Women. They’re… they’re something else. They grow human beings. They bleed every month and it’s considered ‘normal’. Hell, if we men bled every 28 days I think we’d have committed suicide by now. Am I right, fellas?! And many multitask like a beast, juggling everything from obligations at work, friends, home and living life to the full, and look good doing it.
But sadly, like in society, women in comics haven’t been given a fair shake. We were reminded of this in some respect in recent covers like that of the apple-twerking Spider-Woman or Batgirl’s Joker Variant. PC or not, it can’t be denied that strong, recurring female characters have been skint in the comic universe.
But there are a few ladies who shine through the inked panels of the comic to show us who really real runs this bitch. So for this #TAP10, we take a look at the bad-ass women of the comic kind. They don’t care about your patriarchal views and narrow-mindedness, but still know how to use ‘sexy’ as a weapon. Ah, mysterious honey-scented man traps. Seduction and manipulation are the tools to get lesser-minded men to do what they want, and even better men fall prey to the ways of the sultry.
So while she may look absolutely stunning even under the worst conditions, cross her the wrong way and she’ll take your words and make you a manwich. Right before she begins shoving it down your throat:
With enough brains and muscle to match, the lawyer Jennifer Walters is no stranger to the tango of dealing out justice, whether in the courtroom or in the street. Walters received a blood transfusion from cousin Bruce Banner and as such obtained the super strength and green hued skin of the hulk, but retains her intelligence and emotional control. But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t get angry from time to time, an emotion that, like the Hulk, increases her strength.
After exposure to more radiation trying to stop a leak during her stint with the Fantastic Four, she lost her ability to transform back to her ‘normal’ human form. But to be honest we all love the green Amazon look. Shulkie has used her awesome court skills to defend numerous superheroes, and backed it all up with biceps I as a man am completely jealous of. And to top it all off she brought legal action against Tony Stark for being a royal douche in stealing her powers. So even in human form she could wipe the floor with him. What do you expect from a bombshell whose job it is talk slick and manipulate words like a rubix cube.
She was one of the greatest psychoanalytical minds. Then she met the neurosis, head-trauma case that was the Joker and the rest is history. She was Joker’s psychiatrist but she literally fell madly in love with him and became his partner in crime. She’s one of the few comic book characters (Lex Luthor’s Sexy assistant / limo driver Mercy Graves is another) that first appeared in the DC universe in an animation and was so well received that they made the exodus into the comic book panels. It is her reimagining in The New 52 and Rocksteady’s Batman: Arkham Knight game franchise that has really catapulted her persona to new heights.
Harley is a bit of a loon, sure, but her addled-mind has hidden deep within it a sharp intelligence and enough spunk and feistiness to cause real damage, to others and herself of course. Not to mention her own team in the form of Suicide Squad. SKWAD! It’s just that Joker, even in death has a real hold on her.
Also referred to as the She-Devil with a sword, the redhead, scantily clad warrior was not one to be trifled with, having crossed swords with the likes of Conan and hideous supernatural oddities that would have the average man curled up in the fetal position sucking his thumb and crying for mommy. Fierce fantasy-archetype woman who had no soft spot in her heart for weakness.
At the age of 17, Sonja was brutally raped by the head of marauders that murdered her family. She then gets visited by the red goddess Scáthach who grants her the prowess of a skilled fighter, on the condition that she never lie with a man unless she is conquered by him in fair combat. Well that’s the original origin story in Marvel Comics.
Red Sonja got a bit of a revamp over at Dynamite Entertainment, where her village was visited by pillagers, who did kill her family. But in this version she lures the raiders into the thick jungle and murders them one by one. In Dynamites version too Sonja learns her fighting skills from being a slave and being forced into becoming gladiator, learning the ropes from a fellow prisoner. Needless to say we like the second version of the Heroine more.
Nothing can hold this femme fatale. Literally, seeing she’s a deadly shapeshifter who can virtually attached herself to surfaces being virtually undetectable, she transforms into black ink like consistency and can move through any crack or crevice. She’s gone up against everyone from Batman Beyond and the Justice League.
She’s not too fond of water or electricity, or any combination of the two, but catching her or getting close enough to subdue this vixen is a task and a half in itself.
