Throughout history, there has pretty much always been great male warrior characters in stories, but the occurrence of women in these roles was a lot less common. Sure, there are some decent female warrior types amongst pagan goddesses, but apart from that I can’t say I really noticed many while I was growing up.
In my childhood, as a child of the 80s, the damsel in distress was the most common female hero being presented in books, tv, and movies.
But as I got older, female warriors were becoming more and more common. The terminator series shows a pretty great example with Sarah Conner, who in the first movie has no ability to defend herself, but by the second had turned herself into a warrior in order to protect her son.
Buffy was another great example, a very petite and seemingly defenseless female that saves the world a lot. As a teenager when this series began, being shown an example of a character that was strong and capable, but still able to maintain her femininity was incredibly empowering. Even though these skills were magical, the show made an effort to show how hard she trained to achieve this, and even went so far as to take how powers away in an episode to show that she could fight the monsters with intelligence alone.
Yes, I am a buffy fan.
What I am noticing these days though, is that female warrior characters aren’t just the occasional occurrence, and they aren’t necessarily sexualised as can be seen with Rey Skywalker.
I particularly love the way in superhero comic movies, female superheroes are playing starring roles, like Captain Marvel. For the children of today, this is powerful for boys and girls alike.
For me personally, I greatly value these characters. Tapping into my warrior archetype in my everyday life has not been something I find easy to do. This isn’t to say I want to go and beat up the bad guys and shoot people, it’s that the warrior archetype allows us to feel strong and that we can defend ourselves, that it is within our power to protect those we love if we need to.
For this reason, I value watching these types of shows as much as any other spiritual endeavour, and honestly believe it to be healing. So next time you are sitting down watching some seemingly B grade movie with a loveable female superhero, treat it as a healing experience, you are definitely not just wasting your time with simple entertainment.
…and if you are just wasting your time with simple entertainment, shrug and smile, and remember we are here for fun too.