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"Are all girls like this, or just the ones I know?"—Ron Stoppable's newest female acquaintance springs into action (like all the others), Kim Possible
Gender equality is a bit of a funny thing.
Not too long ago, having a woman kicking ass was an earth-shocking novelty. Now, however, there are loads of tropes and archetypes that effortlessly manage to combine a double-dose of X chromosome and a double-dose of asskickery. We have powerful video game heroines, we have powerful film heroines, we have powerful comic heroines, people could go on and on about examples left and right and all over the place.
In some fiction, though, it seems that being a woman instantly gives you masterful ability in gunslinging, martial arts, swordplay, or sometimes more. In these settings, almost every major female character is an incredibly dangerous badass that could take on the police and military with their hands tied behind their back, and are far more numerous than the men to boot. While that's not to say that the ass-kicking men are non-existent, they are either secondary characters or just simply vastly outnumbered. It's far more likely that the men will be a Non-Action Guy, tagging along and acting as either Mission Control or moral support.
When you have only a small squadron of badass women, that's an Amazon Brigade. When every man is just as badass as the women, and the numbers are fairly equal, that's a World of Badass. This trope is not the women of a World of Badass; rather, it is when the numbers are decisively tilted in the women's side.
Loosely related to the Improbably-Female Cast.
Anime and Manga
- Black Lagoon is almost the poster for this trope. While Mr. Chang and Dutch certainly are no slouches, compared to Revy, Balalaika, Roberta, Eda, Fabiola, Sawyer, Shenhua, and others, they might as well just toss their guns up and kick back.
- Roughly every Magical Girl show, for obvious reasons. A lot of times, it's not just the main cast members; the monsters of the week are often all-female as well (as is often the case in Cutey Honey or Sailor Moon).
- Claymore actually tries to justify this trope. Women inherently make better Claymores than men, because men are more likely to become Awakened Beings.
- Dog Days plays with this while The Hero is a male there are more named Female warriors.
- El Hazard features a cast of magically empowered females, with Fujisawa as its only noteworthy male since Makoto and Jinnai are a pair of highschool students with no combat ability whatsoever. There's the three priestesses for starters: Shayla Shayla, Afura Mann, and Miz Mishtal. Along with the demon god Ifurita, who's a biological super weapon. And finally, there's Kalia, easily the most powerful being in all El Hazard.
- In Freezing, the only combatants are females.
- The Solonoids from Gall Force.
- Gunslinger Girl is like this. Not only are all the characters young girls, but all of them have been trained to take advantage of how they're young girls.
- Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls every fighter are females.
- The primary fighters in Ikki Tousen are female.
- Considering it's a mass Gender Flip of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Koihime Musou definitely fits this trope.
- In Infinite Stratos, Same thing except for the main character.
- Noir, not is only almost every member of the cast some kind of Badass assassin, but most of the cast is also women.
- Mid-Childa from the Lyrical Nanoha series. To the point where the local Acceptable Feminine Goals seem to begin with "become a Special Forces Captain" and go up the badass ladder from there.
- Queen's Blade is a series narrating how a bunch of hot women fight each other in order to become ruler of the kingdom. There are some males, but they are, at most, secondary characters and not geared towards kicking ass like the females.
- Sengoku Otome is Koihime Musou IN SENGOKU-ERA JAPAN, so it qualifies.
- Strike Witches is essentially about teenage action girls with magical power who tends to use guns as big as themselves to fight invading aliens.
- Tenchi Muyo!, with a full cast of super powered heroines... and only two males, Tenchi and his grandfather the legendary Jurian prince, Yosho, worth mentioning. He and the others often have to rely on Washuu's reality warping scientific genius, Ryoko's raw power and tenacity, and Ayeka's Jurian powers to save them. Then there's the spiritual embodiment of Jurai's greatest battleship Tsunami, queen of the universe (by proxy of Jurai) Funaho, and captain of the royal guard Misaki. With women like these running the show, who needs Tenchi, indeed.
- An odd example, since Tenchi is the main character and eventually becomes the most powerful of them all, but aside from him, his Grandfather, and a handful of villains, everyone with power lacks a Y chromosome.
- To Aru Kagaku no Railgun only focuses on the females of the universe.
- In Change 123, the focus is mostly on female-on-male (with female usually being more skillful) or female-on-female fights, with the latter ones being more prevalent from the chapter 20 onwards. (And, on top of that, there is also an all-female ninja clan!) This creates an interesting situation during the sport festival, when the teachers insist that girls should be the "riders" on the "battle on horses", believing that they would be less aggressive than boys, not knowing that there is a badass girl in each of the three teams, one of them being also a Blood Knight.
- While the Birds of Prey (themselves an Amazon Brigade) have gone up against male villains, they're usually dangerous primarily due to their super powers or their resources and intellect. If someone is shown to be able to go toe-to-toe with the heroines - especially Black Canary - in hand-to-hand combat, ten-to-one says it's a woman. In fact, there are a surprising number of women out there who live only to prove themselves against worthy foes in personal combat.
- The Tortall Universe and the Circle of Magic Universe, both created by the same author, drift into it. While there are quite a few very strong male mages and fighters, all of the protagonists and the majority of their allies (and sometimes enemies) are female, and they can all kick ass. For example, the main case of Circle of Magic is composed of five girls and three guys, all of whom are some of the greatest mages in the world.
Live Action TV
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer has shades of this. While no one ever comes close to having the power of Buffy and Willow, the other females on the show do hold their own from time to time. Even Dawn and Anya get some badass moments from time to time (Dawn doesn't get any till the Season 6 finale though), and even Joyce gets in on the action, with a particularly awesome moment in "School Hard". By contrast with the males, only Spike, Angel and Riley are competent fighters, and the latter two are eventually Put on a Bus. Of the only two permanent male cast members, Giles is The Mentor but doesn't do much fighting and Xander is just a normal person. The two do have their moments but are certainly overshadowed.
- All Japan Womens Pro Wrestling, SHIMMER, and any other women's pro wrestling promotion that emphasises athleticism over T&A.
- Marilith is less extreme, as Marshall does get his share of the spotlight, but Valentino, Marilith, and even the barely-trained Kimiko overshine him.
- Drowtales has several badass male characters and several non-badass females, but mainly features the loads and loads of amazons. Justified in that elven sexual dimorphism is the reverse of human: females are taller and stronger. The dominant culture values fertility, strength in combat, and honor. Thus, princesses are expected to grow up to be military commanders.
- Gensokyo, the primary setting of the Touhou series, is filled to the brim with girls who will unleash Bullet Hell on you, with more than a few of them being very powerful monsters, if not actual goddesses.
- Maji De Watashi Ni Koi Shinasai where every female can kick more ass than the males.
- Hyperdimension Neptunia and its sequel has every single playable character as a female and would kick anyone's ass in their fight against piracy.
- In Kim Possible, most female characters can put up a fight, even those who've never been in a fight before, like Kim's school friend Monique. The male characters tend to be klutzes if not ridiculous experts in non-combatant fields such as rocket science.