Ladies First: The Best Female Characters Of Sci-Fi Film And Television

RipleyLoaderOne of the reasons we love science fiction is because there’s no shortage of strong, dynamic, fascinating female characters kicking around the galaxy, a trait that isn’t always a given in other genres. Iconic characters like Ripley and Sarah Connor have become the bar by which most other female heroines are measured against, but thankfully sci-fi doesn’t limit its badass females strictly to the most obvious form of badassery. Our favorite sci-fi heroines might have what it takes to field-strip a pulse rifle, or they might have the fortitude to lead a desperate fleet of mankind’s remnants across the stars to a new home. They might be able to take down multiple murderous cyborgs, or they might have the courage to serve as inspiration for revolution against an oppressive government.

When it came time for us to pick out favorite female characters from science fiction film and television, the task was more than daunting. After several rounds of voting, arguing, throwing things, and threats of blackmail, we finally whittled our list down to 19, our picks for the very best, most interesting, most compelling, most badass female characters the genre has had to offer across film and TV. We’re listing them in alphabetical order by last name, but it’s strangely appropriate who wound up as number one regardless…

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Star Wars: Episode VII Might Return To Hoth

HothLook out for Wampas and Tauntauns! After two years of rumors and speculation, Star Wars: Episode VII will finally go into production at Pinewood Studios in London, England this May. While Disney and Lucasfilm still haven’t even announced who’s actually in the movie, one new report suggests Episode VII might return to a very familiar — and chilly — planet.

According to the U.K.’s Metro, Lucasfilm is taking its production of Episode VII to Iceland. It’s speculated that the Iceland shoot won’t involve the film’s leads, but rather the production team, most likely second unit there to shoot mainly landscape “plate shots” that would be used for scenery and transitions. This led some to surmise that some of the film’s story might take place on the ice planet Hoth.

The Star Wars saga hasn’t returned to Hoth since The Empire Strikes Back in 1980. The frozen world was home to the Rebel Alliance’s Echo Base, which was mostly destroyed in Episode V. The Rebels relocated to Echo Base after they evacuated Yavin IV after A New Hope. Considering that Episode VII will take place 30 years after Return of the Jedi, there’s no telling who — or what — might be lurking on Hoth.


Not Just Pigs In Space: The Muppets’ Most Sci-Fi Moments

star wars muppet showWhile this weekend’s box office will no doubt be dominated by Neil Burger’s YA dystopian thriller Divergent, the second-biggest opening will be James Bobin’s sequel Muppets Most Wanted, hands down. (Or, technically, hands up inside a Muppet.) And while that film’s plot revolves around mistaken identities and criminal elements, we thought it would be a good time to reflect on just how sci-fi-friendly the Muppets have been over the years. How is there not an asteroid named after Jim Henson yet?

It would be extremely difficult to go back into all of the Muppet iterations to find every single science fiction reference made, so we won’t be talking about the serialized “Trash Gordon” segments of Sesame Street, the Henson puppets in Farscape, or the multitude of alien characters that have populated Henson’s works over the years. These entries are more specific in their nature and were, admittedly, a lot of fun to relive while putting this story together. The Muppets, much like the best sci-fi, are absolutely timeless.


Disney Rumored To Be Casting For Star Wars TV Specials And Miniseries

VaderHardly a day goes by that we don’t run across one Star Wars rumor or another. Most of them involve Episode VII, the flagship with which Disney will launch its revitalized Star Wars franchise with gusto. But Disney almost certainly has other Star Wars-related projects in the works that they haven’t announced yet, and now the latest rumor suggests that Disney’s recent casting calls aren’t just looking to assemble the next generation of big-screen Star Wars heroes and villains. They may also be lining up actors for future TV specials and miniseries set in that galaxy far, far away.

First off, this rumor comes via Cinelinx.com, a site whose track record I’m not familiar with, so this has to remain firmly in the “rumor” column until further info either supports or refutes it. Cineflix claims that their unnamed sources “were told the people holding the [Star Wars] auditions were casting for roles in as yet unannounced television projects including ‘specials and mini-series.’”


Billy Dee Williams Cha-Chas Alongside R2-D2 On Dancing With The Stars

This is the third time we’ve had the (dis)pleasure of talking about ABC’s reality competition Dancing With the Stars here on GFR, following Bill Nye’s short-lived run on the series. I can’t tell if I’m bothered by this, due to my lack of interest in the show or if I’m satisfied with more science and sci-fi personalities making their way into reality television. (It’s probably the former.) In any case, the show’s 18th season started with a bang — or at least a pyoo-pyoo sound — when 76-year-old Billy Dee Williams strutted out on stage and Lando-bombed the crowd with a Star Wars-themed version of the cha-cha. To say it was magnificent would be a major understatement.


Star Wars: The Clone Wars — How To Watch The Show In Chronological Order

The Clone WarsAfter 121 episodes and a theatrical movie, Star Wars: The Clone Wars has come to a close. The animated series provided fans with a closer look at the Jedi Knights and Jedi Council during the war between the Galactic Republic and the Separatist Movement. Of course, The Clone Wars leads into the events of Revenge of the Sith, but the recently concluded animated series found an audience that didn’t necessarily grow up with the original trilogy or the prequel trilogy. Believe it or not, The Clone Wars is the pinnacle of the Star Wars universe for many younger fans.

Now that the complete Star Wars: The Clone Wars is available on Netflix Instant, Lucasfilm has revealed the proper way to watch all the episodes and the movie in chronological order. This will give viewers a better understanding of the continuing battle between good and evil, while also offering an excuse to rewatch the show in a different way.