TV Shows Fashion Trends and Celebrity Style

If I murdered someone, she would be the one I call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor She is my person. Does that sound familiar? My personbecame the tagline of one of the great friendships in television history the bond shared by Cristina Yang and Meredith Grey in Grey’s Anatomy. Our girlfriends are our persons: they get us, they nurture us and they are at the centre of some of our fondest and strongest memories. They dip in and out of our lives, coming back as if they’ve never left; they accept our complicated selves without giving up on us. Sisterhood used to be a favoured trope in some TV series shows where that level of friendship was at the emotional centre.

In Sex and the City, for example, despite men problems and career issues, at the end of the day it all came down to what Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte meant to each other. In Clueless, Living Single and Girlfriends, sisterhood was the focal point, carrying as much weight as (sometimes more than) a boy-girl love story. But lately multifaceted and realistic examples of screen relationships between women seem to be far less prevalent. According to the Bechdel Test (an indicator of gender bias in all forms of fiction), TV series are ticking the right boxes far more than big-screen movies when it comes to female representation. The test looks at how well rounded a story’s female characters are, measured by these criteria: the story has to have at least two women in it, who talk to each other, about something other than a man. In the past couple of years, TV series emerging from Hollywood that pass for five TV womances we love the Bechdel Test are depicting strong females as their protagonists: think Carrie Mathison in Homeland, Olivia Pope in Scandal and Claire Underwood in House of Cards.

But while most of these shows make for excellent viewing, it is hard to not miss the under-representation of balanced, positive interactions among women. The way they are shown tends to reinforce a different notion that women (especially those in power) do not have healthy and kind relationships towards each other. It is really hard to believe, for example, that, with all the drama that Olivia Pope experiences with President Fitzgerald, she does not have one ultimate bestie to drink her red wine with. In some shows, there’s a best friend who has to shrink into the background whenever the heroine’s heterosexual relationship takes centre stage.

In New Girls Ceecee and Jess are childhood friends, but the focus is really on the relationship between the lead and her housemates. It’s men who are projected as having the ultimate bromance. And what about Mindy of The Mindy Project? How does someone so funny and intelligent not have at least one girlfriend to share those witty one-liners with? Do realistic portrayals of female friendships make for poor ratings? Do women need to be portrayed as bitchy and detached from other women these days for a show to be a hit? Most of us have our person, just like Cristina and Meredith. These people are sometimes the biggest part of our own love stories the love that sisterhood brings and we are still looking for reflections of those same stories on television.

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TV Shows Fashion Trends and Celebrity Style

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