Game of Thrones has been hailed one of the most feminist shows on television. While it can sometimes be hard to find strong female icons in Hollywood, they’re the standard in this popular show. Here are the seven most powerful female characters in Game of Thrones who make a habit out of kicking ass and taking names.
Cersei might be one of the show’s more villainous characters, but she’s still worthy of a spot on this list. She is fiercely loyal to her family and refuses to accept any established structures that deny women equal power.
Dany has been a feminist force since season one, when she stood up to her big brother’s physical and emotional abuse. Since then, she’s grown into an unstoppable force — overtaking nations, freeing slaves, building an army and making her way to Westeros to conquer the rest of the world.
Arya is proof that feminism has no age; she’s been a warrior of women’s rights since season one when she told her father she wasn’t interested in a life defined by traditional female gender norms. She’s defied them every day since, leaving her life in her family’s castle for overseas adventure, and even training to be an assassin.
The first queen of the Iron Islands, Yara is a fearless leader who effortlessly takes on the role. She leads her army to form an alliance with Dany and the rest of her exclusively female team as they join forces to conquer Westeros.
Brienne of Tarth
Brienne’s sheer presence is feminist. She exudes loyalty, courage, kindness and confidence without arrogance — the traits of a true hero. She defies patriarchy with her masculine appearance and devotion to what’s right.
Sansa undergoes one of the most transformative character shifts in the entire series. While she starts the show set out to marry a prince and live her life in luxury, a series of abusive and cruel situations emboldens her to abandon her traditional vision in favor of independence, leadership and strength.
Lady Olenna offers a dose of humor throughout the show, but really shines in season seven. In conversation with Dany, Olenna divulges her secret to outliving and overruling many clever men: ignoring them.
There are dozens of other female characters who deserve a spot on this list — Lyanna Mormont, Missandei, Catelyn Stark and Ygritte just to name a few — but these seven never disappoint. When you need a little extra feminist oomph in your day, be inspired by these #TitanStrong ladies who never let anything jeopardize their greatness.