Moore: Everett Collection; LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY: Everett Collection; WKRP IN CINCINNATI:Everett Collection; CHEERS:Everett Collection; MURPHY BROWN:Everett Collection; SIMPSONS: Fox; SEINFELD: Everett Collection; FRIENDS:Andrew Eccles/NBC; ALLY MCBEAL:Ever
Jeff Labrecque
January 30, 2012 AT 11:39 PM EST

Mary Tyler Moore, who was awarded the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award last night, was already a television veteran when she introduced Mary Richards on The Mary Tyler Moore Show in 1970. For six years, she’d starred as Laura Petrie, one half of the popular Kennedy-esque couple on The Dick Van Dyke Show. But Mary Richards, her sweet, silly, and optimistic single gal, struck an immediate nerve with audiences. More than 40 years later, there’s no denying that she did make it after all, as television is dotted with Richards’ creative progeny. Some are married, some are drug-dealing moms, some are animated kids. But all have her spirit. Click below for just some of the female characters who have shared DNA with television’s most graceful heroine. 

Moore: Everett Collection; LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY: Everett Collection; WKRP IN CINCINNATI:Everett Collection; CHEERS:Everett Collection; MURPHY BROWN:Everett Collection; SIMPSONS: Fox; SEINFELD: Everett Collection; FRIENDS:Andrew Eccles/NBC; ALLY MCBEAL:Ever

Graphic credit: Jef Castro

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