Is It Possible To Write Good Female Villains? (Also, A Very Chatty Introduction)

Look who’s baaaaaaaaaccckkkk!

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Hello!!! And Happy Late New Years, dudes and dudettes!!!

Wow. I haven’t posted since last year guys.

(And even though that is a joke it seriously has been too long.)

I can explain, smol beans.

So right after I posted my horrifying Q&A video (and like literally as I was uploading it to YouTube) I felt myself getting a sore throat.

And so it began.

I got an absolutely terrible head cold that lasted like two weeks.

It was bad, beans.

For like an entire week this was me:

 

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But miraculously, I did not die. But whilst I was recovering I did not do anything social. Na. Da.

And I got kind of behind visiting my friends blogs.

I’m sorry about that, beans!!! 😥 😥 😥

So I’ve been trying to catch up, beans. If I still haven’t gotten to your blog yet I am so sorry and I hope to be back up there soon!!!

Now, the second week I was still recovering but was able to get some things done.

What did I do, you ask.

Well, I wrote in my book.

And I’ve got like almost 55, 000 words.

O_O

I’m right at about the halfway point in the book now.

O_O

Yeah. Yikes. It’s been…….going.

I either have two speeds writing this book.

Either this:

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Or this:

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Aaaaaaaand right now I’m more in the Sloth at the Bank right now.

Last week, I wrote chapter 16 (which was like 4k words *screams at a wall*) in like a couple of hours.

And then I’ve been working on chapter 17 for like five days now and I have like 200 words.

 

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I’m sorry Thor.

But we are getting somewhere. As long as The Force Awakens And The Last Jedi and Solo’s soundtracks are on YouTube, I can do write book with no problem.

(And also, I found that if you want to feel evil when crafting those villain scenes, listen to the Imperial March. An Epic version. It makes me feel like a wicked villain while I listen to it and it’s perfect for those scenes.)

(PENNY STOP GIVING AWAY ALL YOUR WRITING SECRETS!!!!)

(don’t worry no one cares)

Also, I made New Year’s Resolutions.

I’ve seen a lot of people post their resolutions on their blogs. I was sort of surprised at this I guess. I didn’t expect it to get so personal. I’m actually a really private person (don’t judge me you peasant beans) so I was like “Wow. You guys are a brave bunch.”

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But really my reason for not posting my resolutions is because they’re pretty underwhelming XD XD XD XD

I’d post them up here like “yeah here we go into 2019 with THIS as my goals!!!!!”

And you guys would be like:

 

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So we ain’t gonna talk about Penny’s disappointing, low bar (or as her friend put it, “super achievable”) resolutions on my blog.

 

We’re gonna talk about lady villains!!

 

Now before we get started no this isn’t some “Yeah feminist baloney for the win!!!” post.

But as a writer there are all different types of villains and antagonists that I create and come across and of course there are some of the female variety.

But.

Is it possible to write a good female villain?

We have to admit. Guys are scarier than girls. They just are. They’re stronger. Bigger. And women are soft. Not as intimidating in looks. (Well, most of them XD)

We can’t help it. And that’s fine.

But it raises the question.

Can we write good female villains that strike fear into hearts?

The answer is yes. Because it has been done. Let’s look at some examples of female villains (both good and bad techniques) from films and learn from them.

 

Now this is one of my most favorite woman villains of all time.

 

Captain Phasma.

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Captain of the army of the First Order Phasma is a villain from the sequel trilogy of Star Wars.

Whatever your thoughts may be on Star Wars, it has some of the most amazing and perfect examples of character arcs, likeable characters, villains, storylines, magic systems, and humor uses.

Now, I love all the villains from Star Wars. The sequel trilogy alone has some exceptional baddies.

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But right now we’re going to talk about Captain Phasma.

What made her so scary?

For one, her femininity has hidden from us. All we can see is the shiny, foreboding armor of her suit. All we can hear is her metallic, womanly, but very stern voice coming through her helmet. That alone is scary.

