Yvonne Strahovski in the Top 5 Alpha females
Alpha-Beta, or opposites-attract stories are a common and winning formula in romances today. Fire and ice. Action and reaction. Passion versus logic.
While there are many different flavors for this particular formula, there is a gendered norm. Most commonly, the hero is the Alpha—logical, dominating, socially elevated, and emotionally distant. Add to this a passionate, sensitive heroine who is, if not an outright social outcast, at least on a lower level on the social spectrum. The hero gives the heroine security and fidelity. The heroine teaches the hero how to get in touch with his emotions. Sparks fly. Boots are knocked. Baby-strewn epilogues are had. Everyone goes home happy.
While there is certainly nothing wrong with this trope, the romances that reverse these gendered roles are all the more special to me for being rarer. I’m talking Alpha Female romances. Where the heroine is the strong, take-charge, emotionally scarred character partnered with a sweet, supportive, sly Beta male.
Here are my top five Alpha Females:
#5 Sarah Walker from NBC’s Chuck
When a hapless retail employee recovering from a disastrous breakup accidentally downloads all of the United States’ secrets, a high-ranking CIA agent is called in to assess the damage. Only in Chuck’s case, the emotionally reserved, butt-kicking superspy is Sarah Walker, and it is the lovelorn nerd Chuck Bartowski who must be rescued. However, the lovely reversal of gender roles is only half the fun of this romantic pairing. Watching Sarah evolve through five seasons from the icy government handler in charge of guarding Chuck to the complex, compassionate woman in love with Chuck (and who can still swoop in and save the day, guns blazing) is one of the central plotlines of the show.
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By Elizabeth Vail