Part two of our look at sitcom mothers. I may be stretching things, but aunt’s and mothers have a lot in common. Sometimes auntâ€™s are surrogate mothers just by being there when the kids don’t feel they can talk to their actual mothers. Sometimes they literally raise the kids, for different reasons. The only rule for this list is that the character has to be a regular part of the cast, appearing in more than a handful or episodes. For example Bewitched had some great relatives such Aunt Clara and Aunt Haggatha, but they were never regulars (except one relative was, and we’ll get to her tomorrow).
#5. Aunt Zelda/Aunt Hilda (Sabrina, The Teenage Witch)
Unable to live with her mortal mother (I never did understand why), Sabrina was raised be her aunt’s. Zelda was the wise and logical one while Hilda was the free spirit, more interested in having fun. Together they made a decent parenting team. Of course being the typical teen Sabrina was never inclined to actually listen to what they advised which caused all sorts of trouble.
#4. Aunt Vivian (Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
When Wil was sent to California so he could get an education, it was his Aunt Vivian who welcomed him. His Uncle Philip wasn’t pleased, and it took a little while for him to adjust to Wil’s presence not to mention the influence he had on his kids. Vivian stepped right in and did a decent job helping Wil acclimate. Of course, Vivian was played by two actresses. I always felt Janet Huber Whitten put more effort in the role, playing a very strong woman. Daphne Maxwell Reid didn’t bring the same enthusiasm to the role, sometimes it felt she were there just to smile and collect her paycheck.
#3. Aunt Becky (Full House)
I give this show credit for figuring out that they needed a female presence, or to put it another way a mother figure. The first season when it was just the three guys was just, weird. Rebecca came in and quickly became a surrogate mother, especially to D.J. who was having problems growing up that the guys just weren’t equipped to handle. As the show evolved and she became a mother herself, she was still Aunt Becky. There when the girls needed someone to talk to.
#2. Aunt Rachel (Family matter)
Aunt Rachel was also a real mother of course. She was always good for advice and help when things got sticky. One episode I remember her in is the classic one where Steve drinks too much and almost falls off a building. Itâ€™s Rachel who comes into save the day. Rachel also gave the kids a place to hang out and work when she created her own diner.
#1. Aunt Jackie (Roseanne)
What can you say about her? She did everything that a good aunt is supposed to do. She spent time with the kids, helped them when they needed it, and was the one to stand up for them if Roseanne got a little too strict. She was the fun aunt you go to when you want to run away from home, or have a problem so big there is no way you can go directly to your parents. What does it say that one of my favorite episodes of this show is the one where Roseanne is way and Jackie was in charge of the household? She was over the house a lot, doing laundry or just hanging out, and there is a very simple reason why Laurie Metcalf won an Emmy for this show long before Roseanne did.
Aunt Bee (The Andy Griffith Show)
How could I possibly do a blog about aunts and not mention her? She practically set the standard on The Andy Griffith Show, creating a character which has been copied to death. You can see traces of her in Hazel, Alice on The Brady Bunch, Sophia on The Golden Girls, and so on and so on. She was Andy’s aunt but the whole town called her Aunt Bee. She was a friend, advisor, surrogate parent, and voice of reason all in one. Why is she not on my main list? Because I have never really seen the show so she is not a “favorite”. However she is so well known that I feel like I have.
Did I miss your favorite? Tomorrow we will take a look at my top 5 favorite grandmotherâ€™s