Most people are affected by at least one fictional character at some point in their lives. As silly as it might seem, for me that character has been cheerleader and demon killer Buffy Summers of the TV series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Buffy was a strong and complex female character in a mass of one-dimensional leading ladies. She wasn’t some emotionally hardened warrior princess wearing a metal bikini. Sure, she was conventionally pretty and had more than her fair share of close-up shots, but she was also a girl who wanted to be accepted by her peers (and considering that most of her nights were spent in cemeteries battling the undead, fitting in wasn’t easy). Her wardrobe was an insight into her character. She dressed like an ordinary teenage girl, because that’s exactly who she wanted to be.
Since high school, I’ve realized that Buffy Summers is just one of the compelling female characters in the world of sci-fi — great women of action with wardrobes to match, whether she is a robot with implanted emotions or a warrant officer battling parasitic aliens.
[Pictured: 1. Leather rucksack by HomesteadLeatherWrks; 2. 1980s Khaki button-down romper from NewmanHall; 3. Pure silk top by threelittleducksaust; 4. Brown leather belt by StepOriginals; 5. 1980s Avant garde cut out oxfords from jamesrowlandshop.]
In the 1979 film Alien, Officer Rigley transitions between a loose government-issued jumpsuit and a sporty white tank top, with little else. Her wardrobe is limited but effective in her pursuit to defeat alien intruders aboard her spacecraft.
[Pictured: 1. Faux leather thigh-high leggings by PeekoApparel; 2. Little Wing shrug by celapiu; 3. Rectangle cut out bather by MinnowBathers; 4. Medium black and silver hand-printed leather zig zag clutch by arcofla; 5. Gem ring of faceted ebony and sterling silver by arosha.]
In the campy ’60s flick Barbarella, Jane Fonda uses her physical appeal rather than her strength to save planet Earth. Throughout her journey, she wears a series of tight bodysuits, each new ensemble more revealing than the last. I wouldn’t exactly call Barbarella a feminist role model, but her daring wardobe of cut-out bodysuits is definitely worth replicating.
[Pictured: 1. The original draped Sad Sack dress from JoDemontis; 2. Black kangaroo leather envelope clutch by SomandTooby; 3. Art Deco Ronson Mastercase from ADelightfulFind; 4. Minimal chevron arrow necklace by portalsandprisms; 5. ’90s Avant Garde leather and pony hair heeled loafers from lousybeatnik.]
Rachael is a genetically engineered robot who believes herself to be human in the ’80s cult classic, Blade Runner. Though the story is set in the distant future (2019!), Rachael has been manufactured like a classic femme fatale of the past. She wears simple dark suits in bold silhouettes, reminiscent of Lauren Bacall during the 1940s.
[Pictured: 1. Large leather carry-all pouch by MirkaDesign; 2. Genuine leather cuff with gunmetal studs by CrescentMoonVintage; 3. Kólga Sheer Square Dress by Ovate; 4. Biker black leather fray necklace by AMzeager; 5. ’80s Bootalinos from bluebutterflyvintage.]
Pris is a rebellious robot who escapes to LA in an attempt to extend her own life span. Her bold attitude is reflected in her New Wave punk-inspired look, from her sheer black clothing to her platinum hair.
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