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100 Sci Fi Women #9: Leela

Leela Doctor Who


Leela has probably always been my favourite of the Doctor’s companions (except, maybe, Romana, maybe). At the young age I encountered her, there were not many women I saw who were effective wielders of violence, tough and assertive in the way that Leela was. And while she wasn’t educated, she was smart, and she often picked up on trouble before even the Doctor did. She showed us that girls didn’t have to scream and run away at the sight of trouble and that we could face danger boldly. Leela may have been, in part, eye candy for the Dads, but for the little girls watching, she opened our late seventies eyes to another possibility for women.

Doctor, you make me wear strange cloths, you tell me nothing, you are trying to annoy me.

5 responses to “100 Sci Fi Women #9: Leela

  1. Tea Drinker ⋅

    When I was a little kid my favourite was Nyssa. I had hysterics when she left and my mother was very confused as to why I was so upset. I don’t remember Leela – must have been on before I started watching. Sounds good though.

  2. DebC ⋅

    Don’t know that it counts as SciFi, although some of the concepts were certainly out there, but when I was 13 I totally had a girl crush on Emma Peel of the Avengers. Smart, funny, beautiful, and could kick serious butt when necessary.

    • godardsletterboxes ⋅

      I don’t thik she strictly fits in the (albeit broad) sci fi category. But she was definitely another character who, during that particular period, pioneered the way for the Buffys and the Sidney Bristows to follow.

  3. Vancian Notions ⋅

    Dr who did pioneer (for TV, anyway) a lot of fairly non-traditional female characters. Leela is def. a good choice!

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