After being complimented on portraying female frienships realistically on television last week, the cast of US sitcom Broad City responded brilliantly by pointing out that this kind of portrayal should be the norm. Instead we usually get stuck with the competitive, back-biting, frenemies that make up 99% of reality tv. Snooze. But not all television shows get women friendships wrong. Lauren De Beer looks back at our favourites, past and present.
1.Orange Is The New Black - Taystee and Poussey
Okay sure, inmates Taystee and Poussey had a mean girl moment with each other last season. But despite all the complicated twists and turns their relationship has taken — from first kiss to complete estrangement to total sisterhood — these two remain ultimate BFFs and one of television's best examples of how deep and indestructible a friendship between women can be, even in prison.
2. Girls - Hannah, Marnie, Shoshanna & Jessa
Girls goes beyond the superficial to show you exactly how annoying and weird and amazing and crucial our friendships can be. Whether it's Marnie sleeping with Shoshanna's ex, or Jessa setting up the love of Hannah's life with another girl, these four have been through possibly every pitfall a group of twentysomethings could ever run up against. Real life reactions to real life situations, resulting in a real friendship, on television. Imagine that?
3. Scandal - Abby and Olivia
With Abby Whelan and Olivia Pope, Scandal showed us what might be the most complex friendship of all: the best friends/boss and employee. But even after Abby handed Olivia her resignation as one of 'the gladiators' on payroll with her crisis management firm in order to take a plum Press Secretary job at the White House (working for Olivia's ex-boyfriend, The President, no less), the show continues to show the two working through grudges and hurt feelings to remain in each other's lives.
4. Parks and Recreation - Leslie Knope & Ann Perkins
The biggest takeway here is — despite what reality TV would have you think — women can actually be loyal friends to one another even when they don't have much in common. Despite being total opposites, Park's and Rec's over-enthusiastic public servant and disgruntled nurse bring out the best in each other, in the sweetest, most girls-rule way.
5. Grey's Anatomy - Cristina and Meredith
More than anything, doctors Cristina Yang and Meredith Grey deserve credit for breaking the 'let's go shopping!' stereotype and showing viewers a deeper picture of girlfriends. We watched as the two battled through real-life, relatable experiences spanning miscarriages and the unbareable loss of friends. And when they fought, they really fought, which made it all the more compelling to watch their friendship endure.
6. Sex and the City - Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte
Not that we weren't doing it anyway, but it was New York's Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte who gave women all over the world permission to talk about sex loud and proud. Sex and the City made it plain and obvious that comparing bedroom notes is not only entertaining, but good for a girl's sex life (and health!) too.
7. Friends - Rachel & Monica
Friends taught us many important life-lessons: always knock before entering, close the blinds in case of peeping Toms (remember Ugly Naked Guy'?) and always find out if there's a vegetarian in the room before making a dozen lasagnas. But the show taught us a lot about friendship too. Rachel and Monica are the ultimate dynamic duo. From Rachel's first job to Monica and Chandler's wedding, this wo-mance has been through it all.