Katniss is certainly a strong female character. Her courage, power, and survivor-mentality cannot be disputed. She provided for her family, took her sister’s place in the Hunger Games, and fought against the other twenty-two (not counting Peeta) tributes to win the Games. However, as the fictional series became more and more popular and the movie was finally released in theaters, people seemed to have forgotten her inherent strength as a female individual and have instead become fixated on a less important, more superficial aspect of Katniss’s story: her love interests.
Sure, Peeta and Gale embody a large part of the story line, but I believe that Katniss’s story has more depth than a mere love story. I admit that I was rooting for Peeta while reading the series (yes, I couldn’t just stop at the first novel…), and I’m sure I’ll swoon over the actors once I get around to seeing the movie, but I can’t help but thinking that the newfound obsession with this Hunger Game love triangle parallels directly with that of another major player in the industry of fictional series: the Twilight Saga.
In my opinion, Katniss is an obviously stronger, more powerful female character than Bella, but while reading the Hunger Games series, I kept relating her predicament with that of Bella. Just as Bella was torn between Edward and Jacob and couldn’t seem to make up her mind, Katniss was torn between Peeta and Gale and remained undecided until the very end of the series. The love triangle surely brought more conflict to Katniss’s story, but it also weakened her image as a powerful female character in a way. I found it hard to believe that as her life was on the line (as it was countless times throughout the series), she couldn’t make up her mind and realize who she truly loved as more than a friend.
I know that it was a difficult decision, but such uncertainty certainly caused Katniss to seem less powerful, especially since it was centered around her own emotions. Just as Bella did in the Twilight Saga, Katniss wavered back and forth between the two men in her life. Rather than taking a stand and realizing her true desires, she remained undecided and tiptoed around her actual feelings. I still think that Katniss’s strength is undeniable, but I just wish she made up her mind earlier in the series and did not show much of the typical “girly” problem of not knowing what she wanted when it came to love. I guess it made for good drama, but I couldn’t keep myself from relating her commonplace dilemma to Bella’s, and this definitely caused me to view her as a weaker character overall.