The Matrix franchise became a pop-cultural phenomenon on so many levels. It tackles everlasting social and existential questions while also giving us such incredible action. One of the reasons I loved the movies so much is the presence of strong, empowered female characters.
From Trinity and Captain Niobe to the Oracle, here’s a list of all relevant female characters from The Matrix Trilogy (soon to be Tetralogy). The list is in alphabetical order, and it includes both human females and programs with female RSIs (Residual Self Images).
Kamala is a program, and she has a minor role in the Trilogy. She is the mother of Sati, a sentient program with an RSI of a little girl. Kamala strikes a deal with the Merovingian to smuggle Sati inside the Matrix and save her life. She also has a husband named Rama-Kandra, portrayed by Bernard White.
As for Kamala, the actress playing the role in the Matrix movies was Tharini Mudaliar. The character appears only in The Matrix Revolutions and has brown eyes with black hair.
Maggie, also known as Magnum or Margaret, was a medical expert in the real world on a ship called Mjolnir (or the Hammer, as the crewmembers called it). She appears in The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions.
After Neo’s ship, Nebuchadnezzar, gets destroyed, the Hammer crew finds them and saves the survivors. Neo and Bane are placed in the medical chambers, and while Neo shows signs of being in the Matrix (despite being “unplugged”), Bane regains consciousness.
However, when Bane and Maggie stay in the medical bay of the Hammer alone, it is revealed that a clone of (Agent) Smith occupied Bane’s body, and he stabs Maggie in the stomach with a scalpel. Sadly, she passes away from the wound and is later found by the rest of the crew.
Essie Davis played the character in the movies. Maggie has short ginger/blonde hair and blue eyes.
Captain Niobe is a very popular character in the movies and the Matrix comics and video games. Niobe is the captain of a ship called Logos, with Ghost being her first mate. Over time, she has proven to be an incredible pilot and a prolific combatant, especially in hand-to-hand combat. Also, she’s a former lover of Morpheus, one of the most badass characters in the entire universe.
In Greek mythology, Niobe was a queen of Thebes with a tragic history, forced to watch all her children and her husband die. Niobe is strong, independent, brave, and rightful. Nothing and nobody can do her act against her own beliefs or gut.
Captain Niobe appears in all three Matrix movies, where Jada Pinkett Smith plays the part. She also appears in the games Enter The Matrix, The Matrix Online, and The Matrix: Path Of Neo, while her appearance in the fourth Matrix movie has been announced.
Niobe has brown eyes and black hair, and although she’s only about 4’9’’ (150 cm), the Logos captain is as tough as they come.
Persephone is a very old program living in the Matrix – one of the oldest out there, for that matter. When you’ve been around for so long, you get kind of bored, even if you’re just a computer program. Persephone is the wife of villainous Merovingian, but after losing the love they once had, she starts to despise her husband.
Persephone wants excitement and chaos, so she betrays her husband by leading Neo, Trinity, and Morpheus to the Keymaker to help them reach the Architect in exchange for only a single kiss from Neo.
There’s a link to Greek Mythology here once again – Hades kidnaps Persephone and takes her to the underworld, where she ultimately becomes their goddess. Many say that Monica Belluci did look like a goddess playing Persephone in the movies, with her beautiful dark black hair and supermodel physique.
Every program within the Matrix is created to serve a purpose. When that purpose is fulfilled or no longer needed, the program is terminated. However, one program wasn’t created out of need but rather out of love, Sati.
She’s a child of the programs Kamala and Rama-Kandra, who made a deal with the Merovingian to save Sati’s life and smuggle her into the Matrix.
She lives in exile with the Oracle, one of the most powerful programs that took her under her protection. The Oracle believed Sati would someday possess incredible power and be crucial to the future of both the humans and the Machines.
Sati might be more powerful than we think, though. After the One sacrifices himself to bring peace, and the Matrix is restored, Sati tells the Oracle that she had created the sunrise in Neo’s memory. If that’s true, it means Sati can manipulate the Matrix itself, which is something not even the Oracle can do.
Switch was an awesome character appearing in the first Matrix movie. She was one of the original crew members on Nebuchadnezzar, usually tasked with guard duty alongside her partner, Apoc. Switch was the one holding Neo at her crosshair while Trinity got the nasty bug implant out of his stomach.
Unlike other crew members, Switch rocked an awesome white trenchcoat with short spiky blonde hair. Unfortunately, her time in the Matrix movies was short-lived, as both Switch and Apoc perished in a betrayal from one of their crew members, Cypher.
An interesting fact about Switch is that the character was originally planned as somewhat of a transgender character, changing gender from male outside of the Matrix to female when entering the Matrix. Hence, the name Switch.
Instead, the producers cast Belinda McClory and went with the single-gender approach. However, they kept the name and gave Switch the iconic white outfit, symbolizing the white angel and the female warrior.
7. The Oracle
Before the Matrix version we see in the movie trilogy, two previous iterations of the Matrix went horribly wrong. One was Paradise, while the other was Nightmare – and the human minds simply couldn’t comprehend either.
So, the machines created the Oracle – an incredibly powerful program designed to understand people and their needs to help the Architect build a sustainable version of the Matrix. It seems that she understood the humans a bit too well, as she went rogue and into exile, playing a granny baking cookies and taking care of little Sati.
The Oracle never directly says what needs to be done. Still, seeing how well she understands humans, the program lies to Neo and Morpheus several times, only to manipulate them to make certain actions, steering them on the right path to where they need to be. She’s one of the most powerful and most influential characters in the entire Matrix universe.
Two different actresses had portrayed the gentle, soft-spoken granny. Gloria Foster impersonated the Oracle in the first two movies, while Mary Alice took over for The Matrix Revolutions.
Trinity is the epitome of powerful women characters in the Matrix from start to finish. She’s a hacker, and a free mind who first contacted Neo, pulled out the nasty bug-like device from his stomach, and helped him wake up after taking him to Morbius. The two later became lovers, but the most important part of their relationship was fighting the Machines.
Trinity is extremely confident, strong, independent, and intelligent while also being a prolific martial artist and hand-to-hand combatant, and a weapons expert. In the first Matrix, she resurrects Neo from the dead and fights alongside him to the end. Her Matrix suits are always made out of black leather or latex, and she drives and pilots all kinds of vehicles.
In the end, Trinity sacrifices her life to allow Neo to finally break the cycle and end the war between the humans and the Machines. Neo succeeded, so her death wasn’t in vain. She is by far the most influential female character in the entire trilogy.
Carrie-Anne Moss was tasked to play the role of Trinity. The character has short-to-medium black hair and blue eyes. Oh, and her real name is Tiffany, and believe it or not, she’s 53 years old – at least according to the Matrix Wiki.
Last but not least, Zee is a wife to Link and a sister to Dozer and Tank. After her brother Dozer dies, she remains extremely close friends with Cas, his widow. Interestingly, Zee is a natural-born human of Zion, something that’s not so often.
During the battle of Zion, she was a loader for a bazooka team, and on another occasion, Zee single-handedly destroys a Sentinel with a lightning rifle to allow Kid and Link to save the Docks. She survived a lot, and she believes it has something to do with her lucky charm, which Zee eventually gives to her husband, Link.
Zee appeared in The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions and is portrayed by Nona Gaye, Marvin Gaye’s daughter actress. Interestingly, yet sadly, the producers first gave the role to Aaliyah, the famous singer. However, before the movie’s production, Aaliyah tragically passed away, so Nona replaced her in the movies – and did a marvelous job.