1. She’s smart enough to see Ganondorf’s betrayal before everyone else does, even though she’s so young.
2. She comes up with a plan to try to stop him. Yes it was unsuccessful, but what do you expect? SHE WAS MOTHERFUCKING TEN-YEARS-OLD! Look at her:
She’s just a child! Practically a baby. You know what I planned when I was this age? A bunch of nonsensical, stupid shit. I was an idiot; most are as children. Hell, some are as adults. Despite what some think, nobody is infallible, especially not someone so young and sheltered. At least she’s trying to help, unlike running away and crying like most would do at ten.
3. She’s able to disguise herself as a boy and escape the man who a) defeated her father’s army and b) overthrew her kingdom ruthlessly for seven years. SEVEN YEARS. SEVEN. FREAKING. YEARS.
4. She goes to Link when he awakens to lend whatever help she can, despite how dangerous it would be for her.
5. She saved Ruto from the ice in Zora’s Domain by herself. Link isn’t the only hero in Hyrule.
6. SHE HAS MAD MAGICAL SKILLS DUDE!! REMEMBER HOW SHE TRAPPED GANON, THIS GIANT-ASS PIG-DEMON, WITH HER MAGIC POWERS?? HOW BADASS WAS THAT??
7. She’s feminine and strong. She’s soft-spoken and kind and wears a dress, but she’s also brave and determined. Please don’t forget:
is still also this person
8. She cares about Link’s well-being. People just love to demonize Zelda in OoT and say “oh she’s just using Link, that deceptive little bitch” but no, she shows some actual, genuine care for his well-being. a) like I mentioned before, she’s risking her life to meet with him as Shiek b) She actually cries out in fear anytime he gets hurt while they’re escaping Ganon’s crumbling castle together and during the final boss-battle. c) I will touch upon it later, but trust me, she considers his feelings more than so many people think she does.
9. She admits that she screwed up. This one is a big one for me because I think it’s pretty hard for anyone to admit when they’ve fucked up, especially when they meant well. But Zelda doesn’t even falter, she straight-up admits that her plan backfired and even goes as far as saying everything was her fault. Look:
She even tells Link that she now realizes that she was far too young to mess with things she didn’t fully understand.
10. She sends Link back in time for his sake and nothing more. Based on what Hyrule Historia says about the cutscene in the clouds (how it “marked the parting of Link and Princess Zelda”) and Zelda’s behaviour in MM’s flashback cutscene, we can insinuate that her consciousness did not go back in time as his did. Meaning, the Princess Zelda we meet in the very final cutscene and who gave Link the Ocarina in that flashback in MM is not the same Princess Zelda who disguised herself as Shiek for seven years. That Princess Zelda remains in the ruined Hyrule, a lonely orphan, left to rebuild an entire kingdom by herself. She no longer has Impa, as she is now a sage, and now she sent Link back in time so he can regain what she feels responsible for taking from him. This shows her courage, for facing the consequences of her mistake, her selflessness, for not abandoning the people living in the wake of Ganondorf’s tyrannical reign, and her care for Link, as she sends him back despite that it will leave her completely alone.
Final Verdict: OoT Zelda is a freaking goddess and there’s not one thing anyone can say to convince me otherwise.