Also, not only is she in a place of authority, but she doesn’t use it nicely. She is very strict and unfeeling with Finn, which makes us dislike her even more.

 

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She is also cruel with her power. Later, in The Last Jedi, when Finn and Rose are about to be executed, Captain Phasma orders them not to be killed quickly.

“Let’s make this hurt,” she says.

At this point I was in awe of how terrifying and evil she was. Not only was she hurting the characters we loved, but she wanted to have fun doing it.

But what really topped off Captain Phasma’s performance was at the end of the Last Jedi, after a duel with Finn, collapsed to the ground where the floor is about to give way. When she looks up, for the first time, we see her eye behind the stormtrooper helmet.

 

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And then we see that she wasn’t a robot. She was a person. And for almost a moment, we pity her.

But she is evil. And she hates Finn. And right before she dies she says to him.

“You’ll always be scum.”

Okay sorry I’m getting chills over here XD XD XD

 

Here’s another example. Personally, I don’t like this option as much.

Make your villainess insane.

 

Take Cruella De Vil from 101 Dalmations. No one in their right mind would make a coat of out puppies????

But Cruella would. She was crazy. And everyone could tell.

Her obsession with killing and making coats out of puppies was downright creepy and pretty hard not to hate. Paired with her rude manners and strange fashion sense, it made her an instantly hateable villain.

 

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Did this lady not FREAK. YOU. OUT. as a child???????

But as much as I don’t ever care for the “insane” villain type, Cruella (and Glen Close) pulled this off quite nicely. And she was a very memorable villain that has still not been forgotten to this day.

 

Also, as I read on another site, making your villainess not very motherly is also a very fearful trait.

 

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Were you not terrified by Lady Tremaine in Cinderella? She should have been kind to dear bean Cinderella. Been there for her. The girl had lost her mother young, and then just recently her father. And what does this evil lady do? Put her to work, treat her cruelly, and tell her she’ll never amount to anyone.

And not to mention, she had major class.

Mothers are people we expect to be gentle, kind, and loving people. So when we see someone like Lady T here who totally knocks down those expectations, sides with her bratty daughters, and puts Cinderella to work, it both breaks our hearts and makes us fear her sorely.

What are some examples of bad female villains? (And this goes for guys too) When they try to make her funny. She’s more like the comic relief sidekick. She’s the whiny wife of the real villain (Bailey’s Billion) or the stupid southern girl sidekick (K9 Adventures: Legend Of The Lost Gold) or the more stupid, bratty, rich, diva girl stepmothers of the Cinderella Story movies. (Not anything like the true Lady T. Classy and evil.)

But I seriously hate the comedy villain. 

I love villains with a sense of humor. They keep things interesting.

But this villain who’s not really creating evil. She (or he) is just here for laughs, and maybe put a bump or two in the hero’s plan. They’re in a lot of kids’ movies (particularly low budget flicks) and I honestly hate them. They’re not scary. They don’t strike fearful awe in our hearts.

So why should we even care if they get defeated?

Seriously if I see one more comedy villain I’m going to protest in front of movie studios to end this tyranny.

 

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Let’s end bad villains together!

 

SO.

 

Are you writing a story with a female villain? Do you know of any other good ones? (Or bad ones?) Did you agree with my tips and thoughts? Did you miss me while I was gone?

 

Images sourced by……Google. I can’t remember all the sites. O_O

 

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32 thoughts on “Is It Possible To Write Good Female Villains? (Also, A Very Chatty Introduction)

  1. From a knife wielding mass assassin to a bitter queen plotting revenge, the Fantasy book I’m writing has quite a few female villains. And I agree, they definitely need to be written right. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi! I have to tell you, I got VERY excited about this post because…. I write female villains! (And my sister hates them in the right way, so I think they’re decent.)

    Female villains make me giddy, which is absurd, but you don’t see them enough. And they aren’t always done well enough because they tend to have different motivations as opposed to male villains and, culturally, they’re received differently.

