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From SMILF and Grey’s Anatomy to Insecure and The Bold Type, there are a number of shows on streaming services that were made by and for women. To recognise these and other series, a coalition of industry professionals founded by Women in Film and the Sundance Institute, known as ReFrame, created the ReFrame Stamp, and, together with IMDbPro, awarded the stamp to 62 shows that reflect gender diversity in television.
Variety says that the goal of the ReFrame Stamp is to “recognise projects that have demonstrated success in gender-balanced hiring”.
In four out of eight critical areas of production, women or female-identifying people would have to have been hired for the show to be given the stamp. These areas include writing, directing, showrunning, producing, lead acting, season regular acting, department heads and crew members. And the series had to reflect this gender diversity across all seasons, not only in specific episodes.
Here are seven of the shows that were awarded the stamp, all available to stream on Showmax.
Being a single mom’s tough, especially when men run away once they see your kid. But Bridgette wouldn’t trade it for anything in this stunningly raunchy, raw, candid series, first on Showmax. Created, directed, written by and starring Frankie Shaw, who based the show on her real-life experiences. Both seasons are on Showmax. Watch now »
Called “utterly bingeworthy” by critics, this captivating drama follows several women who lead double lives as professional escorts. But it’s not just about the sex – they provide much more. Season 1 follows law intern turned high-end escort Christine aka Chelsea, played by Riley Keough, and Season 2 introduces us to two other women in a similar position. Half of Season 2 is all about Bria, a former escort who goes into witness protection after exposing her arms-dealer husband. The Bria episodes are the ones that were awarded with the ReFrame Stamp. Strictly no under-18s. Watch now »
Seasons 1 and 2 of this brilliantly real series, created, written by and starring the inimitable Issa Rae, are on Showmax. Season 1 follows Issa, who is trying to figure out her life. Should she stay with her boring boyfriend Lawrence or throw herself into the frightening world of dating in her late 20s? In Season 2, she tries on the single life for size, yet longs for Lawrence, who is keeping things relaxed with a new fling. Watch now »
This wasn’t the only show from Shonda Rhimes that was awarded the stamp – The Fixer and How to Get Away with Murder are just two of her other shows that also were recognised. Seasons 1 to 13 of this binge-watch classic are currently on Showmax, with Season 13 due to arrive in December. Start at the beginning as Dr Meredith Grey joins a top Seattle hospital. She’s there to save lives, but is she ready for the changes in her own life? Watch now »
Based on the dystopian novel by Margaret Atwood, starring Elisabeth Moss, and produced by both women, The Handmaid’s Tale is about June, a woman who had an ordinary life in modern-day Boston until a coup turned part of the United States into the Republic of Gilead. Once women have been subjugated by the state, they are forced into roles depending on their reproductive value. June becomes Offred, the property of Colonel Fred Waterford and his wife Selina. Offred’s sole purpose is to fall pregnant with their child. But she’s not taking any of it lying down. In Season 2, which diverges from Atwood’s novel, June figures out a way to fight the system from within. Both seasons are on Showmax. Watch now »
Created by Sarah Watson, inspired by the life of real-life women’s magazine editor Joanna Coles, and starring Aisha Dee (you’ll recognise her from Channel Zero S2, also on Showmax), Katie Stevens and Meghann Fahy, this series is full of female powerhouses. Three friends fought their way up through the magazine world and are now finally making their mark. But that is just the start of a lot of drama, excitement and romance in this edgy, funny, intense and heartwarming comedy drama series. Watch now »
The Chi is about a group of residents trying to make a life in one of the US’s most dangerous cities when they are unexpectedly connected by an act of violence. Watch now »
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