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[[quoteright:350:[[Film/{{Aliens}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/vasquez_aliens_2052.jpg]]]]

-> ''"... people can call it typecasting, but I pigeonholed myself... Saying no to the girlfriend, saying no to the girl that gets captured, and eventually I just got left with the strong chick who's always being killed."''
-->-- '''Creator/MichelleRodriguez'''

When two {{Action Girl}}s are featured in the same film, frequently the tougher, more aggressive and less feminine character will die, despite being better equipped for the situation at hand.

One of the reasons is the belief that the femininity and sex appeal of a female character determines their usefulness as {{Love Interest|s}} or FanService or, in the most insulting cases, their reason to be in the story at all. In some flicks, especially horror, this is inverted as the Vasquez lives while the MsFanservice frequently suffers DeathBySex or if there is a third girl in the cast, both the Vasquez and the MsFanservice get axed while the timid and androgynous FinalGirl makes it.

A more charitable explanation would be that there's much more shock value in killing the tough, competent warrior; leaving the [[WeakButSkilled less warrior like]] one around thus increases suspense, since her survival isn't as assured, especially if AnyoneCanDie. It's easier for an audience to feel fear if the FinalGirl is less battle savvy and thus more vulnerable - a hardened Vasquez left alone wouldn't be as terrifying. The death of the Vasquez character is thus a form of TheWorfEffect or SacrificialLion.

Writers will sometimes compensate by making the more attractive woman some sort of mysterious secret agent, thus relegating the Vasquez character to a {{Mook|s}} or RedShirt by comparison. This may also be a byproduct of filmmakers' insistence that the female lead (who is likely to outlive her supporting cast in an action movie) be significantly more attractive than anyone else.

Compare BuryYourGays, FauxActionGirl, FinalGirl (the weakest and most innocent girl is the only one to live, but take note that like the Vasquez, the final girl is often androgynous in that she isn't usually stunningly beautiful nor does she take part in traditionally feminine activities too much), BlackDudeDiesFirst, TheWorfEffect, DeathByPragmatism and GirlyBruiser (the most feminine female survives because she can kick ass in addition to being feminine). Overlaps with TheWorldsExpertOnGettingKilled, where the most qualified person in the whole cast, male or female, is killed early on and often with ease.

!!'''As a DeathTrope, all Spoilers will be unmarked ahead. Beware.'''


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Played with in ''Anime/ShinkonGattaiGodannar'', where the rather tomboyish action girl Shadow is almost killed by ''TheVirus'', BECAUSE she's not feminine.
* Jane Proudfoot (Peri Gilpin), the tough female SpaceMarine in ''Anime/FinalFantasyTheSpiritsWithin'' dies; the scientist wearing the skintight jumpsuit lives.
* ''Anime/{{Vexille}}'' has two ActionGirl leads and the more badass one is the one invoking DiabolusExMachina in the end.
* Many times the ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'' protagonists fell in love with female {{Ace Pilot}}s only to invoke the LoveHurts trope to Earth-shattering levels. However, this is not always the case. For example [[spoiler: Shinn's first love is dress wearing, dance loving, sweet tempered Stella. She dies and his second love is his fellow soldier Lunamaria]].
* Invoked in the second season of ''Anime/{{Vandread}}'', where Gascogne (seriously, even BC is hotter than her, what with being a [[GenderBender guy in woman's body]]) [[HeroicSacrifice rams the enemy mothership, allowing the rest of the crew to escape]]. She survives and returns for the GrandFinale. Another example would be how many chances the writers missed to kill off Meia.
* ''Manga/GiantRobo: The Day The Earth Stood Still'': out of the two female members of Experts of Justice, Yoshi, the blue-skinned, muscular one dies halfway through the series, while the very feminine Ginrei survives to the last episode - [[SubvertedTrope and dies too.]]
* ''Manga/DeathNote'' has the death of Naomi Misora, the cool BikerBabe UsefulNotes/{{FBI}} agent and the most badass female character on the show who was literally killed off for being too competent. [[WordOfGod The author said in an interview]] that if she hadn't been [[DroppedABridgeOnHim written out]] she would have solved the case and the manga would have ended after only three volumes.
