Your Top 5 Favorite Female Horror Characters (Good or Bad)

Hey everyone.  Sorry for the relative silence the last few days; had a big family weekend.  If I could get some advertisers on the site then I can afford to hire someone to help me out (hint hint hint).  But I thought I’d finish the weekend with a new discussion topic.

Who are your Top 5 Favorite Female Horror Characters?

I’m opening up the discussion to include both good and bad characters.  I think that the horror genre is greatly  under represented by by females and I for one would love to see more horror flicks from a female perspective.  Of course behind the camera we have 1987’s Near Dark directed by (eventual) Academy Award winner Kathryn Bigelow; 1989’s Pet Sematary directed by Mary Lambert; and 2009’s Trippin’ (and a bunch of short films) directed by Devi Snively.  Of course there are more female directors in the genre, but these 3 immediately came to mind.

But for this topic we’re leaving “real people” out and going for those females characters (good or bad) that you really love.  I’m gonna lay down one “rule”; PLEASE no one put Ellen Ripley from the Alien franchise on their list!!!  Here’s my list in no particular order:

Dalle from Inside. She’s bat-s**t crazy!!

1.  La Femme (Inside; 2007) – Béatrice Dalle’s performance as the completely psychotic, yet extremely focused, killer is nothing but chilling and brutal.  She maybe says 2 sentences worth of dialogue the entire film, yet she is one of the scariest modern-day killers.  Leave it to the French!!

Sexy AND covered in blood!! Jennifer from Bad Biology.

2.  Jennifer (Bad Biology, 2008) – Relative newcomer Charlee Danielson plays the lead role as a woman with 7 clits trying to find true love in Frank Henenlotter’s latest flick.  Danielson is just amazing.  Sure she kills some of her lovers in the throes of passion, but she’s not really bad or good; she just “is.”  Danielson plays the role brilliantly with the perfect blend of innocence and raw sexuality.  She is fucking great!!

3.  Nicki Brand (Videodrome, 1983) – Deborah Harry’s character here is that of a Black Widow.  She’s smart, sexy, and always looking for a little kink.  Her Nicki Brand characters to James Woods’ Max Renn has to be one of the most dysfunctional, anti-love affairs in modern cinema.  When Brand asks Renn, “Wanna try a few things” … s**t; it’ll send shivers up and down your spine.


I think this pic says it all. Crampton in From Beyond.

4.  Dr. Katherine McMichaels (From Beyond, 1986) – My list just wouldn’t be complete without having Barbara Crampton on it.  I wrestled back and forth between her role here and her role in 1985’s Re-Animator as Megan Halsey.  But ultimately From Beyond won out because I really loved her in this role as the straight-laced, obsessed scientist with a kinky side.  Crampton has a real natural beauty that radiates through all of her roles, and never so brightly as Dr. McMichaels!!

Anna just about to begin her suffering in Martyrs.

5.  Anna (Martyrs, 2008) – Which of my regular readers is shocked to see Anna on this list???  Anna (Morjana Alaoui) is, simply put, the strongest female character to ever be in any movie.  Ever.  Period.  What Anna goes through is all 9 levels of Hell, and then some.  But at the end of the day she’s a survivor; she actually lives through all of her suffering more knowledgeable than when she started.  Alaoui is absolutely amazing in the role and I can’t imagine the nightmares she had after filming this one.

There’s my choices everyone.  Remember:  NO RIPLEY FROM THE ALIEN FRANCHISE is allowed!!  I’m curious to see your choices.  Is there anyone on my list that you think doesn’t belong?  Let me know!!

Stay Bloody!!!