Spider-Man you lucky dog. Imagine having a red head model and a sultry vixen who can steal you things. Not that he’d take it of course. But it does explain why’d he would possibly dance like an idiot for 10 minutes.
Felicia Hardy aka Black Cat is the type of gal who makes her own luck, especially when it came to getting what she wants. Whether its riches or Spiderman. The former feline cat burglary gave up the crime and caper life to be one of the good guys, but one thing she didn’t give up was her resourcefulness and uncanny ability to make any mundane task look like the sexiest thing ever. We’d say the obvious, making some link between her and Catwoman in terms of characteristics, but I think it goes without saying. Black Cat
… Copy Cat more like.
Now this is one cold fox from the mind of Frank Miller. Smokes like a chimney, Ava uses her body as a weapon and tool of ensnarement. She manages to convince an old distant love Dwight that she was in danger. Caught up in her web of lies , Dwight kills Ava’s husband, but alas Ava only wanted her husband dead for the life insurance money. Ava then tries to kill Dwight to cover her tracks. Failing that, Ava seduces a detective to kill Dwight for her. Failing that, she then tries to seduce Dwight again when her number’s up. Crazy. Screwed up. But you can’t deny she has a rocking bod. Yeah, men are pathetic.
An enigma simply put. Fully blue skin, yellow, jaundice eyes and red hair, you’d think she couldn’t pull off ‘sexy deadly’. Well, that would make you dead wrong. She gives the X-Men hell, and as a shapeshifter, she can transform herself into anyone she can think of. So that includes a long lost love, a trusted ally or your worst nightmare, any of which could be used to coerce you into doing what she wants you to. But is she a naughty girl seeking the destruction of humanity, or a misguided mutant? Either way she’s got a hot blue alien vibe going on with a deadly killer instinct to match. Not to mention she can transform herself into any fantasy to entice her victims.
Sultry. Deadly with a sai. An assassin that cut your eyelids off before you could blink. There. See? If she was in the room with you, you’d have just lost your eyelids. Now you have bloody, dry eyeballs. Created by Frank Miller, she is a kunoichi, a female ninja assassin that pays the bills by slicing necks as a mercenary. Efficient and looks good in red, it’s no wonder she has a mutual love for Daredevil. But being a hot-blooded, violent mercenary may not be something you’d want to put in your e-dating profile, Elektra. But then, who is Daredevil to judge, really? And with Elodie Yung set to portray her in Season 2 of Daredevil, we just know sparks (and blood) is going to fly. And thinking about it, she’s pretty much Marvel’s Catwoman. Daredevil’s Batman… you get the drift.
A passionate botanist with a penchant for ecoterrorism, this cherry blossom knows how to lure simple minded men into a venus fly trap. Using the power of nature to subdue people, men usually, to her will, she can be found either taking out corporations harming the planet or making off with the cash monies to fund her research. But honestly she really doesn’t need plant-assisted hypnosis to get a guy under her green thumb. Plus she and Harley Quinn have a ‘thing’. I’d love to be a fly on that crazy sexy wall.
Selina Kyle a.k.a Catwoman’s love-hate relationship with the Batman is stuff of legend. With high tastes and expensive class she had a penchant for upscale 5-talon finger discounts. As a burgular and jewel theif, she was armed with a whip and was comprised of about 30% latex. And the rest was sex appeal and a BDSM vibe. And Kyle is the only woman to keep her sex appeal amidst having more than 3 cats as house pets. That is remarkable.
In more recent years, Catwoman has become a champion for the little guy, prostitutes, the poor and destitute in the slums and squalor, the people Batman may overlook when hunting bigger crime fish. As such her reimagining has made her into a figure that represents the resilience and fighting spirit of Gotham who wasn’t afraid to crack some skulls. Like Batman. Except Batman sometimes would say she took it too far in her methods of apprehending a criminal. And if Batman says she overdid it, that is really saying something.
They don’t make ’em like the used to. Film noir opened a whole new world but as it is with great ideas, they get overused and become tropes. The reason our top 10 list of femme fatales are so great is their stories are always change, evolving. Their sexuality is a powerful component to who they are, but is not their only defining characteristic. Wit, situational awareness, cunning, intelligent, strong, deft and determined all play a part.
Or as Ivy would put it, the sexuality is the sweet nectar that draws all the flies, but it is the organic makeup of the venus fly trap that will do all the devouring.