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Mar 152013

Highly skilled warriors have always been both inspirational and interesting heroes in pop culture. From martial artists to “chosen ones” with special powers, these ladies really make an impression with their amazing skills. Here are some of my favorites, who I find fascinating.

#10) Red Sonja (Brigitte Nielsen) from Red Sonja: This warrior is not only highly skilled with a sword, but also has an amazing jumping ability. I like to think of Sonja as a pre-Xena kind of warrior woman, even though she is difficult, especially when it comes to winning her heart by defeating her in a fair fight.

#9) Yim Wing Chun (Michelle Yeoh) from Wing Chun: Now here’s a martial artist like no other. She not only has fast reflexes, some of which are highly exaggerated, but also has a comedic wit. Wing Chun makes all of her fight moves look so smooth and easy that not even the toughest bandits can touch her. Her only limit is that she never kills. She only toys with her foes. It’s all part of what makes Wing Chun a big favorite of mine.

#8) Alice (Milla Jovovich) from Resident Evil films: Amazing combat skills and smooth moves are what make her the hottest heroine in the franchise. Whenever faced with ravenous zombies, mutant canines, or other dangerous beasts, Alice will fight it. Alice’s abilities are so extraordinary that Umbrella Corp decided to make many clones of her, which keep getting killed in their deadly obstacle course. It just seems so wasteful.

#7) Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar) from Buffy the Vampire Slayer: She was once a high school cheerleader, only to receive the strength and skill of a type of warrior called the slayer. Now Buffy spends much of her spare time battling evil supernatural beings from vampires to demons and sometimes the rebellious slayer Faith with her martial arts and comedic wit. Luckily, Buffy never has to fight alone.

#6) Helen (Gina Torres) from Cleopatra 2525: She leads the trio of freedom fighters and is the only one who can communicate with the anonymous Voice because of the receptor inside her ear. Helen is a courageous fighter, but has a personal grudge against Creegan for murdering her father. Whenever Helen faces Creegan she struggles to stay focused on the task at hand. Luckily, her teammates Sarge and Cleo are always there to watch her back.

#5) Princess Amelia (Amber Benson) from Attack of the Gryphon: She is the princess of Lockland and a noble leader. Whatever the adversary, man or beast, Amelia shows no fear, especially when there’s a task. I admire her devotion, but she hardly ever loosens up. I wonder what Amelia does on her leisure time when she’s not fighting battles, or going on quests to save her kingdom.

#4) Beatrix Kiddo a.k.a. the Bride (Uma Thurman) from Kill Bill: She was a trained assassin specialized with any kind of weapon. When Beatrix decides to give up that lifestyle, she gets hunted down and nearly killed by Bill, her lover and sensei. Although Beatrix’s main focus is revenge, I sure admire her will power. Even against overwhelming odds, she never lets up.

#3) Chun-Li from Street Fighter franchise: Ever since her first appearance on the Street Fighter 2 Super NES video game, Chun-Li has always been a huge favorite in the franchise with her jumping skill, powerful kicking moves, and sex appeal. There have been at least several versions of Chun-Li over the years, but her story is always the same. She didn’t become a street fighter for personal glory. Chun-Li merely wants revenge on Bison for her father’s murder. Here are a few of my favorite movie versions.

Street Fighter: Ming Na plays the role as a reporter covering the war in Shadowloo, but also goes undercover in an attempt to take her revenge.

Street Fighter 2 the Animated Movie: In this Anime film, Chun-Li is an Interpol agent. She has the same grudge against Bison, but always keeps a clear head because she knows that duty comes before personal feelings.

Street Fighter the Legend of Chun-Li: The most recent version played by Kristin Kreuk features more of Chun-Li’s background, including how she learns to use the Hado fireball from later Street Fighter video games.

#2) Xena (Lucy Lawless) from Xena Warrior Princess: She was once a dangerous warlord, but thanks to Hercules she now uses the many skills she developed over the years to become a heroic warrior. Like Hercules, Xena travels around helping others in need while making up for a lifetime of evil. Some of her fighting moves are highly exaggerated, but I admire her strength because even while Xena is vulnerable, she can still kick butt easily.

