Happy International Women’s Day! It’s no secret that we at Geek Girl Authority love to celebrate women. Let’s face it — we kick ass. Not only that, but we love strong, complex women in geekdom. The nerdsphere. The geek-iverse. I’m a Marvel gal myself, so it stands to reason (sorry, WandaVision fans) that I should drum up something in that realm. Commemorate the badass ladies in the Marvel arena.
So, without further adieu, I present you with my top 10 favorite Marvel female characters.
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Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) is a character I loved almost instantly, but WandaVision quickly elevated her into the stratosphere in my eyes. Now, I’m not a massive comic book reader, so I didn’t know too much about her story prior to the Disney Plus series’ debut. But her unique grief journey really resonated with me. I’m no stranger to trauma and I felt like I could see myself in Wanda. Not to mention, she’s practically the strongest Avenger! And now that she’s unlocked her Scarlet Witch abilities, the universe is the limit. Her grit, tenacity and her unyielding loyalty to her loved ones make her an a-okay person in my book.
More WandaVision love! Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) is another character that burrowed into my heart. Yes, burrowed. Like Wanda, she was also grappling with the grief of losing her mother. Monica’s desire to help Wanda and her ability to empathize with her is so important. While everyone else was willing to brand Wanda a terrorist, Monica refused to slap that label on her. She knew that, deep down, Wanda was a grieving woman. Monica is immensely intelligent and possesses strength in more ways than one. She’s a survivor harboring a heart of gold. We need more Monicas in the world.
I’ve been an Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fan since the beginning. Daisy Johnson (Chloe Bennet) is my girl! She epitomizes survival, in my humble opinion. Daisy bounced around from foster home to foster home, not knowing her real parents. Then, she finally met her folks only to promptly lose them. In addition, she developed mutant abilities that incessantly made her a moving target for baddies the universe over. Her evolution amid the course of the series is as magnificent as it is touching. We love a good character arc. She’s literally a badass superhero with extraordinary abilities and sweet computer hacking skills. Daisy boasts loyalty in spades, spunk and overflowing kindness.
Marvel’s Agent Carter deserved to live another day, but I’ll save that for another article. Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) is a kickass agent who eventually goes on to establish S.H.I.E.L.D. as we know it in the Marvel realm. She worked in a career field that was dominated by men during a time when feminism wasn’t a thing. She had to deal with rampant sexism in the workplace and a whole lot of 1940s misogynistic bullsh*t. Peggy did it all with aplomb and style. She knows her value and doesn’t rely on others’ perception of her as a basis for her worthiness. Peggy is whip-smart, clever, resourceful and just badass.
Shuri (Letitia Wright) from Black Panther is exceedingly intelligent. Like, should-be-running-the-world intelligent. Besides being a Wakandan princess, Shuri is a technological genius. Much of her work has helped advance Wakanda as a country. She’s smarter than Bruce Banner and Tony Stark. She even conjured a way to extract the Mind Stone so Vision could survive without it until everything went pear-shaped. We need more kickass, immensely intelligent warriors like Shuri. She just seems so cool. I’d want to get a drink with her and talk tech.
The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. love is real. Gemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) is another Marvel genius with approximately two billion degrees. Approximately. She helps create vital technology for the S.H.I.E.L.D. team and even embarks on some fieldwork from time to time. Her love story with Leopold Fitz may be one of the best love stories of all time. I shall invite no arguments at this juncture. You all know it’s true. Gemma went through the wringer trying to survive on an alien planet, attempting to reunite with Fitz in a different time period and traveling across space to find him. That’s just the tip of the FitzSimmons iceberg.
Anyway, Gemma is intelligent, courageous, clever, kind and a shining light to those around her.
Krysten Ritter as Jessica Jones (Jessica Jones) was a casting hole-in-one for Marvel, as far as I’m concerned. She encapsulated good ol’ J.J. to a tee. She’s bold, blatantly honest and very flawed. That’s what intrigues me the most about Jessica — she’s severely imperfect. She drinks all the time, is quite surly and doesn’t suffer fools. While I consider myself to be a nice person, there are multiple traits of Jessica’s to which I can relate. Yes, she has super strength. But she’s more of an antihero if anything. She’s one of the first “antihero” characters in Marvel TV and Jessica Jones was all the more refreshing for that.
Gert Yorkes (Ariela Barer) of Marvel’s Runaways is the quirky, cool punk girl I wish I was in high school. She’s psychically linked to a dinosaur named Old Lace. How badass is that? Gert is also a bastion of social justice who refuses to put up with discrimination of any kind. Not to mention, she boasts a solid moral compass. Gert struggles with anxiety and I appreciate that Runaways addressed this issue head-on. People mistake Gert’s passion for aggression, but she just harbors a strong desire to advocate for those who need it. Gert’s a good egg with an awesome sense of style, sarcasm for days and a dinosaur. Did I mention she has a dinosaur?
Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen) is another kickass character from Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. She’s stoicism personified. A tough egg to crack. But beneath her hardened exterior, there’s a teddy bear just waiting for cuddles. Agent May’s physical prowess never ceases to astound me. Not to mention, the fact that Ming-Na Wen is almost 60 years old and she looks that good? Anyway, May is a valuable asset to the S.H.I.E.L.D. crew. Her strength lies in her immense fighting capabilities, but she’s also incredibly clever. Kindhearted. When she allows you into her personal circle, you’re there for life. She’s a great friend to have when the going gets tough.
Luke Cage‘s Misty Knight (Simone Missick) deserved to have her own show. Besides being a no-nonsense detective with the NYPD, she now has a cybernetic arm with enhanced abilities of its own. Super strength! Extreme durability! But she starts out on Luke Cage as an impassioned detective with a penchant for justice. She’s a hard worker with a knack for taking down the baddies. Additionally, she’s blatantly honest and doesn’t shy away from speaking her mind. Misty can cut fools down to size and has zero time for shenanigans. She’s a quintessential New York badass. We deserve to see her blossom into the comic book legend she is, so Marvel, get us a spin-off!
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Who are your favorite Marvel female characters? Sound off in the comments below!
This article was originally published on 3/8/23.
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