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27 Responses to Your Top 5 Favorite Female Horror Characters (Good or Bad)

  1. l3pr3chaun says:

    5. Janet Leigh – Marion Crane “Psycho”
    4. Betsy Palmer – Mrs. Voorhees “Friday the 13th”
    3. Daveigh Chase – Samara – “The Ring”
    2. Jodie Foster – Clarice Starling – “The Silence of the Lambs”
    1. Sigourney Weaver – Ellen Ripley “Alien” / “Aliens”

    • l3pr3chaun says:

      6. Kathy Bates – Annie Wilkes – “Misery”
      7. Rebecca De Mornay – Peyton Flanders – “The Hand that Rocks the Cradle”
      8. Linda Blair – Regan – “The Exorcist”
      9. Jennifer Jason Leigh – Hedy Carlson – “Single White Female”
      10. Sharon Stone – Catherine Trammel – “Basic Instinct”

      • Rebecca De Mornay in The Hand that Rocks the Cradle …. HELL YEAH!!! Awesome flick. Ya know; I didn’t care too much for Single White Female. I’m just not that big a fan of Jenn Jason Leigh.

      • l3pr3chaun says:

        I agree with you on Jennifer Jason Leigh, I am not much of a fan either except for this flick. I origianlly rented it because I really like Bridget Fonda and think she is a really talented actress and then Jennifer Jason Leigh comes in and just gives the performance of her life. Now that I think about it I would be hard pressed to name another Jennifer jason Leigh film that I have viewed other than “The Hitcher” and “Hudsucker Proxy”.

      • Now I did like Jennifer Jason Leigh in The Hitchhiker. I really love that flick and watching her get torn a part!! I’m not sure but I’m gonna throw this out there: Jennifer Jason Leigh and Bridget Fonda are actually the same person. Right? Have you ever seen the 2 live together in person?? I thought not!!

    • Aahhh Bill …. you broke the one rule I set up for this discussion. I specifically said NO RIPLEY!!! LOL I think you know I’l let ya slide buddy!! Solid list; Janet Leigh was VERY close to making my list as well.

      And how the hell could I forget about Ms. Voorhees??? The literal mother of all slashers 🙂

      • l3pr3chaun says:

        Sorry I just couldn’t resist needling you a bit with Ripley. It’s an obvious choice and I understand why you said “No Ripley” but all bias aside with how we feel post Avatar about Weaver, she did kick ass in that flick!…..the rest I listed (6-10) because I was pleasantly amazed at how many strong women roles in horror came to me so quickly. Still not enough compared to the men but all of these were exceptional performances regardless of screen time in their respective films.

      • Ripley was absolutely an ass kicker in Alien and Aliens …. and her performance in Alien Resurrection was pretty friggin’ bad ass too. I’m glad I did this topic because it made me realize (just like you did) that there’s actually a lot of really great female roles out there in the genre.

      • l3pr3chaun says:

        I just love Betsy Palmer’s Mrs. Voorhees because she plays her so psychotic straight that it is so unnerving to watch. You begin to say to yourself “this hellin’ bitch really is five cans short of a six-pack and about to go medieval on these kids” Brilliant performance by Palmer all done with a serene aura, just down right creepy. It’s like Carol Brady or June Clever snapped and went postal. Just so original and well played.

      • Totally agree about Betsy Palmer’s performance. I can remember the bat-shit crazy look in her eyes. It was one of the 1st performances where I realized that the really great actors/actresses act with their eyes!!

  2. In no order:

    Zoe Bell – herself – Deathproof

    Ellen Page – Hayley Stark – Hard Candy

    Cécile De France – Marie – Haute tension/High Tension

    Nicole Alonso – Tank – CRAWL

    Jodi Foster – Clarice Starling – Silence of the Lambs

    • I think you need to send me over a copy of The Isolation of Subject #136 (especially since it’s filmed in my home state). You’re the 1st one to mention Clarice Starling!!

  3. Katie says:

    5. The women from Descent-Kick-ass women who go through hell. I only put them this low because they seem to grow a set very quickly. I’m not so sure I would. I would probably cower for awhile, then decide to find a way out (if I didn’t get shredded before that!).
    4. The three women from Death Proof-They play it perfectly. They’re scared, then pissed, and whoop his ass at the end! And that was quite a surprise!
    3. The mom from The Last House on the Left-I love my daughter and would probably do anything to protect her, but the things those parents did? I’m not sure I could go that far. I would definitely think about it, but actually do it? That’s a tough woman!
    2. The girl from The Audition- Yes, she is quite mild-mannered. But then she turns around and saws your tongue off with a wire while making creepy singing noises? That’s pretty bad-ass to me!
    1. Sally Field in Sybil-I don’t know if you consider this a typical horror film or not, but that movie scared the crap out of me! And her performance is outstanding! And the courage to seek help and work through those scary painful memories, that’s tough!

