Women, on average, are shorter than men. And a good number of men find petite women charming. Because of this, in our society, tall girls and women often feel awkward and out of place, and some men will feel uncomfortable when it comes to having a relationship with a woman who towers over them, similar to someone stronger than them.
But then there are some women for whom this trope applies. These are the women whose overall charm comes from their height. Even if they themselves don't acknowledge it, the story and/or characters make it clear that her height is one of her distinguishing charms. Also, in fiction, tall women tend to be Tomboys and sometimes fall into the Action Girl archetype. Due to their extreme height, they will often have nice, long legs.
They are also quite common in the Superhero genre, where they also often have a Heroic Build and the Most Common Superpower. As with those tropes, tall heroines can be more the norm than the exception. Tall heroines have to be extremely tall to really stand out. Looking at published Canon references like DC's Who's Who and Marvel's Official Handbook Of The Marvel Universe, one gets the impression that the average height for female heroes is something like 5'10" or 5'11" (and that for male characters, it's about 6'3").
There is some Truth in Television to this trope as well: there are a few Real Life examples listed below - models are usually quite tall (the better to show off their clothing, for one, and to have a more impressive presence).
Please note that for a woman to qualify for this trope, she needs to fulfill two criteria:
She must be either taller than most men in her setting or stand at least 5'8" (172 cm) tall.
In Air Master, the eponymous streetfighter—real name, "Maki"—is this, as well as a Huge Schoolgirl and an Action Girl. During the opening, she's seen walking through an average, crowded Tokyo street—heads and shoulders above everyone else. Most of her height is in her legs, which is handy since they're also her main weapon. As for being "stunning"... well, several guys in the show seems to think so, at least.
Viletta Nu, Cornelia Li Britannia, Rakshata Chawla, and Milly Ashford from Code Geass.
Nel Tu, in her true, adultform (the former 3rd Espada Nelliel Tu Odelschwanck), stands at a height of 176cm (roughly 5'10"). As such, she's one of the few female characters taller than the 174cm (5'9") hero Ichigo. Befitting of her status, she's also one of the few ladies who rivals (if not equals) Rangiku in terms of cup size.
Though her height is never revealed, Yuuko Ichihara from xxxHOLiC is almost the same height as Kurogane, which means she's probably about six feet tall.
In the manga Walkin' Butterfly, the protagonist bemoans the fact that she's super-tall until she realizes that most models are actually quite tall.
Mai Kujaku/Valentine of Yu-Gi-Oh! stands almost eye to eye with Katsuya Jounouchi/Joey Wheeler.
An excellent example from One Piece: Boa Hancock, whose official height is a whopping 191 cm (that's over six feet three inches), yet she is very obviously beautiful both to readers and in-universe characters. In fact, she's called the most beautiful woman in the world at one point. It fits, since she's the empress of an island of amazons.
There's also a un-named female Marine in the very literal "Giant Squad", who's fairly attractive. Unlike the majority of male giants, who usually have somewhat monstrous features.
One Piece is a bit of a subversion in that almost EVERYBODY is exceptionally tall. So characters like Hancock and Robin, who would be considered huge in Real Life, aren't considered exceptionally big, and characters like Luffy (who would be average in Real Life) are considered short. See Our Giants Are Bigger for more detail.
Naga of Slayers is every bit as tall as she is busty. Which is to say, very much so.
Mahou Sensei Negima! gives us several: Kaede (181cm), Chachamaru (174cm), Mana (184cm), Akira (175cm), Ayaka (173cm), and Chizuru (172cm). All regularly wear Stripperiffic clothing or nothing at all and the only potential Love Interests for them are 10. Lampshaded by Chisame on how her class is so abnormal in every aspect including beauties, breast size, and height.
Kagari Ayaka from Witch Craft Works. The male protagonist Honoka barely reaches her chest (although the size seems to change from chapter to chapter), making her at least 6 feet tall. She is also a a Kuudere with G-cup breasts, dark, thigh-long hair (except when she is in battle, where it becomes fire-like), and a very nice body. It shows in the many, many, many instances where she carry Honoka bride style.
