They solve cases. Outwit dangerous thugs. Get their hands dirty. They are television’s most respected, well-loved and badass female detectives.

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Throughout history, male detectives such as Sherlock Holmes and Gil Grissom have dominated crime scenes and our television screens. Which is all very well but they are not the only ones patrolling our neighborhoods.  It’s about time we recognize these women of authority who are fighting crime and keeping our streets safe as well.

SVU Olivia Benson
1. DETECTIVE OLIVIA BENSON

Det. Olivia Benson may look tough on the exterior but she has a special talent in dealing with the victims. Week after week, we see how the strong and independent  Det. Benson squares off hardened criminals so that justice can be achieved.

But life has not been kind to her – abusive parent, sexual assault, forced separation from her adopted son, abrupt departure of her long-time work partner – it seems like Det. Benson could hardly catch a break.

During  the final moments of Season 14  finale, our beloved detective was seen on the wrong end of a pistol – just before the scene faded to black.

Thankfully, it’s wasn’t before long when Mariska Hargitay announced on Twitter that she “will be back” for the next season. Seriously, Det. Benson  is the only reason why we are even watching this show.

X Files Dana Scully

2. DR. DANA SCULLY

Growing up in the 90s, Dr. Dana Scully was a huge inspiration. Here was a heroine who hunted monsters and aliens, investigated conspiracy theories, re-wrote Einstein for her senior thesis, kept her cool in face of life-threatening situations, questioned her faith and worked with a partner she loved but did not feel the need to rip off Moulder’s shirt at every opportunity. She was perfectly capable of recusing herself – and sometimes her man as well.

Veronica Mars movie

3. VERONICA MARS

Life has taken our feisty teenage detective away from Neptune. In the years since spoiling Keith’s chances to be reelected sheriff, Veronica has not taken a single case. But something huge is about to bring her back on our screens – in the form of a Kickstarter fundraiser campaign launched by director Rob Thomas and Kristen Bell to get the Veronica Mars film made. Thanks to devout fans who are affectionally referred to as “Marshmallows”, the project broke several Kickstarter records, including the largest successful film project on Kickstarter. The campaign ended on April 13, with a record 91,585 donors raising $5,702,153, exceeding the original goal of  $2 million dollars.

Right now, the movie is in production with a projected release in early 2014. Fellow Marshmallows can follow the production team on Twitter for more updates.

bones tv

4. DR. TEMPERANCE ‘BONES’ BRENNAN

Best-selling author. Accomplished forensic anthropologist. Three doctorates in anthropology, forensic anthropology and kinesiology. Contract  work with FBI.  Practiced three types of martial arts. Hunting licenses in four states. Overachiever of the year? Possibly.

“I don’t know what that means” is her tagline but with such brain power and achievements, who cares if she doesn’t know her pop culture? With her FBI sidekick, the confident and outspoken doctor solves case after case with her acute observations and  cunning insights.

Who are your favourite female detectives? Share with us in the comments section below!