By: Elisabeth Rappe

Move over, Disney! When it comes to princesses, the sci-fi / fantasy genre has you completely outnumbered, outgunned, and outdressed.

Actually, I find the genre's obsession with princesses rather strange. Not on the fantasy end, mind you, as that genre draws heavily on European fairy tales and dynastic history, and will always find room for royal courts. But you'd think those galaxies far, far away would steer clear of European titles and class systems, and invent new systems of government. But let's face it, few labels evoke such a specific and exotic image as that of "princess," and slapping it onto your heroine does half your screenwriting for you. All you have to decide is if she carries a weapon or prefers a tiara, or if she's comfortable enough to coolly wield both in the name of duty. Luckily, the sci-fi / fantasy genre is rife with examples of all three. So drop a curtsy, and check out the list of my favorite genre princesses. And bow to Erik Davis for hatching the idea while you're at it.

1. Princess Leia Organa (Star Wars)

Princess Leia may not have been science fiction's first princess, but she's the one they all have to measure up to. Every girl since 1977 has thrilled to the fact that the head of the Rebel Alliance was a woman, and that no one (not even the cocky Han Solo, who needed her more than she needed him) raised an eyebrow at the fact. As if being fearless, diplomatic, intelligent, and one hell of a shot wasn't enough, she was also a Jedi like her father before her. No wonder Yoda seemed so calm when Luke flew off to his possible doom. Leia was the ace in the hole.
categories Features, Sci-Fi