Captain Phasma Featured In New Photo From Empire

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Captain Phasma is the featured character in a new and exclusive photo from Empire.

Empire has released a new photo of Captain Phasma from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The scene is the village on fire we’ve seen from the trailers and tv spots, and the chrometrooper is poised to blast anyone who gets in her way.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie)

Ph: Elena Dorfman

© 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved.

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There’s something powerful about Captain Phasma, and it’s not just because she’s a captain or because she has shiny silver armor. Part of it is the fact that Phasma is a she, and that the actress playing her is Gwendoline Christie, who has shown herself to be a strong performer capable of stepping outside of female hero stereotypes in her role as Brienne of Tarth in HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Perhaps that’s the other part of Phasma’s appeal: She’s not dressed in skintight clothes, showing off her hourglass shape and cleavage, and she’s not French-kissing any of the heroes or other villains in the footage we’ve seen. There’s nothing wrong with having an hourglass shape or cleavage, or even with French-kissing; but when these things become the normal forms of marketing a “strong female character,” one begins to think it’s the only way female characters in popular media look.

Phasma, as well as Rey and Leia, challenge those conceptions. She’s dressed practically for her occupation, she’s dangerous and authoritative… and that’s really all we have to judge her on (although, admittedly, she does have a sexy voice). Like her fellow male characters, Phasma is treated as a real person, rather than a stereotype.

Next: Watch: Three New The Force Awakens TV Spots

See Gwendoline Christie bring Captain Phasma to life in The Force Awakens on December 18th. Less than a month away!