When it comes to kick-ass women, no genre has more fearless ladies than Sci-Fi. From astronauts to space explorers, women stride through sci-fi films taking on aliens, apocalyptic scenarios, and countless other galactic threats. Sometimes the enemy is found in a distant future or a far-flung galaxy, and occasionally our spacey superheroines are found closer to our home planet (and time).
This October, two more women are sure to be added to the sci-fi halls of badassdom, as Jessica Chastain and Kristen Wiig star in Ridley Scott's new film, The Martian.
Based on the novel of the same name, The Martian follows a lone astronaut, stranded on Mars and presumed dead by his colleagues. While he struggles to find a way to survive and contact his crew (he decides to "science the shit out of this"), those who left him struggle to return and bring him home.
Now, check out this brand new trailer for the film, showcasing Chastain and Wiig refusing to give up on their crewman, no matter the obstacles.
While we still have just over a month to wait before we get to see the rest of the film, you can get your fill of kick-ass women in Sci-Fi with some of these epic characters.
Note: As this list is inspired by The Martian, it's scope is limited to movies (rather than tv series) and to those films with a strong connection to outer space, interplanetary travel, etc.
10. Trillian (The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy)
While the 2005 film may not have been the best adaptation of Douglas Adams' quirky sci-fi classic, Trillian still deserves a mention as a badass girl in outer space. Brought to life by Zooey Deschanel, she's not only incredibly intelligent (a very important attribute for badassery), but she's brave enough to steal a ship and go wandering around space with a relative stranger. Despite being captured by Vogons and running into all kinds of trouble, Trillian manages to keep smiling and talk her way out of trouble.
She may not be the classic shoot-em-up style of awesome, but she's her own kind of kick-ass!
9. Eve (WALL-E)
No list of amazing female characters in outer space would be complete without a mention of this adorable little animated droid (voiced by Elissa Knight). Sent to search out signs of plant life on a ruined Earth, she and Wall-E end up sparking a revolution on the starliner Axiom. She's willing to break all kinds of rules for Wall-E, even though it goes against all of her programming, and she'll stop at nothing to save the day.
She may be sweet and kind and curious, but don't let that fool ya'. Eve is a sharpshooter with a laser gun who can take down a slew of other robots.
8. Nyota Uhura (Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness)
The leading lady of the Star Trek franchise, Uhura (Zoe Saldana) is another woman whose true strength lies in her intelligence. Quick-witted and fluent in an impressive number of languages, Uhura is utterly fearless and a vital part of the Enterprise crew. More than a match for the arrogance of James Kirk, she refuses to be talked down to by anyone. Ever.
Even a Romulan warrior wouldn't want to get on her bad side - her tongue is as sharp as she is smart, and she's not afraid to use it.
7. Zoe Washburne (Serenity)
Second in command of the Firefly class-vessel, Serenity, Zoe Washburne (Gina Torres) is a proven soldier who knows her way around a gun. She's also calm and collected, even in high pressure scenarios, and doesn't blink when it comes to making tough decisions. While she's a little more approachable than Captain Mal, she's still not anyone you would want to mess with.
6. Kyra, a.k.a. Jack (Pitch Black, The Chronicles of Riddick)
The first time we meet Jack (originally played by Rhiana Griffith), she's not much of a badass. In fact, she's just a scared girl on a crashed spaceship, idolizing the hero of the tale. However, by the time we run back into her in the Riddick franchise, Jack has taken the name Kyra (Alexa Davalos), and became a take-no-prisoners mercenary who can give Riddick himself a run for his money. To top it all off, she ends up saving Riddick in his showdown battle with the Lord Marshall.
Sadly, she doesn't survive, but up until her last moments, she is an incredible inter-planetary badass.
5. Gamora (Guardians of the Galaxy)
This gorgeous green-skinned lady (Zoe Saldana) was brought up as an assassin by galactic villain Thanos, but was brave enough to rebel against him (which is no mean feat) and strike out on her own before joining the Guardians. She's ridiculously capable with an impressive range of weapons, particularly those lethal silver blades. She may be part of a team, but there is no doubt that Gamora can take care of herself.
4. River Tam (Serenity)
The second lady on our list from Serenity, River Tam (Summer Glau) is gifted, incredibly intelligent, graceful, psychic and unfortunately quite insane. Tortured by the Alliance, River was rescued by her brother and brought aboard Serenity, but only after her mind was damaged beyond repair. However, her particular abilities and skills make her a deadly adversary, and she alone can take down entire squads with ease.
3. Ellen Ripley (Alien, Aliens, Alien 3, Alien Resurrection)
Routinely topping lists of kick-ass women in sci-fi, there is no doubt that Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is one of the Queens of Badassdom. This big-gun-toting, alien-killing survivor is not someone to mess with, whether you are an attacking alien or not. Ripley was also one of the first really powerful female characters on the big screen, undefined by the men around her and unwilling to be treated like a delicate flower. Her position as the ultimate "final girl" is unchallenged.
2. LeeLoo (The Fifth Element)
Orange hair, super strength, superhuman intelligence, and the ability to defeat the ultimate evil. Yup, that earns supreme being LeeLoo second place on this list. Throughout The Fifth Element, she not only takes down hordes of warriors and bad guys, saves the planet and teaches Korben how to love again, but she does it all without wavering from her mission. Still, LeeLoo takes time to enjoy the little things, whether it's a cruise ship or a great meal, and managed to learn a new language and 5000 years worth of history at the same time. She really is the perfect woman.
1. Princess Leia (Star Wars)
While her brother was still off shooting womp-rats, Leia had already become a member of the Imperial Senate and a spy for the Rebel Alliance; all while still having time to spend (presumably) hours on her hair! This incredible warrior princess withstands torture, the destruction of her home planet, and having to travel with an infuriating nerf-herder in her fight to defeat the evil Empire.
The Martian comes to cinemas October 2nd!