Where Are All the Leading Women? On TV, Of Course

By Sarah Carlson | Seriously Random Lists | June 26, 2013 |

Good thing I stopped relying on movies as my main source of entertainment ages ago. I go to the movie theater every now and then, but I learned long ago that if I want the best entertainment around, I should turn to TV. You're looking for not only great female characters, but ones that either are the leads or are among the main characters in a story? Start filling up your DVR queues. This doesn't solve the problem of a lack of female voices in film, and statistically, I'm sure women are still underrepresented on TV compared to men. (And this doesn't even cover minority and LGBT characters.) Nevertheless, TV, and especially extended cable, is where the stories are.

Here are some of our favorite leading ladies from current shows:

Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), "Game of Thrones"


Mindy Lahiri (Mindy Kaling), "The Mindy Project"

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Sarah/Beth/Alison/Cosima/Helena/Katja/Rachel etc. (Tatiana Maslany), "Orphan Black"

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Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), "Veep"


Peggy Olsen (Elisabeth Moss), "Mad Men"


And another from Elisabeth Moss: Robin Griffin, "Top of the Lake"


Sarah Linden (Mireille Enos), "The Killing"


Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington), "Scandal"

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Jackie Peyton (Edie Falco), "Nurse Jackie"


Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies), "The Good Wife"


Hannah Horvath (Lena Dunham), "Girls"


Carrie Mathison (Claire Daines), "Homeland"


Jess Day (Zooey Deschanel), "New Girl"


Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin), "True Blood"


Fiona Gallagher (Emmy Rossum), "Shameless"


Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler), "Parks and Recreation"


Sarah Carlson is a TV Critic for Pajiba. She lives in San Antonio. You can find her on Twitter.

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