You dare not mess with Tulip O’Hare, the badass woman in “Preacher,” the acclaimed AMC drama based on the popular comic book.
AMC has smartly revamped the character, played brilliantly by Ruth Negga, for today’s new era of the super woman.
In the comics, Tulip is a skinny, blonde white woman who is getting her life back on track after kicking her drug habit. In the TV series, Tulip bites a man’s ear off while fighting him in runaway car careening through a field and then kills him with an ear of corn. Then, she builds a bazooka out of tin cans and duct tape and uses it to shoot down a helicopter. This takes place all in the series’ first episode.
Negga explained the reasoning behind the Tulip transformation in an interview with ET:
They wanted to sort of update Tulip. The comics were written in the ’90s and I think they all wanted to make her more present and more modern. Which is important, especially with the conversations we have about women’s place in comics, and women’s place in TV and movies.
This is a woman who denies all projects and refutes any sort of traditional definitions of what a woman in an action piece should be. So I think that was just a necessary kind of update.
Negga talked about her inspirations:
What influenced me was sort of the punk era, and that kind of androgynous nature of all these musicians, who refused to be one thing or the other — they’re kind of slippery. David Bowie, for example, was a huge influence. Siouxsie Sioux, Poly Styrene, all those women — Debbie Harry playing CBGB’s — they kind of intelligently cut through a really male, seemingly aggressive scene. I just love what they did.
I like it when you kind of refuse to be boxed in by your gender, and by what people assume. I mean, can you imagine what people thought when they first saw Bowie? I mean they must have been astounded.