Even if a vast majority of the action figures based upon popular culture's finest heroines and villainesses aren't exactly worth writing home about, there are definitely exceptions to the rule. From awesome articulation to spot-on sculpting, there are certainly some great female action figures available on the market deserving of praise - particularly after I eviscerated the worst of the bunch a few days ago! As a counterpoint to that venomous rant, here are ten of my personal favorite female action figures of all time.

Jinx ("G.I. Joe," Hasbro)
Introduced in the 1986 animated "G.I. Joe" film, Jinx took a bit of time to win me over - but once she kicked the snot out of Pythona, I was hooked. Hasbro's action figure equivalent of the character could have benefited from an unmasked head sculpt, but the essence of Jinx is nonetheless captured perfectly. One of the great heartbreaks of my geek life was misplacing this Jinx figure, so I'll admit that there's some personal bias guiding this choice. Still, I think it's a great toy.

Storm ("X-Men: Robot Fighters," Toy Biz)
Although not my current favorite version of Storm, this "Robot Fighters" figure was one of my favorite toys when it first came out. As a kid, I loved the costume design and fought tirelessly to keep that heavy-set head on her body without it snapping off. (I eventually failed.) I also worked my butt off trying to track down the short-haired chase variant, which is probably a better figure in the grand scheme of things. Regardless, the standard issue version of this Storm remains a personal highlight of my toy collecting career.

Harley Quinn ("Batman Hush," DC Direct)
As one of my favorite characters since her debut on "Batman: The Animated Series," Harley Quinn gets me every time. In the action figure realm, this DC Direct toy is hands down my favorite depiction of the character. Aside from the fact that she looks perfect, Harley's accessories - a massive mallet and a clown-sized hand cannon - are just plain cool. Seriously, that's a gun I'd normally think to give to Hellboy, but seeing it in Harley's hands makes me cackle with unbridled glee.

Beatrix Kiddo ("Kill Bill, Vol.2," NECA)
I'm more of a "Kill Bill, Vol. 1" kind of guy, but there's a lot to be said for NECA's rendition of Beatrix in her just-been-buried-alive-and-stuffed-with-rock-salt look. You can really sense how much hell this character has gone through, and that's not a backhanded dig against the sculpt. One of these days, I would love to own a heavily articulate Beatrix - but for now, this is one Bride I'm happy to take home.

Magdalena ("Minimates Indymates Box Set," Diamond Select)
The idea of Lego sized characters from specific corners of popular culture is something I would have loved as a kid. While there are a ton of great Minimates to choose from, the Magdalena figure from the "Minimates Indymates Box Set" is easily my favorite thanks to great accessories and design work. It's not easy to pick just one favorite female Minimate, but when push comes to shove, Magdalena gets my vote.

Leia as Boushh ("Heroes of the Rebellion," Sideshow Collectibles)
First off, the complete lack of donut buns on this Leia figure already wins some serious points in my book. But this is also my favorite of the "Star Wars" icon's many costumes both for nostalgia purposes and purely on a design level. While this figure has a few flaws, Sideshow compensates with great attention to detail, overall accuracy and zero donut buns. Did I already mention the donut buns?

Ms. Marvel ("Marvel Universe," Hasbro)
Classic superheroes at 3.75 inch "G.I. Joe" sizes? Yes please! Ms. Marvel is one of very few heroines included in this line-up, and while I'm certainly jonesing for more, Hasbro did a great job bringing Carol Danvers to a smaller scale. Already one of my favorite characters floating around in the current Marvel Universe, Ms. Marvel's ability to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with my favorite "G.I. Joe" figures is something I wholeheartedly endorse.

Yuffie Kisaragi ("Final Fantasy VII," Square-Enix)
You have to respect the fact that Square-Enix produces brilliant collectibles on par with the company's brilliant video games. The entire "Final Fantasy" action figure line is almost universally fantastic, but Yuffie stands out for me due to her great articulation, wonderfully oversized shuriken and striking resemblance to her video game counterpart. Yuffie is also significantly less annoying as an action figure, which earns her bonus points.

Storm ("Marvel Legends," Toy Biz)
While the "Robot Fighters" version of Storm holds tremendous weight in pure nostalgia, the "Marvel Legends" rendition of the weather-manipulating mutant is clearly her best available action figure analogue to date. She sports wonderful sculpting and nice poseability, and while I'm not particularly wild about the awkward plastic cape, it's a minor complaint against an otherwise perfect action figure.

Wonder Woman ("JLA: The New Frontier," DC Direct)
There aren't too many toys that I could stare at for hours on end, but the Wonder Woman from "JLA: The New Frontier" is one of them. She sports excellent accessories in the form her shield, sword and whip, and she's not scrawny like so many of her female action figure contemporaries. And the accuracy of the design - it's almost as if somebody spilled a magic potion on one of Darwyn Cooke's illustrations, springing it to life, or at least into plastic perfection.

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