* In ''Anime/MartianSuccessorNadesico'', a bright female pilot is introduced as an replacement for Akito after he's unjustly blamed for a failed mission and removed from military service. Despite her having a spotless record as an experienced ace pilot, she quickly dies within the same episode during her first mission on the Nadesico.
* In the original anime adaptation of ''Anime/SailorMoon'', the most tomboyish amongst the Inner Senshi, Sailor Jupiter, is the first to kick the bucket when they storm the Dark Kingdom towards the end of the first season. Also to be noted that all in all, the girls die out in order of usefulness. Jupiter was the strongest, so she died first. Mercury's analysis capabilities were too useful when the enemy was unknown, so she died second. Venus was the most experienced and competent so she died third. Mars was ostensibly the least suited to the situation, so she died last. And Sailor Moon was the most feminine (sort of, or at least the least competent) so she survived (again, sort of).
* ''Manga/{{Aruosumente}}'': Lamia, the more tomboyish of the female characters, dies when she tries to save Lante and Dante from the attacking Finfield army.
* ''Anime/DivergenceEve'': Luxandra Frail, the tough, {{scar|sAreForever}}red SpicyLatina of the core cast, is the only character to die in combat in the first series, EatenAlive by a Ghoul.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In ''ComicBook/ThePunisherMAX'' arc "Man of Stone," the ex-CIA killer O'Brien. She's hot, smart, and highly skilled at violence and mayhem, and her panties get wet whenever Frank is murdering the fuck out of people who deserve it. They have a brutal, joyless whirlwind romance. She steps on a mine at the end of the story. [[AnyoneCanDie Then again, if you don't want dying to be on the agenda, you shouldn't be in a]] ''[[AnyoneCanDie Punisher MAX]]'' [[AnyoneCanDie arc.]]
* ''Comicbook/YTheLastMan'': [[spoiler:Agent 355, short-haired action girl dies at the end, while Dr. Allison Mann survives the comic]].
* In the comic book ''Film/{{Aliens}}: Colonial Marines'', we are introduced to Carmen Vasquez, sister to the character we met in the movie. [[spoiler: Living up to her namesake, she makes it to the last issue before going down swinging.]]
* "Monster Island," a story first published in ''ComicBook/DarkHorsePresents'' and then later ''ComicBook/DarkHorseMonsters'', features a badass female soldier with a red headband named Vasquez. She gets unceremoniously eaten by a cyclops at the end.

* The {{Trope Namer|s}} is from ''Film/{{Aliens}}'', in which the chinup-pulling, [[SmallGirlBigGun smartgun-wielding]] Colonial Marine Vasquez dies, as opposed to the maternal civilian, Ripley. Now you could excuse Ripley surviving since she's the star, but the film gives the impression that Vasquez is simply ''too'' badass to live. It's also an UnbuiltTrope as [[KillEmAll most of the cast dies in this film]] and Vasquez is one of the ''last'' to die along with the fact "feminine girl" Ripley is not your traditional untrained civilian as she's proven to be a sarcastic hard ass both in this and the original film. In addition Ripley herself puts herself in the front row of the action as oppose to most examples of this trope, taking charge of the marines as the leader and planner when the officer is knocked out and the team is panicking from the catastrophe. Prior to any of the violence, Ripley is also shown doing traditional male jobs such as piloting and dock work thus also subverting the trope in that the "less masculine survivor" isn't necessarily a feminine preppy girl.
** Averted in the sequels, by which time Ripley has become significantly more determined, brave, and masculine.
** Also averted in the first movie. While Ripley isn't an action survivor yet, she might as well be a superhero compared to Lambert. Ripley lives while Lambert... [[NothingIsScarier well lets just say it still gives people nightmares]].
%%* ''Film/{{Prometheus}}'', with Noomi Rapace's Shaw outliving Charlize Theron's Vickers.
* Inverted in ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'' : the somewhat more feminine foster mom, Janelle, played by Jenette Goldstein (the actress who played Vasquez), dies while the ripped and gun-toting Sarah Connor does not.
* Creator/MichelleRodriguez has made a career out of the trope.
