Dragon lady and the female boss character


Balalaika, the head boss of Hotel Moscow.
A force to be feared in the Black Lagoon universe.

Anime and other forms of media are always criticized of being sexist, portraying women as a sexual object, etcetera, etcetera I don’t really want to get into that, even though I get the feeling I will.

Note: If you haven’t finish Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood/ Berserk get out of here, I try to avoid spoilers but I can’t guarantee anything…

Actually, only worry about FMA: B, there are perhaps spoilers from ep 30

Leaving that aside, there is a type of character, which I refuse to claim is a stereotype, even though there are several example of it all around the entertainment industry (or so I believe), since I am only familiar with a few.

Recently I’ve been enjoying the wonders of Black Lagoon and before that I came to love Fullmetal Alchemist and even before that Hellsing was already on my watched list… All of these series have a  plot based on a type of war so of course they’re all action packed and but there is something else they all have in common and that is a female  (military) boss. I think Wikipedia calls them dragon lady type.


Integra Hellsing, leader of the Hellsing organization and enemy of almost all vampires…almost

One of the interesting things about this type of character is how they are always portrayed as the ideal leader (In a warfare environment of course)

Their army is portrayed as being totally loyal and of course, the reasons for such loyalty are very explained by each of the series.

The thing is, even though they being of the female gender is relevant to the story their gender is somehow irrelevant, if you replace any of this characters with a man, the changes would be barely noticeable. My point being, these characters really represent equality in gender.


Olivier Mira Armstrong… the woman I aspire to become… maybe

This has been tried before of course, there is Berserk, with Casca, a military woman, a leader who also fight in the battlefield but… those who’ve seen it will know… Having a main character repeating “Because you are a woman” all the time is really obnoxious, not to say her personality was quite annoying to. I’m not against her being an unlikeable character, since you warm up to her as the series goes along…only for you to end it on a fit of rage… Indeed, that’s the perfect example of how not to do a female character.

I’d like to go on about how well done are the other characters, but I’d like to tackle them individually, since they are so interesting. So that’s for now, no point made and no conclusion. That’s life.


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