• Catherine Hansen

The 1 show you need to watch—a love letter to aging women

Can you count off the top of your head, how many shows on mainstream networks have a female lead over the age of 40? I'm not talking side characters here—I'm talking lead characters who are featured front & center of promo posters and have more than 5 minutes of screen time. How about female leads over the age of 50 or 60? A few that come to mind: Golden Girls (an oldie, but a goodie- no pun intended!), Desperate Housewives that dominated ratings in the mid 2000s and the recent long anticipated reboot of Sex & The City. That's only 3 in the span of almost 4 decades! There are almost 1 million women over the age of 50 in the U.S. & approximately 92% of them still watch TV weekly (AARP), so why isn't there more representation of this demographic in the media? Hopefully the hit Netflix show Grace and Frankie depicts a positive change in that trend. Make a date with your couch if you haven't seen it yet! It's a hilarious show that doesn't shy away from the taboo issues aging women face on a daily basis.

The show follows Lily Tomlin (Frankie) and Jane Fonda (Grace), two women in their 70s who develop an unlikely friendship when they learn their husbands have fallen in love with each other and want to get married—leaving the women to start over. Some of this issues highlighted in the show are:

  • finding your real self after a long marriage ends

  • dating and sex at a mature age

  • how & why women need each other

  • the value of maintaining friendships

  • masturbation and sex toys

The show is a funny guide and a love letter to women—it proves women can take charge of their bodies, find their voices, and reclaim their lives at any age. It showcases the value of women as they age. At a time when people and society tend to cast aside women, Grace and Frankie refuse to be ignored! We should all follow suit. And beyond that, I think the show is representative of women who embody the idea that the second half of life can be just as dynamic & fulfilling as the first half. I hope you end up watching an episode...or two!