#1) Charmed Ones from Charmed: If there’s one team of women that deserve to be on top, it’s the Halliwell sisters.

Prue (Shannen Doherty) is the courageous leader. Combined with her telekinetic powers, I definitely see Prue worthy of the title Noble Warrior.

Piper (Holly Marie Combs) has the power to freeze anything in its place. Her powers eventually expand with the ability to blow up enemies. Of course it’s really Piper’s comedic persona, which usually comes from being irritated, that makes her a big favorite.

Phoebe’s (Alyssa Milano) power is only limited to premonitions, but don’t underestimate her. Phoebe’s martial art skills always pack quite a punch in battle.

Then there’s Paige (Rose McGowan), who is half witch and half white lighter. Her telekinetic power is different from Prue’s, but still just as useful in battle. It’s also neat that Paige can orb anywhere at anytime, which gives the Charmed ones more of an edge.

Oct 162009

Last week I talked about meeting Cerina Vincent at FX Convention 2009 and highlighted several of the horror films that she was in. I recently had the opportunity to see her again at the Spooky Empire 2009 Horror Convention in Orlando. I learned from her Q&A that she grew up in Las Vegas modeling and doing commercials locally. She moved to L.A. right after high school. During college she got an agent and started going on auditions.

Cerina Vincent and me

Cerina discussed how it’s much more difficult for actors to find work nowadays, because 75% of all TV shows are Reality TV. The industry has totally changed. Also, many actors were not able to work enough to keep their health insurance during the recent writers strike. Cerina is happy to be a working actor and make appearances at conventions. As for Cerina ever being on a reality TV show, she looks forward to possibly executive producing a positive show based on the Hot Chick books she co-authored with Jodi Lipper. Her favorite show is Dancing with the Stars, so if they call her with an offer she would definitely accept.

Now I have been to many Q&As before, but never had the courage to ask any questions myself. This Q&A was a major breakthrough for me because for the very first time I did ask a question. I asked Cerina what it was like to work with Amber Benson on the film Intermedio. She said that Amber is a sweetheart and was glad to have worked with her.  Unfortunately, the movie itself didn’t go very well. For one, Amber’s broken foot was not originally part of the script. It was a real injury she had at the time. Also, the director was a bit crazy but she didn’t go into too much detail about that.

 Cerina Vincent autograph


I’m so glad that I got to meet Cerina Vincent again. This autographed photo was the one I got from FX Convention 2009. There were quite a few different choices, but I chose this one. Like I said before, it’s always good to meet a Power Ranger.

Oct 092009

Cerina Vincent and me

I met Cerina Vincent at FX Convention 2009 and she was very sweet. She mentioned that her first role was Maya the Yellow Ranger on Power Rangers: Lost Galaxy (1999-2000). Although that’s a later version, I was still glad to have met Cerina. It’s always good to meet a Power Ranger. After that, Cerina Vincent has had some pretty interesting roles over the years as a scream queen.

Cabin Fever is a teen horror film about college students in the woods. Only instead of a serial killer or a monster, they’re attacked by a deadly virus. Cerina Vincent plays Marcy, one of the teens. When Marcy gets infected, she becomes so terrified that she decides to take a bath. She even shaves her legs with those scars all over her body. Talk about making sick look pretty. But that pretty soon turns creepy when Marcy gets mauled by that vicious dog and gets torn to pieces.

It Waits also takes place in the woods. A legendary monster that’s been buried in a dark cave for centuries has been released. Now it’s on the loose, killing people. I’ll tell ya, if there’s one place more dangerous than the woods, it’s dark caves in the woods. Cerina Vincent plays Danny St. Clair, the forest ranger, who already has issues of her own to deal with. Danny’s best friend dies in a car crash and now she’s drinking her guilt away. That all changes when Danny finds out about the monster. Now it’s about survival. I’m not sure what kind of creature that was exactly, but it reminds me of the winged demon from Jeepers Creepers.