** In ''Film/ResidentEvil'' the [=SWAT=] team member Rain Ocampo (Rodriguez) becomes a ZombieInfectee a third of the way through, survives almost all the way through the rest of the film, and then dies on a tram a few minutes away from a cure. Blonde, minidress-wearing Alice (Creator/MillaJovovich) becomes the FinalGirl. The franchise lasted long enough that they brought her back via cloning for [[Film/ResidentEvilRetribution the fifth film]], only to die again...twice!
** Subverted in ''Film/{{Machete}}'': we're meant to think her character dies when she's shot through the eye, but she reappears at the climax of the movie with an EyepatchOfPower.
** Subverted again and played for laughs in ''Film/MacheteKills'', where her character is shot through the other eye, blinding her, but she still survives.
** Seemingly happened off screen in ''Film/FastAndFurious''. [[spoiler: Turns out she just had LaserGuidedAmnesia and shows up in the stinger of ''Film/FastFive'' and working for the BigBad in ''Film/FastAndFurious6''. ]]
** In ''Film/{{Avatar}}'', she is a gruff gunship pilot who dons warpaint and dies in the final battle (interestingly, she managed to live longer than the Sigourney Weaver character--who also dies). The [[GreenSkinnedSpaceBabe Blue-Skinned Space Babe]] NubileSavage love interest lives.
** Zig-zagged with the film ''{{Film/SWAT}}''. She gets shot in the finale, but survives thanks to her Kevlar.
* ''Franchise/TheMatrix'':
** In the original movie, Tank pulls a BigDamnHeroes on [[TheMole Cypher]] too late to save butch-looking, androgynous Tilda Swinton-lookalike Switch from being fatally unplugged but ''just'' in time to save the feminine {{Love Interest|s}} Trinity.
** In ''Film/TheMatrixRevolutions'', a female character named Charra with a crew-cut, a tanktop, and big ol' biceps is introduced right before the battle against the machines to help out Zee, who is trying to hold the line until her husband Link shows up. Guess what happens.
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers'':
** Dizzy Flores, the QB of the football team and tough marine, dies while the feminine starship pilot survives.
** Applies to the Roughnecks' original Corporal, who gets her arm fried by the gigantic lava-spewing bug before Rico grenades it. However, it is implied that she lives as Rasczak orders a call for evac.
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers2HeroOfTheFederation'': The only person to get off the planet alive is a pregnant woman. Must be all those maternal instincts keeping the bugs away.
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers3Marauder'': Unlike the previous movies, this one ultimately subverts it: of the entire squad crash-landed on OM-1, only the two female members survive to the final scene, and when it looks like the badass Captain Beck is about to be devoured by a giant bug, [[spoiler:both she and Holly are rescued by the BigDamnHeroes in the film's eponymous mechs]].
* ''Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet3DreamWarriors'' has Taryn, whose dream powers are having a large mohawk and a gang outfit. She doesn't fare as well as the notably more feminine Kristen.
* In turn, in ''Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet4TheDreamMaster'', the weight-lifting, cockroach-battling Debbie dies before the more feminine Alice. [[spoiler: They both outlive Kristen, though.]]
* Holly from ''Film/TheDescent'' is a curious example. While she fits the "least feminine" part of the description, she was an impulsive and reckless amateur who obviously [[MilesGloriosus saw herself]] as an ActionGirl but ended up getting herself injured through her carelessness. It was this that led to her getting killed off first. In the sequel, which has four Action Girls, the trained cave diver Cath is killed first, the average outdoor enthusiasts Juno and Sarah die last, and the cop Rios is left alive.
* ''Film/{{Carnosaur 2}}'' features a tough female clearly modeled on Vasquez who is killed pretty gruesomely during the finale.
* ''Film/{{Carnosaur 3}}'' does this to both a female Army soldier and a Marine, while the more feminine lady scientist survives. Notably, that makes this the first ''Carnosaur'' film that doesn't kill off all of its women.
* Justified in ''Film/LakePlacid3'', where Yancy Butler's character takes down ''two'' giant crocodiles with a ''hunting knife'' after being both ''bitten and shot''. Naturally, the injuries catch up with her. Or not...she turns up alive and well in ''Film/LakePlacidTheFinalChapter''...[[spoiler: and survives that film.]]