Tsubaki Natsukasa from Soul Eater is about a head taller (anywhere from 5'7" to 5'9") than most of the teenaged Weapons/Meisters. Same goes for Elizabeth Thompson, who's about the same height as Tsubaki or at least just a little shorter.
Mora Bascht of Gundam 0083 stands head and shoulders above most of the cast, regardless of their gender. She becomes one half of the show's Beta Couple with Keith, who is initially put off and intimidated by her size, but later seems quite happy with her.
Though Integra Fairbrook Wingates Hellsing is still dwarfed by Alucard (really not much of an accomplishment), she still sees eye to eye with the more average height male characters in the series and towers over the shorter ones.
Big Barda is... well... BIG. As seen in the trope image, she towers over her husband Scott/Mr. Miracle (see the page image), and indeed over most heroes, male or female. Including Superman.
Supergirl tends to be portrayed as a woman of roughly above average height at 5'7", but occasionally taller, particularly if shown as her "future self" of Superwoman. Not too surprising, since Power Girl is essentially Supergirl's "grownup" counterpart from a parallel Earth.
Power Princess' Darker and Edgier counterpart from the Supreme Power universe is slightly shorter at 6'3" and while she's always been drawn tall she was originally more of a thin supermodel type. Then Frank Cho started drawing her in The Ultimates.
Storm of the X-Men, at 5'11", certainly qualifies.
Psylocke, also of the X-Men, is likewise 5'11". Her former crime fighting partner Captain UK, real name Linda McQuillan, is 6'2".
Two of the Spider-Women count. Jessica Drew, the first and current Spider-Woman, is 5'10", while Julia Carpenter, the second who now goes by the name of Arachne and later became the new Madame Web, is 5'9".
Evidently, Lady Death and her half-sister Vandala.
In Echo, the Phi-project is slowly altering Julie Martin's body, making her grow larger and larger until she towers over everybody else in the group. People soon begin to assume that she is an actress or model, and when she denies anything of the sort they refuse to accept that she is not at least somehow a sex icon.
Honor Harrington, who at her 188 cm (6'2") is one of the taller characters in the series. The fact that she considered herself a Huge Schoolgirl in her youth, with attendant self-esteem issues, had large implications in the early books.
In Thud!, Nobby's stripper girlfriend Tawnee is described as being over six feet tall.
Evelyn, the narrator and protagonist of "Paper Chains" by Jane Langton, is a six-foot red-head. And her parents have always encouraged her not to slouch.
However, notably averted with the most prominent female of the series: Karrin Murphy is five feet even.
On the other hand, they are almost all blonde. And curvy.
Galadriel of The Lord of the Rings et al. is this. She is said to be 6'4" and one of the most stunning beauties in Middle Earth.
Lizzy of the web-novel Domina is described as bronze-skinned, golden-eyed, and over six feet. Sounds like the description of a Greek goddess.
Patrick Tilley's Star Wartz features Shalimar, who is described as "seven feet of exotic fantasy fodder". A significant chunk of the hero's motivation includes the distant hope of sleeping with her. It later turns out the top eight inches or so are the result of her hairstyle. 6'4" is still pretty tall, though.
On How I Met Your Mother, Robin is definitely considered attractive. Marshall once called Robin "freakishly tall."
Of course, she's got nothing on the women in Marshall's home town.
Barbara Feldon on Get Smart had to slump a bit next to star Don Adams.
Catwoman, as played by Julie Newmar on Batman, was 5'11". Wearing heels, she even towered over her own henchmen.
My Living Doll also starred Julie Newmar, this time as a female android who towered over most male cast members.
Ghost Whisperer: Andrea Moreno (Aisha Tyler), Melinda's six-foot-tall Black Best Friend - Andrea mentioned in one episode how being a tall black woman made it hard for her to get dates in Grandview.