    Lady Tremaine from the live action Cinderella is a PERFECT villain, down to her backstory and motivation. Just chilling in how she’s presented and how realistic she is. I also love to hate on Dolores Umbridge from Harry Potter. As one reader pointed out (goodness knows where), Voldemort is unrelateable as a villain because the average reader won’t meet anyone like him, while Dolores reminds most of us of people we know in real life whose sole purpose seems to make said life miserable.

    Cruella just…. I don’t know. The whole 101 Dalmatians thing just weirds me out, and she adds like three levels of weirdness, lol.

    So long as a villain has believable motivations and doesn’t exist just because, without any good reason, I’m down for them. It’s when they don’t have any realistic goals or, like you said, they’re just there for comic relief that I start rolling my eyes.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hey there!!!!! 😀 You do???? That is AWESOME!!!! 😀
      I know, right? Good female villains are so much fun to watch. And I never even considered that point, but you’re right, they often do have different motivations than male villains.
      AH! Lady Tremaine is terrifying. Completely. But she’s EPIC as a villain. And I think I actually read that article about Dolores somewhere too!
      I tooooootttalllyyy agree with you on Cruella. I’ve never been a fan of her. She so weird it’s like……I’m not sure if I like this or not XD XD
      And me too! As long as they’ve got a decent motivation, I love them. But the comic relief villains……those are a no-no. XD
      Thanks for your AMAZING comment!!!! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi! I do!!! My last four books have had female villains (some featured alongside and equal to male villains).
        Lady Tremaine is the right kind of cold and calculating villain. Cruella is just odd. Agreed: can’t decide how I feel about her.
        Sure thing!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Don’t worry girl. ME TOO. That’s why I write these articles……..to help me, mostly. XD XD
      Aw, it’s okay to take breaks. (But you most start again soon or I will start flipping omelets again.)
      (Also, I plan to get back into reading Just Come Home again soon……to finish my alpha reading. I’m excited to read that story because like, it’s awesome :D)
      Yay I’m back!!!!! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yayyyy, you’re back! ❤ I love your sense of style in GIF’s! *hugs* We bonded, LOL. 😂😂😂 Great post, this was awesome. Glad you didn’t die! I like villians that are so wicked it’s creepy and are…funny in a way, you know? Totally agree, nice job!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YAY THANK YOU!!!! And oh ma word THANK YOU!!! I love GIFs XD *hugs you back*
      And thanks so much!! Ha ha, me too. I felt like I was going to for a while XD
      And right? I love wickedly evil villains. Thank you again, Ariana!!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Ooooh! I love this…
    I should make an evil female villain…
    I should actually be writing…
    I should start my next book…
    That I haven’t named…
    But I’ve decided how to start it…
    That’s good, right?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m pretty sure female villains are scarier than guys because they can be dEcEiViNg! (idk if I spelled that right but who cares!) As a child I absolutely despised Cruella, and Cinderella’s mother is literally made of evil. Oh yeah, glad you’re feeling better now Penny! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. AWESOME post Penny!! And I’m glad ’cause a whole ton of fairytales include very scary, very evil, very wicked ladies. Also because I just manage to drop a female villain in pretty much every storyworld I’ve ever written… 😉
    ANYWAY I’m so glad you’re back!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I personally love female villains more than the traditional male villains (except a few). For me, female villains are better able to do more damage to the protagonist (whether male or female).
    One of my favorite tropes in regards to good male villains that I feel female villains could utilize is manipulation; despite it being one trope that I don’t like regarding female villains.
    However, I enjoy a good female villain that utilizes their intelligence but also strategies and tactics. Like Cersei from Game of Thrones.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re defintely right!! Female villains can sometimes be worse than male villains and even do more damage.
      And yes, I love the trope where they use manipulation……that’s always a good one to use for an extremely evil villain.
      And I agree too! Female villains who are really smart are always very terrifying.
      Thanks for commenting!!! 😀

      Like

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