Great Moments in Female Bonding

From the March sisters to Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, history's best examples of girl power

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1868 “Little Women,” Big Message

While Dad’s off fighting for the North, Marmee and the resourceful March sisters form a tight, loving unit of their own.

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1869 Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony Join Forces

Stanton has the big ideas, Anthony the organizational skill. Together, wild corsets can’t keep them down.


1907 Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas Defy Convention

Who needs Hemingway? These belles toll for each other. The longtime pair are famed for their Paris salon.


1952 Lucy and Ethel: Faster Than a Speeding Bonbon

The pals share the wackiest of schemes, most memorably a stint at a supercharged chocolate-factory conveyor belt.

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Mary and Rhoda Prove There's (Single) Life After 30

Sweet Mary turns the world on with her smile; sly Rhoda wields a wisecrack like a shiv. Together, they’re gonna make it after all.

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1985 “The Color Purple”: Sisters Doing It for Themselves

In Alice Walker’s acclaimed novel turned movie, set in Georgia in the early 1900s, a supportive circle of women overcome male brutality.

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1985 The Golden Girls Reveal the Secret of Eternal Youth

Nothing retiring about these roomies. Their verve comes from matching wits and hatching schemes—i.e., being best buds.

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1986 Princess Diana and Duchess Fergie Shake Up the Palace

These merry wives of Windsor break royal rules with antics that include dressing up like bobbies to crash Prince Andrew’s bachelor party.

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1991 Thelma and Louise Hit the Accelerator and Soar

Sure, the vigilante duo are in for a terminally rough landing—but these fast, fierce friends have a great ride while it lasts.

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1993 Generations Come to Terms in “The Joy Luck Club”

Over mah-jongg and dim sum, traditional tiger moms and their Chinese-American daughters make peace with the past and with each other.

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1997 Barbara Walters's “The View” Breaks the Daytime Mold

These powerful, diverse and highly opinionated women don’t agree on much—except that they relish talking and tangling.


1998 Carrie Bradshaw and Pals Shatter Taboos in Their Jimmy Choos

Raise a cosmopolitan to the Sex and the City BFFs, so key to one another’s lives that Big and the other guys seem like fifth wheels.

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2001 Elizabeth and Debbie Forget Eddie Fisher

Proving they’re so over that messy love triangle, Taylor and Reynolds film the TV movie These Old Broads.

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2002 Frenemies Velma and Roxie Dance Away From Murder

Chicago's antiheroines battle for headlines and a lawyer but find success as a two-person act.

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2003 Madonna Kisses Britney at the Video Music Awards

What’s a little lip-lock between icon and pop tart? Just a coupla chanteuses getting chummy.

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2008 Sarah Palin Meets Her Doppelgänger (Tina Fey) on “SNL”

None dare call it friendship; only their suits are in sync. What unites them: the ability to hold the spotlight and excite a crowd. 

Fey: NBC Universal. Palin: Associated Press

2009 Beyoncé Rescues Taylor Swift from Kanye West

Pros show up bros: After the rapper interrupts Swift’s VMA speech, Beyoncé gives her airtime.


2012 Hillary Clinton and Meryl Streep Share a Moment

Actress Meryl Streep uses her iPhone to get a photo of her and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton after the State Department dinner for the Kennedy Center Honors gala Saturday, December 1, 2012, in Washington, D.C.

AP Photo/Kevin Wolf

2011 “Bridesmaids” Crowns New Queens of Comedy

Move over, Frat Pack: This female-led cast proved that a group of hilarious ladies could change the role of women as box office superstars.

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2012 Hannah and Her “Girls” Take On Adulthood

Stressed out by bosses, parents and romantic interests, these twenty-somethings find sanity and strength in their core group of friends. Kudos to Lena Dunham, the show’s creator and star, for pushing the limits with this raw dramedy.

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2013 Tina Fey and Amy Poehler Win Laughs at The Golden Globes

With unmatchable chemistry and memorable one-liners, these longtime pals put on a performance worthy of its own golden statue.


Next: Check out our friendship profile of Katie Couric and Nicolle Wallace.


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First Published Tue, 2011-10-25 15:35

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