* In ''Film/TwentyEightWeeksLater'', Scarlet is killed by Dom, and that leaves Tammy to take Doyle's rifle and become the new ActionGirl.
* The ActionGirl is the first contestant killed in ''Slashers'' and just after she had killed one the eponymous psychos.
* In ''Film/RamboFirstBloodPartII'' this trope is averted. Co-Bau the machine gun Asian girl is shot dead by Captain Vinh, just after she rescues Rambo. Ironically, she was wearing a lovely red dress as part of the rescue (it was a DirtyHarriet) and looking very much like a GirlyGirl.
* Inverted in ''Film/{{Leviathan 1989}}'' which has two women on the team. Ditzy and more feminine Bowman dies (she kills herself when she finds out she has the parasite inside her) while the no-nonsense Olympic runner Williams is one of two survivors.
* Creator/SueShiomi has fallen victim to this no less than five times:
** In ''Film/TheStreetfighter'', she portrays Nachi Shikenbaru, brother of AntiVillain Junjo. She puts up some resistance against Terry Tsurugi when he attacks her brother Gijun for welching on him, as well as the pimps who swarm her after Terry prostitutes her through Mutaguchi. Also, in the end, she winds up coming closer to killing Terry than her brother (or Miss Yang) ever did... and she dies trying!
** In ''The Streetfighter's Last Revenge'', she portrays Kaho Huo Feng, a defector from Owada's gang and one of three women set up as potential love interests for Terry, the other two being FemmeFatale Aya Owada and her [[LightFeminineAndDarkFeminine light feminine counterpart]], telephone operator Kimiko Nakayama. Guess which two die.
** In ''Manga/{{Golgo 13}}: Kowloon Assignment'', she portrays an undercover policewoman who comes close to busting a drug operation before being killed in a shootout.
** In ''Shogun's Ninja'', she's a Chinese martial artist who's killed in a confrontation against Shogun's forces.
** In ''Film/LegendOfEightSamurai'', she's one of the eight dog brothers (who in this film [[GenderFlip is biologically female]]) who made a living as an assassin before she was discovered to be one of the eight. During the climactic final showdown, she's pitted against snake demon Yonosuke; they kill each other in combat.
* Characteristic of vintage movies which often featured two female love interests; one passive and conventional and the other an action girl. The feisty girl usually ended up giving her life to save the hero's. One rare inversion of the rule was ''Film/TheBuccaneer'' in which Yul Brynner played Jean Lafitte. The passive blond wimped out and the tough girl got Yul.
* In ''Film/SmokinAces'', there's Sharice Watters (Taraji P. Henson) the mentionably more badass and aggressive partner of Georgia Sykes (Alicia Keys), is gunned down by the FBI from behind while her more feminine counterpart is literally carried away to safety by a handsome "[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_%28artist%29 prince]]."
%%%%* Cybil in ''Film/SilentHill'' suffers this fate, which is the opposite of the game's outcome (if you save her from being possessed).
* Averted in ''Film/YoureNext''. Erin, the AwesomeAussie daughter of a [[CrazySurvivalist survivalist]], is by far the most badass character in the film, male or female, and it's precisely this that makes her the FinalGirl and turns the last third of the film into the most violent remake of ''Film/HomeAlone'' ever made.
* Zig-zagged in ''{{Film/Sharknado}}'', in which tough barmaid Nova is swallowed by a shark while Fin's non-action ex-wife April escapes ingestion, only to have Fin cut open the shark and pull Nova out alive.
* Played straight (seemingly) in the Irish horror film, ''Film/RedMist''. Harriet, the tough, goth-dressing AlphaBitch (played by Creator/KatieMcGrath) dies about three quarters into the film while her NiceGirl counterpart, Katherine survives...[[spoiler: if one can call being incarcerated in psych ward while possessed by a vengeful bodysurfer surviving]].
* Inverted with Katie [=McGrath=]'s role in ''Film/JurassicWorld''. Her character, Zara, a personal assistant [[spoiler:dies a horrible and tragic death]] while Meyers, an containment worker and soldier who gets even less screentime than her, [[spoiler: gets mauled by the ''I. Rex'' but lives]].
