15 of the most interesting female monsters in fiction

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6. Werewolves

We’ve already touched somewhat on women who turn into beasts. There’s Irena from Cat People, who is none too happy about what appears to be a rare genetic condition. In The Wasp Woman, Janice Starling brings her own B-horror style transformation on herself, though you can’t help but feel at least a little pity for her.

And then there’s fate. In Ginger Snaps (2000), Ginger and her sister Brigitte have to deal with a particularly cruel and strange twist of fate. They’re already outcasts, having creeped out the other teens with their morbid fascination with death. But, in the midst of a strange series of dog attacks, Ginger gets her period. That’s essentially a giant, flashing neon sign that we are about to enter a horror tale centering on pubescent young women.

Sure enough, that mysterious dog attacks Ginger. Brigitte is unscathed. Instead of going to the hospital, however, Ginger decides to just go home. Her wounds are healing incredibly fast, after all.

Soon, it becomes clear that Ginger wasn’t bitten by any ordinary dog. She starts sprouting hair from her wounds and gets aggressive, both socially and sexually. Ginger even grows a tail. It’s all pretty serious imagery centered on that strange, sometimes frightening passage into adulthood: puberty. Normally, we all have to deal with odd and seemingly sudden changes to our bodies during this time. In Ginger Snaps, that anxiety is ratcheted to an extreme, but perhaps one that is all too familiar.

Like many other monsters here, Ginger becomes too much to handle. Even Brigitte, her closest friend, can’t tame the beast that has taken her sister’s place. It’s another tragic end for a female monster that turned too strong and too dangerous for the rest of us.