The YA Dictionary: Badass (adj.)



The word badass is one of the more varied adjectives out there. What do you consider a badass? More importantly, what do I consider a badass? (narcissistic Reem strikes again ). This is one of the harder words to describe, so being the computer whiz that I am, I did a little research on the subject. If only I did this with my chemistry syllabus..

   Anyway, brace yourselves ladies and gentlemen, because here are the results of my research:

  According to the Free Online Dictionary: 

1. tough or aggressive 
2. excellent

Hmm, not exactly what I was looking for. Shall I seek for my ever trustworthy dictionary? I shall. Here's what Urban Dictionary had to say: 

The badass is an uncommon man of supreme style. He does what he wants, when he wants, where he wants.

That's more like it. Although I have to disagree that a badass can also be a woman. Matter of fact, most of YA books these days feature a tough, strong female character. It's a one up from the insecure whiny ones. Personally, when I come across the word badass, I imagine certain actors or actresses. This lead me to think, what makes a badass? Why did I choose that certain fella as a badass? The results I got went further than just having a cool leather jacket and an equally cool motorcycle. Here's , IMO, what makes a character badass: 

1.Tryion Lannister

Matter of fact, all the Lannisters are a bunch of badasses. Except Cersei, I don't like her. Tyrion Lannis
ter isn't exactly what you would call.. brave. Atleast, that's what he looked like at the beginning. The man has all the odds against him (see: Tywin Lannister) but he manages somehow to make it to the top, and takes the right steps as to not fall in the same mistakes as the people before him. Also, do you remember his speech at Blackwater? Badass.

2.Dr. Gregory House 

I think if I ever was a patient of Dr. House, I'd hate his guts. The man is so honest, it borders on being rude. No, scratch that, the man is rude. But like the definition from Urban Dictionary suggests, the man does what he wants, when he wants. This, of course, results in a series of hilarious scenes, that makes him endearing yet not someone you'd like to meet in real life. Also, he usually gets the diagnosis right, so there's that. 


Fun fact: On rare occasions, I don't make sense. This is one of those occasions. The thing is, I don't know what make both of those characters badass because they have nearly nothing in common. Maybe it's their presence? Their charisma? I don't know, but here it is.. 



The good thing about the word badass is that it can apply to the hero/anti-hero, and for the most part, that is Snape. Even before the "big reveal" the man was, IMO, a badass. I think he's the reason half the Hogwarts students peed themselves. Not that enticing fear in children is something to be envied for, but still, his somewhat mysterious and fierce personality made him worthy of the title.

And now to the more obvious part as to why someone is regarded as badass..

1. Katniss Everdeen
This one's pretty obvious. While not showing charming qualities, you can't deny Katniss is a badass. She's a true survivalist, all the while defying the President, and standing up for what she believes in. She could have chosen the easy way out during the 74th Hunger Games, but she showed courage, even though it meant she had to pay for it sooner or later. Also, she was the reason a current trend of strong female characters are everywhere. Not that I'm complaining.

2. The Free Hawks

I know some of you might not know what I'm talking about, but these are basically a group of girl warriors from Blood Red Road. They were my favourite part of the book because they, truly, were badass. They basically went around the country causing mayhem and blowing up fires (all for a good cause). Imagine the ninja turtles except much, much cooler and not living in a sewer.

What are your examples of badass characters? Let me know! 


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