The Trouble with "Carrie": Strong Female Characters and Onscreen Violence.
Whether she's volunteering to take her sister's place in the arena or grooming her son to lead the resistance; gunning down the gangsters who sell drugs to the kids in her neighborhood or swinging swords to avenge her daughter, the "strong female character" is often stirred by a maternal concern, a quintessential desire to preserve her community, to protect the weak and vulnerable. Her bad-assery must be in the service of a greater good. Even when she's more ethically complex (like the Bride, who begrudgingly admits that all the people she killed to get to her daughter, "felt good"), she never takes a place at the table of Walter White's grand epiphany: "I did it for me."
Carrie does what Beatrix Kiddo and Ellen Ripley and Katniss Everdeen don't: She does it for herself. Her vengeance, her violence, is in service to no one, no noble good. She doesn't kill because her family and friends have been threatened. There are no friends, no fellow outcasts, to protect from the bullies. No little sister to shield from Mama's wrath. Only her. And she is enough. Carrie kills because she was wronged.
Chris Sims of the Invincible Super-Blog has tangled with the undead before, most notably with The Annotated Anita Blake, but now he's taking on the big daddy with the cape and the fangs: It's Dracula Week! Over on Comics Alliance Chris lists Dracula's Greatest Comics Appearances, then back on ISB he's followed up with Batman versus Dracula and Dracula versus Superman. Now he's taking on Dracula in his ultimate, most 70s form. Behold... BLACULA!
Shaft was so cool that he had his own theme song. Shaft walked across the street whenever he wanted to. Shaft was a complicated man. But not all Blaxploitation heros were Private Dicks. They could be a Pimp, a Power-Hungry Criminal, a Coke Dealer, or a Male Prostitute. One was a Former Green Beret, one was a Bounty Hunter, and one was a Prize Fighter. Some were Foxy Ladies, such as Vigilante Nurses, US Special Agents, or Escaped Convicts. They might even be a Karate Master or a Vampire. [more inside]
Pam Grier, Tura Satana, Laura Gemser. Cult Sirens is a site dedicated to, you guessed it, the women made famous due to the cult movies they starred in. If you love this kind of stuff, there are links to more sites having to do with actors, cult movies and horror movies. And there's always this list of cult movies, complete with reviews.