    • I would categorize Sybil as another one of those “Great Horror Films That Really Isn’t a Horror Film.” Great choice. Sally Field’s best performance (after which she went down hill QUICK).

  4. mark says:

    My 5 are in no particular order

    Sheri Moon Zombie -Devils Rejects
    Jamie Lee Curtis – Halloween
    Jennifer Tilley – Bride Of Chucky ( i imagine she is crazy in real life )
    Marilyn Burns -Texas Chainsaw Massacre
    Angela Vidal -REC

  5. Sezin says:

    1) Anna – Martyrs. You’ve said it all Scott!
    2) Sarah – The Descent. She goes primal on those Crawlers’ asses. Yeah!
    3) The Masked Girls – Strangers. “Why are you doing this to us?” “Because you were home.” *Shiver*
    4) Zoe Bell, Rosario Dawson and Tracie Thoms – Death Proof. That final scene is crazy badass.
    5) Esther – Orphan. That kid freaked me out, man. Brilliant little actress.


  6. autumnforest says:

    I’m going to suck at giving you names, but I can give you characters.
    1. The chick who survived in “Texas Chainsaw” (original for surviving the unsurvivable).
    2. The chick from “I Spit On Your Grave” (original version for ultimate revenge)
    3. The mother from “Last House on the Left” (for biting a dick off a much-deserved guy),
    4. Nicole Kidman in “Dead Calm” (for being willing to sleep with Billy Zane-hee hee)
    5. The reporter chick in “Dawn of the Dead” (original, for learning how to fly a helicopter)

    • Camille Keaton as Jennnifer Hills (I Spit on Your Grave) almost made my list as well. Never has women’s empowerment been so savagely depicted!!

      I also loved Gaylen Ross as Francine in the original Dawn of the Dead. In fact you can tell the decade each film from his original trilogy was made in just by watching the lead female character. She started off meek and helpless (60’s); became empowered and self-sufficient (70’s); and finally was an ass kicking SOB that held her own against every male in the film and in some cases did better (80’s)!!

  7. 3amfright says:

    1. Jennifer Tilly (Bride of Chucky & Seed of Chucky)-The girl is voluptuous & talented & any actress willing to play a dual role as herself & a doll in mock fashion is numero uno in my book!

    2. Laurie Holden (Silent Hill)- Hot chick in leather with a badge and a gun, need I say more? I’ll admit, when I saw the scene where her helmet comes off & she puts three rounds in the spewing corpse I moaned out load in the theaters. Thankfully I was surrounded by geeky men who were doing the same thing.

    3.Milla Jovovich (Resident Evil)- Girl likes her action & her zombies & her gun. Plus, she’s not hard to look at ;).

    4.Selma Blair (The Fog)- The remake may have sucked but Selma Blair as Stevie Wayne was HOT & she’s the only reason I have the movie on dvd. No one else could have recaptured that role like she did.

    I’ve got a tie for 5th because I can’t pick just one of the last two so…

    5a.Eliza Dushku (Wrong Turn, Soul Survivors)- It’s Eliza Dushku, How could she not be on the list? She’s like a young Jamie Lee Curtis who fought back instead of crying.

    5b.Famke Jannsen (Lord of Illusions, House on Haunted Hill)- The girl knows how to wild attitude, vulnerability & sex appeal like a deadly sai sheathed in a leather calf boot. No matter what role she is in you know Famke will deliver.

  8. Chris Keaton says:

    Lady Sylvia Marsh
    The Layer of the White Worm

  9. Gore Girl says:

    Dr. Katherine McMichaels
    I also like Laurlie and Deborah Meyers whom aren’t on here

    • There’s nothing better than a strong, sexy woman in a horror film getting all bloody!! Julie (Mindy Clarke) from Return of the Living Dead 3 (1993) and the entire cast of The Descent just missed making the list!!