6 Lady Badasses From Zombie Films

by Samantha Albala

Zombies create a wonderful commentary on society, survival, and our mortality because they appeal to our fears of widespread viruses, and how much potential we have as individuals in a society to combat a widespread infection (cough Ebola cough). All of the following movies mentioned fall mostly into the typical Hollywood zombie movie premise, meaning it involves a virus. This list of zombie movie queens contain strong, independent, in control… oh, and deadly (and sometimes undead) ladies. Enjoy.


The Best Armed Zombie Survivor: Rose McGowan in Planet Terror

zombie weapon

Cherry Darling IS the weapon of mass destruction! This Robert Rodriguez movie is full of puns, philosophical commentary, and of course a gorgeous woman who can kick ass (zombie or otherwise). She is full of sass, power, and guts, with a backstory! This movie also happens to contain one of my favorite puns ever (“no brainer”).


PG-13 Zombie Survivors: Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin in Zombieland

bummerc/o books-forests-andmrborden

Wichita and Little Rock are traveling together, protecting each other and kicking zombie ass! This movie is pretty tame compared to the classics, gore wise, but it is a very funny and lighthearted film (as far as zombies go). The girls prove their strength and awesomeness by pulling various cons on the other survivors throughout the film in order to maintain their independence and advantage over the virus.


The Best Female Zombie Team: The Female Leads in Zombie Strippers

c/o ohmygore


Yes, the movie’s lead is a porn star in real life, and yes, it is full of both comedy and gore, and yes, it is brilliant that these ladies kick offensive male cat-caller butt! Of course these ladies are competitive with each other which is something that I find annoying in Hollywood depictions of show girls, strippers, or otherwise, but they start to team up toward the end as the virus takes more and more of a hold on them. If being infected somehow makes you into a better stripper and gives you super strength and agility–bite me.


The Zombie’s Love Interest: Teresa Palmer from Warm Bodies

Julie Swaying
c/o sydneysagei 

Be Dead
c/o izzys-boobs

I struggle with loving Julie because while she does create a new breed of “mixed” relationship by falling in love with a zombie, (which is arguably cooler than falling in love with a vampire) she is still kidnapped and taken hostage by zombie narrator “R.” Sure, she kicks zombie butt, and her love becomes a key cure to the undead plague, but I still would have loved to see more of her backstory and strengths. She seems to still fall within the trope of damsel in distress, but hey, at least she has an active speaking role.


Most Active Female Zombie Savior: ­­­­Emily Hampshire from The Returned


image from The Returned

Kate is a doctor that keeps people from turning into zombies, however when the government puts a restriction on the life-saving injections, and riots begin, she has to make some difficult choices. Although her story may be tragic, and the actually interactions with zombies are limited in this film, she is a great strong character that I am proud exists. You tell um’ girl! 


The Zombie Babe To Fall In Love With: Anna Flachi in Cemetery Man

cemetery man
c/o exploitastic

c/o coldbloodedbeast

In 1994, director Michele Soavi created Cemetery Man or Dellamorte Dellamore, an Italian film showcasing one of the sexiest female zombie characters ever created. Played by Anna Flachi, this sexy and classically alluring zombie haunts the male lead, Francesco Dellamorte whose role is to kill the zombies in the cemetery as they come back to life. She captures both his heart and brain with killer control!


c/o openfacedmako 

Honorable mentions: Selena from 28 Days Later, Michonne from The Walking Dead, Ana in the 2004 version of Dawn of the Dead, Vera Cosgrove in Braindead aka Dead Alive, all of the female leads in the Resident Evil series, and Angela in Zombies Anonymous.

No Brainer 
c/o The Horror of Truant


Comment below with some of your favorite zombie genre queens!


First image: c/o fairystoned

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