->''When the Himalayan peasant meets the he-bear in his pride,\\
He shouts to scare the monster, who will often turn aside.\\
But the she-bear thus accosted rends the peasant tooth and nail.\\
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.''
-->-- '''Creator/RudyardKipling'''

Oh, look, a ProperLady. She is calm, always ready with a [[StepfordSmiler genuine smile]], and [[SacredHospitality the perfect hostess]]. Oh no! The audience is wincing; here come the bad guys, [[StuffedInTheFridge she doesn't stand a...]]

[[WhamLine She set up the castle to do]] ''[[WhamLine what]]'' [[WhamLine to intruders?]]

This is when men are physically strong and quite capable of violence, but women are characterized as having a [[BewareTheNiceOnes hidden, but apparently bottomless capacity for lethal mayhem]]. To help this trope along, expect the bad guys to totally ignore the female, [[GenreBlindness dismissing her as a threat]]. She may even appear to [[DoubleAgent capitulate or collude]] with the enemy, suffering indignities no one would expect her to tolerate, all in order to get a better [[BestServedCold shot at revenge]]. Should you be foolish enough to want to trigger such behavior in a female, try [[MamaBear pestering her offspring]], [[WomanScorned crossing her in love]], or [[ViolentlyProtectiveGirlfriend threatening her love interest]].

Remember, this does ''not'' describe a situation where men are weak and women are strong. This is when women are depicted as far more ruthless, more cunning and ultimately more bloodthirsty than their {{Spear Counterpart}}s, even though--or maybe because--they are physically smaller and weaker. While males are visibly larger and more aggressive, they tend more toward forms, codes and displays of power; meanwhile, the wily female [[CombatPragmatist bothers not with such things]].

This is the precursor to the modern ActionGirl, but nonetheless can carry UnfortunateImplications by characterizing women as less morally upstanding than men and by playing into the "crazy bitch" stereotype -- in fact, the TropeNamer (Creator/RudyardKipling's poem "The Female of the Species") cites this trope as a reason that women shouldn't be trusted with power. The difference between the modern ActionGirl and this trope is kind of like the difference between a BraveScot and a ViolentGlaswegian.

Bread and butter to its sister trope SilkHidingSteel.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'': Annie Leonhart, a young woman noted for her exceptional fighting skills ''because'' of her small stature. She sometimes jokes that she's a "delicate maiden", but her fighting style is primarily meant to remove the advantage a larger, stronger opponent has over her. She utilizes many kicks, throws, and grappling moves to quickly disable stronger foes, often using their own size and strength against them. [[spoiler: This extends to her Titan form as well. While other Shifters primarily rely on brute force, she uses her superior speed and agility to take down her targets]].
* ''Manga/BlackLagoon'' is a [[WorldOfActionGirls World of]] [[DarkActionGirl Dark Action Girls]]. While male characters like Mr. Chang and Dutch can definitely handle themselves, the female criminals of the story such as [[TheGunslinger Revy]], [[TheBaroness Balalaika]], [[DragonLady Shenhua]], [[NotSoHarmlessVillain Eda]], and [[AxCrazy Roberta]] are much more competent and ruthless in a fight.
* ''Manga/DeathNote'': [[TooCoolToLive Naomi Misora]] is this way in comparison to her husband; while Raye is barely a probem, Light is in some real trouble when she decides to avenge him. Though [[MagnificentBastard Light]] manages to take advantage of her grief and lack of resources to get her out of the game before that happens, her [[spoiler:death]] leads L to him and sets in motion the events leading to [[spoiler:his ultimate destruction]]. The author himself admitted that, if Naomi had lived, [[spoiler:there would have been no game. She has enough intellect to come to key realizations, without the issues that bind L, namely L's unwillingness to go for the kill.]]
** Even more so in ''LightNovel/AnotherNote'', where Naomi's singlehanded [[spoiler:solving of the case]] impresses even ''L''.
* ''Manga/{{Gintama}}'': There's almost no man in this series who hasn't had his ass repeatedly kicked by a woman for anything from a minor infraction to actual combat. Kondou loses to Otae, Tatsuma loses to Mutsu, everyone but Okita & Kamui have lost to Kagura, Gintoki has lost to every woman except Sarutobi and Ana, and few men can match Nobume with a sword.
* ''Manga/{{Kekkaishi}}'': the main character Yoshimori is explicitly UnskilledButStrong to contrast with his [[ChildhoodFriendRomance childhood friend and crush]] Tokine, who's WeakButSkilled. Where he gets bogged down by his soft [[HonorBeforeReason heart]], she's ruthless and willing to get her hands dirty.
* ''Anime/KillLaKill'': There are six notable female characters. Two of them are so powerful that all of the most powerful men in the world work for them, Ryuko's goal is to take the other two women down. Gamagoori completely bends his will for Satsuki and Mako out of sincere respect.
* ''Anime/LegendOfGalacticHeroes'': Hildegard von Mariendorf is ''the'' deadliest woman in existence, as Reinhard says that her methods can just be as underhanded as [[NecessaryEvil Oberstein's]], and the fact that she [[spoiler:personally ends the war]].
* ''Manga/MakenKi'': On average, the majority of the female students at Tenbi Academy [[CharlesAtlasSuperpower are far stronger]] and have [[FeministFantasy vastly superior combat capability than the guys.]] Which also extends to [[WorldOfActionGirls the cast in general]], because it's predominantly female, as are most of the series' powerhouses.
* ''Literature/{{Moshidora}}'': In a flashback in the first episode, Minami, at bat in the bottom of the ninth with the scores tied in a junior baseball game, makes a wild swing at the first pitch that convinces everyone she is a hopeless batter. It turns out that her wild swing was done ''intentionally'' to lull the pitcher into a false sense of security, and on his next pitch she is able to get a hit and score the winning run.
* ''Manga/NectarOfDharani'': Dwarven men are elite warriors and war-engineers who craft and use the finest weapons in the world. Dwarven women are the ones who keep their society running smoothly through careful use of assassination.
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'': Ikari Gendo is a MagnificentBastard who commands a force of HumongousMecha. His son Shinji pilots one of these mecha. Gendo's wife and Shinji's mom, Yui? [[spoiler:She is the soul of said mecha that Shinji pilots, prone to UnstoppableRage [[MamaBear in order to protect her son]] [[BewareTheNiceOnes and ''ripping her opponents limb from limb before devouring their organs'']]. It's also likely that she is the actual mastermind behind the whole Instrumentality project and the Evas.]] Gendo really only takes over command because she is no longer able to. By the way, Ikari is ''her'' birth surname, not Gendo's.
* In ''Manga/SailorMoon'' the female characters tend to be more bloodthirsty than the male ones. The best example comes from confronting any version of Prince Demando (TheDragon of the second group of villains, who believes himself the BigBad) with [[spoiler:Sailor Venus]] (a hero): when put having to kill the person they loved, Demando refused (in the manga he ultimately tried it, but that's only in his VillainousBreakdown, and it was merely a collateral effect of [[OmnicidalManiac what he was actually trying to do]], [[spoiler:Sailor Venus]] ''did it in a heartbeat, '''twice''''' (while the first time she may have been panicking, given it was her first mission, the second time she had just [[DontMakeMeDestroyYou begged him to stand down while holding him at deadly spellpoint]]).
* ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}'': No one is more deadly than Lina Inverse, except maybe her older sister.
* Adiane from ''Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' is TheSmurfettePrinciple of the Four Beastmen Generals, and is much more psychotic and violent than her male colleagues. Using her mecha, she beats down most of Team Dai-Gurren's entire brigade ''by herself''.
* ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'': Hiei planned to commit genocide on the Ice Maidens for, among other reasons, throwing him down a cliff as a newborn infant and driving his mother (an Ice Maiden who had conceived him through sex rather than their species's normal parthenogenesis) [[DrivenToSuicide to suicide]], but eventually settled for CruelMercy. His twin sister Yukina (the only Ice Maiden he planned to spare) is searching for him to ''remind him he promised to commit the genocide''.

