Is Smart The New Black?

There is nothing more annoying then a weak and whiney heroine. You know the ones who do nothing but scream and wait to be rescued. Think Willie in Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom. All she did was scream and whine for the majority of the movie. At times, I was rooting for the bad guys to get her just to shut her up. On the other hand, I think we can all agree that kick-butt heroines are fun. Wonder Woman, the inspiration for mine and Melinda’s story, Amazon Heat, was one tough cookie well before it was cool for female characters to be so. She was smart, sexy, and always took down the bad guys using her lasso of truth and wearing her high-heeled boots. Still, I think there is room in the pool for a heroine that falls somewhere between the two.

Evie from the movie The Mummy is a great example of middle of the road heroine. If you haven’t seen it, rent it. It’s a fun movie with Brendan Fraser(He’s so hot). Evie is not a kick-butt heroine, but she makes up for it with her smarts. She’s the one that can read ancient hieroglyphics and speak Arabic. While she may not be taking on the bad guys physically, she’s gutsy and determined. Her smarts and knowledge are just as integral to solving the conflict of the movie as the hero’s fighting skills.  However, when the bullets start flying she didn’t cringe and cry, but she also wasn’t out there in the fray either. She put her head down and did what she needed to do to survive. As the movie series progressed and the character continued to grow, Evie became more confident and self assured and better able to defend herself and her family.

So what do you think? Do you prefer your heroines to be tough and action oriented? Do the middle of the road type heroines turn you off to a book? What characteristics do you like in your heroines?

8 responses to “Is Smart The New Black?

  1. I definitely prefer the middle of the road. While loved the Twilight series, Bella was so freaking whiny and cried all the time. And Hamilton’s Anita Blake series was so far on the other end of the spectrum. She was such a hard core b*tch, who refused to care about anything or anyone (even though she was dating three guys at once). She left nothing to admire of love in that character.

  2. Can’t stand whiny heroines. I’ve never read the Twilight books and saw one movie out a curiosity (that’s two hours of my life that I’d really like back). Give me Marian from Raiders of the Lost Ark any day. Smart, sassy, and tough. Love those types of characters.

    Thanks for stopping in Christy.

    Rayna

  3. I agree completely with Christy Parks. I’m not even sure why I like Twilight, because I usually spend the whole book wishing Bella would just quit whining! And I don’t like Anita Black at all. I think I prefer the middle-of-the-road heroine, as long as she’s consistent. If she’s whiny, whiny, whiny, kicks some butt and goes back to whiny, that doesn’t work. I suppose Sookie Stackhouse is a good example of what I like. She starts out innocent, yet brave and not stupid. And she changes with the experiences she has…she gets smarter, but she also gets harder, which is a natural progression for someone that goes through a lot of what Sookie, specifically, goes through. Even Stephanie Plum gets a bit smarter, or at least learns herself better if not how to apprehend criminals, which helps.

  4. Hi Christina,
    Two series that I just couldn’t get into. I read a short sampling of an Anita Blake book once and it didn’t seem like it would be my cup of tea. From all I’ve heard about Bella. I’d wind up chucking the book across the room and walking away.

    Stephanie Plum, I like. She is learning about herself and growing, she’s not afraid to land face first in the garbage to get her bad boy, and she’s just flat out funny.

    Thanks for stopping in.

    Rayna

  5. I think strong can be good, but I probably like middle of the road best. Marian from Raiders is a perfect example. She’s tough in her own way, but still feminine too. I like balance.

  6. I agree! I like a woman in between. More vulnerable means more relatable to everyday women, like me. But a woman who has a little bit of a badass streak makes it feel like I’m not that far away. And who doesn’t strive to be a little badass? 😉

  7. I think you’re right Jamie, what woman doesn’t have her moments of wanting to be like Trinity in The Matrix(1st movie not the sequels) or Selene in Underworld or Alice from Resident Evil. Someone who wants to kick butt and take name.

    Rayna

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