Entertainment Weekly recently published its list of “100 Greatest Characters of the Last 20 Years” to celebrate the magazine’s 20th anniversary. The criterion for selecting the characters was not necessarily those that had been created after the ’90s, but those that made a “lasting impact” on American pop culture in the two decades following 1990. There must not have been any queer women on the brainstorming team, because many of those characters that made a lasting impact on queer women are much different than many that were on the list. (Borat — really?)
On the bright side, the list contained a few of queer actresses and one queerish female characters.
Glee‘s Sue Sylvester, played by the recently hitched Jane Lynch nabbed #18.
Angelina Jolie‘s Lara Croft scored #17.
That’s it, folks. Sure there were some bi-curious characters on the list — Ally McBeal, Carrie Bradshaw, Rachel Green — and some lesbian favorites &Mdash; Buffy, Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica, Mary Katherine Gallagher from SNL, Tracy Flick from Election, the original Sarah Connor from Terminator 2: Judgment Day — but what about all the queer female characters that made an earth-shattering impact on pop culture?
Queer actresses and queer female characters have undoubtedly made an impact on the public’s openness to (or exploitation of) queer female’s sexuality, and helped to further visibility across the country. Not only that but, for many queer women, it was the lesbian movies they secretly rented and watched late at night, the lesbian TV character they discussed in fan fic forums, or the girl-loving novels they read by flashlight that encouraged them to come out of the closet or feel like they were not alone. I think with a little bit of teamwork, we can come up with a much better list than this. Here are some friendly suggestions:
Calzona on Grey’s Anatomy
Who are some characters that made a “lasting impact” on you since the ’90s? Considering that’s when the lesbians on TV finally started showing up, there are a lot to choose from.