* The Female (of the Species) in ''Comicbook/TheBoys'' is quite literally named for this trope. She is also [[AxCrazy Ax Crazy]].
* In DC Comics, Franchise/{{Batman}} and Franchise/{{Superman}} both have [[ThouShallNotKill codes against killing]]. ComicBook/WonderWoman, however, explicitly doesn't, which has led to conflict between them on a few occasions. For Batman, this tends to end badly.
** Out of all of Batman's associates, the ones he has the least control over have been his female ones: Oracle (the original Batgirl, who was completely independent of him and considers herself his equal), ComicBook/{{Catwoman}} (who skirts the line between vigilante and criminal, and has no code against killing), Spoiler (who became a superhero largely to apprehend her criminal father and ''then'' became Batman's student), ComicBoook/{{Batwoman}} (more loyal to the symbol than the person) and ComicBook/{{Huntress}} (who also doesn't bother with ThouShallNotKill sensibilities). These ladies, while wanting to prove themselves as Gotham Heroines, don't have any of the "mentor/daddy issues" that the boys have and largely disobey Batman whenever they damn well please.
*** [[ComicBook/{{Batgirl 2000}} Cassandra Cain]] does have these issues, seeing Bruce as a surrogate father figure. She still qualifies since she is by far the deadliest combatant the Bat-family has ever known, and considers her first loyalty to be the symbol.
* UsefulNotes/{{The Bronze Age|OfComicBooks}} Comicbook/TeenTitans. Starfire was a hardened ex-slave from a ProudWarriorRace. Donna Troy? A literal Amazon operating under the same code as her older sister, WonderWoman. Raven? Half-Demon with daddy issues, and some ''seriously'' scary powers. Robin (Dick Grayson) had his mentor's "do not kill" code. Cyborg was strong, but not an experienced fighter, and Changeling (Gar Logan) was only dangerous if you backed him into a corner.
* In a flashback in ''ComicBook/{{Preacher}}'', [[BigBad Herr Starr]] advises a class of military recruits to shoot female terrorists first; she will be more dangerous than the men since she will have had to work much harder in order to prove herself enough to join them.
* In the Gallimaufry arc of ''ComicBook/BuckGodotZapGunForHire'', sweet, cheerful HookerWithAHeartOfGold Louisa Dem Five introduces us to the tradition used in New Hong Kong to [[DueToTheDead honor a murder victim]]... killing their killer, which she does through a drug-laced snack in the guise of a remembrance ceremony.
---> No, you didn't ruin anything. This is what a New Hong Kong wake ''is''.
* In ''ComicBook/SinCity'', this always happens when Dwight teams up with deadly little Miho. Dwight is a brooding noir hero who can hold his own in a fight. Miho is an extremely agile and deadly Old Town assassin, probably the most dangerous character in the books. Dwight tends to stand back while she slaughters whole groups of enemies in front of him.
* Among the main and recurring characters of ''ComicBook/{{Diabolik}}'', the two most dangerous are not the protagonist, a murderous thief known as the [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast King of Terror]], and [[SympatheticInspectorAntagonist inspector Ginko]], the only man in the police who can match Diabolik and rightly feared by every criminal because he ''will'' arrest them, but their respective fiancees, Eva Kant and Altea: where Diabolik's revenge may be terrible, a sufficiently enraged Eva is positively sadistic (her ''epic'' revenge on her uncle for driving her mother to suicide was AFateWorseThanDeath, and after a while she started thinking about killing him because she was getting ''bored''), and if she decides to kill you she'll make sure you suffer if she has the time; and where Ginko is constrained by the law and his own status as a police officer, Altea has no such limit, and when prompted to take lethal action by Ginko being in danger she will calmly ask her uncle the phone number of a hitman or, failing that, ''manipulate Diabolik into killing whoever is gunning for Ginko''. Both of them are proper and nice ladies.
* ComicBook/{{X 23}}, being the OppositeSexClone of ComicBook/{{Wolverine}}, makes this even ''more'' noticeable, considering Logan's already one of the top badasses. While Laura's height in relation to Wolverine varies, she's consistently depicted as a slender (or at her heaviest athletic) teenage girl. She's also faster than him (not weighed down by 100lbs of adamantium), heals more quickly (her HealingFactor is not impacted by a full adamantium skeleton like Logan's), was raised from birth to be a living weapon, has extensive espionage and black ops training, was a professional assassin with the body count into the ''hundreds'' before she was thirteen, and every time she walks into a room she's already figured out several dozen ways to kill ''everyone inside it''. ''And'' she's one of the top martial artists in the 616 'verse and may be an even ''better'' fighter than Logan.
* ''ComicBook/TwoThousandAD'':
** ''ComicBook/NemesisTheWarlock'': Female Warlocks are bigger, stronger, and more powerful mages than the males. The phrase itself is commonly used when referring to them.
** This is also a major theme in ''ComicBook/AgeOfTheWolf'', where the best fighters are all women and the men are mostly {{Action Survivor}}s. Pretty literally among the werewolves, where the females are larger than the males (despite mammalian sexual differentiation usually being the opposite, among both humans and wolves).