Sophie Turner, who plays Sansa Stark in A Game Of Thrones, is still in her early teens, and is already taller than most men, made easier by several of the adult male actors not being particularly tall. Gwendoline Christie, who is Brienne of Tarth, is absolutely gargantuan at 6'3" but is far more attractive than the character described in the novels.
Word Of God has it that part of what won her the role of Brienne is that she showed up to her audition done up to look as homely as Brienne does in the books.
Number Six of Battlestar Galactica (Reimagined), played by fanboy-endorsed Tricia Helfer who stands at 5'11". Especially in the miniseries she towers over 5'8" James Callis (Baltar).
Blake Lively is somewhat taller than her Gossip Girl co-star Leighton Meester (she's a touch over 5'10", Leighton... isn't) and many of the rest of the cast, a point acknowledged in "The Magnificent Archibalds":
Aaron: Serena's life is complicated?
Dan: Yeah. I don't know about you but the Serena I know has long, flowing blonde hair, towers over both of us?*
While Blake Lively is, in fact, taller than Penn Badgley (Dan) in real life, John Patrick Amedori (Aaron) is a bit taller than her. But not much.
Which would explain why the artwork for The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (both movies) tries to play down Blake's height (she towers over the other members of the sisterhood as well, especially America Ferrera).
In an episode of Law & Order: SVU, a perp refers to Casey Novak as "blonde and statuesque." Diane Neal is 5'10 and quite attractive, both in-universe and out.
Steven Tyler committed a serious faux pas on season 11 of American Idol by referring to Shannon Magrane, who is over six feet tall at age 16, as "hot, humid, and happening". Directly to her father's face.
Samus Aran from the Metroid series has a listed height of 190 cm (6'3"), though it isn't specified whether that measurement applies to her or her Power Suit. (In-game sprites for armorless Samus are always depicted a bit shorter than their armored counterparts. The trope holds in either instance, though.)
Ivy from Soulcalibur is one of the tallest characters, let alone women, in the entire series.
Fran from Final Fantasy XII towers over most of the cast at 6'1¾". And that's not even taking her rabbit ears or stilettos into account!note And when you do take these into account, she's the tallest playable character in the main Final Fantasy series (the offline games, at least).
Rips from the Dissidia: Final Fantasy renders make it clear that Cosmos, Ultimecia, and the Cloud of Darkness subscribe to this trope: Cosmos scrapes in at an estimated 5'9", Ultimecia qualifies at around 5'10", and the Cloud of Darkness absolutely blows them all away at roughly 6'7" barefoot.
Rival Schools' Natsu Ayuhara, who is a shade under 6 feet tall (182cm) and gets more than her fair share of fanservice shots. Kyoko Minazuki (173cm/5'8.5") and Zaki (175cm/5'9") are also as pretty as they are tall, but their height isn't paid attention to like Natsu's is.
There are quite a few from The King Of Fighters: Whip (173cm/5'8"), Shermie (173cm/5'8"), Elisabeth (174cm/5'8½"), Lien (174cm/5'8½"), King (175cm/5'9"), Luise (175cm/5'9"), Leona (176cm/5'9¼"), Mature (177cm/5'9.6"), Vice (178cm/5'10"), Foxy (181cm/5'11⅓"), Vanessa (182cm/6'), Diana (188cm/6'2"), and especially Jun (199cm/6'6.3"). Whip and Foxy (and depending on the game, King and Elisabeth) are more conservatively dressed than most, but their depiction in artwork tends to say otherwise.
Bayonetta has not been given any particular measurements, but has been estimated to stand 12 heads tall from her official art, due in no small part to her ridiculously long legs.
Like with most things concerning Touhou, character height mostly depends on the preference of fans, but Komachi Onozuka and Yuugi Hoshiguma are universally portrayed as quite tall.
