Four Marvel Ladies Who Deserve Leading Roles

It may have received almost universal critical praise and broken box office records for an August release, but Guardians of the Galaxy’s financial success suggests something much more significant: people are ready for new Marvel stories.

Most are already aware of its most popular heroes, but Marvel’s universe is a vast one filled with characters both male and female who represent a wide range of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and origins. And, since they are just as powerful as their male counterparts and deserve an equal amount of time to tell their own compelling stories, here are four ladies that definitely need some time on the silver screen.

4marvelinsert1Ms. Marvel (2014)

Ms. Marvel is a wonderful example of how to create a multi-dimensional character. She’s a teenaged Muslim girl struggling to figure out her own religious beliefs, her identity, and her interests. When she’s endowed with shape-shifting powers, everything in her world becomes infinitely more complicated, and her character arc becomes all the more compelling to watch unfold. While saving kids and sorting out relationships, she’s constantly struggling with her circumstances and trying her best to do what’s right. Keep the diversity intact, and Ms. Marvel could pave the way for a whole new wave of minority characters with great new stories to tell.

She-Hulk (2014)

4marvelinsert2Most people already know the story of how Bruce Banner’s DNA became all jumbled and left him with the ability to change into the massive green monster known as the Hulk. But what do we know about Jennifer Walters, the woman who shares Hulk’s super-strength abilities?

Definitely not enough. Which is a shame, because she’s a great character with a lot of interesting characteristics and abilities. What’s more, she owns her powers and juggles them with her successful career as a lawyer in New York City. Too often, superhero films revolve around our caped defenders fighting off evil threatening the entire universe. What if it just featured a hardened lawyer with super-strength out seeking justice for her clients?

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4marvelinsert3X-23 (2006)

X-23 is one of the darker characters within the X-Men universe. A part of the weapon X project, she shares Wolverine’s retractable claws on her hands and feet, and has been conditioned to go into a murderous blackout whenever she senses a trigger smell. Because of this, her history is one soaked in blood she has unknowingly and unwillingly shed, including that of her mother’s and fighting master’s.

She’s constantly fighting against the notion that she’s merely a weapon, appealing to her human side and even trying to do right by the ones she loves. But old habits die hard, and her past has a knack for catching up with her at extremely inopportune times. X-23’s would be a fantastic exploration of humanity the likes of which we haven’t seen in a long, long time.

4marvelinsert4Captain Marvel (2012)

There’s not a lot to say about Captain Marvel that hasn’t already been said. She’s a powerful character, often referred to on comic covers as “Earth’s Mightiest Hero” and boasting a great amount of ability and intelligence. But beyond that, Carol is a complex person. She’s hesitant to take up the mantle of Captain Marvel, even after changing her look and re-inventing herself, and is motivated by memories of her past and particularly influenced by those who so inspired her to become the person she is. She’s a powerful do-gooder who rivals even the most powerful superheroes in both fortitude and capability. The phrase “strong female character” is tossed around a lot, but few words could better describe Captain Marvel.