The Bella Swan Syndrome

Five heroines not worth fighting over

by Josh Kurp   |   Jun 30, 2010

The Bella Swan Syndrome

Two out of three ain’t bad (Photo: Summit Entertainment)

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I was lucky enough to attend a screening of The Twilight Saga: Eclipse in IMAX yesterday. Although I haven’t read the books, I have seen the previous two films and know enough about the series to at least get by. I do have one question for all you Twihards out there: Is Bella as annoying in the books as she is in the movies? If I were Edward or Jacob (I’m on his team, for what it’s worth), I wouldn’t risk my life on a daily basis for her. She’s just not that interesting.

With that mind, below is Encore‘s list of Five Heroines Not Worth Fighting Over. Most of the selections aren’t bad people; they’re just either boring or a missed opportunity for a female hero, like Ellen Ripley or Sydney Bristow.

#5. Sookie Stackhouse from True Blood

The fact that’s she magical and can rock a pair of Sookie Shorts is endearing, but until we find out how and why’s she so magical and maenad-shocking (I’m only going by the show, not the books), which is presumably why Eric and, to a lesser extent, Bill are in love with her, Sookie’s just another waitress who misses a lot of work. Seriously, if I were Sam, I’d fire her.

#4. Cho Chang from Harry Potter

Sometimes life works in circles, y’know? Let’s see: Jacob and Edward spend their time fighting over Bella in Forks, Washington, but over at Hogwarts, the actor who plays Edward, Robert Pattinson, also is Cedric Diggory, who has his eye on Cho Chang, as does Harry Potter. But why? Cho seems like a nice enough girl, but the hottest wizard in school and the Boy Who Lived both fighting for your love? She must have brewed up some wicked Amortentia. Not too get too spoilery on you, but: SNAPE KILLS DUMBLEDO…I mean, CEDRIC DIES. That leaves Cho available, but Harry instead chooses Ginny, and Cho begins dating Michael Corner, who had previously dated Ginny. Love’s confusing.

#3. Mary Jane Watson from Spider-Man

In the comics, she’s fine. But in the films, you almost wish the Green Goblin had dropped her off the Queensboro Bridge. I think Kirsten Dunst is a decent enough actress (Jumanji!), but she’s horribly miscast as the girl tearing apart Peter Parker (he’s Spider-Man, shhh) and Harry Osborn, at least until he gets torn apart by Venom and dies in the third film. Comic MJ is fiery and enthusiastic, but Movie MJ is passive and expects to be saved. It’s a shame too, because she could have been a great role model for an entire generation of women, like Princess Leia.

#2. Bridget Jones from Bridget Jones’ Diary

You know what would have made this a much better movie? If instead of fighting over Bridget, who is a terrible person, Mark (Colin Firth) and Daniel (Hugh Grant) instead became a couple. No diary, no nothing. Just an adorable British romance.

#1. Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City

Maybe I’m only including her due to lingering anger/sadness over the awfulness of the two movies, but, well, I think Big and Aidan could do better. Sure, Big has commitment issues and Aidan is a furniture designer, but at least neither of them ever said, “And we were dressed from head to toe in love…the only label that never goes out of style.” No, Carrie. Just no.

(Thank you to Nadia, Val and Kayley for providing female perspective)