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* ''Disney/TheLionKing'': Nala, Simba's best friend and love interest, has easily beaten Simba in all their "fights". She pinned him twice in a row as cubs, and the second time was after Simba tackled her by surprise while she was smugging proudly after the first time. They get into a much more serious fight as adults, and although it seems much more even she still beats him the same way she did the first two times as kids, flipping him in midair and slamming him to the ground pinning him. She might have even killed him if he didn't recognize her from this move. [[spoiler:Although Simba does "beat" Nala eventually, pinning her himself, rolling down a hill romantically is hardly considered a fight.]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/{{Clue}}'': Col. Mustard directly quotes Kipling during dinner. [[spoiler:Miss Scarlet and Mrs. Peacock are the sole murderers in the first and second endings respectively, and in the third ending Scarlet, Peacock, ''and'' Mrs. White all killed someone.]]
* ''Film/TheForceAwakens'': Rey is better at hand to hand combat than either of her forebears. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] in that she's spent the last 10-15 years living on her own in a harsh environment where she HadToBeSharp. And in that she's '''very''' strong in the Force. On the other hand, she's apparently not quite in Kylo Ren's league when it comes to lightsaber combat, as she spends most of their battle [[spoiler:on the back foot against Ren despite his already being injured and trying to take her alive, and she only manages to disable him by catching him off-guard with a flurry of attacks]].
* Meta variant in ''Film/TheJungleBook2016''; Kaa in this version is female and notably more competent than her 1967 film counterpart (though far less so than her book counterpart, who happens to be male - granted, Book!Kaa was basically the Yoda of snakes). Justified on a biological level, too - female snakes in real life do indeed tend to be bigger, stronger and more aggressive than their male counterparts.
* ''Film/TheMagnificentSeven2016'': Emma is the most deadly out of everyone in Rose Creek, being the best shooter, and this is even before the villagers were trained by the Seven.
* ''Film/{{Species}}'': the decision was made to make the alien hybrid female "so she'd be more docile and controllable". A female scientist observes that "You don't get out much, do you?" ''Film/SpeciesII'' subverts this, however; it turns out that a male hybrid is much more dangerous. The big threat of the hybrids is that they will procreate and overthrow humanity, and that's an area in which males have greater advantages to females since they can impregnate multiple partners in a short timespan. When they metamorphose into their alien forms, the male one is also three times the female's size.
* The final battle in ''Film/{{Avatar}}'' has Sully repeatedly try to kill Col. Quaritch, but he keeps narrowly failing and only managing to inflict superficial injuries. When Neytiri catches up with them both at the end of the battle, [[spoiler:she manages to kill Quaritch almost immediately]]. Though Sully is fighting using a body and weapons he's not too familiar with, whereas Neytiri is an expert archer.

