9 Strong Female Characters To Aspire To*

In her article "A Leslie Knope in a World Full of Liz Lemons," Shanna Brookes argues that too many women aspire to a Liz Lemon aesthetic as opposed to that of Leslie Knope. The salient point the article is trying to make is that there seems to only be one right answer when looking towards fictional role-models. Why limit women to those specific characters for inspiration? Here’s a list of other literary figures we can all can aspire to.

Hermione Granger:


The boss witch herself. Homegirl routinely keeps her spell game on lock, totally has her shit together at all times, and carries the Harry Potter team singlehandedly on her back all while taking advanced courses, time-turning like a boss, and making out with International Quidditch stars. 

Daenerys Stormborn Targaryen: 

Don’t nobody mess with the mother of dragons. After freeing the Slaves of Mereen with an army of Unsullied warriors, Daenerys has her sights set on retaking the iron throne that was taken from her family when she was a baby. Also she’s like 18 years old. 

Imperator Furiosa:

The true hero of Mad Max: Fury Road, saving the Five Wives from Immortan Joe without even the slightest consideration for repayment or her own safety. She’s strong and resourceful–completely and utterly overshadowing her male counterpart in the movie. 

Veronica Mars:

Sassy? Check. Knows her way around a tazer? Check. Befriends the leader of the local street gang and uncovers all sorts of murder and intrigue? Check! Doesn’t take any guff from anybody? Triple check!

Katniss Everdeen:

She’s totally killed people. Don’t worry though, they were bad people, and she didn’t really want to kill them at the time. Also, she is all about fomenting revolution and taking down the man!

Xena Warrior Princess:

They don’t just hand the title of "warrior princess" out like party favors. You gotta earn that shit. To be a warrior, one must first and foremost engage in wartime activities. Crushing your enemies, seeing them driven before you, etc. To be a princess…well typically you gotta be born into the gig. 

This Raptor:



An “evil thing in spider form…[the] last child of Ungoliant to trouble the unhappy world”…."But still she was there, who was there before Sauron, and before the first stone of Barad-dûr; and she served none but herself, drinking the blood of Elves and Men, bloated and grown fat with endless brooding on her feasts, weaving webs of shadow; for all living things were her food, and her vomit darkness.”

Cruella De Vil:

Killer fashion sense (pun intended), self starter, entrepreneur, knows how to manage a crew of henchmen, automobile enthusiast.

Feature photo by Ryan McGuire/ VIA Gratisography