Or (and Top Gun fits this one all too well) sexed by the protagonist as a way to work out his own issues. Her issues, goals and desires, if she has any, are mere wallpaper to the Maverick's own crisis of manliness. Once he has had a proper shag he is once again on the path back to alpha manliness.
It is Hollywood, but at the time there was a lot of fuss and braying about how she was a role model for young women because she was a smartypants scientist (whose big entrance started with sexy nylons and heels). And despite her brilliance, she risked her career and all that she had worked for just to get a little Tom Cruise penis.
I say again, total bullshit character. I'm sure the real person is much more interesting.