* Creator/RudyardKipling's poem, ''[[http://www.potw.org/archive/potw96.html The Female of the Species]]'' sums this trope up poetically, and attributes it to the hardships of motherhood.
--> When the Himalayan peasant meets the he-bear in his pride,\\
He shouts to scare the monster, who will often turn aside.\\
But the [[MamaBear she-bear]] thus accosted rends the peasant tooth and nail.\\
For the female of the species is [[TropeNamer more deadly than the male]].
* Literature/TheBible: In Judges 4, an Israelite woman named Jael invites Canaanite captain Sisera to take shelter in her tent. She gives him milk to drink, and then while he sleeps, she drives a nail through his temples. With his death, Israel is freed from Canaanite captivity.
** Judith does much the same thing to an invading general, going into his tent, then giving him strong drink and, once he's gone to sleep, beheading him.
* ''Literature/{{Barrayar}}'' by Creator/LoisMcMasterBujold:
** Princess Kareen realizes her son is alive and that she's been lied to. Without hesitation, she draws a nerve disrupter in a room full of soldiers and fires at the usurper who told her that her son was dead, the self-proclaimed Emperor.
** Despite Aral being a [[FourStarBadass remarkably capable warrior]], ultimately Cordelia leads the team that [[OffWithHisHead ends the coup attempt]] and changes the fate of the world...''[[IWasJustPassingThrough on the way]]'' to [[MamaBear rescuing her son]], her real mission.
* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'':
** Lady Sybil has hints of this. She was raised [[ProperLady properly]], but that means she almost ''never'' has a chance to let off steam, and is occasionally very interested in violence...
** Compare the male wizards and the female witches (ESPECIALLY Granny Weatherwax).
** In particular amongst the witches we have [[GranolaGirl Magrat Garlick]], who is compared to a small furry animal in overall demeanor, and she isn't easily angered--but as ''Witches Abroad'' and ''Lords and Ladies'' prove, sometimes a cornered small furry animal turns out to be a mongoose
** In ''Discworld/GuardsGuards'', we find an unexpected example at the climax. [[spoiler:Lady Sybil deduced the literal Dragon--the BiggerBad ruling Ankh-Morpork through fear, is female.]]
** The Lady Assassins can be quite inventively nasty. Witness Alice Band's cure for over-confidence--sending students on doomed assignments to target Sam Vimes. And Lady T'Malia's armoury of poison-dealing jewelry.
* ''Literature/BloodAndChocolate'': The male fights for alpha are planned meticulously and widely announced. The fights for the alpha's ''mate'', on the other hand, begin with no ceremony and are expected to be lethal.
* Madame [=DeFarge=] and Miss Pross in ''Literature/ATaleOfTwoCities.''
* Bene Gesserit Lady Jessica, HotConsort to Duke Leto Atreides in ''Literature/{{Dune}}''. As both [[ProfessionalKiller Thufir Hawat]] and [[ProudWarriorRaceGuy Fremen]] ''[[AuthorityEqualsAsskicking naib]]'' Stilgar find out the hard way.
* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'': Briefly mentioned in the first book, ''Storm Front''. Harry believes that women are simply able to feel a stronger hatred toward someone than men are. It should be borne in mind that he's a bit of a sexist [[CharacterDevelopment at first]] and this likely stems from the fact that he's got severe trust issues after an incident with his first love, Elaine, who he believes tried to mind control him. He also thinks that she's dead. [[spoiler: As it turns out, she's alive and she did, sort of, but she was mind controlled at the time]]. But even after that, he's proven somewhat right in that we got [[MamaBear Charity]], [[ViolentlyProtectiveGirlfriend Murphy]], [[TheFairFolk Mab and Lea]], and [[HornyDevils Lara]] to prove that the ladies of the verse tend towards being more dangerous when provoked than the males.
* Ellana in Pierre Bottero's ''Ellana'', in the second part, where Rhous Ingan says that little girls (Ellana is 15) can't fight (or use bows). Later that day she shoots to death 10 Rais.
* If you saw Rachel of ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'' you would never guess that Ms. Fashion, the graceful girl who looks like a model and loves shopping is Xena, Warrior Princess, a blood-thirsty killer.
* This is pretty explicitly part of the worldbuilding in the ''Literature/BlackJewels'' series by Creator/AnneBishop: the culture is matriarchal, with males serving females as guardians and protectors; but females generally have more powerful (or at least more deadly) magic, and one character even says outright, albeit half joking, that the reason males serve is because "you're deadlier when you're angry" and at least if they go down first the males won't have to deal with them when their tempers are roused.
* In ''Literature/TimeScout'', Malcolm is frequently surprised and impressed by Margo's ferocity.
* In ''Franchise/TheDarkTower'' series novel "Literature/WolvesOfTheCalla", the Calla have a lady Oriza who is an in-universe legend. After her husband was murdered, she had a nude dinner with the conqueror. When the time was right, she took the sharpened dinner plate, threw it and took his head off.
* One of the Marines in ''Literature/GenerationKill'' unconsciously echoes Kipling when the women of an Iraqi town emerge from their huts, unarmed, to verbally berate the heavily armed Marines, while the men stay hidden.
-->"If we had to fight the women, dawg, we wouldn't stand a fuckin' chance."
* In ''The Literature/BookOfTheNewSun'' by Creator/GeneWolfe, women are forbidden from joining the Torturer's Guild because they are considered too vicious.
* ''Literature/InDeath'' series: ''Rapture In Death'' has [[spoiler: Reanna]] brag about this trope to Eve. Eve refutes it, however, saying that she thinks ruthlessness and viciousness have no gender.
* The works of Creator/PGWodehouse frequently reference the Creator/RudyardKipling line.
* The works of Creator/JamesHSchmitz--to whom the DarkActionGirl heroine was a signature trope--feature this quite a lot. The most notable one may be Literature/TelzeyAmberdon, a telepathic teenage genius who unrelated adults find frankly terrifying.
* In Creator/MercedesLackey's ''[[Literature/HeraldsOfValdemar Owlsight]]'', the local lord and his son head out into the field to assist in commanding the defense against a possible barbarian invasion, leaving the lady of the keep behind to oversee the village evacuees. This is for two reasons: she can keep the refugees busy helping plan her son's wedding, and she's as good or better at castle defense than her husband, "and that's why I married her." Their son is rather surprised to hear that one.
* Ruth from ''Literature/SomeoneElsesWar'', full stop.
* In ''[[Literature/MythAdventures Hit Or Myth]]'', when told his brother is dying, Aahz doesn't believe it, because his brother is a lot tougher than him. Then his nephew claims Dad had gotten into a fight with Mom, and suddenly Aahz is very worried....
* From "The Wallenstein Gambit", a short story set in the ''Literature/SixteenThirtyTwo'' universe, [[spoiler:after an American woman serving as his nurse helps ward off a coup attempt]]:
-->'''Wallenstein:''' A pity there are so few American women. If I had an army of you mad creatures, I could conquer the world.
** Julie Mackay (nee Sims) and Gretchen Higgins (nee Richter) embody this trope. The former is a FriendlySniper who was almost disturbingly cheerful about [[BoomHeadshot blowing off men's heads]] before she had graduated high school. The latter has become the leader of a powerful revolutionary movement, and figures prominently in the nightmares of much of Europe's nobility. She herself has yet to turn 30.
*** By contrast Julie cries when she shoots deer. After all deer don't RapePillageAndBurn.
* ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'':
** [[SmugSnake Cersei Lannister]] is a subversion of the trope. She think of herself as this, and is certainly more dangerous than her idiot husband, but the series is so overflowing with other manipulators of greater competence than her that she is ultimately outmatched. Note that her inferiority in this field is not implied to be due to her gender, but simply her intelligence and personality.
** Ultimately subverted with Daenerys Targaryen. She's a fifteen-year-old girl without any of the martial training male nobles usually receive. To date, she has sacked three separate cities, and has a short way with those who cross her. In ''A Dance with Dragons'', however, while it's clear she started with the best of intentions, her supporters are vastly outnumbered by those who want to overthrow her. All three cities eventually rise up in rebellion.
** Played straight with Olenna "Queen of Thorns" Tyrell, and she's training her protegee/granddaughter Margaery to be the same.
* In the ''Literature/HonorHarrington'' series, pirate captains are usually male. There are female pirate captains, however, and they tend to be a lot nastier than their male counterparts.
* In ''Literature/TunnelInTheSky'', Deacon Matson goes on a rant to his students that humans are the most deadly animal in existence. He notes that "it goes double for the female".
* According to Sapper, after battling the mysterious master criminal Carl Peterson through four books and finally killing him, Literature/BulldogDrummond is challenged by Peterson's female associate Irma in the book ''Female of the Species'' (1928). Nearly forty years later, there was a film, ''Film/DeadlierThanTheMale'' (1967), in which the lead character is also called Bulldog Drummond, but he bears little relation to the original.
* Graduates of [[Literature/TheFinishingSchoolSeries Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing School]] are ''expected'' to be this.
