Art & Entertainment

A Franchise Ahead Of Its Time - How ‘The Hunger Games’ Put Strong Women At Its Forefront

As you enjoy the latest in ‘The Hunger Games’ franchise, let’s glance at some of the strong female characters that the film series has given us over the years. Be it Katniss Everdeen or Dr Volumnia Gaul, let’s take a look at the strong women who rule Panem and our hearts.

Viola Davis

When they first released, ‘The Hunger Games’ movies had the entire nation in a chokehold. With a dreamy star cast including Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks and Stanley Tucci, the films became a cult favourite almost instantly. From ‘I volunteer as tribute’ memes to pop culture references, ‘The Hunger Games’ franchise has gone down in cinematic history for multiple reasons, including its political messaging and stance on societal issues.

As we move into a new era with ‘The Hunger Games: The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes’ and deep dive into the early days of tyrannical President Snow, we must credit the franchise for giving us women characters that are diverse, eloquent, intelligent and represent strength in their own unique way.

Be it Katniss Everdeen or Dr Volumnia Gaul, let’s take a look at the strong women who rule Panem and our hearts:

Katniss Everdeen

Katniss Everdeen was a beacon of hope for Panem - a mockingjay if you will. While her rebellion spread through the Capitol and the districts like wildfire, she became a symbol to fans all around the world. Her unwavering courage, spirit and willingness to fight for her and her people’s rights, cemented her in the hearts and homes of not only the citizens but also audiences. With Jennifer Lawrence’s iconic character upholstering an uprising, Katniss’ vulnerability, kindness and intelligence proved that true femininity lies in being strong, soft and sensibly selfless.

Effie Trinket

Often overlooked as a strong female lead, Elizabeth Banks’ Effie Trinket is a Capitol citizen who plays the role of an escort for District 12 tributes. Over the course of the first four films, we see her develop a strong bond with both Katniss and Peeta, eventually becoming a part of the rebellion. Although Effie starts off as a loyalist to President Snow, she starts to see the maniac for who he truly is. It is her ability to empathize, despite the brainwashing and her excellent taste in fashion that makes her a force to be reckoned with.

Lucy Gray Baird

She’s a songbird through and through. Lucy Gray Baird is one of the strongest feminists in The Hunger Games franchise. Her wit, relentlessness and intuition make her a true victor in every sense. Lucy is fearless even at times of peril. Her energy and fervor are well encapsulated by the brilliant Rachel Zegler, who never ceases to amaze with her incredible acting prowess. Lucy’s headstrong personality and never-say-die attitude even in the face of defeat showcase her true strength, making her an emblem in The Hunger Games franchise.

Dr Volumia Gaul

Viola Davis’ Dr Gaul is perhaps the epitome of a character who is wicked good. Volumnia is evil, intimidating and powerful - a combination made in heaven (or perhaps hell). She knows what she wants and how to get away with it; an antagonist you can’t help but love. Her absolute gall (pun intended) and menacing aura feed into her character’s duplicitous nature and make her a formidable foe and woman in the series.

‘The Hunger Games: The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes’ released on November 17.