Entertainment

The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History  

Ranker TV
Originally by
8.8k votes 882 voters 18.5k views 47 items

List Rules Single female TV characters who never settle down or date lots of men throughout the series

List of the best female characters who are perpetually single in television history, as ranked by television critics and fans. Often female characters can be defined by the guy whose arm she’s on. Not so with the women on this list. These women are not defined by the men they date, but rather their strong personalities and ambitious career tracks. Many of the characters on this list are much more serious about their careers than their dating life, such as Law and Order SVU’s Detective Olivia Benson and Mad Men’s Peggy Olson. Other female characters are simply unlucky when it comes to the people they date, like Mindy Lahiri and Elaine Benes. Some of the women simply aren’t interested in long-term relationships, like Friends’s Phoebe Buffay.

This list answers the question, “Who are the best single female characters in TV history?” The characters range from past feminist icons like Mary Richards to contemporary women who have broken stereotypes about how women should date, such as Sex in The City’s Samantha Jones.

The female characters on this list may have had a history of dating a lot but they are often seen as heroes for single women, making them among the best female characters of all time.

list ordered by
1
Buffy Summers is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
2
Liz Lemon is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
30 Rock
3
Phoebe Buffay is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Friends
4
Olivia Benson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
5
Mary Richards is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
The Mary Tyler Moore Show
6
Elaine Benes is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Seinfeld
7
Samantha Jones is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
8
Rachel Green is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Friends
9
Dorothy Zbornak is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
The Golden Girls
10
Murphy Brown is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Murphy Brown
11
Diane Chambers is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
12
Blanche Devereaux is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
The Golden Palace, The Golden Girls
13
Grace Adler is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Grace Adler Will & Grace
14
Monica Geller is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Alaina Hillman added Friends
Before her and Chandler started dating. 
15
Robin Scherbatsky is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
How I Met Your Mother
16
Kelly Bundy is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Married... with Children
17
Alice Nelson is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
RobLein added The Brady Bunch, The Brady Bunch Hour
18
Temperance "Bones&q... is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
19
Debra Morgan is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Dexter
20
Carrie Bradshaw is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Sex and the City, The Carrie Diaries
21
Elaine O'Connor-Nardo is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
22
Britta Perry is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Community
23
Sabrina Duncan is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
CB Ladnier added Charlie's Angels
24
Ally McBeal is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Ally, Ally McBeal
25
Laverne De Fazio is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Perpetually Single Women in TV History
Laverne & Shirley