who can take a punch and most likely dish one out themselves.

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