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Female Driven Shows

Since I cut off my cable with an experiment to live on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and the internet, I've been exploring a lot of shows that I wouldn't otherwise be able to watch. In particular, I've watched a bunch of shows where the cast is heavily skewed towards female characters who have interesting personalities (with flaws) and complicated plot lines. If you're looking for something to pass the Bechdel Test (flawed as it is), these are great. Most of them are just great in general!


Not surprisingly, these shows often have a premise that allows them to focus specifically on women, with very specific times and places, so I've noted that specifically since I find it interesting.

Here is my Female Driven Shows countdown (although after 5, they are all pretty much even on how much I like them) Most are available on Netflix.


7. Land Girls: Girls working on farms during WWII.

Pro: WWII era setting in the English countryside. Should be my jam.

Con: In the first episode, the naïve, young character spends a rash night with a solder who turns out to be a cad and she is then, of course, pregnant, I couldn't get into the show. I only watched two episodes.


6. Orange is the New Black: Women's prison

Pro: WOC and LGBTQ characters! Delicious back stabbing (literally and figuratively)


Con: Piper, our white person "relatable" character to draw us into the world of a women's prison is super annoying.

5. Call the Midwife: Midwives working out of a convent post WWII

Pro: For a show centered around childbirth, there is very little (what I elegantly call) birth grossness.


Con: Very few POC or LGBTQ characters. (I think none of the latter.)

4. The Paradise: Victorian era woman moves her way up in one of the first department store's women's wear section


Pro: Sometimes I just want a beautiful costume drama with a classic "guy meets girl who he hired to work in his store and they will obviously fall in love" story.

Con: There is a second season, which doesn't really seem worth it and it was canceled after that.


3. The Bletchley Circle: Women who were codebreakers during WWII try to catch a serial killer several years later

Pro: Short and sweet. Three episodes, perfect for an evening binge.

Con: Due to length, lack of character diversity

2. Bomb Girls: Girls working in a bomb factory during WWII

Pro: I love how the characters aren't totally good or bad. Everyone is flawed. A lesbian main character! Abortions! Interesting portrayals of PTSD! (in men only, but still)


Con: WOC side character gets introduced in the middle of season two but they don't do much with her. Tries a little too hard at the end of season two, the last season :( Set in Canada, but only one character says "sowrry" the right way. Come on.

1. Orphan Black: Clones are trying to figure out the mystery behind their existence


Pro: One actress playing all the roles and everyone is still crazy different. Naked butts!

Con: None that I can think of. I love every second.

I'd love recommendations for more!

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