[[quoteright:300:[[Franchise/TombRaider http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Lara_Croft_Action_Girl.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:300:The phrase "Fight like a girl" becomes a BadassCreed.]]

%% A single quote is sufficient. Extras go on the quotes tab.

->''I'm a big haymaker in a title fight.''\\
''I'm a cute black kitten with a nasty bite.''\\
''I'm an action double-feature on a Friday night!''\\
''I'm me!''
-->-- "[[IAmSong I'm]] [[AwesomeMusic Me]]", '''Vanessa Doofenshmirtz''' from ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb''

An Action Girl is a female {{Badass}} who is just as tough and kicks just as much butt as the guys do. DamselInDistress? Not her. She proves that girls aren't only "not helpless", they are ''strong''. She's featured in far more than the DesignatedGirlFight. Expect regular appearances in actions scenes, facing dangerous foes and deadly obstacles, and expect her to ''win.''

For the longest time in many cultures, {{Double Standard}}s in both fiction and real life meant that when it came to action and fighting, guys outnumbered girls. MenActWomenAre was the rule of thumb, which led to the Action Girl being a subversion of what was acceptable. As society has marched on, the view of this as a subversion has faded in some media, leading to stories where Action Girls are the norm rather than the exception, such as stories set in a WorldOfBadass, and especially a WorldOfActionGirls.

The broad Action Girl concept can take many forms. FauxActionGirl is a case of presenting a character as this, only for them not to live up to the standards of this trope. DarkActionGirl is the villainous variety, and AffirmativeActionGirl is a cast addition intended to balance out gender ratios that typically also falls under this trope. Less action-y versions include YouGoGirl and PluckyGirl.

This is somewhat of a CyclicTrope, with Action Girls experiencing surges in popularity in the 1940s, 1970s, 1990s and 2010s, probably not coincidentally times when the women's movement increased in prominence.

See below for even more subtropes and other variants.

Not to be confused with ''Comicbook/ActionGirl'', a comic series ''about'' an Action Girl.

%%If you have time, please take time to put examples in alphabetical order. This page Administrivia/HowToAlphabetizeThings should help you with that. Please link examples of the subtropes to them, not to the supertrope.
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[[index]]
A SuperTrope To:

* ActionGirlfriend: She either makes up the other half of a BattleCouple, or covers for her [[NonActionGuy non-action boyfriend.]]
* ActionMom: An action girl (''woman'' more likely) who has given birth and kicks ass.
* AmazonBrigade: A group of Action Girls who consistently work together with no male teammates.
* BadassPrincess: She's a princess.
* BlackMagicianGirl
* CuteBruiser: She might ''look'' small, sweet, and mostly harmless, but she [[MegatonPunch hits like a freight train]]. ''Not sure if this is exclusively female or not.''
* DarkActionGirl: Because they ''aren't'' always heroines.
* DragonLady: She comes from Asia, and is often associated with TheTriadsAndTheTongs or the {{Yakuza}}. Very likely to be a DarkActionGirl.
* FairCop: ...when female.
* GirlsWithGuns: Girls who are [[TheGunslinger good with guns]] in general.
* GirlyBruiser: The Action Girl happens to be a GirlyGirl.
* [[JeanneDArchetype Jeanne d'Archetype]]: Action girls modelled on Jeanne Darc[[note]]The "d'Arc" thing was a misunderstanding. This is why she is not from Arc. [[/note]](UsefulNotes/JoanOfArc).
* JunglePrincess: Lives in the jungle, often protecting native tribes and animals.
* KickChick: Not only fights unarmed, but doesn't even favor her arms.
* LadyOfBlackMagic: A sorceress who's elegant in appearance and mannerism, who wields [[DangerousForbiddenTechnique immense power]] with an air of dignity and grace.
* LadyOfWar: The Lady of Black Magic's sword/[[NaginatasAreFeminine polearm]]/[[DaintyCombat bow and arrow]] wielding counterpart.
* LittleMissBadass: Very young Action Girls who are notable for skills and abilities other than, or in addition to, physical strength.
* LittleRedFightingHood: An Action Girl version of Literature/LittleRedRidingHood
* LovelyAngels: Two Action Girls who work together as a consistent team.
* MagicalGirlWarrior: A magical girl who realizes spells and ThePowerOfFriendship aren't always enough, so they're prepared to get physical.
* MoreDeadlyThanTheMale: If she wins fights by looking like the exact opposite of an Action Girl, and then being [[CombatPragmatist cunning and cutthroat]].
* NeverMessWithGranny: Sweet little senior citizen who can still kick your ass; may also be an OldMaster.
* NinjaMaid: Her ''official job'' is as a household servant or employee: [[{{Meido}} maid]], butler, babysitter or nanny are the most common.
* PirateGirl: She's a pirate.
* PregnantBadass: If she's capable of fighting ''while pregnant''. If she's extra ferocious because of said bun in the oven, this overlaps with Mama Bear, above.
* SheFu: Action Girls tend to use lots of flips and cartwheels in fight scenes.
* SilkHidingSteel: She's gentle and lady-like, but she'll cut you to ribbons if need be.
* SmallGirlBigGun: Prefers a {{BFG}}.
* TheSquadette: The only female in an otherwise all-male unit.
* UndercoverModel: She's a police detective going undercover in a beautiful-woman-related job to investigate a crime.
* {{Valkyries}}: Work for [[NorseMythology Odin]] as choosers of the slain. They have [[Music/RideOfTheValkyries an awesome theme tune]].
* WaifFu: For when a small woman has to fight a much larger man.
* WorldOfActionGirls: For works dominated by this character type.
[[/index]]
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!!Examples of Action Girls who don't fit into any of the sub-tropes above:

[[index]]
* ActionGirl/AnimatedFilms
* ActionGirl/{{Anime}}
* ActionGirl/{{Comics}}
* ActionGirl/FanFics
* ActionGirl/{{Folklore}}
* ActionGirl/{{Literature}}
* ActionGirl/LiveActionFilms
* ActionGirl/LiveActionTV
* ActionGirl/{{Music}}
* ActionGirl/NewMedia
* ActionGirl/{{Pinball}}
* ActionGirl/ProfessionalWrestling
* ActionGirl/{{Religion}}
* ActionGirl/RoleplayingGames
* ActionGirl/TabletopGames
* ActionGirl/{{Theatre}}
* ActionGirl/VideoGames
* ActionGirl/VisualNovels
* ActionGirl/WebComics
* ActionGirl/WesternAnimation
* ActionGirl/RealLife
[[/index]]
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