The nerds are all right: TV’s best brains


I think a lot of lesbians are nerds. I mean that in the most complimentary way possible. Nerds are always the smartest and funniest kids in the class. And many of them turn out to be quite successful as adults.

Parallel Universe recently published a tribute to TV Nerds (hat tip, Heather) that includes many geeky greats – mostly male. But they named two women to get us started, so we thought the time was right to once again honor the geeky girl in all of us. And what better way to start the weekend than by enjoying pictures of smart women?

Willow Rosenberg (Alyson Hannigan) Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Willow started as Buffy’s hopelessly shy BFF and sidekick, but evolved into a witch powerful enough to bring the Slayer back from the dead. She journeyed to the Dark Side and back, but once she visited Lesbos, she decided to stay. What did I tell you? Smart.


Betty Suarez (America Ferrera) Ugly Betty

She may have inspired the name of the show, but Betty was anything but ugly. Despite mousy hair and questionable fashion sense, Betty’s sincerity and smarts won over her mockers and took her to the top of the editorial staff at "Mode." When we said goodbye to one of the first nerd characters to be the star of her own show, Betty was on her way to her dream job in London, pursued by an unlikely suitor, her former boss Daniel. Ugly never looked so good.


Lisa Simpson, The Simpsons

How Parallel Universe could have mentioned Millhouse instead of Lisa, I’ll never know. In a family that seems destined for anything but greatness, Lisa flourishes. She’s the smartest person in the school — eight years old but reading at the 14th grade level and already a member of MENSA. She plays a mean saxophone, speaks fluent Italian and saves Bart – and the rest of the family – from ruin on a fairly regular basis.


Temperance Brennan (Emily Deschanel) Bones

Bones never met a pop culture reference that sounded familiar, although hanging with the cool kids in forensics has helped. But she’s a brilliant scientist, with three doctorate degrees and the kind of logic that makes lesser brains hurt. And she’s the hottest social misfit television has ever seen. When she meets Booth by the coffee cart at the reflecting pool next year, she may get even hotter.


Penelope Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness) Criminal Minds

Garcia plays MMORPGs on the FBI computer system – you can’t get geekier than that. But she puts the rest of the tech-heads in the Behavioral Analysis Unit to shame when the time comes to track down a killer. That’s because she’s a gifted and dangerous hacker, recruited by the government in order to keep her on its side. She has said that she can run U.S. Central Command from her office while playing online poker. I, for one, believe her.

I could go on and on, but that would take the fun out of seeing your picks. Who’s your favorite TV nerd? Post a picture if you have one, so we can share your admiration.

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