Template:Issues A stock character is a dramatic character representing a type in a conventional manner and recurring in many works. The following are such fictional female archetypes and stereotypes. A distinctive example of each is provided.
According to E. Graham McKinley, "there is general agreement on the importance to drama of 'stock' characters. This notion has been considerably explored in film theory, where feminists have argued, female stock characters are only stereotypes (child/woman, whore, bitch, wife, mother, secretary or girl Friday, career women, vamp, etc.)." Thus, the subject of female stock characters has attracted scholarly attention as seen in the work of Ulrike Roesler and Jayandra Soni whose work deals "not only with female stock characters in the sense of typical roles in the dramas, but also with other female persons in the area of the theatrical stage..."
Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich, and Holger Schott Syme explain further that "Female stock characters also permit a close level of audience identification; this is true most of all in The Troublesome Raigne , where the 'weeping woman' type is used to dramatic advantage. This stock character provides pathos as yet another counterpoint to the plays' comic business and royal pomp."
Tara Brabazon discusses how the "school ma'am on the colonial frontier has been a stock character of literature and film in Australia and the United States. She is an ideal foil for the ill mannered, uncivilised hero. In American literature and film, the spinster from East - generally Boston - has some stock attributes. Polly Welts Kaufman shows that 'her genteel poverty, unbending morality, education, and independent ways make her character a useful foil for the two other female stock characters in Western literature: the prostitute with the heart of gold and the long-suffering farmer's wife.'"
Table of female stock charactersEdit
Definitions of examplesEdit
This is a list of stereotypical female characters. These stock characters play off of popular stereotypes of women (e. g. innocence, helplessness, etc.,) or, more recently, attempts to break these stereotypes (e. g. women's rights, feminism, etc.)
The Adventuress is a female character who takes on an adventure-hero role, especially from periods (such as the Victorian and Edwardian eras) where such activities wouldn't be considered "ladylike". Examples include:
- Kate Reed in Anno Dracula
- Evelyn Carnahan in The Mummy
- Elizabeth Swann of Pirates of the Caribbean and its sequels
- Kim Possible
- Maria von Trapp in The Sound of Music
- Charley Pollard in Doctor Who
The Bad Girl/Rebel is often an antagonist, the female counterpart of the Bad Boy. The Bad Girl/Rebel is usually a troubled and rebellious adolescent or young adult, often the black sheep of the family and a sort of outcast in school. Her preferences in music, fashion or lifestyle are unconventional or non-mainstream. The Bad Girl/Rebel is loud or obnoxious, and is not afraid to stand out in a crowd, an individual who does not care much about what anyone else thinks. Examples include:
- Kaitlin Cooper and Hailey Nichol from The O.C.
- Margaret "Legs" Sadovsky in Foxfire
- Stephanie Zinone from Grease 2
- Val from Beverly Hills, 90210
- Angel Bright from Little Darlings
- Julie Pierce from The Next Karate Kid
A version of the "bad girl" is the good "bad" girl, "that stock character of popular fiction, who despite appearances and circumstances, proves virtuous in the end."
The California Girl is usually a sun-streaked blonde-haired, tanned, light-eyed girl who only eats health food and loves the environment more than anything else. Examples include:
- Dawn Schafer from The Baby-sitters Club series
- Marzipan from Homestar Runner
- Melody Valentine from Josie and the Pussycats
- Sara Connors from Super Sweet 16: The Movie
- Layla Wiliams from Sky High
This is in contrast to Valley girls.
