The Best TV Moms

This one’s for all my fellow TV junkies out there.  In honor of Mother’s Day, check out the best TV moms. Who’s your fave? Did we miss any other memorable TV moms? What's your favorite show?
profile picture of Sarah Yang
BySarah Yang
Updated
Jan 2017
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Photo: NBC
15 slides
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Photo: The WB

Lorelai Gilmore (Gilmore Girls)

There’s no doubt Lorelai was the coolest TV mom around. Lorelai and Rory had the best mother-daughter relationship — they shared a love of pop culture, junk food and talking really fast.

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Photo: ABC

Claire Dunphy and Gloria Pritchett (Modern Family)

Claire’s the perfectionist, sarcastic and type-A mom, while Gloria’s the loud, crazy and daring kind. Who LOL-ed at Claire’s comb sheath craft table at Luke’s birthday party? Or what about when Gloria let Haley have a party at her house just so Manny could have fun and not act like a 40-year-man? They’re totally different, but both really good mothers.

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Photo: NBC

Clair Huxtable (The Cosby Show)

Elegant and intelligent, Clair was the ultimate modern mom. She had a high-powered job as a partner at a law firm, but she still had time to teach her kids some serious life lessons while dealing with her eccentric hubby, Cliff.

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Photo: NBC

Tami Taylor (Friday Night Lights)

One-half of Dillon, Texas’s power couple, Tami was a fantastic mom not only to her daughters Julie and Gracie Bell (seriously, what was up with that name?), but she was also a pseudo-mom and mentor to her students as principal of Dillon High School. Plus, who didn’t love her super-strong relationship with her coach husband, Eric? Tami Taylor, you rock.

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Photo: ITV

Cora Crawley (Downton Abbey)

Alright, so we never really see Cora having a cuddling and bonding session with her daughters. But we’ll cut her some slack because people just didn’t do that stuff back then and she’s an American-turned-Brit. Cora cares about her family — she wants her daughters to be happy (and marry well!). Plus, props to her for carrying her daughter Mary’s dead Turkish lover out of Mary’s room and keeping it a secret from her hubs.

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Photo: NBC

Vivian Banks (Fresh Prince of Bel Air)

Aunt Viv was a tough but nurturing mom to her kids Hilary, Carlton and Ashley and a pseudo-mom to her nephew, Will. Any woman who could discipline the Fresh Prince gets a gold star in our book. Plus, remember that episode where she did that dance audition and showed up all the other people in the room? Wow.

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Photo: ABC

Nora Walker (Brothers and Sisters)

The matriarch of the Walker clan, Nora was meddling and loving all at the same time. She’s one of the finest helicopter parents around. Also, who wouldn’t want Sally Field as their mother?

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Photo: Warner Brothers Television

Becky Donaldson Katsopolis (Full House)

Aunt Becky was a mom figure to her nieces DJ, Stephanie and Michelle in a house full of dudes. Plus, she was mom to twins Nicky and Alex too. And didn’t Lori Loughlin have the best hair on the show (sorry, John Stamos)?

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Photo: muffintopmommy.com

June Cleaver (Leave it to Beaver)

The ultimate ‘50s housewife, June Cleaver cooked, cleaned and disciplined her kids. Of course, she did it all perfectly and with pearls on.

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Photo: Fox

Marge Simpson (The Simpsons)

Marge is definitely the voice of reason in her family. She keeps Homer and Bart in line, nurtures Lisa’s brainy antics and manages to take care of baby Maggie.

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Photo: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC

Betty Draper (Mad Men)

Okay, we know that Betty’s parenting basically teaches us what not to do, but you’ve gotta love her anyways. She’s stylish and sassy.

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Photo: Showtime

Nancy Botwin (Weeds)

Another parenting no-no, but Nancy only started dealing pot because she needed money to support her kids. Plus, she did time in prison for her son. That’s motherly love right there.

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Photo: Paramount / CBS

Carol Brady (Brady Bunch)

Here’s a story of a woman who didn’t lose her mind with six kids under her roof. Okay, so she did have help (Alice) and her kids were unusually obedient. But still, she was supportive of her family and a great mom.

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Photo: CBS

Marie Barrone (Everybody Loves Raymond)

Marie, I wouldn’t mind you bringing pasta dishes over to my house everyday. Like Nora Walker, Marie is a mom who just can’t stop baby-ing her adult children. And let’s face it, Robert and Ray loved it.

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Photo: Fox

Lucille Bluth (Arrested Development)

Lucille’s another one of those crazy moms we shouldn’t aspire to be, but who didn’t love her crazy antics? She always had a drink in hand and always played her kids against each other — what a mischievous lady.

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