* In ''The Cave'' we have demure British scientist Catherine contrasted with brash rock climber Charlie. Three guesses which one dies.
* ''Freeway II: Confessions of a Trickbaby'' - There are two female leads representing Hansel and Gretel. Gretel is a more demure, confidence scheme criminal. Hansel is a brute. Guess who lives.
* [[ZigZaggingTrope Zig-zagged]] in ''Film/HaloNightfall''. Macer is a pilot and scientist more than a field soldier, and wears a more fanservice-y tank top when everyone is forced to strip off their gear, while Wisner is an expert markswoman who keeps her jacket on. Of course, Wisner is the one who bites it. However, their backstories invert this a bit; Macer is a FormerTeenRebel and MilitaryBrat who is shown to be interested in a full military career, while Wisner had a relatively privileged upbringing and has no intent for any further involvement in the military or law enforcement after her short contract with the Sedran Colonial Guard is over.
* In ''Film/TheHungerGamesMockingjay'' ''- Part 2'' Lieutenant Jackson only makes it to the halfway point before she it killed by mutations, while the more feminine Katniss and Cressida survive the film.
* Inverted in ''Film/MadMaxFuryRoad''. The ActionGirl Furiosa survives her injuries, including getting stabbed in the lungs. Meanwhile, the feminine Angharad, one of the Five Wives and heavily pregnant, is killed halfway through the film. However, the majority of the heroic casualties are [[NeverMessWithGranny the warrior Vuvalini]], while the rest of the non-combatant Wives survive.
* Played straight in ''Operation Chromite'', where the unnamed female operative who assists the protagonists on their mission in North Korea, dresses in men's clothing, and actively participates in shooting mooks is killed while the feminine nurse love interest, Chae-seon, survives to the end.
* None heroic example in ''Film/NewJackCity''. Kesha is a tough as nails member of Nino Brown's gang and won't [[DarkActionGirl hesitate to kill]] anyone who crosses them, no matter how minor. She is also the first one in his gang to die during a shootout, when an assassination attempt is made against Nino Brown by the Italian Mob during a wedding he was sponsoring.

* ''Literature/DreamPark'' series:
** In ''Dream Park'', the two main ActionGirl characters in the South Seas Treasure Game are the sexy Acacia and the indefatigable Mary-Martha. Both acquit themselves well, but only one of them makes it to the end of the Game, and it's not the middle-aged, 4'1" veteran with the battleax.
** Inverted in ''Literature/TheCaliforniaVoodooGame''. Mary-Em makes it out alive and with a massive experience boost, while Acacia's character suffers CharacterDeath, causing her to go through a HeroicBSOD.
* Dayna Jurgens in ''Literature/TheStand'' is Vasquez. Never send this character alone into a high risk [[TheInfiltration infiltration]]; they're guaranteed to go out in a [[DefiantToTheEnd blaze of glory]].
* Non-death example: the short story ''[[http://theopinionguy.com/OG25.pdf Assumption]]'' (scroll down) by Desmond Warzel. Belasco proves to be more effective in combat than the men or the unnamed female narrator, and is the only one seriously injured.
* In the ''Shane Schofield'' series of novels by Creator/MatthewReilly, there are two women who fit the Vasquez model, one moreso than the other. First, there's Mother (short for [[OneBadMother motherfucker]]), who is over six feet tall, shaven-headed, gets a bionic leg following an incident with a killer whale, and can kill several men with her bare hands. Then there's Elizabeth 'Fox' Gant, who is slightly more ladylike, but has the short hair and the ass-kicking ability. This trope is averted -- but not for lack of the universe trying, as Mother apparently dying only to turn up alive is a RunningGag -- up until ''Scarecrow'', [[InvertedTrope where Gant (by then Schofield's girlfriend) is beheaded by the asshole of the novel]].
* In ''Literature/TheTwoPrincessesOfBamarre'' by Gail Carson Levine, tomboyish older sister Meryl is the one who becomes ill with the Gray Death, while delicate younger sister Addie survives and must carry on Meryl's mission.
