She is formidable. She is ruthless. She is the quintessential badass. She is The Bride, a.k.a. Black Mamba, from Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and Kill Bill: Vol. 2. She may be a fantasy figment of director Quentin Tarantino's gruesomely bizarre imagination, but you cannot contest that she is probably one of the most remarkable female protagonists to have graced the silver screen.
Let's face it, no one does the blood-drenched look quite like she does. She's been voted one of The 100 Greatest Movie Characters of all time by Empire magazine, and here's a random thing or two you can learn from this katana-wielding heroine of vengeance...
Lesson Numero Uno: Never Date Your Boss
It's a rule set in workplace etiquette stone that goes as far as to be a contractual given. Even if you're seeing hearts and little bare-bottomed cherubs of lurrrrve, you absolutely DO NOT date your boss. Besides the whole getting fired thing — or being hated by all your colleagues — you could most likely end up being shot in the head like poor Kiddo here. A bloody, gory mess of guts and hearts. Suddenly doesn't seem worth it, does it?
Lesson No. 2: Always Prepare For The Worst-Case Scenario
If it's your special day and you have a few enemies (or peeps you pissed off on Facebook) lurking somewhere in the world, prepare yourself for the likelihood that they will try to rain on your parade and gun you down. In fact, in life people are always trying to do just that, so always be primed and have a backup plan (or 20).
Lesson No. 3: Will Yourself To Accomplish Things
Being the king or queen of procrastination is all well and good, until a certain point. Learn from the Bride that even if you've been in a coma for a few good years and find yourself in a state of paralysis, you CAN wiggle that big toe (and then the other piggies, too) and get your ass into gear.
Lesson No. 4: Wardrobe Choices Should Always Include A Weapon And A Kickass Leather Jacket
Why? Because the weapon handles every known possible situation you will ever find yourself in (people pushing you in the coffee line, people talking to you before you have coffee, etc). Plus the jacket? Damn sexy! Looking good while slicing people's heads off — a given must.
Lesson No. 5: Learn endurance
The Bride gets gunned down, shot in the head, buried alive, raped, put into a coma, stabbed, paralyzed, beaten up, spat on, tied up — the list is endless — and let's not forget the trauma of losing her groom and thinking she lost her baby. If you're going through something difficult in life at the moment, just be grateful it ain't this! So persevere, maybe?
Lesson No. 6: Stabbing Bitches Is Sometimes A Mental Moral Imperative For Personal Well-Being
Well, at least in your own mind. It's healthy to act out revenge fantasies in your head, therapeutic even (in your mind!).
Lesson No. 7: Forgive But Never Forget
Yeeeah, that's gonna get you into a whole lotta trouble. If you've been wronged, rather be the better person and get a punching bag for any residual anger. You could go all Kiddo on their asses, but unless you know The Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique, chances are you're just playing the woman scorned and revenge won't be so sweet. You'll most likely get yourself into a situation you cannot get out of — like jail, perhaps. Let it go! Snowflakes and stuff.
Lesson No. 8: Refuse To Lay Down And Die
No matter what life throws at you. Find a resourceful way to counteract and own it. It takes poise!
Lesson No. 9: Always Make A List
Life is often complicated, enemies innumerable. Think ahead and stay focused: lists, lists, lists.
Lesson No. 10: Lastly, Never Underestimate The Power Of A Great Hairstyle (Ever)
Why? It adds that little bit of extra oomph to the situation at hand. You can opt for scraggly and lifeless (but where's the appeal in that?) or you could go for something fabulous — because let's face it, if you're going to be badass, then you need to look the part, right?
Oh, and you might as well learn to speak like a badass, too, so I leave you with some of my favorite lines from Beatrix Kiddo (insert hard stare and unusually calm yet unnerving demeanor here):
"I am gonna ask you questions. And every time you don't give me answers, I'm gonna cut something off. And I promise you, they will be things you will miss."
"It's mercy, compassion, and forgiveness I lack. Not rationality."
"I've allowed you to keep your wicked life for two reasons. And the second reason is so you can tell him in person everything that happened here tonight. I want him to witness the extent of my mercy by witnessing your deformed body. I want you to tell him all the information you just told me. I want him to know what I know. I want him to know I want him to know. And I want them all to know they'll all soon be as dead as O-Ren."
Who is your most inspirational fictional character and why? Tell us in the comments section below.
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