This year has given us tons of new and exciting additions to the nerd world, from Age of Ultron to Squirrel Girl. No area of fandom has been neglected within 2015, and it definitely shows. With all of these new pieces of media to love, a wealth of both new female characters and ones in need of a reboot have popped up to admire and look up to, in every realm of fandom from movies and TV to books and video games. Here are some of the best of the best that I particularly enjoyed this year.
Batgirl/Barbara Gordon from Batgirl Vol. 1: The Batgirl of Burnside
With a new design and new authors, Batgirl got a remake this year which caters to a younger generation. After a fire destroys both her outfit and equipment, Gordon packs up and moves to the trendier borough of Burnside, leaving behind her old home and old persona for a fresh start at being a superhero. Hoping to draw in a more diverse audience, DC has really struck gold with this new reboot, with Batgirl’s character still being a strong, capable female heroine – with her flaws still intact. With so many exciting new comics for women, such as Lumberjanes, Ms. Marvel and Squirrel Girl, the last few years in the comics world have introduced tons of amazing new female characters.
Liv Moore from iZombie
If you were a fan of Veronica Mars and don’t yet know about iZombie, you’re in for a treat. The creator of one of the most beloved mystery shows, Rob Thomas, has done it again: Liv, the main character of iZombie, possessing all of the snark and sarcasm that made us fall in love with Veronica – with a relatable soft side, as well. The show centers around Liv, a promising medical resident who ends up being attacked by – you guessed it- zombies while at a party, forever changing her life. Now a zombie herself, Liv works in a morgue to feed her hunger for brains, but soon learns she absorbs the memories of those whose brains she eats. With this knowledge, she goes on to solve murders with a detective. Probably my favorite show from this year, iZombie combines the wit of Veronica Mars with a supernatural twist. Liv’s character is also spectacular and relatable – she’s just trying to make it through life, with the added complications of zombie-ism. She slowly grows into her powers, but still wishes for her old life – and in the process realizes who she truly is. Bonus – it was just announced Kristen Bell will guest star on the show!
Imperator Furiosa from Mad Max: Fury Road
This might have just been the most talked about movie in 2015 – and for good reason. It’s actually probably one of the best movies of the past five years, and one of those reasons? The female characters. Women aren’t seen as second to men in this film – in fact, one of the main characters, Imperator Furiosa, is the main one on charge, trying to help the wives escape the evil (and repulsive) Immortan Joe. Unlike most of the characters in the Mad Max universe, Furiosa isn’t just out for herself – she makes it her mission to help others as much as she can with her position of power as a driver in Immortan Joe’s group. She’s caring and gentle with the wives, but also fiercely protective, strong and intelligent. She also represents that people with disabilities are just as capable as those without. In a sense, Furiosa is the feminist warrior we’ve been dying to see on screen for a while.
Buy the movie from Amazon or rent it at your local Redbox.
Jessica Jones is just a normal girl who wants to be left alone – but not really. With superhuman strength, an evil ex with the ability to control anyone when he speaks and who repeatedly violated her self control, and an alcohol problem, Jessica is nowhere near normal. And with Kilgrave, her ex, back in the picture wreaking havoc again, Jessica must do anything to stop him. Her character was probably my favorite of the year, because her portrayal is so brutally honest. While everyone deals with abuse and rape differently, the portrayal of how Jessica deals with it – by not dealing with it and drinking to remove the pain – is a path that some survivors do go down. Jessica’s sarcasm and wit are also spectacular and relatable, even if they are used as weapons against letting others into her life. However, she’s not just a victim – she’s a fighter, through and through, and she’s willing to do anything to protect those she loves.
Watch the show on Netflix.
Rey from Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This movie was one of the most anticipated movies in years, probably of the decade – and wow, did it deliver. Without any spoilers, it was the perfect blend of all of the old, beloved characters and an introduction to some great new characters as well – especially Rey. Yes, this go around of Star Wars, the story is led by a girl – and a kick ass girl at that. *SPOILERS AHEAD* Rey has been waiting on Jakku for many years for a family who haven’t returned, and goes about her daily routine until Finn and BB-8 pop up and change her life completely. Rey is stubborn and headstrong, but is also willing to leave behind the family she’s been waiting on to help the whole galaxy. Along with her tenacity, she learned to completely rely on herself on the desolate Jakku, becoming a gifted pilot, scavenger and mechanic. She’s truly efficient on her own, but finally realizes that she needs others to be her best self – and I can’t wait to see the rest of her story play out.
Catch the movie in theaters or pre-order your own copy from certain stores.
Celaena Sardothien from the Throne of Glass series
While this series has been going for a few years, the newest book was just published in September – and everyone should know the brilliance of this series and Celaena Sardothien. However, Celaena isn’t your typical likable character – in fact, she might raise a few eyebrows. Snarky, grumpy and a bit of a jerk, Celaena is still able to dig into your heart, just like with the other characters in the series. This outward facade of stone hides one of the strongest, most caring characters you’ll ever read about. She’s been taught to be hard and cocky as an assassin, but she also hides her soft side in fear of being hurt like she has been before. In the third book, she also deals with depression in the most human way I’ve ever seen – even though she’s completely broken down, she’s able to pick herself back up. Her arrogance and pride are also not just shown as bad things – she truly thinks she’s the best…and she kinda might be.
Buy the whole series on Amazon.
Lara Croft from Rise of the Tomb Raider
Lara Croft has been around for quite awhile now, but with the reboot of the series with Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider, released in November, the series is completely new. Being able to play as a young Lara, players are able to see a different side of the beloved character: still young, still competent, but without the experience and wisdom she possesses in the previous games as an older woman who’s been on many missions. We get to see her evolve into the brave young woman thirsting for adventure in both, but I’ve been told that Rise of the Tomb Raider does an even better job of exploring both Lara’s character and the world of Tomb Raider.
Pick up a copy of the new video game at your local Gamestop or on Amazon.
- Connie from Steven Universe
- Scarlet Witch/Wanda Maximoff from Avengers: Age of Ultron
- Peggy Carter from Agent Carter
So, who were some of your favorite new characters from 2015? Maybe a new reboot or addition to a character’s story that you love? Which new female characters are you excited to see in 2016? Comment below – I always love suggestions for new things to check out! Let’s hope the new year will bring in even more female characters we can all adore!