female characters The Greatest Female TV Role Models  

Ranker TV
Originally by
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List Rules Strong and admirable woman and girl characters in television

List of the greatest female TV role models. Here are the rankings for the best female characters for your daughter to look up to. The TV shows with great female role models span the decades, from black-and-white to digital film. They also span the style, from live action multi-camera sitcoms to cartoons. Who are some of the best female role models on TV?

You could make a pretty good case for Leslie Knope's passion, Liz Lemon's wit, and Rachel Green's attitude. Or, if people really want to talk about strong independent women, we have listed ladies like Susie Greene from "Curb Your Enthusiasm" and Xena (the Warrior Princess). Some seem to think even Nancy Botwin from "Weeds" is a good female role model on television -- perhaps for her business sense. TV can make a difference in the culture, as shows can set standards and aspirations for young women, or men, with the remote control.
list ordered by

1
424 214
Olivia Benson is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
lemonhead added Olivia Benson Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

2
324 262
Mary Richards is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Mary Richards The Mary Tyler Moore Show

3
501 418
Buffy Summers is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Buffy Summers Buffy the Vampire Slayer

4
233 225
Victoria Barkley is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
mclewis added Victoria Barkley The Big Valley

5
211 306
Liz Lemon is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Liz Lemon 30 Rock

6
219 324
Lisa Simpson is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
lemonhead added Lisa Simpson The Simpsons, The Tracey Ullman Show

7
220 217
Mary Beth Lacey is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
lemonhead added Mary Beth Lacey Cagney & Lacey

8
277 204
Sophia Petrillo is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Sophia Petrillo The Golden Palace, The Golden Girls

9
215 198
Carla Espinosa is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Carla Espinosa Scrubs

10
255 200
Maggie O'Connell is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
lemonhead added Maggie O'Connell Northern Exposure

11
138 301
Diane Chambers is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models

12
201 201
Emma Peel is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
lemonhead added Emma Peel The Avengers

13
202 201
Julia Sugarbaker is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Julia Sugarbaker Designing Women

14
323 158
Kathryn Janeway is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Kathryn Janeway Star Trek: Voyager

The Greatest Female TV Characters of All Time

15
328 237
Leslie Knope is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Leslie Knope Parks and Recreation

16
201 166
Anita Van Buren is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Anita Van Buren Law & Order

17
246 171
Dorothy Zbornak is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Dorothy Zbornak The Golden Girls

18
152 263
Murphy Brown is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Murphy Brown Murphy Brown

19
435 195
Dana Scully is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Dana Scully The X-Files

20
174 179
C. J. Cregg is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added C. J. Cregg The West Wing

21
169 171
Rhoda Morgenstern is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Rhoda Morgenstern The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Rhoda

The Most Annoying TV and Film Characters Ever

22
119 239
Claire Beauchamp Randall Frase... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
mclewis added Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser Outlander

23
170 174
Lady Mary Crawley is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Lady Mary Crawley Downton Abbey

24
179 167
Violet Crawley, Dowager Counte... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham Downton Abbey

25
240 142
Uhura is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Uhura Star Trek: The Original Series, Star Trek: The Animated Series

26
257 64
Abby Sciuto is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
LaChance added Abby Sciuto NCIS

27
255 75
Rebecca Katsopolis is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Rebecca Katsopolis Full House

28
195 165
Brenda Leigh Johnson is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models

The Best Re-Casting of Famous TV Roles

29
269 269
Wonder Woman is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Wonder Woman Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman, Justice League Unlimited

30
81 185
Kate Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Kate Lawrence Family

31
266 61
Topanga Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
JVall14 added Topanga Lawrence Girl Meets World, Boy Meets World

32
186 243
Veronica Mars is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Veronica Mars Veronica Mars

33
215 64
Laura Ingalls is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
MeganAnderson added Laura Ingalls Little House on the Prairie

34
98 165
Grace Van Owen is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Grace Van Owen L.A. Law

35
201 64
Caroline Ingalls is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
MeganAnderson added Caroline Ingalls

The Best Fake Words From The Simpsons

36
182 61
Penelope Garcia is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
LaChance added Penelope Garcia Criminal Minds

37
218 289
Daenerys Targaryen is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Daenerys Targaryen Game of Thrones

38
243 135
Jessica Fletcher is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Jessica Fletcher Murder, She Wrote

39
207 107
Jaime Sommers is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Jaime Sommers Bionic Woman

40
172 82
Molly Flynn is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
LaChance added Molly Flynn Mike & Molly

41
99 201
Ann Kelsey is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Ann Kelsey L.A. Law

42
210 125
Cristina Yang is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Cristina Yang Grey's Anatomy

The Greatest TV Characters of All Time

43
170 149
Jennifer
LanaYoshii added Jennifer "JJ" Jareau Criminal Minds

44
262 280
Lorelai Gilmore is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Lorelai Gilmore Gilmore Girls

45
30 10
Olivia Walton is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Olivia Walton The Waltons

46
176 150
Selina Meyer is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models

47
207 108
Carol Brady is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Carol Brady The Brady Bunch, The Brady Bunch Hour, The Brady Brides

48
253 285
Willow Rosenberg is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
Willow Rosenberg Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Buffy the Animated Series

49
151 98
Margaret Houlihan is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
phoebelouise added Margaret Houlihan M*A*S*H

50
132 178
Arya Stark is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Female TV Role Models
intcat-eternal added Arya Stark Game of Thrones