Cinderella or Pretty Ugly GirlEdit
Cinderella or The Pretty Ugly Girl is supposed to be somewhat plain-looking, yet is actually quite attractive—the most famous examples being Cinderella herself and Mary Ann from Gilligan's Island. Usually, the girl's mother is either completely absent or is, of course, a Wicked Step-Mother. Her father is usually distant or uninvolved with her. Often this character is contrasted with someone considered to be the Beautiful or Popular Girl, such as:
- Samantha Baker from Sixteen Candles
- Gabriella Montez from High School Musical and High School Musical 2
- Samantha "Sam" Montgomerey from A Cinderella Story
Damsel in DistressEdit
- Penelope Pitstop
- Daphne Blake
- Buttercup in The Princess Bride
- Maid Marian in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- Princess Peach
- Tifa Lockhart
- Rinoa Heartilly
- Gwendoline in The Perils of Gwendoline in the Land of the Yik-Yak
This archetype is now often subverted, with the damsel being secretly formidable and waiting for the right moment to strike back (such as Amy Rose or Princess Fiona), or learning to do it as the story advances and she leaves her initially passive attitude, such as:
Defensive Hopeless RomanticEdit
The Defensive Hopeless Romantic, as a lead character in a Romantic Comedy context, is usually an attractive female that supposedly does not believe in true love, usually from being left heartbroken many times. Some Defensive Hopeless Romantics are players, some are single, and some are just plain man-haters, as a means of defense against any more emotional pain associated with a relationship--that is, until they meet their match. Examples include:
- Christina Walters in The Sweetest Thing
- Katarina "Kat" Stratford in 10 Things I Hate About You
- Andie Anderson in How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days
- Katherine Minola in The Taming of the Shrew
The Drama Queen is an overly self-centered, popular, vulnerable, and dramatic person. Her sensitive side contrasts with her tendency to be controlling. Examples include:
- Brittany Taylor in Daria
- Melody Valentine in Josie and the Pussycats
- Jillian (Brian Griffin's new girlfriend of Family Guy)
- Olivia Ryan from the The Clique Series
- Karen Smith in Mean Girls
- Deborah Ann Fimple from Secret Admirer
Occasionally the Dumb Blonde is not actually blonde, just dumb. Marilyn Monroe portrayed this stereotype in a number of movies. In rare cases the dumb blonde is not dumb but acts in the fashion of the dumb blonde to avoid being classified as a Nerd Girl in her social circle.
- Poison Ivy from Batman
- Lady Macbeth
- the Dragon Lady from Terry and the Pirates
- many women in film noir.
- Lust from Full Metal Alchemist.
- Lorry Dane from The Big Town
In more modern fiction, femme fatales are not necessarily evil, but are simply women who use their looks and female charisma to get what they want. More often, they are protagonists, supporters of protagonists, antiheroes, or villains who switch sides, rather than all-out antagonists. Examples include_
- Gabrielle Solis and Edie Britt of Desperate Housewives
- Julie Cooper from The O.C.
- Green of Pokemon
- Nami of One Piece
- Angel from Lilo & Stitch: The Series.
The Female Triad is a group of three girls who are mostly seen together. Often used in fantasy fiction as three women in magic (i.e.: witches, deities, etc.) or at least with different "special abilities", like Dylan, Alex and Natalie in Charlie's Angels, but may alternatively be three girls who have different tempers that play off each other. They are usually differentiated by distinct hair colours: blonde, brunette and redhead. The Three Fates and the Weird Sisters are examples of the former; the Plastics from Mean Girls, The Powerpuff Girls and Josie and the Pussycats are examples of the latter. Occasionally qualifies as both, as with the Halliwell Sisters from Charmed.
Girl next doorEdit
The Girl next door is the archetype of wholesome, unassuming, or "average" femininity and female counterpart to the "boy next door". Her character is open and straightforward, and her intentions do not need to be concealed. She is seldom much richer or of much higher social status than the protagonist. The girl next door is most likely someone the protagonist has known for most of his (or her) life, but in the past could not appreciate the depth of her feelings because of his age. Examples include:
- Mary Jane Watson from Spider-Man
- Betty Cooper from Archie Comics
- Judy from Rebel Without a Cause
- Cherry Valance from The Outsiders
- Toni from Secret Admirer
- Stephanie Jameson from Minutemen
Hooker with a Heart of GoldEdit
- T. J. Wray writes, "From Bianca in Shakespeare's Othello to Vivian from (played by Julia Roberts) in the 1990 film Pretty Woman, the hooker with a heart of gold is a common stock character in literature, poetry, and film."
- Belle Watling in Gone with the Wind
- Karen Kasumi from the X manga
- Nancy 'Sikes' from Oliver Twist
- Divina from Running Scared
Inga from SwedenEdit
- Reese Witherspoon's character in Cruel Intentions
- Christine Daaé in The Phantom of the Opera
- Dr. Allison Cameron—as is once explicitly stated, in fact—in House, M.D.