In Return to the House on Haunted Hill, a group of visitors arrive at a haunted asylum in search of an archeological treasure called the Baphomet Idol statue. Some of those visitors are college students. Cerina Vincent plays Michelle, a seductive student.  One by one, the killer ghosts murder each of them as they explore the place. Michelle finds herself in a topsy-turvy room as she explores solo. (Watch your head.) I admit that I didn’t like House on Haunted Hill, but this film is creatively freaky with its zombie-like patients and flashbacks of those patients being tortured.

Last, but not least, there’s Intermedio. In this film, two teenage couples explore underground tunnels in search of marijuana to get rich, only to find out that these caves are haunted with ghosts. The teens try to escape, but it’s like a maze down there and the ghosts are out to kill them. Cerina Vincent plays Gen, one of the teens, but here’s an amazing coincidence. Amber Benson is in this movie too, as Barbie, another one of the teens. I met her at Mini MegaCon 2009.

Amber Benson and me

I know I showed this on an earlier post, but one good photo is worth showing again.

Oct 052009

After Buffy the Vampire Slayer ended in 2003, some of the actors went into the music biz.

James Marsters

James Marsters has a solo album called Civilized Man and he performed some of his songs with an acoustic guitar at FX Convention in Orlando in 2009. He even mentioned at his Q&A that the musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer was his most favorite. He and Anthony Stewart Head were the only cast members with singing experience. So it was more difficult for the others.


Juliet Landau

Juliet Landau was in a Godhead music video as a dancer. While Jason Charles Miller, the lead singer of Godhead, was performing that song at the FX Convention in Orlando in 2009, Juliet was in the background dancing to it. She really had that choreography down, it was amazing. Juliet Landau sang with Jason Charles Miller later that evening. I looked forward to it and she was great. They said it was the very first time she sang in public. I wonder, if Drusilla had been in the musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. What would that have been like?

Adam Busch and Amber Benson

Adam Busch sings in a folk rock band called Common Rotation. The band’s latest album “Isalie” was released in the fall of 2006.

Although Emma Caufield and Amber Benson had beautiful singing voices on the musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, neither of them have any plans for recording an album, according to a Q&A at Mini MegaCon 2009 in Orlando.

Oct 022009
Amber Benson

Orlando 2009 Photo courtesy of FearFragments.com

In the fanstasy adventure movie Attack of the Gryphon, Amber Benson stars as Princess Amalia, a brave warrior woman who leads a crusade to find the legendary Draconian pike that can slay the monstrous Gryphon.  The wicked sorcerer Armand (Larry Drake) awakened the Gryphon and whatever the Gryphon feels, he feels. It’s just like with Dragonheart – Collector’s Edition, only neither can die by any other means. Prince Seth (Jonathon LaPaglia), from a rival kingdom, leads his own crusade.  Reluctantly, both groups join forces on their quest for the pike.

The types of perils on the journey are like what you’d find on a Dungeons & Dragons adventure, or in a video game like In the Name of the King – A Dungeon Siege Tale. I find that fascinatingly creative. The perils include the Valley of the Dead with killer ghosts and spooky skulls in the trees, a cursed temple with a stone guardian, and a labyrinth of underground corridors and traps. All before facing the Gryphon, Armand, and his magical henchwomen.

I met Amber Benson at Mini Mega Con 2009. She was very sweet and nice to talk to. After getting a photo, I went to get her autograph. Amber remembered me for being so tall. She asked me if I watched Joss Whedon’s new show Dollhouse. I admitted I wasn’t a fan and she pointed out that Dollhouse was a very different show when compared to Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel. I totally agreed with her there. Then I told Amber that she was great in Attack of the Gryphon. She thanked me and mentioned having a really fun time making that film. Here’s an interesting factoid she mentioned – In place of the CGI graphics was a Romanian kid holding a stick with a ball on the end of it.

Amber Benson and me

I admit, there aren’t that many Sci-Fi Channel original movies this good. Attack of the Gryphon was definitely a favorite.