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These Are The Best TV Female Friendships

While TV entertains us, it also serves as a vehicle to celebrate and question modern society. Television needs to provide its audience with accurate representation. 

During Women’s History Month, we illustrate how TV shows empower women with one word: friendship. Television has the opportunity to emphasize healthy relationships between female friends and how vital it is to stick together rather than tear each other apart. 

Here’s a look at 8 of the best female friendships in television history that A) pass the Bechdel test and B) uplift women. 

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Before we do that we have to know: What is the Bechdel test?

The Bechdel test was initially inspired by Alison Bechdel’s 1985 comic. In the comic strip, a woman explains to her friend that she will only see a movie if it passes her rule with 3 requirements. The film has to have 2 female characters, those female characters have to talk to each other, and their conversation has to be about something other than a man. 

 

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It has become a part of the Hollywood conversation, with cultural critics and media fans dissecting films and TV shows to discover whether they pass the Bechdel test. The 3 requirements rule helps to reinforce positive portrayals of women on screen. 

While there are many TV friendships that pass the Bechdel test and uplift women, here are 8 of our favorites. 

Best TV friendships: Rebecca & Keeley, Ted Lasso

These polar opposites have captured our hearts! While Rebecca (Hannah Waddingham) is initially seen as the cold owner of the AFC Richmond team, Keeley (Juno Temple) is an over-the-top bubbly model. However, they realize they’re not much different from each other than they thought. While Keeley helps Rebecca gain her self-confidence back after a terrible marriage, Rebecca lets Keeley tap into her career potential. 

It’s refreshing to see 2 female characters exist without competition. Although Rebecca and Keeley occasionally gossip about their dating lives, most of their conversations revolve around lifting each other up. 

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The actors are super close off-screen too! Hannah and Juno’s duo interviews are just the cutest to watch. 

Do they pass the Bechdel test?: Yes! Most of their conversations aren’t about a man.  

Best TV friendships: Rose, Dorothy, Blanche, & Sophia, The Golden Girls

We have to thank this OG girl group for eating their fair share of cheesecake and saying some of the funniest jokes on television. The Golden Girls introduced older female friendships where 4 single women faced aging together. Each “Golden Girl” has distinct qualities: Dorothy is the sarcastic and hardworking teacher, Rose is the naive and sweet farm girl, Blanche is the sexually free Southern femme fatale, and Sophia is Dorothy’s sardonic Italian mother. 

The 4 women may get into their fair share of arguments, but they always show their support for each other. They confide in each other about their careers, interests, troubles, and wildly engaging sex lives. Betty White, Bea Arthur, Estelle Grey, and Rue McClanahan connect magically on-screen, making their friendship dynamic even more fun and heartfelt to watch.

 

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Do they pass the Bechdel test?: They are 1 of the first core girl groups that passed the test! 

Best friendships on TV: Ilana & Abby, Broad City

Ilana (played Ilana Glazer) and Abbi (Abbi Jacobson) are 20-something Jewish-American best friends in New York City that are equally obsessed with each other. The 2 friends try to survive in NYC while getting themselves into crazy adventures. While Ilana is more outspoken and overtly sexual and Abbi is shy and sweet-natured, the two fit perfectly together. 

Together, Ilana and Abbi are crude and rebellious as they talk about sex and bodily functions, stick to feminist ideals, and smoke tons of weed. They also spend little to none of their time talking about men. It’s a friendship that brings the best out of the 2 characters. 

Since Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson wrote the show based on their real friendship, the beauitful relationship you see between them is even more genuine.