female characters

X is for X-tra Companions

Look, the letter “X” is a hard prompt to fill so I am cheating a bit. In each episode of Doctor Who you meet a lot of new one-off characters and some of them leave a mark. This post is for some of those characters who I could totally see have become a companion if the Doctor had met them at a different time, or if the events of the episode(s) they were in went slightly differently because the tragedy of such good one-off characters and would-be companions is sometimes, they don’t survive the adventure.

Lynda Moss – “Bad Wolf”/“The Parting of the Ways”
Lynda was the first one-off character who I instantly found to be very likeable and wouldn’t have minded of seeing more of her. She’s a very sweet, bubbly person and helps the Doctor to acclimatise to this strange and unexpected situation he found himself – apparently a housemate in the Big Brother house. Lynda was brave and fun and the fact that the Doctor said yes when she asked if she could travel with him after only knowing her for a few hours shows how much of an impression she’d made on him.


Dr Nasreen Chaudhry – “The Hungry Earth”/“Cold Blood”
Nasreen is a bit different to the other characters mentions here she does survive her episodes but she does choose to hibernate under the Earth for hundreds of years so there’s no real chance that we can see her again. I did love that decision though; she chose to stay with the Silurians (a lizard-like race) underground to pursue her thirst for scientific knowledge and to be with the man she loved. I think a sign of how great Nasreen was is that the Doctor chose her and Amy Pond to be Ambassadors for humanity in the human-Silurian talks that would decide the fate of the planet. He’d only known Nasreen for a couple of hours but was already impressed by her intelligence and had considered taking her on a trip in the TARDIS because of it.

Rita Afzal – “The God Complex”
Rita was an English medical student who along with other humans and aliens was abducted from their lives and placed in a hotel that killed people with their deepest fears. She was smart and perceptive, quickly figuring out possible scenarios for what was happening thanks to observing everyone and everything. The Doctor instantly took a shine to her and even joked that Amy was fired and Rita was now going to join him in the TARDIS. Rita was a devout Muslim and I really liked how her faith was incorporated into her character as that’s not something we see that often in Doctor Who. Or rather fictional/alien faiths are mentioned quite frequently but not real-world/present day ones.

Grace O’Brien – “The Woman Who Fell to Earth”
Honestly this one still makes me mad. Grace is such a wonderful character and is the one who instantly rolls with the weirdness of the Doctor falling through the roof of the train she’s on and the weird glowing ball of light that zaps her. Her husband is far more hesitant about getting involved while Grace embraces the adventure and the desire to help others. I get that it’s a tragedy that Grace dies and doesn’t get the chance to travel the universe after loving every second of the short adventure she was on with the Doctor. Grace has all the best qualities of a companion; she’s kind, is calm under pressure, and she’s adaptable. I instantly took to her and wanted more of her compared to the other characters who’d end up as companions. I honestly think Grace had more personality and definable traits in one episode than a lot of Thirteen’s companions did in dozens of episodes.

U is for Uma

I watched the Descendants trilogy for the first-time last year and absolutely loved them and became somewhat obsessed with all the songs and I even bought the books though I’ve yet to read them. I think all the characters are pretty great but there’s something especially fun about Uma.

Uma is the daughter of Ursula and the Captain of her crew of pirates which include the sons of Captain Hook and Gaston. Uma is calculating and resourceful and will go to extreme lengths to get what she wants – including kidnap and manipulation. But Uma isn’t self-serving, what she wants is a better life for her, her crew and the rest of the kids on the Isle of the Lost.

Uma is incredibly loyal to her friends and crew, she’s smart, capable and good at problem-solving. I like how devious she can be and even when she has to reluctantly work we her former nemesis, you never really know how long that truce will last.

I also really like Uma’s personality. She can be stubborn, mean and arrogant, but she’s also funny, sarcastic and caring. She has layers and her dynamics with various characters are a lot of fun, especially Harry Hook.

Uma also has some of the best songs in the trilogy.

S is for Shuri

I love Black Panther for giving us so many interesting and cool female characters. I think besides the Thor films; Black Panther has the most well-developed female characters than any other MCU film.

Shuri is so great because while she is ridiculously smart and is the head scientist of the Wakandan Design Group, she still acts like a teenager who enjoys music, jokes and messing with her big brother. I love the scenes with her and T’Challa. They feel like proper siblings but T’Challa still listens to her judgement when it comes to the technology she’s created.

I like how Shuri is a character that has many sides and responsibilities. She’s Princess of Wakanda, meaning she has certain responsibilities and must act a certain way when she’s doing her royal duties. She’s a scientist and engineer, making much of Wakanda’s modern technology. She’s a warrior, prepared to fight alongside her brother for the good of Wakanda. But then she is still a young woman with a sense of humour and her own ideas about what’s right and good.

I also love that in the MCU all characters just accept how ridiculously smart this young black woman is and no one underestimates her. Or if they do, they end up regretting it.

P is for Pepper Potts

Pepper Potts is the best. I love her, and her relationship with Tony, so much and I’m just super invested and hope she gets a happy ending.

Let me count the ways that Pepper Potts is amazing. She was the Personal Assistant to Tony Stark, something that definitely wasn’t an easy job, but she kept him in line, dealt with board members of Stark Industries, networked and could deal with the press like the best of them. No doubt when Tony made her CEO of Stark Industries she received a lot of backlash – I bet some people thought she only got the job because she was sleeping with the boss, which she wasn’t but even if she was, she proved to be a more than capable CEO and has guided to the company to great heights.

