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The Best Black Female TV Characters of All Time

 Lieutenant Nyota Uhura, Star Trek

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Lieutenant Uhura, played by Nichelle Nichols, was an important part of the original series’ multicultural cast and one of the first characters of African descent to be featured in a non-menial role on an American television series. She joined the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise as a lieutenant, and served as chief communications officer under Captain Kirk.

Olivia Pope, Scandal

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Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) is a crisis manager running the consulting firm, Olivia Pope & Associates, dedicated to protecting and guarding public images and reputations, and solving certain crimes in her clients’ interest. Pope is also a widely-watched fashion and style trendsetter. Her employees have law degrees, but do not serve as lawyers. Instead, they are “gladiators in suits,” and Olivia leads them by wearing her figurative white hat. But she also has a few crises of her own: namely, the professional relationship with President Fitzgerald Grant III that led to an extramarital affair and a rather complicated relationship.

Liz McIntyre, Room 222

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Liz McIntyre (Denise Nicholas) was the pretty and kind-hearted guidance counselor who truly cared about her students at Walt Whitman High School. The green-eyed beauty was a favorite of male students, but her heart belonged to history teacher Pete Dixon, her love interest on the show.

Cookie Lyon, Empire

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Cookie Lyon, played by Taraji P. Henson, is the outspoken ex-wife of Lucious Lyon, the cutthroat CEO of Empire Entertainment. She is also the mother of his three sons: Andre, Jamal, and Hakeem. Cookie served a 17-year sentence in prison for drug dealing and sees herself as the sacrificial lamb for the Empire she built with Lucious, as it was her drug money that financed Lucious’ early career. Upon her return from prison she is determined to bring the Lyon family back together and take back what’s hers. And we’re here for it. All of it.

Lydia Grant, Fame

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“You’ve got big dreams? You want fame? Well, fame costs. And right here is where you start paying… in sweat.” Yessss! Tell it! We first met Lydia Grant in the 1980 film Fame. Although her role in the film was relatively small, Lydia would become a central figure in the television adaptation. She was strong and ambitious and had Leroy looking right doing those pirouettes and jumps.

Gina Waters-Payne, Martin

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Gina Waters-Payne was the silly, optimistic, occasionally misbehaved, forgiving, and eternally romantic girlfriend—and later wife—of Martin Payne (Martin Lawrence). Not only was she a loving and devoted girlfriend, but Gina also had a successful career working for a public relations firm. Often described as “bougie”, Gina was actually the perfect complement to Martin by being the voice of reason to his crazy antics.

Willona Woods, Good Times

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Willona Woods (Ja’net Dubois) was a close family friend and neighbor to the the central Evans family of the classic Black TV show, Good Times. Independent, generous and always up for fun, Willona was nosy and always available for a little low-key gossip. A divorcée sporting fashionable clothes and slinging unabashed advice, Willona juggled a variety of jobs while maintaining an active single life. She was also the adopted mother of the sassy Penny (Janet Jackson). When things go awry for the Evans kids, she was always another tower of strength, besides their mother.

Dottie McStuffins, Doc McStuffins

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Dottie “Doc” McStuffins, voiced by Kiara Muhammed, is a kind and beautiful 9-year-old girl who loves to talk to toys and mend them. They come to life with the help of her magical stethoscope. Whenever a toy needs help, Doc always thinks carefully before she figures out what the problem is, which allows her to come up with the perfect solution. Yes, even little Black animated girls rock!

 

Check out more of the best black female TV characters here

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Feminist Heroes to Teach Kids Their ABCs

A is For

B is for

C is for

Check out the original article on GOOD and make sure to check out all the illustrations here.

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around the world, hollaback!

Illustrated Comebacks to Sexist Backhanded Compliments

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comeback 3

comeback 1

Wanna see more comebacks? Check ‘em out here.

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Things My Male Colleagues Have Actually Said to Me, Annotated

“Most girls aren’t into this kind of stuff.”

“You got it! Clever girl!”

“You don’t mind if we call you a ‘chick,’ do you?”

“How did you learn to do all this?!”

“It’s not ‘P.C.’ to say this, but…”

“It’s got to be a girlfriend-proof system.”

“Wow, you’re pretty strong!”

“No, when I complain about ‘geek girls,’ I don’t mean you. You’re a real geek.”

“He told me it sounds like we’ve got a new hot chick working here. I was like ‘yeah, man.’”

“But—you’re way too nice to be a lesbian!”

“You know about making coffee, right?”

“It doesn’t have all the features; this is the soccer mom version.”

“Haha, that guy thought you were the receptionist!”

“Women are going overboard with this representation in video games thing, now. Like, calm down.”

“Let me know when you want to do that so I can help you. No offense, but you just don’t know enough about it to try it on your own.”

“I had this female boss once, and I know I’m not supposed to say this, but I could totally tell when it was her time of the month.”

“See, that’s the great thing about you, I know I can tell ‘offensive’ jokes around you and you won’t care.”

“You and my wife could mud-wrestle naked.”

“You’re a girl, but you’re not, like, a girl-girl, y’know?”

Check out the original, full article The Toast

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