The Most Badass Japanese Women In Film and TV

Japanese characters have always fallen in to one or two camps.

Japanese characters have always fallen in to one or two camps. 

Either they are exceptionally reserved or exhude confidence, independence and fighting prowess. It is not just the men either with these qualities. There are plenty of examples of Japanese female characters who showcase these skill just as well and in some cases better than the men themselves.

Gogo Yubari (Kill Bill)

Gogo Yubari is the sidekick of Cottonmouth, better known as O-Ren-Ishi. She has become iconic for her costume as a Japanese schoolgirl because it is so juxtaposed to her violent nature. Wielding a lethal chain mace, she almost gets the better of Uma Thurman, but let’s be honest, the baddie never wins. Sigh.


Misty was part of the original Pokemon anime series along with her ‘star’ Pokemon Staryu. She took no nonsense from Brock or Ash and was very much the calming presence within the group. Countering their macho bravado and hot headedness. This did not mean she could not fight herself. She became one of the best Pokemon trainers in the world inspiring girls involvement in the franchise. It is one of the things that made Pokemon Go so popular in 2016.

San – Princess Mononoke

San was raised by Wolves and lives in a magical forest. If that is not marriage material then I don’t know what is. She is the saviour of not only a whole village but also the Prince who has to rely on San to save his life.

Chiyo Sakamoto (Memoirs of a Geisha)

Chiyo’s story is the powerful tale of a woman who overcame all things that a man’s world can throw at her. Whether it was through social, military or financial strife, she showed her strength to get the man and life she wanted.


Another character from Kill Bill. O-Ren was a half Japanese assassin who had one of the best introductions in any film ever, as her terrifying ordeal as a young girl was shown in anime style cartoon. Her character commanded over a large motorbike gang, while also being part of the deadly assassin team under Bill. Badass

Katana (DC Comics)

Katana appeared briefly in Suicide Squad, but still managed to showcase what she was all about. She owns a sword that captures the souls of her victims. But the most badass part? The sword was used to kill her husband and he resides in the sword. Yes it is sad, but oh so cool.

Written by Joshua Mason

Joyenergizer Community Member

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