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This has been an awesome year for women on TV with some truly awesome characters, and thankfully, the ladies aren't beholden to any one specific network or even format. From premium cable to network television to basic cable, these ladies are different ages and different nationalities, but all of them kick some serious ass. Give them a problem, they'll solve it. Give them a fight, they won't back down.
Here are 2014's 10 most badass women...
Claire (Outlander)I feel like anyone who can be trapped in a completely different time period, manage to (mostly) keep their cool, and even start a life in this different era deserves to be on the list of badass women. Claire has taken a scary, crappy situation, and she’s managed to find the good in it. And, of course, by “the good” I mean her sexy Scottish soul mate, Jamie Fraser.
Sansa Stark (Game of Thrones)I’ll be honest. Sansa was not always my favorite character. While I don’t know if I’d necessarily call her a favorite character of mine now, this year Sansa definitely came into her own on Game of Thrones. She has managed to take all of the horrible injustices she’s suffered and now uses them to make herself stronger. I’m sure we’ve all seen the “Sansa Stark Has Entered The Game” memes floating around. They're fitting too because the Stark daughter has finally become a real force that could completely change Game Of Thrones.
Leslie Knope (Parks and Rec)Leslie Knope is kind of a goofball. She’s a bit awkward at times, she overdoes it on gift-giving occasions, and she probably has a bit of a problem when it comes to waffles. However, Leslie is absolutely amazing. She is one of the most driven women out there, and she manages to be incredibly career-minded while still having a life and meaningful relationships. Leslie is the most loyal, loving friend a person could ever ask for, and she is never too busy to take time to help out or shower crazy amounts of love on a friend. She’s also an awesomely supportive partner to her husband, Ben, and a pretty amazing boss. Sure, she gets overwhelmed at times, but she always manages to remember what is most important, and realize her dreams. Leslie Knope for President.
Melinda May (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)Melinda is amazing. She has some killer martial arts skills, a take-no-prisoners attitude, and she’s a pilot. All of this would be amazing in its own right, but since Melinda works for S.H.I.E.L.D., the stakes of her daily life are certainly more elevated than your average 9-5 job. She manages to keep her cool and hold her own in the face of Hydra and other superhuman threats to her, S.H.I.E.L.D., and the earth in general. More than that, she still manages to have (somewhat) of a life in the face of all of that. If that doesn’t make a person badass, I don’t know what does.
Cosima (Orphan Black)Oh, Cosima. I just want to give her a hug. Cosima is the one clone who has managed to do All of the Things for the Clone Club. She is using her crazy science skills to run tests on herself to learn more about her clone biology and cure whatever is slowly killing her (and several clones before her), she manages to be a crazy supportive sister to the other clones--even Helena, an awesome aunt to Kira, and a supportive girlfriend, all while maintaining her cheery attitude. She’s brave, she’s smart, she’s loving, and to top it all off, girlfriend’s got some killer style.
Missy (Doctor Who)I don’t know what I liked better about Missy. Her Mary Poppins get up, her sassy attitude, or the fact that she had the entire Whovian fandom guessing for an entire season. Missy was clever, charming, and incredibly cunning. Don’t worry if you’re not caught up on Doctor Who, no spoilers here, but the reveal of Missy’s actual identity just made her that much more awesome to me. I loved seeing her up against Peter Capaldi’s Doctor. The two played brilliantly off of one another. I don’t know if it is possible, but I would love to see a LOT more of Missy in the future.
Abaddon (Supernatural)So Abaddon maybe isn’t a “good guy”, but you have to admit that she was quite a force to be reckoned with this year. A Knight of Hell, Abaddon managed to infiltrate the Men of Letters and usurp the throne of Hell right from under Crowley’s nose. She gathered an army of demons to keep her role as Queen of Hell, and she did all of this after literally reattaching her head to her body after the boys chopped it off. She was such a force to be reckoned with that she drove Dean Winchester to take on the volatile and dangerous Mark of Cain just so he could slay her.
Sara Lance (Arrow)Sara has been through a lot. Much like Oliver Queen, she has grown up a ton since Oliver’s father’s yacht was sunk. Sara managed to survive in impossible situations on the island, and she managed to somewhat thrive in her life with the League of Assassins. Okay, so maybe she hated life in the League. However, while she was a part of the League she did learn some amazing fighting skills, and she even found love with the Nyssa al Ghul. When she finally had enough of her life as an assassin, she escaped the League and returned to Starling City to protect the city, ultimately teaming up with Team Arrow. Sara has been tossed tons of curve balls in her day, and she’s suffered greatly. She may have encountered some problems this season, but that won't affect her place in the hearts of fans.
Carol (The Walking Dead)Carol has changed so much since we met her in the first season of The Walking Dead. Carol has gone from a quivering victim of spousal abuse to the no-nonsense walker killer that literally managed to dismantle an entire camp of baddies by herself. She isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty if it means saving her friends, and she is somehow able to take the immense tragedies that she has suffered since the zombie apocalypse and use them to make her stronger. While Carol has made it very clear that she is done with any form of motherhood, she is still very keen to teach others--even kids--and she makes sure that anyone in her care is as well-equipped as possible for the craziness outside.
Brienne of Tarth (Game of Thrones)Brienne gets extra points for being awesome and thriving in a field dominated by dudes. She is a knight who can hold her own, and beat just about anyone who comes against her. More than that, she’s also incredibly loyal. She named her sword Oathkeeper, which is perfect for a woman who takes nothing more seriously than those causes to which she pledges herself. Brienne is the true embodiment of a knight. She is brave, she is strong, and she will give her life to defend a worthy cause. The fact that she continues to hold herself to such high standards when she is consistently faced down by those who doubt and belittle her just gives her extra points.