Go Ahead, Make Her Day

From China to California, in TV and films, pop culture is embracing a new image of the action heroine who is both feminist and feminine

It used to be the heroine's job to get in trouble and the hero's job to get her out of it. How many films ended with the good guy and the bad guy battling it out while the sweet young thing shivered to one side, never thinking to pick up a plank and help out?

You've come a long way, baby. Flick on the TV, and see women--young women, almost always--kicking and thinking and winking at both the old notion of femininity and the aging precepts of feminism. Buffy the Vampire Slayer (in her fifth season on the WB) saves...

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