Welcome to this week’s installment of Geek Girl Authority Crush of the Week, wherein we shine a spotlight on strong women who inspire us. Each week, we will highlight a favorite female character or creator of geeky media. These ladies are a prime example of female empowerment and how crucial it is for young girls to have said example to follow.
DISCLAIMER: The following contains some spoilers for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. If you’re not already caught up, you can find seasons 1-5 on Netflix and season 6 is available on Hulu.
Agent Melinda May – Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Agent Melinda May (played by Ming-Na Wen) is a woman of many talents. Pilot, field agent, administrator, and fighter for all that is good and just. This woman is dangerous! She smart, stealthy, and an expert in martial arts. If she really needed a gun, she’d carry one. Melinda May is truly an Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D..
Agent May began her career in S.H.I.E.L.D.as a field agent. She earned the nickname “The Calvary” after single-handedly taking out terrorists who took her team hostage. FYI, don’t ever call her “The Calvary.” Unfortunately that included a young Inhuman girl that May had to kill to release the hostages. This incident traumatized May, prompting her to seek a desk job and avoid field work.
May was recruited by Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) for a special team that would need a practical and pragmatic second in command. Since then May has been the voice of reason and making tough decisions for the team even in the face of death. Her loyalty is to her team and SHIELD…except that one time she served Hydra in the Framework. But that doesn’t count.
The Real Deal:
Not much is known about May’s past. She was once married to a psychologist, Andrew Garner (Blair Underwood) who then turned out to be the Inhuman Lash. She trained to be an ice skater when she was younger, but traded in her skates for martial arts. Which is part of the reason she’s so dangerous. May trains new recruits, old recruits, and sometimes she trains old enemies to remind them of who she is. If May is glaring at you, you’re in trouble.
People have to earn her trust and her smile. Since season one, we’ve watched May soften up a bit when it comes to the team. She befriended a young clairvoyant Inhuman named Robin Hinton (Ava Kolker). May become Robin’s Mom after the Earth exploded. Other than Coulson, Robin was the only other person May spoke softly to. Just proving that under that hard exterior is a loving, compassionate woman who cares deeply about her friends.
Why Does She Matter:
As a S.H.I.E.L.D. team leader, May has to be strategic and stealthy. Never take your eyes off her because she will disappear quickly and hit you out of nowhere. Always first in the fight and the last one standing, May is truly a force to be reckoned with. Man or woman, May is already ready for combat.
Agent May has endured a lot, but she remains tough on the inside and out. Losing her best friend, Coulson should have broken her. Instead she kept her chin up and remained strong for the team. Now that Coulson is gone, May carries his legacy with her, rebuilding S.H.I.E.L.D.with the team that Coulson trusted most.
Melinda May matters because she knows her strengths and weaknesses. She never back down from a fight but knows when to let someone else take charge. Her wit and charm shine best when she’s with her S.H.I.E.L.D. family. And she always makes an impact. So be like Agent Melinda May and fight like a girl!