* In the ''Literature/NightWatch'' and the following books of the series, male wizards seem to be more competent in the tasks requiring patience and precision but they are absolutely no match for females when it comes to raw power they are able to unleash. Even mundane women (i.e. [[{{Muggles}} ones devoid of any magical talent]]) have much bigger reserves of the internal magical potential. On the flipside, this [[BlessedWithSuck makes them preferable target for human sacrifices]], as observed in ''Day Watch''.
* In the Literature/{{Emberverse}}, the single deadliest warrior in the Portland Protective Association is Tiphaine d'Ath. She is strong, lethally quick, clever, and an absolute CombatPragmatist. According to her, the fact that she doesn't waste time posturing and flourishing, as a male noble would, is a tremendous advantage.
* ''Literature/UrbanDragon'' is dominated by these. Leadership all levels is mixed-gender, but the women will always be the scariest by a mile.
** Small, harmless-looking Arkay is constantly being assaulted by men who think they can take advantage of her, only to beat them within an inch of their lives
** Nadia is the {{Dragon}} to a literal dragon
** In a mixed council, Archduchess Stavros earned her place as highest ranking by a long history of dragonslaying
** For being such an elegant lady, the Contessa is just plain scary
* Opal Koboi, the main recurring villain in the ''Literature/ArtemisFowl'' series--other than [[VillainProtagonist the protagonist]]--follows this trope. Like Artemis, she's a greedy and manipulative [[XanatosGambit scheme-happy]] evil genius; ''unlike'' Artemis, who [[EvenEvilHasStandards has some moral principles]], she's a [[AxCrazy homicidal maniac]]. Artemis eventually develops into more of an AntiHero; simultaneously, Opal goes even further off the deep end, eventually attempting to KillAllHumans and become an evil overlord of the fairies.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' and ''Series/{{Angel}}'':
** Women usually end up more vicious in similar roles than men, particularly vampires Darla and Drusilla. Note also that Angelus originally got in touch with his sadistic side just to impress Darla.
** There's a reason Slayers are always women. Dudes have traditionally stayed on the sidelines, from the Shadow Men all the way down to their descendants, the Watcher's council.
* ''Series/BurnNotice'' describes Fiona as a "trigger happy ex-girlfriend" in the opening narration. Michael is no slouch himself, but he tries to maintain diplomacy whereas Fiona is a little more eager to jump straight to the "shooting and C4" part of the evening.
* ''Chinese Paladin 3'': A running theme in this show is women being willing to strike first, fight dirty, and take no prisoners if they or their loved ones are threatened. A prime example is Zixuan's ''setting a monastery on fire'' as a distraction when her lover is arrested.
* ''Series/{{Defiance}}'':
** The series features the gangster and slum lord Datak Tarr, and his loving wife Stahma... who quickly demonstrates that she is far more cunning and ruthless than her husband. She talks her husband out of killing the entire family of local mine owner Rafe [=McCawley=] by pointing out that their son Alak loves Christie [=McCawley=] - who would inherit the mines if her father and brother were to have a tragic mining accident.
** Even Nolan catches onto this during "A Well Respected Man":
--->'''Nolan:''' I've been watching the wrong snake. ''You're'' the dangerous one.\\
'''Stahma:''' You're very sweet.
** In Castithan culture, females are expected to be meek and obedient while their husbands are strong and ruthless. Stahma tells Christie, her son's girlfriend, a story about how her fiance "accidentally" fell out an airlock, implying that Datak killed him so they could be together. A later rant changes the context quite a bit.
--->'''Stahma:''' Once again, the strong Castithan male fails to do what is necessary, and it falls to me to open the airlock door myself!
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The first two adult companions were Ian Chesterton and Barbara Wright. That said, while Ian had his awesome moments, Barbara was such a badass it's a common fan joke that the show could have been renamed "Why Barbara is Awesome", and no one would have noticed.
** Also notable is Fourth Doctor companion Leela, a NobleSavage and KnifeNut the Doctor sometimes struggled to physically restrain.
* A lot of the culprits of the week in ''Series/{{Elementary}}'' are well-mannered, respectable women who plan and carry out subtle, elaborate murders - and if not for Holmes and Watson's intervention, they'd probably have never been caught. [[spoiler: And then there's the series' take on Moriarty.]]
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'': Though a demure young girl with no propensity for arms, and an openness to non-violent solutions at least on the outset, Daenerys Targaryen is directly and indirectly the possessor of the largest body count in the show.
* ''Literature/GenerationKill'' the series: One of the Marines says this when he observes the women of a town doing backbreaking labor to clear the streets and their yards of debris, while the men lounged on the lawns smoking:
-->"If we had to fight the women, dawg, we wouldn't stand a fuckin' chance."
* ''Series/{{Grimm}}'':
** Hexenbiest are much more powerful, cunning, and dangerous than Zauberbiest, their male counterpart.
** Female Grimms get their powers decades earlier than male Grimms, meaning they have decades more experience and training at the same age. Also, female descendants are much more likely to inherit Grimm status than male descendants.
* ''Series/ICarly'': "iMake Sam Girlier": Sam's new crush says "And even though I haven't known Sam for too long, I know that if I ever get in a fight and I can have either the football team or Sam back me up, I'm going with Sam."
* ''Series/{{Chuck}}'': Threatening the title character will get you beaten up and arrested by Casey. It will get you killed outright by Sarah.
* ''Series/ThePrisoner1967'' is notable for the three episodes in which Number Two is female being the ones in which Number Six ends up most defeated and the closest to being mentally broken.
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'': Rachel Matheson. She may not look like Action Girl material at all, and in fact seems willing to put up with loads of hardships. But the minute her kids or her life get threatened...well, there's nothing that she won't do to ensure survival. Her former colleague Dr. Bradley Jaffe in "[[Recap/RevolutionS1E9Kashmir Kashmir]]" and Sergeant Will Strausser in "[[Recap/RevolutionS1E10NobodysFaultButMine Nobody's Fault But Mine]]" learned this at the cost of their lives.
* ''Series/{{Smallville}}'':
** [[{{Superman}} Clark Kent]] may be a PhysicalGod, but being such a [[TheCape boy scout]], he might just be less dangerous than [[SatelliteLoveInterest Lana Lang]] and [[PlatonicLifePartners Chloe Sullivan]]. Lana enacted a complex and vicious plan of revenge after [[spoiler:ComicBook/LexLuthor faked her pregnancy, which includes beating up and imprisoning Lionel.]] Chloe delivered an [[IfYouEverDoAnythingToHurtHer If You Ever Do Anything To Hurt Him]] speech to Lana with a very convincing tone; if you are the week's bad guy who tried to expose Clark to the world [[spoiler:and she is under the influence of Brainiac]], ''you won't live long enough to regret it''.
** Jonathan would come at you with a shotgun if you try to hurt his loved ones. [[spoiler:Martha would come up with an elaborate gambit and finish off with a EvilCannotComprehendGood speech that induced a VillainousBreakdown in the DarkActionGirl.]]
* ''Franchise/StarTrek'':
** The original [[GreenSkinnedSpaceBabe Green Skinned Space Babes]], the Orion slavegirls, are far deadlier than the males and are the true rulers of their world thanks to their pheromones.
** According to Klingon creation myth the first Klingon was male, and the second was female and stronger because the gods had a better idea what they were doing now. They fought for a time, until the female convinced the male that together they would be strong enough to destroy the gods themselves. [[KillTheGod Which they then did.]] This story is recited at Klingon weddings as the ideal, just before the husband's friends attack the pair to give them some BattleCouple cred.
* ''Series/That70sShow'': The guys taunt [[GirlNextDoor Donna]] and [[RichBitch Jackie]] with claims that while men can entertain themselves with play-fighting, girls get too angry and begin to fight for real. Cue the girls beginning a nice, playful fight that quickly descends to barbed words and [[CatFight legitimate violence.]]
* The Investigation Discovery channel has an entire series dedicated to women who murdered their husbands, called ''The Wife Did It''.
* On ''Series/SweetVicious'', the women are some of the most fearsome characters on the show.
** On the heroic side, we have the protagonists Jules and Ophelia, two [[OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent college girls]] and [[VigilanteMan Vigilante Women]] who are each, in their own way, vastly more dangerous than most of the boys on campus. The only guys who ever really stood a chance against them were either athletes or people who had the jump on them.
** On the evil side, we have the Kappa Kappa Phi sorority, run by the AlphaBitch Chloe and her two {{Beta Bitch}}es, both named Lindsay. Not only are they able to hold their own in hand-to-hand combat with Jules and Ophelia far better than most of their male targets, but the scope of their evil deeds is far more widespread. While most of Jules and Ophelia's rapist targets are assaulting individual girls, the Kappas are systematically abusing dozens of girls at a time over the course of Hell Week (and presumably even after that), [[spoiler:and profiting from their heinous actions to the tune of twenty thousand dollars a week by secretly filming it for a fetish site]].

