Alpha Bitch

aka: Queen Bee
How pleasant.

"I take it as a rule of nature that all American high schools are ruled by a pack of snobs, led by a supremely confident young woman who is blonde, superficial, catty, and ripe for public humiliation. This character is followed by two friends who worship her, and are a little bit shorter".
Roger Ebert, review of Sleepover

Take your typical setting involving teenagers — say, a High School — wait an establishing scene or two or three, and there she is. See that attractive blonde cheerleader looking down her nose (often literally) and sneering at the frumpy girl in glasses? That's her. Often times, she is the authority of the cheerleading squad and decides who's on an off the squad. After all, Who needs a coach?

The Card Carrying Villainess of many a Teen Drama, the Alpha Bitch is the Distaff Counterpart to the Jerk Jock, and usually his girlfriend; what he does with his fists, she does with a sharp tongue and sharper manipulation. Despite being a not-too-bright, unpleasant, bullying, and mean-spirited excuse for a human, she will still somehow be the most popular girl in school, surrounded by a fawning Girl Posse who suck up to her and act as her faithful minions. Usually, she will have a 0% Approval Rating, but even that won't be enough to stop her. She's very likely to be a Narcissist.

She's also usually the scion of a wealthy and influential family, the star of the school or head sister of the influential college sorority house, thus providing her a network of local celebrity, influence and wealth to exploit. She is often adept at putting on a friendly facade, the better to lull the unwary into letting their defenses down. She's also quite the seductress, and consequently, all the boys fight amongst themselves — sometimes literally — to be her oppressed boyfriend. All this leaves her with the belief that she can do whatever she likes without consequences. Unfortunately, she's often right; the Powers That Be are not immune to her family's wealth, connections, and influence, and they can and will be corrupted or coerced into overlooking her bad behavior.

Her natural enemy is the Cool Loser heroine. Whenever their eternal, jealousy-fueled struggle over possessions, boyfriends, and status is sparked anew, quarter will neither be asked for nor given.

Usually the Veronica in a Betty and Veronica situation, if she's even presented as a love interest at all. Unlikely to be a Fille Fatale; she's too outwardly mean for that. Frequently on the Snob end of Slobs Versus Snobs. It's a Costume Party, I Swear, the Prank Date, and the Party Scheduling Gambit are just some of the many nasty tricks she plays. Often receives her comeuppance at the hands of a member of her own Girl Posse in a Backstabbing the Alpha Bitch moment. Normally joined by a Beta Bitch who assists her in her various cruel deeds.

Contrast with Spoiled Sweet, where a girl is given everything, but is instead is nice to everyone. Compare and Contrast with Lovable Alpha Bitch who is this trope with a heart of gold. This trope is probably so common because everyone who wasn't homeschooled knew someone like this... or was one.

If she's not the cheerleader type with the fake smile, but is the unglamorous girl who will fight to be the best in her class, she's the Academic Alpha Bitch. Though almost always a she, rare male Alpha Bitches (called Alpha Brats) do exist, but they're just that - rare. They're distinct from the Jerk Jock in that they're mainly catty and manipulative, rather than physically threatening.

Not to be confused with the Prison Alpha Bitch, found exclusively in women's jail, whose methods of bullying are much more brutal and whose goal isn't social status but outright dominance.


Examples


Alternative Title(s):

Queen Bee, The Libby, Alpha Bastard