* ''Literature/SpyHigh''. While the heroines are all {{Action Girl}}s, it's [[ArrogantKungFuGuy Jennifer]] who dies in the third book, with Lori (the most stereotypically feminine) and Cally (the least focused and devoted to her training) who survive. Inverted in the final book, ''Agent Orange'', where Jen's [[SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute replacement]] Bex survives while [[spoiler: the rest of the team are "killed" in a mission to defeat Prof Devereaux, although they return]].
* In the penultimate ''{{Literature/Animorphs}}'' book, pretty-yet-[[DarkActionGirl Rachel]] agrees to go on a suicide mission against the [[PuppeteerParasite Yeerks]] and is ultimately killed. Fashion-challenged-[[TheConscience Cassie]] not only survives that battle, but in the last book she stays on Earth while her male teammates are [[AmbiguousEnding implied]] to die battling a DiabolusExNihilo.
* Inverted in the ''Literature/VenusPrime'' series. Despite being the lone AmbiguouslyBrown ActionGirl on a team otherwise populated by white people, Jo Walsh survives through the end of the series. Meanwhile, the pretty white heroine, Sparta, disappears, and may actually have died to save all of reality from Nemo's meddling.
* In ''Literature/TheSouthernReachTrilogy'', the surveyor is the toughest and most aggressive member of the twelfth expedition, being ex-military; however, she ends up being shot to death in a gunfight against the less intimidating, more feminine biologist.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
%%%%%%%%%% Do any of three three characters show signs of being more feminine than the action girls, or do the action girls show signs of being more masculine, other than being action-y?
%%%%%* ''Series/TwentyFour'': If any female character shows signs of being an ActionGirl, then you'd better not get too attached to her. The only recurring female characters to survive to the end of the series were the VoiceWithAnInternetConnection, the [[OurPresidentsAreDifferent president]] and TheScrappy.
* ''Series/ChoudenshiBioman'': In this case RealLifeWritesThePlot. Mika dies in episode 10 because her actress quit. She is, however, eventually replaced by another ActionGirl
* ''Series/{{Lost}}'': Ana Lucia (played by Creator/MichelleRodriguez) and Juliet, Kate's only true competition for Alpha Female of the island or the affections of Jack and Sawyer.
* ''Series/{{Merlin|2008}}'': In the fourth series finale, Arthur has two women on his team: Guinevere and Isolde. Though their skill in combat varied wildly from episode to episode, Gwen was definitely the more passive and feminine of the two, whilst Isolde was tougher and had a more difficult lifestyle. Gwen makes it through the battle, Isolde is killed.
* ''Franchise/PowerRangers'': Generally averts this trope; TheTeam will typically have a {{tomboy}} and a GirlyBruiser working together.
** ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers'' inverts the trope; Kimberly [[PinkMeansFeminine the pink ranger]] was the first to reach a death-like state when her power coin was stolen.
** ''Series/PowerRangersLostGalaxy'' has an inversion. Due to RealLifeWritesThePlot issues (the actress had to be written out after she was diagnosed with lukemia), the kind, friendly scientist girl was killed off while the athletic JunglePrincess remained. She was resurrected in the finale because her actress didn't die from her illness.
* ''Series/{{Primeval}}'': InvertedTrope, where tomboy Abby survived the series while the more feminine Claudia Brown and Sarah Page die.
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'': By the [[Recap/RevolutionS1E20TheDarkTower first season finale]], there were two women connected to Miles Matheson named Nora Clayton and Rachel Matheson. Nora is the tough, aggressive woman, while Rachel is the softer, more feminine woman. By the end of the episode, Nora dies and Rachel lives.
* ''Series/RobinHood'': had two {{action girl}}s, one DarkActionGirl and one FauxActionGirl. One ActionGirl is [[DisposableWoman murdered]], the second is PutOnABus (after undergoing {{Chickification}}), the DarkActionGirl is blown up, and the FauxActionGirl is the only one who makes it to the end of the series thanks to the fact that the male cast has all [[TheLoad but carried her through on their backs]].
* ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'': Played straight with Natasha Yar. Notably, the character was originally designed as a Vasquez {{Expy}}. In this case it wasn't the writer's idea to kill off the character, but the actor's.