* {{Music/Space}}'s SignatureSong, 'Female Of The Species', which takes its title from the Kipling poem above.
* Music/EmilieAutumn's "Fight Like a Girl" is a call to arms for this archetype of girl, in which she champions a RoaringRampageOfRevenge against 49% of the world's population[[note]] surprisingly not misandry since she has lines that refer to men as allies - it's more about those who are misogynist and saying they are the outnumbered ones[[/note]], based on ruthlessness as well as superior numbers.
-->''It's so easy to kill \\
This I learned from watching you \\
If I have to, I will \\
It's not pretty but it's true''
* The [[Music/ScottWalker Walker Brothers]] sang an ode to the poem, though it's more playful than anything.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* In the ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' setting, the [[AmazonBrigade Sisters of Battle]] are easily the most fanatical of all the various military forces of the Imperium.

* The small, frail female Skrall in ''Toys/{{Bionicle}}'' are said to be far more dangerous than their larger, brutish male counterparts, in part due to their Psionic powers which can potentially destroy one's mind.
** A mild subversion: While the above is true, those powers aren't natural, and the CosmicHorror that gifted them with said capabilities uses them as his relatively weak-minded pawns.
** However this is actually a commonly used trope in the series. Female Vortixx and Skakdi are also a lot more dangerous than the males, a stark contrast to the "girls are peaceful" stereotype applied in previous years. [[UnfortunateImplications This has of course lead a couple of fans to believe that there are barely any]] ''[[UnfortunateImplications normal]]'' [[UnfortunateImplications females in the Bionicle universe.]]

* Male Locust Drones in ''VideoGame/GearsOfWar'' are human-sized and carry guns. Female Drones -- a.k.a. ''Berserkers'' -- are enormous hulking beasts with bulletproof armour plating for skin, blind, and fuelled by UnstoppableRage making them kill human and Locust alike. Normally the only way to even ''hurt'' them is by breaking out the ''KillSat''.
* Oddly enough, invoked by Atton Rand in the second ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic''. He mentions that Sith men are bad enough, but Sith women are much worse.
** [[spoiler: Kreia proves it.]]
* In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'', Gerudo guards (who are all women) are the only enemies Link will surrender to.
* Aglaia Lilich from ''VideoGame/{{Pathologic}}''. Despite being neither crazy nor blood-thristy, unlike many other known Inquisitors, she is still more willing than any other character in the game to use extemely brutal means in order to stop [[ThePlague Sand Plague]]. There is an extremly striking contrast between her and another powerful figure in the game - Alexander "General Ash" Block, who, unlike her is a deeply honorable OfficerAndGentleman, and is incredibly humane for war veteran.
* The male party members in ''Franchise/MassEffect'' have a tendency to be calm and rational by comparison to a cast that includes [[ViolentlyProtectiveGirlfriend Liara]], [[AxCrazy Jack]], [[HornyDevils Morinth]], [[KnightTemplar Samara]], and [[TheBigGuy Ashley]].
** [=FemShep=] applies when compared to her male squadmates, potentially [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] by Wrex's "Who'd win in a fight?" elevator chitchat. Does not apply when compared with [=MaleShep=] as they are equals by design.
* In ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiPartnersInTime'', there are two Thwomps that the Bros. encounter on top of Yoshi Mountain, Mr. Thwomp and Ms. Thwomp. Mr. Thwomp does nothing but make passive-aggressive taunts at you and help you throughout the following stage. Ms. Thwomp, however, challenges you to a full-on boss fight against her, and it's [[ThatOneBoss certainly not an easy fight.]]
* In about three of the ''VideoGame/{{Deception}}'' series of games (known as the Kagero series in Japan) features a female main character who is not an ActionGirl by any stretch of imagination, but instead was given a castle full of traps, and a complementary TrapMaster traits to go along with it. Chaining insane, bloody and gory combos with your ever-increasingly lethal and convoluted trap sequence is par for the course. The oddly-named VideoGame/{{Trapt}} (Kagero II: Dark Illusion in Japan) has a ''Princess'' doing this.
* Olga from ''VideoGame/AsurasWrath'' is much more vindictive and cruel than most of the other Deities, being merely subservient to deus out of true admiration then true subservience most of the time. Subverted when around Asura, especially when [[spoiler: he turns into his berserker form, which makes her high tail it and try to use their ultimate weapon on him. She also outlives Deus and tries to kill Mithra when Deus dies.]]
* In ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'' any of the female companions classify. Veronica and her power fist are much more dangerous than most of what the Brotherhood has to offer and Cass... Let's just say she one ups her father on that front. Of note is also the female NCR Ranger, Stella, captured by the Legion. Forced to fight in the arena, she's been tearing up hardened legionaries with her bare hands ever since.
* Happens twice in ''VideoGame/EVOSearchForEden''. The first time it's the Queen Bee, the final boss of chapter 2. The second time it's the Female Yeti, the final boss of Chapter 4. The reason that they attack you is because you [[ViolentlyProtectiveGirlfriend defeated their mates.]]
* ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' has the Meowstic species, which exhibits such a high level of BizarreSexualDimorphism that the two genders have different movepools. The males have primarily support movepools. The females, on the other hand, have primarily ''offensive'' movepools (through level up only though). The female's hidden ability (Competitive) is also offensive-oriented compared to the male's (Prankster), but otherwise, it's downplayed; their stats as well their movepools by [=TMs=] as well as from Espurr's are still the same.
** Combee double-subverts this. While the female is no stronger than the male, it is the only gender that can evolve into Vespiquen. Likewise, female Salandits are the only ones who can evolve to Salazzle.
* ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter'' zig-zags with various related-species and subspecies. The female Rathian, for instance, is often introduced to players sooner than the male Rathalos, and Rathian does not fly around nearly as much or use her fire breath as vigorously. The rather unnerving Diablos species, however, as the even scarier Black Diablos subspecies, which consists entirely of female Diablos who are in heat.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Xenogears}}'', [[TheRival Ramsus']] right-hand woman Miang shows up in their first couple of boss fights [[NeutralFemale as either his healer or his copilot]], never participating in combat directly (you can't even target her if you wanted to). This is almost certainly a ruse, because later on Miang proves to be [[ManBehindTheMan both more central to the plot]] and [[ThatOneBoss a much bigger threat in gameplay]] than [[IneffectualSympatheticVillain Ramsus]] ever was.
* One of the playable choices among the "fans" in ''VideoGame/HotlineMiami2WrongNumber'' are the brother/sister pair Alex and Ash. Ash, the brother, uses firearms like a reasonable person (reasonable by psychotic killer standards, anyway). Alex, on the other hand, opts for a ''chainsaw''.
* In the True Pacifist route of ''VideoGame/{{Undertale}}'', [[spoiler:Toriel effortlessly blows her husband Asgore away with a fireball (although they have equal stats). She then proceeds to chastise him that if he really wanted to free the monsters so badly, he should have used his first human soul to get out of the mountain and killed some people himself rather than playing OrcusOnHisThrone because he was too indecisive. This is the same Toriel who doted on you at the beginning of the game and seems to be in favor of peace between humans and monsters overall, but Asgore's perceived cowardice disgusts her even '''more''' than the fact that he was willing to murder humans.]]
* In ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series, this is a trait of the Aureals (aka Golden Saints) and Mazken (aka Dark Seducers), two forms of [[OurDemonsAreDifferent lesser Daedra]] in service to [[MadGod Sheogorath]]. Each has a [[{{Matriarchy}} matriarchal]], [[ProudWarriorRace militaristic]] society, and, for the Aureal as race, they are [[HonorBeforeReason haughty]], [[PunyEarthlings arrogant]], quick to anger, and cruel in their punishment. The females are significantly more powerful than the males.
* ''VideoGames/LeagueOfLegends'': Xayah, a "marksman" whose partner is a support. Her partner Rakan even has a line for this. "I'm not gonna kill you...she is."