- Lynn Minmei from the Robotech and Macross
- Jemima from the musical "Cats"
- Wendy Beamish from St. Elmo's Fire
The It Girl, sometimes a Girl next door or simply the girl that everyone wants to be. She has everything that you want so you tend to envy her, however, she isn't mean as a Queen Bee. Her presence is always appreciated, all the guys want her and all the girls want to be her. Although she looks perfect, she's hardly happy and has a lot of issues. Examples include:
Make Over GirlEdit
The Make Over Girl is a female stereotype who is the typical ugly duckling, usually initially ignored, unnoticed or downright ridiculed, at times on account of being homely, but later transforms into a lovely or elegant swan. Examples include:
- Laney Boggs in She's All That
- Danielle de Barbarac in Ever After
- Andie Walsh in Pretty in Pink
- Josie Geller in Never Been Kissed
- Lindsay Lohan's character from Mean Girls
- Kathleen "Kiki" Harrison in America's Sweethearts
- Alison from The Breakfast Club
- Sandra "Sandy" Dumbrowski from Grease
- Kara from The It Girl series.
The Motor-mouth is a female character who just doesn't know when to shut up, hold her silence or keep a secret, regardless of whatever harm that could befall her or her companions. Either for truth be known, uncontrollable urge, wanting to gain the approval of a certain person or group, or simply because they want to, these women will not simply put a lid on it. Examples include:
The Nerd Girl differs from the Pretty Ugly Girl by being less wholesomely mainstream. She doesn’t dress fashionably and may be intensely interested in some specialized area or notable for her intelligence. Examples include:
- Deb in Napoleon Dynamite is a classic Nerd Girl (she wears her hair in an unusual way, dresses in loose, unfashionable clothing and is into photography)
- Darla Simmons in Martin Mystery
- Gadget Hackwrench (Chip and Dale's Rescue Rangers)
- Diane Snyder in Ed (TV series).
- Gretchen Grundler from Recess
The Nerd Girl is often kind and goodhearted, and may be quite attractive, or have the potential to be so with some “tidying up” like:
Like the Pretty Ugly Girl, she is explicitly contrasted with the beautiful but shallow popular girl.
The Nurse is typically a woman who finds the hero or villain injured, and nurses him back to health. She falls in love with him, but will never have her love returned because of his love for another or his plans for conquest. According to University of North Carolina Philological Club, "As a rule the nurse is but a stock character, common to all plays." Examples include_
- Michal Amagi from Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch Pure
- Hannah from The English Patient
- Éowyn in The Lord of the Rings (at least in the film adaptation) also bears similarities to this character type towards Aragorn.
The Outsider excludes herself from popular social circles and avoids people. Her story is centered around a new life for her and how she gets into trouble with the new society. She is usually the victim of every negative stereotype and rumor, and she doesn't have a social life. But it doesn't matter to her, because she hardly has anything to lose. Examples include:
- Alex Kelly from The OC
- Vanessa Abrams from Gossip Girl
- Annie Dray from Big Liar on Campus
- Janis Ian in Mean Girls
The Popular Girl is a girl who is well-liked and appreciated at her school, but is often mean and prissy to less popular girls. She is usually very attractive and often has sidekicks following her everywhere. In recent times, this character type has gained the appellation Queen Bee. In many high school Cinderella stories, the Popular Girl is the initial love interest of the male lead character--until she reveals her "evil qualities", which is usually midway through the story or near the end. Examples include:
- Linda Barrett in Fast Times at Ridgemont High
- Stacy from the GirlTalk book series by L.E. Blair
- Regina George from Mean Girls
- Alana (later Bianca, later Muffy) from That's So Raven
- Harmony Kendall
- Cordelia Chase of Buffy the Vampire Slayer
- Sharpay Evans from High School Musical and High School Musical 2
- Amber Von Tussle from Hairspray
- Rachel Witchburn from Sydney White
- Tiffany from As the Bell Rings
- Amber Addison and Ashley DeWitt, later Mikayla from Hannah Montana
- Stacy from Odd Girl Out, Stacey Hinkhouse from Freaky Friday
- London Tipton from The Suite Life of Zack and Cody
- Meredith from Bratz: The Movie
