The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
One day, I was watching New Girl and I thought, “Nick is so great— he was definitely written by a woman.” And guess what? He was! New Girl was created by television writer Elizabeth Meriwether. But after digging through my deep knowledge of sitcoms, I noticed most of the sitcoms I know were created by men. And more specifically, most of the sitcoms I watch were created by the same man: Michael Schur co-created Parks and Recreation, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and solely created The Good Place. He was also a writer and producer for The Office.
Even though Parks and Recreation might be my favourite show, there are some other pretty amazing sitcoms out there created by some even-more-amazing women. Here are a few:
- New Girl
Starting with the show that made me think of writing this list, New Girl is a sitcom about the adventures of a particularly unique group of friends. Jess moves in with roommates Nick, Schmidt and Winston after a breakup and completely changes their lives. Jess is this quirky, sweet girl, who only adds to the chaos of the residents in loft 4D—a bunch of sweet, funny guys. Their relationships and all the messes they get themselves into are why this show is so entertaining to watch. Besides creating it, Meriwether worked on the show as an executive producer, writer and even directed a few episodes herself.
This Netflix original series was not only created by one woman, but two: The Office star Mindy Kaling and comedy writer Lang Fisher. The pair also acted as two of the show’s executive producers. Never Have I Ever tells the story of an Indian-American family, and it has been praised repeatedly for its groundbreaking representation. This alone is one reason to watch the show on Netflix, but it’s also worth checking out because of the people behind it! Mindy Kaling— besides acting in many comedy shows and movies— is also a tremendously accomplished comedy writer. She wrote for The Office back in the day and was even nominated for awards for her work, including Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series in 2005 and Outstanding Comedy Series five times at the Emmys. In 2012, Kaling created, co-produced and starred in the romantic series, The Mindy Project, one of her biggest successes. And she has continued to co-create and work on multiple projects, such as NBC’s Champions, Hulu’s Four Weddings and a Funeral and most recently, HBO Max’s The Sex Lives of College Girls. On the same note, Fisher also has a great writing career. She worked on The Mindy Project with Kaling from 2013 to 2017, and after that, she wrote for and co-executive produced Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
Now onto a more obscure show: Don’t Trust the B- – – – In Apartment 23. It was created by Nahnatchka Khan, who also acted as one of the show’s executive producers. Khan later created the TV show Fresh Off the Boat and co-created NBC’S Young Rock. But back to Apartment 23: The sitcom stars Krysten Ritter (from Jessica Jones) and James Van Der Beek (from Dawson’s Creek), who plays an exaggerated version of himself. It follows Chloe (Ritter), an unpredictable and irresponsible city girl as she tries to find roommates for her New York City apartment. It is incredibly funny and definitely worth the watch, even if it was sadly cancelled after two seasons.
Based on a homonymous show from the 1970s/80s (co-created by Whitney Blake), Netflix’s One Day at a Time (2017) was developed by Latina writer Gloria Calderón Kellett and Mike Royce, who also acted as showrunners in the sitcom. This show is a celebration of Latin-American culture as it showcases a Cuban family and has the legendary Rita Moreno as the family’s Abuelita. As the title tells us, One Day at a Time gives us a glimpse into the daily lives of this Cuban family in the U.S. Kellett also wrote for the next show on our list, How I Met Your Mother, for which she was nominated for two writing awards (and won one)!
- How I Met Your Mother
How I Met Your Mother, the sitcom that follows New Yorker Ted Mosby as he tells his kids the story of how he met their mother, is a bonus show on our list since it was created by two men: Carter Bays and Craig Thomas. However, the show had a female director who worked on it for its entire run and directed all but twelve episodes of the sitcom. Unlike many TV shows which usually have different directors for each episode, How I Met Your Mother had only a handful of directors for its 208 episodes, and director Pamela Fryman worked on 196 of them. And fun fact: Neil Patrick Harris, who played Barney on the show, was one of the other three directors on How I Met Your Mother. He worked on the 13th episode of Season 5: “Jenkins.”
And there you have it; a few great shows created by women for you to watch!