Many TV shows still lack adequate representation of women, but each season we’re seeing a new group of fascinating female characters. And we’ve rounded up a list of a few of those characters. So if you’re looking for an inspiring figure, someone who isn’t afraid to kick butt and take some numbers, look no further than these fierce ladies.
These five women are the lead characters in strong ensembles, and demonstrate to us season after season that strong is beautiful.
Melissa Fumero as Amy Santiago, Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Someone should write an ode to this unabashedly nerdy cop, who also happens to know a thing or two about kicking serious criminal ass. Amy Santiago is that rare female character that doesn’t fit into any stereotype. She’s smart, competitive, sometimes a little naïve, adorable, and incredibly sharp when it comes to solving crime. Amy takes on class clown Jake Peralta down a notch, and always brings her top game to the precinct. Other ways that Amy has inspired viewers? She’s not afraid to take charge and be a leader, but can also be completely goofy and dorky when the occasion calls for it.
Kerry Washington as OIivia Pope, Scandal
The beautiful and fearl ess Olivia Pope leads her Gladiators-- a crew of crisis management professionals, and each week manages to outsmart and outdo CIA agents, skilled politicians, and tough criminals. How does she do it?
She uses her wit, inner strength and impeccable monotone outfits to intimidate, hack, and get to the bottom of any investigation. Olivia also happens to carry an on-and-off affair with the President on the show, and on more than one occasion she calls him out on his bulls**** without fear. A busy schedule, no doubt, but she gets it all done just in time for her evening glass of wine.
Emilia Clark as Daenerys Targaryen, Game of Thrones
If you’re a member of the legions of GOT fans, you know that the Mother of Dragons stands out as one fierce lady. She doesn’t let anyone intimidate her, and her ice queen persona, while not exactly warm or fuzzy, comes in handy during stressful situations. At one point she walks into a fire and wakes up the next morning with a freshly hatched crew of baby dragons. Maybe it’s best to get inspired by fierceness, but not her methods, which she uses to lead with a bloody and totalitarian fist.
Mariska Hargitay as Olivia Benson, Law & Order: SVU
An incredible character on one of the longest running shows on TV, Olivia Benson dedicates her entire career to protecting and serving others. She helps women who are in terrifying situations, and kicks butt in every way. Olivia eventually ends up leading the show as she ascends the ranks and is promoted from detective to sergeant. But it’s her sense of integrity, courage, and commitment to doing the right thing that has made her a favorite TV sensation. In case you forgot some of her incredible badass moments here are a few recaps:
- Going undercover as an inmate to expose corrupt, violent jail guards
- Outsmarting her kidnapper, an evil perp who planned on killing her
- Saving a little girl who is locked in a room (this episode earned actress Mariska Hargitay an Emmy)
Gina Torres as Jessica Pearson, Suits
You need a strong, unflinching character like Jessica Pearson to stand up to someone as arrogant as Harvey Specter, not to mention the many other conniving, Machiavellian characters that a law firm is bound to come across. But few are a match to Jessica Pearson, the head of the Pearson Specter Litt law firm. Her law firm goes through drastic changes, management turnover, backstabbing and the threat of it all falling apart, but Jessica manages to handle all of these issues with relative calm and legal brilliance. The best Jessica Pearson quote seems like it’s the one she thinks when she opens her eyes in the morning: “I will win”. Boom. Mic drop.
If these TV women inspire you, let us know all about it. Or perhaps there are others who bring you inspiration. Share more about your favorite kickbutt women on TV in the comments below.