- Gwen Grayson from Sky High
- Taylor Tiara from Super Sweet 16: The Movie
- Missy Meany and Suzie Crabgrass from Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide
- Carla Santini from Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen
- Shelby Cummings from A Cinderella Story
- Maris and Cranberry from Unfabulous
- Stacy, later Rebecca from Zoey 101
- Trish and Inga from Nancy Drew
- Kate Sanders from Lizzie McGuire
- Vicki Sanders from Big Liar on Campus
- Amber, later Carrie from Summerland
- Nina Harper from Braceface
- Princess Morbucks from The Powerpuff Girls
- Tasha from iCarly
- Stacie from Sleepover
- Sawyer Sullivan from Read It and Weep
- Massie Block from The Clique series
- Patrice from The Naked Brothers Band
- Gertrude "Gigi" Hollingsworth from Wizards of Waverly Place
- Winnie Harper from Bring It On: All or Nothing
- Priscilla Wright from The Haunting Hour: Don't Think About It
- Skye Hamilton from The Clique Series
- Tinsley from The It Girl
- Cinder Carlson from Little Darlings
The Prep is a superficial girl whose biggest preoccupation is with wealth and the appearance of wealth. More often WASP, blue-blooded and from aristocratic family. Her characteristics include particular subcultural speech, vocabulary, accent, dress, mannerisms, etiquette, and entitled life view. More generally, preps attend elite college preparatory schools, often boarding schools. Preppy culture idealizes intelligence, athleticism, sociability and wealth and in fashion the term "preppy" is associated not with dramatic designer fashions, but with classic and conservative clothing and accessory brands. Examples include:
- Callie from The It Girl
The Valley Girl is young, rich, and spoiled but usually sweet and not as mean as the Popular Girl, The "Val" is a typically blonde-haired and tan-skinned (not necessarily a natural blonde), bright eyed Caucasian woman, although many other women of different nationalities are devoted to the trend. The typical style of dress was often garishly loud and colorful—a combination of pastel and neon colors, ruffles and lace. Tutus, leggings and bodysuits were more rare, but represented the extremes of the trend. The 21st century version typically carries such technologies as cell phones, iPods, etc. A typical Valley Girl is usually considered to be attractive and sexually promiscuous. Examples include:
- Cher Horowitz from Clueless
- Caitlin Cooke from 6teen
- Kelly Taylor in early seasons from Beverly Hills, 90210.
- Paris Hilton.
The Jewish-American Princess (JAP) or Black American Princess (Bap). It is referring to a stereotypical spoiled somewhat snobby young, rich, wealthy, materialistic and selfish girl. A pampered female of African American or Jewish American descent born to upper-middle- or upper-class families. Her life experiences give her a "sense of entitlement" and she is accustomed to the best and nothing less. Examples include:
The Tomboy is a female character who is “one of the guys”, the Tomboy is generally "independent" and displays superior physical or athletic prowess and/or is able to relate more with males in terms of interests. Because of her attitude, interests or activities, the Tomboy is sometimes, though not always, a Pretty Ugly Girl. The Tomboy exhibits a deep-seated or transient envy of more feminine girls, usually when confronted by a boy she likes; others try to find a balance between their boyishness and some degree of femininity, with varying results. Michelle Ann Abate explains that "tomboys became fixtures in adventure novels about the 'Wild West' that were geared for boys. From Prentiss Ingraham's Crimson Kate, the Girl Trailer (1881) to Edward Wheeler's Deadwood Dick/Calamity Jane series (1877-1885), a rootin'-tootin' tomboy who roped, rode, and 'ranged became a stock character." Michael R. Stevenson notes that "the tomboy heroine...has persisted as a stock character in American children's books." Examples include_
- Holly Short in the Artemis Fowl series
- Katarina "Kat" Stratford in 10 Things I Hate About You
- Ashley Spinelli from Recess
- Éowyn from The Lord of the Rings
- Motoko Aoyama and Naru Narusegawa from Love Hina
- Akane Tendo from Ranma 1/2
- Makoto Kino from Sailor Moon
- An Tachibana and Miyuki Chitose from Prince of Tennis
- Pepper in Good Omens
- Faris Scherwiz of Final Fantasy V
- Julie-Su from the Sonic the Hedgehog comics by Archie Comics
- Tex in Red vs Blue could be considered an exaggeration of this archetype.
