Evil Geeks Women’s History Month Warriors: Dr. Helen Magnus
So many of the lead female roles these days seem to be lacking something, and I am not sure what it is. Of course, they almost always are young, attractive, and look great in form-fitting outfits. They might have a talent, or some brains, but it just feels like they are still in the shadows, falling short of being a great role model or the one that saves the day. Luckily one of my favorite retired TV shows, Sanctuary, does not have any of these issues. The show has a gold-star woman in the lead, Helen Magnus defies a lot of the traditional qualities we typically see in leading women. She is beautiful, but she is also older, dresses in suits, is a medical doctor, and has successfully started an entire network sanctuaries to protect and preserve supernatural species across the globe.
Speaking of being older, Helen is actually over 250 years old, owing to the fact that she and her scientist friends in the 1800’s were able to each inject themselves with some preserved vampire blood and effectively give each other special qualities: for Helen that meant aging at an extraordinarily slow rate. Having so much time to experience life, Helen is definitely a wise woman.
Helen learned about the world of hiding abnormals when she was a child and her father was performing research in the area. She followed in his footsteps and continued performing scientific research in the realm of abnormal species. Despite being born in the mid-1800’s, Helen did not agree with the limitations set forth for women in that era and became quite an achievement even before she gained her longevity. She became a medical doctor, unheard of amongst women in the Victorian age, and worked alongside several brilliant men as the only female student at Oxford, performing state of the art scientific research of the time.
Helen certainly took advantage of her slow-aging as well, trying to meet with some of he most famous minds she could during her life. She met with Einstein, Ghandi, and others, occasionally commenting that she might have influenced history by planting some seeds in the minds of great achievers. And during her long life she also tried to best herself, becoming a speaker of a half dozen languages, learning how to hold up in hand to hand combat. But her greatest achievement was the development of a Sanctuary network.
Helen single handedly designed, built, and staffed dozens of large buildings over the world where abnormals can find sanctuary or are housed in a pseudo-zoo like situation for their own protection. She saves hundreds of species from extinction over the years, and ends up saving the world several times over thanks to her work with the Sanctuary Network.
I always love a great female lead role, and Helen Magnus fits the role of a woman warrior with grace. She is a brave, intelligent, non-nonsense, strong, and enigmatic woman that deserves a lot of praise. Thank you Helen Magnus for going against the grain and being such a great female role model for us all.
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