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10 Underrated Female TV Characters Who Will Keep You Glued to Your Screen

Whether it’s because the show they were on was underrated, they were hidden in the shadow of another character, or they just didn’t have enough screen time, there are plenty of characters that we just can’t get enough of. In a vain attempt to keep this article relatively short, I’ve only included one female per show. So, in no particular order, here are a few female TV characters I believe deserve a little more love:

Morgana Pendragon- Merlin

Morgana, played by Supergirl’s Katie McGrath, is mainly on this list due to Merlin as a show being rather underrated. Her character arc held a lot of wasted potential, from a love interest that seemed destined from the start but never came to fruition to a storyline that seemed like more of a devolution. It’s sad when a beloved character in earlier seasons becomes known for who they could have been rather than who they were.

Lola Lecomte- SKAM France

The breakout star of SKAM France’s sixth season, Flavie Delangle is absolutely stellar in every scene she’s in. Her development and struggle with addiction are executed to perfection, and even her brief appearances in the seventh season are acting gold. I can’t wait to see what she has in store for the upcoming season.

Faith Lehane- Buffy the Vampire Slayer & Angel

Eliza Dushku’s Faith was one of the first characters that I really gravitated towards as a teenager. Both her early role as a villain and her redemption arc were epic. I just wish that she had more screen time in later seasons or that Dushku had accepted Josh Whedon’s offer to create a Faith-centered spin-off series, because her character is so good. She has an alluring darkness but also gradually sheds her enigma in order to showcase more vulnerability. To me, Faith will always be five by five.

Cassie Ainsworth- Skins

Portrayed by Hannah Murray, who you may recognize from her role as Gilly in Game of Thrones, Cassie has an amazing character arc that is often overshadowed by some of the other protagonists. Her struggles with anorexia and an alcoholic father are handled maturely and reveal how even the seemingly most optimistic characters can be suffering internally. Appearing in seasons one, two, and seven, she ends up with a more optimistic ending in comparison to the rest of the cast, and it’s honestly well-deserved after all of the obstacles she had to overcome over the course of the show.

Ruby Lucas- Once Upon a Time

Ruby, played by Meghan Ory, had the potential to be an amazing character, instead of just a great one, had she been given more screen time. Once Upon a Time has a history of abandoning various side characters due to a burgeoning cast, from Lily and Maleficent to Mulan. Originally intended to be a main character during season two, Ruby started to fade out of the story completely. It’s such a shame, as she was a character with massive potential that became another victim of Once Upon a Time’s massive cast.

Wynonna Earp- Wynonna Earp

This wise-cracking gunslinger, played by Melanie Scrofano, is like a combination of earlier entry, Faith Lehane, and Jessica Jones. Wynonna Earp is an underrated show that is currently airing its surprise final fourth season after a large petition from its hardcore fans. Wildly funny, quotable, and badass to boot, Wynonna definitely deserves more recognition.

Fiona Gallagher- Shameless

Give Emmy Rossum an Emmy already! Although Shameless has its fair share of questionable moments, I was always drawn to Fiona’s struggle to hold everything together. The glue to her family, and arguably the show, I really hope she at least makes a guest appearance in the series’ upcoming final eleventh season.

Remy “Thirteen” Hadley- House M.D.

House M.D. is an amazing, and honestly underrated show, and Olivia Wilde’s Thirteen is one of the reasons I became hooked in the first place. Introduced in the show’s fourth season, Thirteen plays off of Hugh Laurie’s titular character well, with the two of them having some of the best chemistry in the later seasons. She was a bright spot as the show started to decline in quality towards the end of its run, and I just love everything about her.

 Amy Bendix- The Punisher

Giorgia Whigham’s outing as Amy Bendix, as well as her later roles in Scream and Legacies, demonstrates her natural ability at playing cool, calm, and rebellious. Her relationship with Frank is the highlight of the second and final season. Frank loves Amy like a daughter, and saving her serves as his atonement for failing to save his own children. Their interactions alternate between hilarious and heartfelt, and I just wish there were more scenes of this duo together.

Kara Souders- Red Band Society

With only a single season, Red Band Society was an underrated show that documented the lives of a group of teenagers occupying the pediatric ward of Los Angeles’ Ocean Park Hospital. Kara initially makes her mark as the series’ mean girl but gradually begins to showcase her vulnerability and complexity. Her storyline with Hunter Cole (sorry, no spoilers) helps highlight her character growth, and I wish that there had been more seasons in order to explore more of her emotional depth.

I’ll also quickly give a shoutout to Kat Karamakov (Dance Academy), Maeve Wiley (Sex Education), Beth Cassidy (Dare Me), Eleanor Henstridge (The Royals), and Queen Maeve (The Boys) who originally made this list a top fifteen before being cut for the sake of time. There are so many fictional female characters that are absolute scene stealers and deserve to be admired for their complexity and strength. As shows begin releasing more content now that Covid-19 restrictions are being lifted, here’s hoping that there are plenty more in store for us.

Sianna Swavely is a Cinema, Television, and Media Production and Professional Writing major, with a minor in Communication Studies. In her free time, she can be found video editing, playing the piano, or watching Youtube videos while pretending to study.
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