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These female characters are their own heroes

Step aside Spidey, Daryl and Skywalker. The female hero in comic and media realms has evolved, and can take you on in a heartbeat. • We grew up with Kim Possible, a teenage heroine who managed to save the world, volunteer and turn in her homework on time, as well as the Powerpuff Girls, three screechy mites dedicated to defending the greater good even though they still weren't ready to deal with "cooties." • But these characters weren't yet the fully developed, strong, dignified and substantial heroines longed for by viewers tired of eye-candy cliches. Fast forward nearly two decades and you'll find lead female characters who are more well-rounded, with brains, tenacity and determination, focusing more on their independence than their love interests. • Here is tb-two*s list of admirable female characters:

Katniss Everdeen

The star of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy was just looking out for her sister when the opportunity to start a rebellion presented itself. With her people in her best interest, Katniss shows even the strongest woman is allowed to cry.

Michonne

Both physically and mentally tough, The Walking Dead's Michonne wields a katana to defend herself, and is a character you'd definitely want on your side in the zombie apocalypse.

Kitty Pryde

She was 13 when she enrolled in Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters. In the X-Men comics and film series, Pryde uses her genius intellect and knowledge of computer science to best evil ninjas, conquer dystopian futures and survive the deep, dastardly pit known as the friend zone.

Sabine Wren

Don't let her dip-dyed hair and her orange and pink armor fool you. A weapons expert who likes to express herself through her art, Sabine is an upcoming Star Wars character who is sassy yet serious. Ready to confront the Galactic Empire, Wren likes to tag walls with the symbol of Rebellion — the Phoenix — to share with others that the Rebel presence is growing.

Natasha Romanoff

Also known as Black Widow in the Marvel universe , she's got a specific skill set; she's trained in espionage, linguistics and deception. Plus, she's the only woman on an all-male team and manages to hold her own.

Stephanie Brown

She had two male role models growing up: Batman and Superman. Most recognizable for her roles as "the Spoiler" and Batgirl, when Stephanie was "erased" in the DC Comics reboot, fans took to the Interwebs to protest with letter-writing and waffle-eating campaigns to bring her back.

Amy Pond

Doctor Who's "the girl who waited" was willing to follow the Eleventh Doctor across time and space, regardless of the dangers that confronted her. They traveled across war-torn London, met Skeleton People and faced Daleks.

buffy summers

This Sunnydale teen is one of the frontrunners of on-screen feminism. The Slayer showed audiences that women could kick butt while still maintaining their femininity (i.e. "I'm not exactly quaking in my stylish yet affordable boots.") Buffy, however, was only one of the wonder women on the show; her brainy best friend, successful single-mom and various villains proved that female characters could be just as dynamic as men.

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