* Monique in ''Webcomic/{{Sinfest}}'' tried to imitate "[[http://www.sinfest.net/view.php?date=2011-01-18 male bonding]]". [[http://www.sinfest.net/view.php?date=2011-01-19 She does it wrong]].
* Grace from ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'' used to have only two modes: complete pacifism and Unstoppable Flying [[SpikeBallsOfDoom Clawball Of Doom]]. However, this may have more to do with being a hybrid of a herbivore (squirrel) with a really monstrous alien while having rather limited experience. Later martial artist friends, including ladies, convinced her that it's not always a good idea and she got to learn more controlled ways of violence.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Demise, the super-assassin from the ''Roleplay/GlobalGuardiansPBEMUniverse'' is the deadliest fighter on the planet not because she's superhumanly strong or because she's superhumanly fast, but rather because she knows how to turn anything -- anything at all -- into a deadly weapon, and can figure out ways around your defenses in seconds.
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick might be as pathetic and miserable as the Critic, but her temper is scarier, she can worm her way out of trouble easier, she's stronger than him despite their height difference, and she'll stoop to any level to get what she wants.
* Powerful parahumans of both genders abound in ''Literature/{{Worm}}'', but the specific subset of ruthless [[WellIntentionedExtremist Well Intentioned Extremists]] who are willing to trample the lives and free wills of others for the sake of [[TheNeedsOfTheMany the greater good]] is a very small group of parahumans, several of whom are opposed to the others, and all of whom are female.
** What about Number Man? Armsmaster? Coil?

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
** While there are very competent male Fire Benders and fighters in her family, [[DaddysLittleVillain Princess Azula]] plots, schemes, and ruthlessly manipulates others to do her dirty work, before finally bringing out the lightning. And she [[TheCaligula puts even Daddy to shame]] with all of [[MagnificentBastard her machinations, murder and mayhem.]] Best displayed by the fact that she actually managed to [[spoiler:kill Aang (though he did get better).]]
** Katara can also have shades of this. While she doesn't have the raw power of Aang, she can be downright terrifying when angry. Most notable when she's on the receiving end of chauvinistic comments (things tend to break around her) and when hunting for her mother's killer [[spoiler:(where she used bloodbending)]].
** Even the Avatars show shades of this. The female Avatars all show signs of being fiercer than the male Avatars are -- after all, it's [[WomenAreWiser Yangchen]] and [[LadyOfWar Kyoshi]] (both female) who outright tell Aang to kill [[spoiler:Ozai]], whereas Kuruk and Roku (both male) use vague "be decisive, choose your destiny" advice. Kyoshi had such a fierce reputation that she's (falsely) on record as a murderer. (In reality, TheDogShotFirst and was already dying, and Kyoshi merely refused to save him. But as Kyoshi herself pointed out, dead is dead.)
* ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' follows suit like its predecessor series in regards to some of its female fighters.
** While the [[NebulousEvilOrganization Red Lotus]] consists of anarchistic benders with [[WrongContextMagic unique and unusual abilities]], [[BloodKnight Ming-Hua]] and [[ColdSniper P'Li]] are far more ruthless and vicious in battle than Zaheer and Ghazan.
** [[TheClan The Metal Clan]] has this, inevitably given that the badass genes are from [[BadassAdorable Toph]]. Two of the males are [[NonActionGuy Non-Action Guys]] and the other two are {{satellite character}}s to Suyin the matriarch in every fight scene.
* In ''WesternAnimation/SamuraiJack'', Jack and his friend The Scotsman are off on a quest to save the Scotsman's wife, a good head taller and bit wider than the muscular Scotsman, from being sacrificed by some demons. Jack and the Scotsman get to her, nagging about their lateness and pathetic fighting styles, and get her to the main hall where they are surrounded by hundreds of demons. Jack and the Scotsman fight to their last bit of energy when the Demon Lord orders his people to kill them and put the "fat one" back in the pot. [[BerserkButton The Scotsman's wife does not take kindly to being called that]], so she [[CurbStompBattle jumps into the battle alone beating back every single demon]] [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome before taking down the Demon Lord himself.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'': The Ice Queen is much more competent than the Ice King. [[spoiler:Justified, as it's a gender-flipped fanfiction of the latter, so he probably made her competent regardless of her gender.]]
*In an Episode of ''WesternAnimation/TimeSquad'', the heroes have to help henpecked husband Napoleon Bonaparte sneak away from his wife to do some late-night conquering. Eventually they're caught by her and, being the "fiery frenchwoman" that she is, she gets so mad that she singlehandedly obliterates Napoleon's army. They then decide to become conquering partners together.
* Lord Hater is the Big Bad of ''WesternAnimation/{{Wander Over Yonder}}'' until the Dominator shows up. She gets her jollies by destroying every planet in the galaxy. After she's destroyed everything except for a tiny little planet where the heroes are plotting to defeat her, she starts to feel very sad and depressed...because there's nothing left to destroy. She's so evil that during the series finale Lord Hater teams up with Wander and his friends to defeat her because she's destroyed the galaxy he wanted to conquer. After she's finally defeated she almost seems to want to be Wander's friend and become a good guy for a few moments but then she decides she'd rather storm off in a huff instead.
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{The Amazing World of Gumball}}'', one episode revolves around Gumball's neighbor's wife being a total sociopath who enjoys making everyone around her miserable. When Gumball and his brother Darwin try to find out why, their neighbor Mr. Robinson speaks a few lines of dialogue from Batman where he says that "some people aren't after anything logical. Sometimes they just want to watch the world burn."
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Reboot}}'': Hexadecimal was always far more powerful than her brother Megabyte, both in terms of physical strength and viral abilities, with his only real advantage being smarter, more focused, and sane. Her insanity, fickle nature, and crush on the protagonist were the only things keeping her from outright obliterating the whole Mainframe.
* In ''WesternAnimation/Ben10Omniverse'', we have Princess Looma Red Wind, a member of the Tetramand species. In her culture, females can [[BestHerToBedHer only marry those who defeat them in combat]] because females of the species are larger and stronger than the males. Looma, however, is the smallest Tetramand we see, [[LargeRunt possibly a runt]]. Despite this, she ''still'' cannot find a husband because no Tetramand can defeat her in combat. [[VictoryIsBoring She becomes increasingly frustrated with this]].

