Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Kick-assitude and Magic Bites

I've been thinking about the interesting trope of strong female characters in Urban Fantasy, especially Kate Daniels. I think it can be said that in general, stubborn female characters often surface as protagonists in detective-esque novels, and in Urban Fantasy, you need your characters to be able to take on supernatural enemies, so a certain badassitude must arise.
Sometimes I'm fine with Kate Daniels being kick-ass and generally coming out on top in a fight. I mean, she does get injured and lose friends. I mean, obviously she's not gonna die, so whenever she gets hurt she has to make a miraculous recovery. And she's gotta take down the ever escalating evil dudes, so she's gotta pack a punch.
I think that at first, before you see that she takes losses, it can be a little much. As Rita pointed out, the first we see of her is flinging a knife into a vampire with would-be deadly accuracy. I think, looking back, my initial attitude was "This girl's gonna get her shit rocked." I was sort of waiting for her to be smacked off her pedestal. Which came, in due time.
Maybe part of what helped me not be turned off by Kate is her similarity to Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum. They're actually startlingly similar; both aren't the prettiest girls, but they still have lots of men on them, both are stubborn with a capital S, they both hunt down people who break the law, but they aren't law-enforcers, and both have serious commitment issues. And bad-ass boyfriends.
The main difference is that Stephanie Plum is very obviously incompetent, but she pulls through miraculously (usually with the help of others). And she's a great lover of donuts.
So I guess, seeing the similarities between Kate and Stephanie, I could forgive Kate for being a bit Mary Sue. I enjoy her stubborn attitude the same way I enjoy Stephanie's, and once you get a little later into the book/series, you see that Kate isn't all powerful, and the playing field balances out. I mean, of course she's always going to survive against the insane odds, but she does come out injured, physically and psychologically. I'm repeating myself.
Blah blah blah! I like Kate Daniels.

No comments:

Post a Comment