- Buttercup from The Powerpuff Girls
- "Moose" Pearson from Pepper Ann
Ugly Sidekick or WannabeEdit
The Ugly Sidekick or Wanna Be is a female character that isn't necessarily ugly, but is referred to as such for being inferior in looks to the Popular Girl. The Ugly Sidekick idolizes and emulates the Popular Girl in manner of speech, dress and attitude. Out of envy and with a goal to someday outrun The Popular Girl in the rat race, the Ugly Sidekick has a tendency to backstab her idol. Examples include:
The Warrior Heroine is a female hero who has many characteristics of traditional male heroic stock characters. The Warrior Heroine is sometimes prejudiced in her line of work by misogynist male characters, but always manages to come out on top. Many Warrior Heroines are Adventuresses. Some are also Femme Fatales or Tomboys, but do not necessarily have to be either. If the Warrior Heroine is of royalty, she is also a Warrior princess. Examples include:
Sometimes, if caught in a turn of events, this warrior heroine will leave her wild, spiteful, cold ways if rescued by a handsome/main character/newly introduced male and transform into a loyal, loving Barbie doll for her new crush. Shampoo from Ranma 1/2 again is an excellent example for this, but another great example is the Native American Princess "Tiger Lily" from J.M. Barrie's [the author] & Disney's version of Peter Pan.
- ↑ Oxford English Dictionary, http://dictionary.oed.com, retrieved 2008-05-03
- ↑ E. Graham McKinley, Beverly Hills, 90210: television, gender, and identity (1997), 19.
- ↑ Ulrike Roesler and Jayandra Soni, Aspects of the female in Indian culture: proceedings of the symposium in ... (2004), 119.
- ↑ Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich, and Holger Schott Syme, Locating the Queen's Men, 1583-1603: Material Practices and Conditions of ... (2009), 172.
- ↑ Tara Brabazon, Ladies who lunge: celebrating difficult women (2002), 147.
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Bitches, bimbos, and ballbreakers: the Guerrilla Girls' illustrated guide to female stereotypes, Penguin, 2003, http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=hjXaAAAAMAAJ
- ↑ David Gallop (April 1999), "Jane Austen and the Aristotelian Ethic", Philosophy and Literature 23 (1): 96–109, doi:10.1353/phl.1999.0016, http://muse.jhu.edu/login?uri=/journals/philosophy_and_literature/v023/23.1gallop.html
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 Clara E. Rodriguez (1997). Latin Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media. Boulder, Colo.: Westview Press. ISBN 0813327660. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=EuOhmgnKS1EC.
- ↑ Clyde de L. Ryals, "The "Fatal Woman" Symbol in Tennyson", PMLA 74 (4Adate=September 1959), http://www.jstor.org/pss/460452
- ↑ Diane Waldman, Janet Walker (1999). Feminism and Documentary. Minneapolis: Univ. of Minnesota Press. p. 109. ISBN 0816630070. http://books.google.com/books?id=kYFY9Yg_bXYC&pg=PA109.
- ↑ Rachel Josefowitz (2000). Jewish Mothers Tell Their Stories: Acts of Love and Courage. New York: Haworth Press. ISBN 0789010992. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=ZFdDPXB7eikC.
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 Chrid Buckton (2003), Lightning: Year 5 Plays - Teacher's Notes, Harcourt Education, ISBN 9780602308452, http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=cRbT2xFsnv4C&pg=RA1-PA1-IA1
- ↑ Classen, Albrecht (January, 1989), "Matriarchy versus patriarchy", Neophilologus 73 (1): 77, doi:10.1007/BF00399640, http://www.springerlink.com/content/j646781v30kq5317/
- ↑ Carlton, Charles (1978). "The Widow's Tale: Male Myths and Female Reality in 16th and 17th Century England". Albion (The North American Conference on British Studies) 10 (2): 118–129. doi:10.2307/4048338. http://www.jstor.org/pss/4048338.
- ↑ Leslie A. Fiedler, Love and death in the American novel (1960), 169.
- ↑ For more information on this type of character, see Brendan Burchell, Colin Fraser, and Dale Hay, Introducing social psychology (2001), 231.
- ↑ For more information on this type of character, see Brendan Burchell, Colin Fraser, and Dale Hay, Introducing social psychology (2001), 231 and Bram Dijkstra, Idols of perversity: fantasies of feminine evil in fin-de-siècle culture (1986), 174.
- ↑ T. J. Wray, Good Girls, Bad Girls: The Enduring Lessons of Twelve Women of the Old Testament (2008), 45.
- ↑ University of North Carolina (1793-1962). Philological Club, Studies in philology, Volumes 12-13 (1915), 90.
- ↑ Michelle Ann Abate, Tomboys: a literary and cultural history (2008), xv.
- ↑ Michael R. Stevenson, Gender roles through the life span: a multidisciplinary perspective (1994), 48.