As well as being an astute businesswoman she’s also very brave. Along with Happy she drove in the middle of the Grand Prix to get Tony’s suit to him when he was being attacked and she spied on Obadiah Stane when Tony asked her to, putting herself in more danger than she realised, and ended up saving the day. In fact there’s a great tweet where someone worked out that Pepper has killed more of the main villains of the MCU than anyone else. She was also incredibly badass in Iron Man 3 and I loved how they flipped the script and made Tony the damsel in distress at the end there.

Being in love with someone who has PTSD and anxiety can’t be easy and I thought Iron Man 3 did a great job of showing Tony’s issues and how they affected Pepper too. She never stopped believing in Tony though and I’m so pleased they worked through their issues and are now engaged to be married.

Pepper is smart, kind-hearted, loyal and trustworthy. She’s the kind of character who can be underestimated as she’s not a fighting-badass kind of character. Instead she’s quietly badass in her suit and high heels, and one that cares deeply about her friends.

O is for Okoye

Near enough all of the characters in Black Panther are pretty badass but Okoye is perhaps the most badass.

She’s the general of the Dora Milaje, Wakanda’s elite female bodyguards, and is a trusted advisor to King T’Challa. While she is T’Challa’s friend and will question him when she feels it’s necessary, she is also loyal to the throne of Wakanda, no matter who sits in it. She loves her country and its people and will do just about anything to protect it, even going against the man she loves.

Okoye is a fierce and skilled fighter. I loved watching her fight whether it was when she’s undercover in a casino, or when it’s on the plains of Wakanda. She’s elegant yet lethal and with her fighting style being a combination of martial arts and spear mastery.

I love Okoye’s sense of humour. She’s seemingly very stoic and serious, but she can also have a wicked sense of humour. It’s just that she knows when she needs to be professional and be the face of the Dora Milaje, but when she’s with friends or not in a serious meeting, she can be funny and approachable.

Okoye’s incredible and I’m sure she, along with M’Baku, are keeping Wakanda together and I can’t wait to see her again in Endgame.

K is for Kim Possible

Now it’s time for a bit of nostalgia – Kim Possible was not only one of my favourite cartoons when I was in my early teens but I’m also pretty sure for a while I wanted to be just like Kim herself.

Kim Possible is a really fun show, I loved the humour and all the characters – I especially liked Shego and the kind of mutual respect she and Kim had for each other. Oh, and the puns! Love a good pun so Kim Possible being a pun of the word “impossible” and Ron Stoppable being a pun on “unstoppable” were right up my street.

Kim was just so cool. She was a spy, she had cool gadgets, she was funny and popular but never mean about it – she was definitely the sort of character I aspired to be like when I was a teenager. I also really wanted Kim and Ron to get together! They were probably one of my first ship’s and I loved them as both best friends and when they finally ended up as a couple.

I feel like Kim Possible, along with Totally Spies, is what started my love of spies and superheroes, because Kim was kind of a superhero. She had a secret double life, tech support in the form of Wade, and a sidekick in Ron. Kim Possible was one of those shows I’d watch when I was channel hopping, even when I’d “grown out of it” because that’s the thing, the quick dialogue and humour was something that could appeal to all ages.

Who can forget the theme song?! I always used to sing along and I wanted my own phone to make that beeping noise when I got a text – I’m sure you can download it from somewhere but I’ve never got around to it.

REVIEW: Powder Room (2013)

powder room posterWhen Sam (Sheridan Smith) goes on a night out with her old college friends, she is forced to revaluate her life as her new best friends arrive in the club and threaten to ruin the façade she’s put on for her old, more successful friends.

The majority of Powder Room takes place in the women’s toilets of a nightclub, a place where there’s arguments, laughter and tears. Having it set in such a small place means characters are always bumping into each other and there’s secondary characters who appear as the film goes along and you see how their night turns out too.

There’s so many relatable characters and situations in Powder Room. Sam is trying to appear more successful than she is and hiding who she really is from her old college friend Michelle (Kate Nash) and her friend Jess (Oona Chaplin) who are both beautiful and have seemingly wonderful lives in Paris. Sam’s best friend Chanel (Jaime Winstone) is a man-eater, while Paige (Riann Steele) is worrying she’s become boring now she’s settled down with her boyfriend and Saskia (Sarah Hoare) just wants to have a laugh.

Powder Room is a lot of fun and it’s British comedy at its best. So many young women can watch it and recognise themselves or who they used to be, sneaking into nightclubs when you’re under eighteen or ending up spending more of the night in the toilets than on the dance floor. Perhaps most importantly, it’s funny and honest about what female friendship is really like – both the highs and the lows. 5/5.

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Top Ten Favourite Heroines

Top Ten Tuesday is a feature run by BrokeAndBookish each week – I’m thinking I might not take part every week but just see if a week takes my fancy. This week is all about favourite heroines – most of mine are bookish ones but there’s a couple from films and TV shows too.

alana-01Alana from the Saga series by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Alana is a Landfallian who fell in love and had a baby with a solider from Wreath – they’ve got a Romeo & Juliet kind of deal going on but they are far better at communicating so neither of them have died yet. Alana will do anything to protect her daughter but at the same time she is also impulsive and sometimes jealous. She’s also a former solider so she can handle just about anything that comes her way.

Lucy Pevensie from The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
Lucy is so young and full of belief and wonder at the world around her. I love her faith in Narnia and in her family and how she grows to become quite courageous over the course of her adventures. (more…)