Girls with guns

For the album by Tommy Shaw, see Girls with Guns (album).

Girls with guns is a subgenre of action films and animation—often Asian films and anime—that portray a strong female protagonist who makes use of firearms to defend against or attack a group of antagonists. The genre typically involves gun-play, stunts and martial arts action.


The 1985 Hong Kong film Yes Madam, directed by Corey Yuen and starring Michelle Yeoh and Cynthia Rothrock, has been described as the first "girls with guns" film.[1] Other films of the subgenre were produced until 1994. In the early 2000s, films part of what has been called a "girls with guns revival" cycle were produced. They included Martial Angels (2001), The Wesley's Mysterious File (2002) and So Close.[2]

Anime and manga

The "girls-with-guns" genre has also permeated the anime space. Some examples include Bubblegum Crisis,[3][4] Gall Force,[4][5] Dirty Pair,[4][5] Gunsmith Cats,[5] Angel Heart,[6] Gunslinger Girl,[5] Noir, Madlax,[7] and El Cazador.[8] More recent examples of "girls with guns" anime are Masamune Shirow's and Mamoru Oshii's Ghost in the Shell and its television adaptation Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and Yasuomi Umetsu's works Kite, Mezzo Forte, Mezzo DSA, and Kite: Liberator.[9]

Video games

Television series

See also


  1. Funnell, Lisa (15 February 2013). "Chapter 9 - Fighting for a Hong Kong/Chinese Female Identity". In Lent, John A; Fitzsimmons, Lorna. Asian Popular Culture in Transition. Routledge. p. 172. ISBN 9781136300974.
  2. Funnell, Lisa (21 May 2014). Warrior Women: Gender, Race, and the Transnational Chinese Action Star. SUNY Press. pp. 70, 172. ISBN 9781438452500.
  3. " - Reviews - Bubblegum Crisis 2032 by Shouryu". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-09-06.
  4. 1 2 3 Bruce Carlson & Steve Pearl. "The Anime Primer". rec.arts.anime gestalt. Archived from the original on 2007-09-05.
  5. 1 2 3 4 "How Many Girls with Guns Anime are There?". AnimeNation. 2003-10-23. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  6. "Angel Heart on". Retrieved 2009-05-17.
  7. Wong, A. (March 2005). "Inside Bee Train". Newtype USA: 8–15.
  8. "January 3–10 News". Anime News Service. 2007-01-06. Retrieved 2007-01-19. Following Noir and Madlax, this El Cazador will be the third installment in a series of what Director Koichi Mashimo has referred to as his girls-with-guns genre trilogy.
  9. "Justin Sevakis's Review on Kite Liberator". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2010-01-15.
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