[[folder:Real Life]]
* British General Lord Charles Cornwallis is quoted as saying: "We may destroy all the men in America, and we shall still have all we can do to defeat the women."
* The ''tricoteuses'' of UsefulNotes/TheFrenchRevolution (as Burke called them, "All the unutterable abominations of the furies of hell in the abused shape of the vilest of women"), which inspired the creation of Madame Defarge in Creator/CharlesDickens' ''Literature/ATaleOfTwoCities''.
* Wendi Deng Murdoch protected her husband from a dangerous pie-thrower by going for his throat.
* Female domestic abusers of male partners are statistically more likely to use weapons. Of course, this makes sense given the strength difference.
* In military basic training, female drill sergeants seem far meaner than male drill sergeants. And if they're also short, ''[[TheNapoleon well...]]''
* Common among any wild animal with MamaBear tendencies. Indeed, said MamaBear tendencies may be the reason this form of sexual dimorphism exists in the first place; the female of the species is usually the one carrying the young before their actual birth (even egg-laying species have to wait for the eggs to develop within them before laying them), and as such is the one who is most vital to their offspring's existence. If the male is either absent or dies protecting his brood then the loss is not as great, but if the pregnant female dies, so does her offspring and the next generation is over before it even begins.
* Spiders. Females are larger, more aggressive, and have more potent venom than males, and are prone to eating males after mating or if they don't feel like mating. There are a few exceptions:
** Male diving bell spiders are larger than females.
** Male ''Allocosa brasiliensis'' wolf spiders will eat females they encounter who are too young or too old to bear young.
** Male Sydney funnel web spiders are more aggressive and have more potent venom than females. In fact, bites by females are hardly ever fatal while bites by males usually require anti-venom. However, males still risk getting eaten by females.
* Sharks. Males are smaller in most species.
* Snakes. For the same reason. Though there are exceptions.
* Female deep-sea anglerfish take this to the extreme, being voracious predators several times bigger than the tiny parasitic males.
* Eagles, or any other bird of prey (aside from certain vultures). To give some context, a surefire way to figure out if a baby eagle is male or female is to wait until it grows up. If it's bigger than its father ''before'' it reaches full adulthood, it's a girl.
** Once thought to be true of the eagle's forefathers [[note]]or perhaps fore''mothers'' in this case[[/note]], the theropod dinosaurs. [[ScienceMarchesOn Nowadays]], we know that there isn't any evidence for this, but at the same time there isn't any evidence ''against'' it either (and it's not really something we can learn from fossils anyway), so the possibility is still there.
* Spotted Hyenas; while the species as a whole is pretty tough (they've been seen hunting on broken legs, are capable of eating even the horns and bones of prey animals, etc.) the females are larger, more aggressive, and are dominant over males to the point that an adult male may have lower status than the alpha female's infant daughters.
** The females actually have an enlarged clitoris, which they use to urinate, mate, and even give birth through. Did we also mention that it closely resembles a penis? Yikes!
* In general with animals the males's relative strength is proportional to his role in child rearing. Any species that lets the female do all the work will usually have a much weaker male since strength doesn't benefit them as much.
* Female mosquitoes are the only ones that drink blood. While this obviously makes them more of a pest than males, it also makes them very deadly as they are the ones that carry and pass diseases such as Malaria, West Nile, and Yellow Fever. Technically, this means they are one of the world's deadliest predators, while the males are entirely nectarivorous.
* Female ''Photuris'' fireflies use EnthrallingSiren tactics to prey on other firefly species, mimicking their sexual displays' light-flash patterns to lure in males for lunch. Male ''Photuris'' are far more interested in mating than hunting.
* When militants came to Rukhsana Kauser's home to [[IHaveYouNowMyPretty kidnap her]], she was hidden so they started hitting people with their rifles. She took an axe from her hiding place under the bed and smashed the commander in the head, then grabbed his AK-47 and tossed another to her [[BrotherSisterTeam brother]], and with the rest of the family drove them off and headed to the police station. She has since received lots of attention, several awards, several more attacks, and become a police officer.
* While male lions are pretty fierce and threatening, and larger and stronger than the females, from an animals point of view (e.g. a zebra) they are actually less dangerous as male lions are used to having the females in the pride hunt for them (though this is something of a misnomer, as its far from unusual for male lions to hunt, and indeed they are often relied on to overpower and kill especially large prey once the females have caught it). If a male lion is ousted by another and has to fend for themselves, they tend to make poorer hunters because their distinctive manes make it harder to sneak up on prey, and their bulk makes them slower, and may starve to death.
* Many female leaders in history, such as [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast Bloody Mary]] I of England, Hungarian [[SerialKiller Blood Countess Elizabeth Báthory]], and the IronLady herself, UsefulNotes/MargaretThatcher.
* Female wasps, bees, and ants are the only ones with the stingers. Males are actually short-lived in many species and physically constructed for the sole purpose of serving as breeding tools (more often the case for social rather than solitary species, and there are exceptions); often, the male's genitals are derived from the structures as the female's stinger. After breeding season is done, the males (drones) are useless to the colony, and may be driven out to die if not killed on the spot and their corpses disposed of with the colony's other refuse. Assuming they don't [[OutWithABang die in the process]], often in biologically horrendous ways - some species of bee have males that die from their ''gonads exploding''.
* During the siege of the Hungarian castle and town of Eger (by the Ottomans) in 1552, the men did most of the hand-to-hand fighting, but it was the women who poured the cauldrons of boiling oil, tar, and any other nasty liquid they got their hands on. Demonstrated succintly in a Hungarian musical made from one of the novels written about the siege, where the women of Eger get their own rocking song. The chorus translated goes something like this: "Fire, let there be burning fire, let [our liquids] boil and brew, and the attackers will pay, because I'll chase them off to Hell! Fly on a black cloud, oh hot death, Hellfire awaits them [the attackers], let them run away from here, blood-soaked! No weak missus is she, put the wooden spoon and headscarf away, the brave women of Eger grab swords! We have to act, and not cry, up, to the bastion, to fight, kill the Turks, we have to win here, today!"