* ''Series/{{Arrow}}'': Season 3's ending scene of the first episode has them kill off Sara Lance, [[ComicBook/BlackCanary the Canary]], who was the show's most prominent ActionGirl and one of the most badass of the team (going from her BadassBoast, she's at least tougher than Diggle, but its not clear if she's tougher than Oliver quite yet). What's notable is that, besides the fact its also BuryYourGays as Sara was bisexual/pansexual, but Sara had spent the previous season believing she was irredeemable that they'd yet to resolve properly, that looked like they were probably building up to a RedemptionEqualsDeath. Instead, Sara is executed by an off-screen villain to kick off the next season without even getting the chance to put up a fight. Then she gets brought back to life and is shoved into the spin-off series ''Series/LegendsOfTomorrow''. Meanwhile, her sister Dinah, a lawyer and the new Black Canary, gets stabbed to death by Damien Dahrk. While Laurel is an ActionGirl in her own right, she's nowhere near Sara's level.
* ''Series/TheWalkingDead'':
** By virtue of spending every moment of their lives fighting to survive, almost every woman eventually becomes an ActionGirl. However, this trope is inverted with Lori. Despite being pregnant with her second child, lacking combat experience, and spending most her time [[StayInTheKitchen in the kitchen,]] she ultimately dies during childbirth.
** Beth's death. Though capable of using a gun, she still heavily relied on the protection of others, liked to sing, babysat Judith, and was often TheLoad. Only after she TookALevelInBadass did she finally kick the bucket.
%%%%%%%%%%%%%% How does she fit the trope?
%%%%* In ''Series/{{Quantico}}'', [[spoiler:Nathalie Vasquez dies in the second half of the first season, killed by a trap left by the BigBad]].
* Obligatory ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'' examples:
** Faith is the tougher Slayer compared to Buffy, and while she doesn't actually die, she does perform a HeelFaceTurn and get into a fight that puts her into a coma for months.
** Kendra dies; she is also a foil for Buffy, being portrayed as an unemotional warrior who contrasts with Buffy's greater ability to be like a normal girl.
** Inverted with Willow and Tara; Tara is clearly more femme than Willow, and when it comes to magical power, she has less skill and ambition. But in that couple, it's Tara who dies and Willow who survives and avenges her.
* A {{flashback}} sequence in ''Series/TheHandmaidsTale'' has [[spoiler:June/Offred's husband Luke]] get picked up by a group heading to Canada, composed of a gay man, a rescued would-be Handmaid, a Catholic nun, and a tough-as-nails female Army brat. The MilitaryBrat is killed when the Guardians catch up to them at the Canadian border.

[[folder: Theater]]
* Cafe Nordo's ''Smoked!'' has Maddie Withers, a hard-drinking, masculinely dressed [[TheLadette Ladette]], who is gunned down in the final showdown, opposite Clara Still, the prim and proper saloon keeper.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/RedFaction 2'', the team's sexual-innuendo-dropping stealth operative in a SpyCatsuit not only survives the game, but is your main ally for the 2nd half. The tough redhead sniper with an Amazonian build and butch haircut is the first of TheSquad to die.
* In ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIV'', Alys is built up as the best action girl. She is very popular in the game, because of her fighting ability and beauty. However, [[DecoyProtagonist she dies off early]] and other action girls later reveal themselves.
* Played straight in the ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights'' mod ''VideoGame/TheBastardOfKosigan'', in which (as far as the story has been written, at least) the only female character who doesn't disappear after the OptionalSexualEncounter or die automatically is Ernie, who is much more feminine than Alex, whose PlotlineDeath was very frustrating.
* ''Franchise/MassEffect'':
** ''[[VideoGame/MassEffect1 Mass Effect 1]]'': Played with in regards to Ashley Williams, the competent career soldier reminiscent of Vasquez in several ways, who may or may not [[spoiler: be left to die on Virmire - [[SadisticChoice unless the player saves her and leaves Kaidan instead.]] According to the developers, the latter option is overwhelmingly more popular]].
** ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'': During the game's suicide run, it's far more likely for the tough, angry Jack to die than TheBaroness Miranda, and [[DroppedABridgeOnHim in a rather ignominious fashion]] at that, as the time Jack is most likely to die is when she's [[spoiler: standing in the least shielded portion of the ship]] while Miranda is [[spoiler: in the most shielded portion]].
* ''Franchise/DragonAge'':
** Played with in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOriginsAwakening''. [[SacrificialLamb Mhairi]] will always die, and of the two female companions who can make it to the end, both the tough, dagger-wielding Sigrun and the long-distance mage Velanna can die...but Sigrun is killed in a decisive way, while in Velanna's case, they NeverFoundTheBody.
** Inverted in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'', where if you make a choice your party members disagree with during the ending and don't have a high enough [[RelationshipValues Friendship or Rivalry score]], they will turn against you and force you to kill them... except for [[DaChief Aveline]], who merely gives you a [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech brief rant]] before [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere leaving]].
* In the first ''VideoGame/ClockTower'' game, playable character Jennifer's friends Ann and Laura have a chance of surviving to the end, depending on your actions. Her best friend, the tomboyish Lotte, has no such chance.
* ''VideoGame/TheOrionConspiracy''. Brooks, who is definitely the Vasquez in this game, gets killed off trying to stop Ward after he had gone berserk. [=LaPaz=], who is easily more feminine compared to Brooks, survives.
* In ''[[VideoGame/SASZombieAssault SAS: Zombie Assault 3]]'' players who aren't logged in are given somewhat degrading names, one of which is Anonymous Vaskes.
* ''VideoGame/AlphaProtocol'' can play this straight or completely invert it. [[ActionGirl SIE]] (think a female Duke Nukem) can be killed same as the rest of your love interests, but you have to do it yourself after you select her as your handler in the penultimate mission in Russia. Otherwise, she will survive the game, whereas for [[TheChick Madison St. James]] and [[VoiceWithAnInternetConnection Mina Tang]] just don't have to be rescued when they get captured, and Scarlett Lake can be shot in the last decision you make in the game.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' plays with this. Aerith is a sweet, feminine girl who wears pink and sells flowers, whilst Tifa is a tough barmaid who likes to punch things. Tifa is physically stronger, but she's also far more emotionally insecure. Aerith is physically weak, but is also an outgoing, outspoken tomboy with plenty of confidence. It's Tifa, who fears emotional vulnerability, that survives.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Galerians}} Galerians: Ash]]'' is never subtle about its references. Cas, the game's tough and tatted military woman, may as well be Vasquez. The only notable difference is that Cas is more level-headed. The outcome is the same though - a self-sacrificing last stand against monsterous creatures.

[[folder: Web Comics]]
* The adventuring team in ''Webcomic/OurLittleAdventure'' has three girls in it. One's a [[TheHero heroic]] [[QuirkyBard bard]], one's a [[ShortTank spunky]] [[BlackMagicianGirl sorceress]] and one's a [[ActionGirl tough]] [[TheBerserker barbarian]]. Guess which one dies first?

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/ExoSquad'' almost does this in episode "Martian Luck" where the tough-female-trooper Torres is believed to be KIA while the other two more feminine female members of TheSquad survive.
* ''WesternAnimation/StarshipTroopersInvasion'': The squad has two female members: the cute FriendlySniper Trig, and the tough OneOfTheGuys trooper Ice Blonde. One of them ends up as Bug chow during the film. Guess which one? [[InvertedTrope It's Trig]].
* Non-death example: in ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama Island,'' [[JerkJock super-athletic]] but [[HairTriggerTemper tempermental]] Eva is the second contestant, and the first girl, to be voted off. She is given a second chance at the season's halfway point but, having become even ''more'' angry, is voted off again in the same episode.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' episode "Failsafe", when an alien invasion attacks the earth, tough-as-nails Artemis is the first of the main cast to die. Subverted when it turns out it was only a training simulation. Also justified since while Artemis might be the least feminine of the female characters on the team, she's also the [[BadassNormal least durable]]. Then, in the next season, Artemis is also the first person to be killed in battle. [[spoiler: Again, subverted, when it turns out to be a ploy so she can go undercover.]]