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The Best Female Characters In Sci-Fi

The Best Female Characters In Sci-Fi

Dr Chris Forester Avatar
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There's never been a better time to appreciate strong female lead characters in science fiction.  The genre has caught up with (some would say, pioneers) gender equality and is providing role models for the next generation.  Here are our top six to watch out for:

1. Michael Burnham - Star Trek: Discovery

Michael Burnham
Star Trek's newest lead character could be its best ever.

Star Trek:Discovery is the newest Netflix reboot, set a few years before the original 1960's series which featured Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock   Commander Burnham is in fact Spock's younger adopted sister and is played brilliantly by Sonequa Martin.  Although not the Captain (yet) she is the star and focus of this brilliant show.  Star Trek has been taken to a new level with Discovery: adult, mature, confident and compelling.  Burnham is smart, courageous and powerful - fast becoming the franchise's most popular ever character, male or female.  Worth watching the show just for Sonequa Martin.

2. Jyn Erso   Star Wars: Rogue One

Jyn Erso
Jyn Erso risks everything to fight the Empire.

Jyn Erso, played by Felicity Jones, is the lead character in Rogue One.  The film links in with, but doesn't focus on, the Skywalker sagas that are the centre of the main Star Wars movies which started in 1977.  Rogue One is about rebellion, courage and understanding that "freedom isn't free."  

3. Commander Susan Ivanova - Bablyon 5

Commander Ivanova Babylon 5
Susan Ivanova - witty, charming and hard as steel.

Bablyon 5 was a long running series in the 1990s which still has a large fan base today.  Ivanova was played by Claudia Christensen with such aplomb and the character had a wonderful range, from telling unruly aliens that "we also have an open airlock policy" to helping win a galactic war, Ivanova is a sci fi character that shouldn't be forgotten.

4. Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica

Starbuck (Kara Thrace)
"Pilots call me Starbuck. You may refer to me as God."

Starbuck (Kara Thrace) punches her XO in the face during a fraught came of cards in the first episode, and she doesn't calm down much after that.  Throughout the Battlestar Galactica reboot (her character was played by a man, Dirk Benedict in the original 1980s series, who went on to play "Faceman" in the "A" Team), Starbuck, the ace fighter pilot played by Katee Sackhoff kept the show vital, vivid and thrash.  Favourite lines: "I'm all out of fracks to give" and "fear gets you killed-  anger keeps you alive."

5. The next Dr. Who!

Jodie Whittaker as Dr Who
Finally - after all these regnerations!

OK, so we've only seen Jodie Whittaker appear for 2 minutes at the end of the Christmas Special, but the fact that the next Dr.Who is going to be a woman is enough reason to rekindle our childhood love of the series and see it develop in all different directions.  Wittiest response to those who have taken to social media to say "but...but...Dr. Who is a man..." is "no, she's a regnerating Galifrean with 2 hearts.  For all we know the next regeneration won't even be human looking."  Go for it, Jodie.

6. Captain Philippa Georgiou - Star Trek: Discovery

Captain Georgiou of the USS Shenzou
"Sometimes the universe allows for the making of unexpected memories."

Another Discovery character worth mentioning.  Fans have gone nuts for Michelle Yeoh's portrayal of Captain Georgiou of the USS Shenzou....and (plot spoiler) even wilder over her mirror universe character which has a major role to play in the first series.  

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