The TV moms to rule them all are Canadian
A lovingly made list of the moms we stared at while our IRL moms yelled at us not to sit so close!
With Mother's Day upon us, it's always good to look back on the moms that influenced who we are today. We don't mean our actual moms this time, we mean the moms we were staring at when our IRL moms told us to move back or we'd ruin our eyes! TV moms! There's no denying that television moms have left an impression on us with their very-relatable depictions of the ups and (especially) downs of motherhood. Don't call on your memories of Marge Simpson or Sophia Petrillo alone — there are plenty of matriarchs in Canadian television that deserve some recognition. We've made a list of 10 Canadian TV moms that sparkle on the small screen, and whom we love as if they were our own!
Emma Leroy (Janet Wright) from Corner Gas
The first mother on our list is already a beloved modern classic character, lovingly played by the late, veteran actress Janet Wright. As the long-suffering matriarch of Dog River, the wise-cracking Emma was the epitome of tough love and tender care. She would simultaneously be on her son's case about getting his act together while forcefully babying him; making sure he'd forever be a momma's boy. Emma's marriage to her adorably annoying husband, Oscar, also had the hallmarks of an enduring relationship; loving someone even though you want to kill them.
Lucy (Lucy DeCoture) from Trailer Park Boys
There may be no more volatile location to raise your child than Sunnyvale, but Lucy always buckles down and tries to make the best of the worst (and weirdest situations). Lucy lives in her own trailer with her young daughter Trinity, in an attempt to distance herself from the antics of Trinity's father, Ricky. Lucy always acted as the brains and the brawn for her daughter — Ricky had good intentions but never quite the capacity, and being Ricky's daughter, Trinity got herself in a few precarious situations— but despite it all, Lucy is always determined to make Sunnyvale the nicest place her daughter can live.
Moira Rose (Catherine O'Hara) - Schitt's Creek
Moira Rose always seems to struggle — with her rural surroundings, her fleeting fame and her fleeting youth — but she always does it in style. She is our favourite hot mess. Her influence on her children is obvious; though they're often befuddled by her worldviews, their taste and fashion show how much they cherish her. And even when tragically out of her element, Moira is determined to give the world around her a facelift. Catherine O'Hara also lends this role double mom credibility having played iconic, flawed but fierce, mothers in Home Alone and Beetlejuice.
Granny Garbanzo (Grindl Kuchirka) - Big Comfy Couch
Any child who grew up in the '90s might feel like Granny lives right next door to them too. Everyday, Loonette and Molly (a clown and her dolly) would take a trip down the lane to visit Granny (who was actually a classically trained clown), play in her garden and learn everything Granny knew. Along with her mischievous cat, Snicklefritz, Granny would tell tales of the old country and always provide that episode's moral lesson, but she never stopped making sure the other clowns and viewers had fun.
Aunt Agnes (Heather Conkie) - Dear Aunt Agnes
An obscure one for sure (Dear Aunt Agnes ran on TVO for 3 seasons starting in 1986), but Aunt Agnes gets a nomination for how progressive its premise was, especially for a children's show. When a divorced mother accepts a job in another country, she brings in her quirky Aunt Agnes to help raise her two children. Played by Heather Conkie (who is also the producer of Heartland), Aunt Agnes showed that every problem was solvable and that motherhood can come in many different forms.
Catherine Swing (Host) from Just Like Mom
We can't talk moms and Canadian TV without mentioning this game show, which ran on CTV from 1980-1985. Catherine Swing was not only the host (alongside her husband, Fergie Olver), but Just Like Mom was also her creation. Each episode, three kid and mom teams would compete to find out which team knew most about each other and, most famously, each mother would have to decide which dish their child baked. With a potential grand prize trip to Disney World, Catherine's creation put a lot of real-life moms and kids in the spotlight and the show is currently slated for a reboot.
Umma Kim (Jean Yoon) from Kim's Convenience
In the instant-hit sitcom (based on the play of the same name), Umma heads up her Korean family despite having a lot on her plate: co-owning the store with her ever-surly husband, Appa, handling the (often snobby) church community, delicately managing the estranged relationship between Appa and her son, Jung, lovingly meddling in both of her children's affairs. You know. Typical (stoic) Mom-stuff.
Holly Higgins (Holly Larocque) - Under The Umbrella Tree
This long-running CBC classic was from a much gentler time in children's television. Holly (who was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for her role), was clearly the mother figure to her roommates Iggy Iguana, Gloria Gopher and Jacob Bluejay. She was the only one who paid the rent or every really got anything done, but nevertheless, Holly loved and cared for her pals and her patience, kindness and creativity resonated with kids all over the country.
Kate Foster (Catherine Reitman) from Workin' Moms
Kate Foster hit the ground running, depicting the tireless juggle and struggle of new motherhood, marriage and a return to the work force. There is nothing pretty about Kate's approach - she often blurts out the wrong response and brings her like-minded mom friends along for her wild ride. But despite the whirlwind of her world, we love that Kate stays stubbornly perseverant and never quits until she gets what she dreams.
The "Hello" Moms (Jennifer Whalen, Aurora Browne, Meredith MacNeill, Carolyn Taylor) from Baroness von Sketch Show
Rarely can so much be said with one word, but the cast of Baroness von Sketch Show created (literally) the mother of all sketches with Moms Say Hello. With one word they've captured so much - kindness, sweetness, sadness and determination - that your heart may burst with joy the next time your mother calls.