In The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, most females of a race tend to be a smidge beneath the males in height (the males usually being the baseline 1.0x according to the Construction Set). Nordic women match the men in the height multiplier at 1.06x. High elf women match the men in height at 1.1x. In an odd case, the Wood Elf men are the shortest of all races and sexes, and the women are more akin to the typical height of most other females in the other races.
Even some of the Daedric races fall under this trope, too. Male Golden Saints and Dark Seducers are around the same height as most of the Tamrielic races, but the females have the same height and physical build as the Dremora (1.1x).
The Dark Queen from Battletoads stands at 6 feet tall, according to official stats. Although that doesn't explain how she is a giant compared to the Battletoads themselves in the original, who are supposed to be even taller.
Oulan from Suikoden II towers even over Viktor and Pesmerga, who are both over six feet tall, and is in fact the tallest humanoid character in the entire game, only beat out by the large-size beasts. Sid appears taller, but only because of his wings. Jeane also counts (as well as for every other game thereafter), being only slightly shorter than Viktor and wearing pretty much nothing but see-through gauze on her person.
In Rift, female Bahmi are taller than male Ethians, but can be as attractive as any race.
City of Heroes, with its highly customizable character creator, lets players invoke this... however, one dev-created example is the hero Swan, who stands near Manticore (the shortest NPC male), and is about 2 feet taller than him.
Merveille from Solatorobo stands at 180cm/5'11", making her much taller than many of the male characters who have their heights listed. In fact, the only character stated to be taller than her is BigBad Bruno, who is 190cm/6'3". While no one comments on her appearance specifically, the manual describes her as attractive and Béluga seems quite fond of her as well, though he may be interested in her mind as much as anything.
Luminous Arc has resident Ms. Fanservice Vanessa. Though she doesn't have an official height, she towers over the teenage protagonists and has a few inches on all the adults — in fact, the only person taller than her without the aid of a Nice Hat is the Final Boss. The facts she's rather abundantly proportioned only makes her seem even bigger than she already is.
One of the few things you cannot modify about your character in Saints Row is their height. Thus, a female Boss towers above most other characters at over six feet.
Stephanie Rossum in Groovy Kinda stands about 6'5". She's blonde, with a nice figure, and a personality which has been described as "ridiculously adorable." Oh, and she's a robot.
Pretty much any female drow in Drowtales falls under this by default, since female drowolath average around six feet, but Mel'arnach deserves special mention for towering over even the other women and being the Ms. Fanservice. Generally speaking drowolath females are taller than the males, though there are exceptions, including Valo (on the left), who is head and shoulders above almost everyone, and the opposite is true for drowussu, where the males are generally taller than the females.
Di from Fans! is taller than just about everyone, male or female, hot and athletic. For bonus humor, her mentor is Rumiko, who is tiny.
Susan also counts, as due to a growth spurt in the Summer arc has made her able to bump into the top shelf of her locker, making her around 5'8" as per Word Of God.
Di Di in Ménage à 3 is taller than most of the cast, and called an "amazon" by most. She also has an enormous cup size, is considered one of the most beautiful women in the comic, and is the designated Ms. Fanservice of the series.
Nina in Between Failures. She's the tallest member of the cast (around 6'3", according to the cast page), two of the male characters have actively expressed interest in her, a third admits that he finds her attractive (but didn't chase after her due to Better as Friends), and there are hints that one of the female employees also finds her attractive.
Avatar Kyoshi, as seen in flashbacks, was a vertically gifted woman to abnormal proportions.
This happens often enough in Avatar that you could possibly call Author Appeal on it. Katara, while quite short on her own, is significantly taller than Aang even once they become an Official Couple. Also, Mai is tall enough to look her boyfriend Zuko (the tallest Gaang member) in the eye.
This is justified to some degree, as it's likely that neither Aang, Katara, Zuko nor Mai has stopped growing yet. All are shorter than shown adult characters, and Katara is a full two years older than Aaang.