female characters The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time  

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List Rules The most memorable, most groundbreaking, strongest, and/or funniest female characters ever on television

Who are the greatest female TV characters of all time? This list includes some of the greatest television characters in history from dramatic shows, sitcoms, and sci-fi series to procedurals and cartoons! For as long as TV has been a medium to reflect social constructs, programs have featured strong women characters as protagonists, partners, and foils for their male counterparts. In comedy shows, characters like Lucy Ricardo, Mary Richards, and Maude Findlay paved the way for Elaine Benes, Roseanne Conner, and Liz Lemon.

Female characters dominate modern genre series, with popular women like Daenerys Targaryen, Dana Scully, Buffy Summers, and Veronica Mars achieving cult-level idolization. You'll recognize these famous names as some of the strongest, funniest, and most relatable in television history.

Vote up the greatest female characters to move them up the list, and add please any that we're missing.

list ordered by

1
10,651 7,012
Buffy Summers is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Buffy Summers Buffy the Vampire Slayer

2
8,892 6,322
Daenerys Targaryen is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Daenerys Targaryen Game of Thrones

3
7,011 5,817
Dana Scully is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Dana Scully The X-Files

4
5,872 4,457
Olivia Benson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Olivia Benson Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

5
5,435 4,571
Lucy Ricardo is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Lucy Ricardo I Love Lucy

6
7,573 5,315
Arya Stark is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Arya Stark Game of Thrones

7
6,430 4,824
Willow Rosenberg is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Willow Rosenberg Buffy the Vampire Slayer

8
4,292 5,308
Lisa Simpson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Lisa Simpson The Simpsons, The Tracey Ullman Show

9
5,504 3,973
Xena is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
ChangesDownClub added Xena Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Xena: Warrior Princess

10
5,597 5,708
Phoebe Buffay is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Phoebe Buffay Friends

11
3,559 3,826
Violet Crawley, Dowager Counte... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time

12
4,840 3,340
Wonder Woman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Bootsdad added Wonder Woman Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman, Justice League Unlimited

13
4,482 5,059
Rachel Green is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Rachel Green Friends

14
3,595 1,688
Morticia Addams is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
marylylewarrenmccue added Morticia Addams The Addams Family

The Funniest TV Characters of All Time

15
3,474 4,605
Elaine Benes is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Elaine Benes Seinfeld

16
3,489 4,083
Veronica Mars is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Veronica Mars Veronica Mars

17
3,738 4,215
Cersei Baratheon is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Cersei Baratheon Game of Thrones

18
3,965 3,790
Temperance

19
3,506 4,416
Penny is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Penny The Big Bang Theory

20
2,776 4,104
Liz Lemon is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Liz Lemon 30 Rock

21
3,889 3,963
Monica Geller is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Monica Geller Friends

The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years

22
3,113 2,398
Sophia Petrillo is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Sophia Petrillo The Golden Palace, The Golden Girls

23
4,042 3,149
Michonne is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Michonne The Walking Dead

24
3,483 3,385
Amy Farrah Fowler is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Amy Farrah Fowler The Big Bang Theory

25
3,422 2,096
Brienne of Tarth is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
wezel87 added Brienne of Tarth Game of Thrones

26
3,739 2,745
Abby Sciuto is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
willyboymcoy added Abby Sciuto NCIS - NCIS

27
2,977 2,790
Leslie Knope is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Leslie Knope Parks and Recreation

28
2,573 3,813
Marge Simpson is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Marge Simpson The Simpsons

The Greatest TV Characters of All Time

29
1,983 2,254
Kathryn Janeway is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
anonymousagentoftruth added Kathryn Janeway Star Trek: Voyager - Star Trek: Voyager

30
3,010 2,877
Ziva David is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Ziva David NCIS

31
2,977 2,689
Piper Halliwell is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Rose1 added Piper Halliwell Leo, Charmed - Charmed

32
2,962 3,386
Emma Swan is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
m0000 added Emma Swan Once Upon a Time

33
2,084 1,687
Rose Nylund is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Charley Feldman added Rose Nylund The Golden Girls

34
1,982 1,829
Dorothy Zbornak is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Charley Feldman added Dorothy Zbornak The Golden Girls

35
2,857 3,586
Peggy Bundy is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Peggy Bundy Married... with Children

The Best Movies Based on TV Shows

36
1,894 2,927
Mary Richards is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Mary Richards The Mary Tyler Moore Show

37
2,112 2,096
Margaery Tyrell is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
penguinmayne added Margaery Tyrell Game of Thrones - Game Of Thrones

38
1,843 2,429
Roseanne Conner is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Roseanne Conner Roseanne

39
2,288 2,171
Nyota Uhura is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Nyota Uhura Star Trek: The Original Series, Star Trek: The Animated Series

40
2,359 2,169
Lorelai Gilmore is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Umberhaven added Lorelai Gilmore Gilmore Girls

41
2,668 3,082
Rose Tyler is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Rose Tyler Doctor Who

42
2,363 2,781
Leela is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Leela Futurama

The Best Arrested Development Characters

43
2,529 2,250
Faith is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Faith Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel

44
2,123 2,288
Regina Mills is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
m0000 added Regina Mills Once Upon a Time

45
2,743 2,982
River Tam is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
River Tam Firefly

46
2,860 2,355
Carol Peletier is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Carol Peletier The Walking Dead

47
1,573 1,151
Wednesday Addams is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
SannahParker added Wednesday Addams The Addams Family

48
1,632 1,159
Penelope Garcia is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
colormelivvy added Penelope Garcia Criminal Minds

49
2,399 2,451
Karen Walker is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Karen Walker Will & Grace

50
2,682 2,809
Lily Aldrin is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time
Lily Aldrin How I Met Your Mother