By Ashley Begley
My little cousin Jay loves superheroes. He is all about Iron Man and Transformers. But my cousin Abby can kick Jay around the block any day of the week—for her seventh birthday, all she wanted was a Spider-Man costume. She got it and spent the rest of the day running around spraying her Silly String web in the bad guy’s face (which, most of the time, was my face). And even though I had Silly String all over me, all I could say was, “Rock on, girl. You got this.”
Without even realizing it, she had dismantled the age-old “superheroes are for boys only” stereotype. And Abby’s not the only one! Here are some other girls and women who are smashing it up in the world of super…sheroes:
Swoosh! Sew Super Spectacular
Lane Huerta is all grown up now (sorta), but she was raised an only child and so, as it states on her website at lovelanedesigns.com, “Entertaining herself was the only option. Imagining adventures in the woods behind her house, she counts Pippi Longstocking and Punky Brewster as her earliest inspirations.” Now? Lane is founder of Lovelane Designs, where she creates hand-sewn superhero-stylin’ capes and crowns for boys and girls.
Bam! Real Superheroes Read Books
An awesome crew of superhero girls are supercharging bookstore shelves. These aren’t the often-degrading depictions of females we sometimes see in traditional comics—and at the same time, they’re also not-your-mother’s fairytale princesses….
From a prim-and-proper princess who morphs into a black-masked monster-mashing crusader when darkness falls in The Princess in Black (princessinblack.com), to BFFs who get splattered at a sleepover in an ultra-colored galactic goo that gives them serious purple-power in The Ultra Violets (theultra-violets.com), to two best friends who together dream up a fictional warrior-princess through whom they can vicariously experience grand and exciting adventures in I Am Princess X (cheriepriest.com), these girls just go to show that Supersheroes are the new cool.
Crash! Black Widow Strikes Again
Actress Scarlett Johansson returned to her recurring role as Black Widow in Avengers: Age of Ultron, the 2015 sequel to Marvel Comic’s big-screen adaptation of its classic superhero team—Avengers. Even though the film’s producers promised a more rounded female character in this installment, she’s still clearly outnumbered—but we say kudos to Black Widow for being the only gal in the avenging gang, and snaps to Scarlett for striking back against superhero sexism with a little comic relief on a recent episode of NBC-TV’s Saturday Night Live:
Boom! SuperGirl to the Rescue
It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Superman! … Er, wait… I mean it’s Supergirl! That’s right! Melissa Benoist (of Glee fame) ties on her cape in this new show premiering Monday, October 26 on CBS. Kara (a.k.a. Supergirl) escaped with her cousin Superman from the planet Krypton when she was just 12 years old. Since then, she has had to hide her superpowers, but when her city is threatened, she knows what she has to do–release her inner Supergirl and save the day! I don’t know about you, but I am SUPER excited. It’s about time Supergirl got her own show, don’t ya think? Take a look at the trailer below for a sneak-peak!
To ’fess up—before I get beamed with a laser-sharp wireless lie-detecting device—I was never one to devour Marvel Comics or play with G.I. Joe action figures, but I was all about The Powerpuff Girls. I remember running around the backyard, pretending to be Buttercup. The best thing about this superhero trio is that, though they’re all so different, they always come together to save the day. Do they make mistakes? Absolutely! Do they get dirty? Yes, and that’s half the fun!
These female superheroes showed me that being a girl means I can put my own personal spin on “sugar and spice and everything nice”—or kick that cliché to the curb altogether if I so choose. Slam! Seriously, that evil monkey had no chance.
Do you have a favorite superhero? Leave her (or his!) name in the comments below, and tell us why she’s your fave….