Thursday, May 25, 2017

Top 10 Female Gunslingers in Fiction

In my two lists for fictional gunslingers, no female characters were able to make the cut.  Yet, there are indeed some cool female gunslingers out there, and they deserve their own list.

To make this list, these broads don’t necessarily need to be from a “Western”, but the fact that they wield guns should have been a notable factor in defining and celebrating their characters.  Moreover – as with the implied standard of the past two lists – their preferred weapons must be handguns (though it’s okay if they also use other auxiliary weapons occasionally), since the term “gunslingers” are more associated with revolvers or pistols (there’s nothing technically incorrect about a gunslinger using a rifle, but it just doesn’t feel right).

Domino, who is prominently associated with the X-Force, is a mutant that possesses “subconscious telekinetic probability manipulation.”  It means, on her feet, her subconscious is telekinetically manipulating tiny, random things to happen in the vicinity – which, on their own, are very improbable to occur – in order to affect events in her favor.  Simply, this gives her “good luck” and her opponents “bad luck.”  On top of this, she’s a highly proficient sharpshooter, making her very reliable in combat.  She’s adept in using different kinds of firearms, but she’s often portrayed with using handguns.

Sussanah Dean – the amalgamation of the kind, meek Odetta Holmes and her angry, violent split personality, Detta Walker – is a member of Roland Deschain’s ka-tet journeying towards the Dark Tower.

Though she no longer have legs, she turns out being as formidable as her non-disabled husband, Eddie Dean – maybe even more so – after both are trained by Roland in the ways of the Gunslinger.  However, since there are only three guns to be distributed among the four members of the ka-tet, she doesn’t always wield one.  During their stop at the village of Calla, she is able to master the use of the local iron throwing plates.  These become her weapons of choice whenever she doesn’t have a gun.

Sussanah would have been ranked higher in this list if she exclusively owns a gun of her own.

In a world where magic basically exists, with all the Alchemists and Homunculi roaming around, Lieutenant Riza Hawkeye is very much able to hold her own as a soldier due to her resilience, composure, discipline, consistency, intelligence, and excellent marksmanship.

I’ve always been aware of the Tomb Raider games, though I’ve never played one myself.  But I really got to become fond of Lara Croft due to the movies, in which the character is played by the stunning Angelina Jolie.

An attractive chick that can wield handguns like nobody’s business is simply mesmerizing.

6.) FOX
Here’s another Angelina Jolie character making the list – Fox, from the brilliant action thriller film Wanted.  The movie features a secret order of assassins called “The Fraternity”, whose members are skillful killers that can perform unbelievably spectacular feats, including curving the trajectory of a bullet when it’s shot from a gun.  And the greatest of the lot is Fox.

Here’s a glimpse of her jaw-dropping awesomeness:

When I was younger, I used to have the opinion that Naomi Armitage is a better gun-toting cybernetic heroine than the Major.  After re-watching Armitage III and Ghost in the Shell as an adult, I no longer have that opinion.   I love both of them, but the Major is easily the more fascinating and kickass character.

Not only is she very capable with the handgun and tremendously competent in melee combat, but having a cyborg body allows her to perform superhuman feats, including jumping between buildings, complex acrobatics, highly advanced computer and AI hacking, and invisibility.  It’s no wonder she’s the best agent of the paramilitary intelligence agency Section 9.

ScarJo did a stellar job in playing the character in the recent Ghost in the Shell live-action movie (which is, unfortunately, so underrated).

Not many people will remember or like The Quick and the Dead, a 90’s western film starring Sharon Stone, Gene Hackman, Russell Crowe, and Leonardo DiCaprio (the very first movie I’ve seen him).  But it’s a movie I got to be fond of as a kid, and still am fond of until now.  In it, Sharon Stone plays “The Lady”, a mysterious female gunslinger looking to avenge her father from his killer, the sadistic Mayor Herod (played by Hackman).  In order to do so, she must join the town’s quick-draw tournament – which Herod is participating in – where she meets and competes with various colorful rogues and gunfighters, including a brash young man called “The Kid” (DiCaprio) and a preacher who has renounced violence named Cort (Crowe).

“The Lady” is, hands down, my most favorite Sharon Stone role.  She’s the first female gunslinger I’ve ever encountered in fiction; thus, she has left a special impression on me.  And, yeah, I used to have a huge crush on her (“The Lady”, not necessarily on Sharon Stone).

I was basically drawn to Tanya the same way I was drawn to Lara Croft (i.e. “attractive chick that can wield handguns like nobody’s business”).  But her overall charisma, occasional hysterical laughter, rousing in-game quotes (“Shake it, baby!”), and readiness to jump into danger without second thought somehow add up to elevate her above the archetype.  Which is why she made my all-time list for “most favorite fictional female characters.”

For the record, I like Red Alert 2’s actress best.

Being the daughter of Johnny Cage and Sonya Blade, Cassie Cage has turned out being a mix of both.  She has her father’s charisma, cockiness, and humor, and she has her mother’s good looks, figure, and military pedigree.  Most importantly, she’s trained by both.

She’s an immensely well-realized, fascinating, and fun character that I wish there’s an entire movie or TV series centered on her.  Her winning personality is enough for me to love her.  The fact that she wields a hand gun is just icing on top – a very delicious icing.

1.) REVY
This profane, hot-tempered, ill-mannered, nihilistic anti-heroine is the main protagonist of the terrific anime series Black Lagoon.  She’s always raring for a fight, and easily gets bored when there’s none to be found.  In the midst of carnage and warfare, she’s ecstatic and gleeful, killing without any remorse and mercy.

Revy is also known as “Two Hands” because of her incredible proficiency in wielding her trademark dual Berretas.  Very few people can hold their own against her in a gunfight.

Thus, being hardened and deadly, the Lagoon Company can count on her whenever the going gets tough.  In the face of antagonism and danger – regardless of the odds, regardless of the number of opponents – Revy will come out on top, annihilating everyone in her path with a smile on her face.

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