The gender spread in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is fairly uneven. Although there are significant male characters in the show, only a few of them are recurring. Out of these few male characters, many of them are clearly depicted as antagonists and are pit directly against the show’s protagonist, Kimmy Schmidt. They are portrayed as obstacles for her to overcome as she adapts to New York City life. Agency in the show is almost always granted to Kimmy or sometimes to Mrs. Voorhees. Kimmy and Mrs. Voorhees are usually making significant choices that change the course of the plot and male characters are simply seen as reacting to these choices. A few exceptions are made. One example is when Mrs. Voorhees’s husband canceled his visit home for the party she was setting up and Kimmy’s work went to waste as a result.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt focuses on Kimmy’s adaptation to city life in the modern world after being separated from it her whole adult life. However, it is not merely adaptation to modern living that the show focuses on. Kimmy being a female in the show is essential to the commentary that the writers wish to provide. As a female, Kimmy is portrayed as more vulnerable and easy to take advantage of, which often happens throughout the first season. The show tries to make a statement that a strong, independent woman has a lot to offer and can make the most of her situation given the right mindset. This is the mindset that the show instills in Kimmy and is a large part of the reason that the show is female-centered. The most prominent male character in the show is Kimmy’s roommate who happens to be gay. Class-wise, the show puts two of the most prominent characters on opposite ends of the wealth spectrum and lets one mentor the other on how she made it. However, Kimmy doesn’t feel the same urge as Mrs. Voorhees did to marry a rich, older man to attain success, rather she carves her own path to success throughout the courses of the show.