Next week, one of the greatest screen heroines of all times returns. Terminator Genisys once again focuses on Sarah Connor, mother of savior John, and her anti-apocalypse battle against the machines. This time she is portrayed by Emilia Clarke, best known for playing Daenerys Targaryen on Game of Thrones. (Connor was also played on television by Lena Headey, Game of Thrones' Cersei. Make of that what you will.)
The badass version of Sarah Connor really came to the fore in 1991's Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Suddenly a woman who was oblivious when the first movie began was transformed into a super-buff truth-teller, rivaling Arnold Schwarzenegger for physical fitness. The new movie starts Sarah's transformation even earlier in the convoluted Terminator timeline.
Sarah Connor belongs to a lineage of female action heroes across television and movies that includes predecessors like Ripley from the Alien movies and keeps growing each year. (Hello, Imperator Furiosa! Nice of you to join us!) While physical strength doesn't always result in a well-rounded female protagonist and sometimes their storylines don't do women the justice they deserve, these butt-kicking ladies stand out.