Why aren’t there more evil female villains?

Best villainess ever...

The other day, Cassandra Jade had a post asking people about their favorite female protagonists.  Check it out if you haven’t already–lots of good characters listed.  Well, this got me thinking about the flipside of the coin, and I tried to come up with a mental list of favorite female villains.  Surprisingly, I could only think of a few, and now I’m wondering if my memory is just really shoddy, or if there really is a shortage of female villains.

When I say “female villains,” I mean truly evil characters.  Not the bitchy boss, the lying friend who isn’t really a friend, the snarky whatever.  I mean the kind of villain who wants to kill or hurt people, or take over the world, or…well, be really evil.  Can you think of any good ones? So far, I’ve thought of the White Witch from “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” by C.S. Lewis, Umbridge from “The Order of the Phoenix,” by JK Rowling, and, well, I’m sure there must be many more, but I’m mostly drawing a blank.  I know a lot of the different fairy-tale retellings have the evil witch or stepmother figures, and there are some female villains in different series; Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake books have some good ones, for instance, but they all feel almost like minor villains since they only really affect the one book they’re in, and not the series as a whole.  But maybe I’m just being picky.

If you think of any good ones, let me know.  I’m curious, and I’ve now decided I’ll have to have a good female villain in my own future writing.

Published in: on May 21, 2010 at 11:41 am  Comments (7)  
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