Who is the Worst Mother on TV?

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Mother's Day is here and as we celebrate all that this important person has done for us, TV Fanatics know that not everyone got quite so lucky in the parental department.

As the following list of TV mothers clearly reveals, maternal instincts don't always come naturally.  From lies and manipulation to outright abandonment, help us decide which of these mothers should earn the title of worst mother currently on TV.


Victoria Grayson (Revenge)  It was bad enough when Charlotte had to listen to her mother say out loud that she wished she had never been born. But Victoria went on to manipulate both of her children and attempt to ruin their love lives. Now we've found out she has another child which she gave away in order to fly to Paris on an art scholarship, and then paid him off years later to stay gone.  Somehow I don't see a Mother's Day card in Victoria's mailbox this year.

Cersei Lannister (Game of Thrones) She's the mother of Joffrey Baratheon. Do we really need to say anything more? Cersei's incestuous relationship with her brother and indulgent parenting created this unstable little psychopath. Then she did everything in her power to make him king.  As her brother Tyrion aptly said of young King Joffrey, "We've had vicious kings, and we've had idiot kings...but I don't know if we've ever been cursed with a vicious idiot for a king!"

Closing the Well

Regina Mills (Once Upon a Time) The sad part is that in her own warped way, Regina loves Henry.  Unfortunately for Henry his adoptive mom is horrible at sharing…to the point of planning to destroy an entire town and murdering his biological family in order to have him all to herself.

Moira Queen (Arrow) Moira was responsible for her own son's kidnapping. Yes, she can justify it by claiming it was to save his life but in the end, even the son who loves her has his doubts. Either way, Moira is in way over her head and there will be consequences to her actions.

Joan Hunt (Body of Proof) For decades Joan refused to discuss her husband's suicide with anyone, even the man's own daughter. She even went so far as to hide the his suicide note from authorities. Now that Megan's all grown up and a medical examiner to boot, she wants answers. Instead of allowing her daughter to find some peace, Joan still insists on standing in her way…which leads us to wonder what exactly she's hiding?

Marianne Booth (Bones)  Marianne dropped back into Seeley Booth's life with a smile on her face, as though she hadn't been gone for 24 years.  Acting as though leaving her two boys to fend for themselves against an abusive father while she took off to save herself was forgivable. The final insult…she seemingly had no trouble finding a new love and helped raise his kids while she was gone. That Seeley has let her back into his life certainly speaks of a strength of character he didn't get from mom.

Who deserves TV Fanatic's Mommy Dearest award this year?  Make your pick below and then let us know if we left anyone out in the comments below.

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


Not the worst, but other worthy nominees:
Claire McNally on Rookie Blue for abandoning her daughter, striking up the relationship again after ACCIDENTALLY running into her on a case, then giving bad relationship advice. Elaine Peck on Rookie Blue for generally screwing up poor Gail, including leaving her to find her own way home in the woods to the family cottage as a child to "toughen her up." Selina Meyer on HBO's Veep for only caring about her daughter as a political prop. Pretty much every mother on Shameless. Betty Draper on Mad Men for general coldness along with several specific incidents I can't quite recall at at the moment. Mags Bennett form season 2 of Justified for general hillbilly-style brutality as criminal matriarch of her clan. Nancy Botwin on Weeds for pulling her kids into the biz.


I'd have to say that Mama McGarrett (Steve's mom from Hawaii Five 0) would have to rate up there as well since she faked her own death twenty years ago, ultimately sending her two children to live apart with relatives on the mainland. She has now returned into theirs lives, but is not truthful as to her past and current activities.


I'm surprised you guys mentioned Regina and not her mother, Cora - who is by far one of the worst mothers ever.


I don't really know about a lot of these people, but Regina and Cersei both put their kids above all else and they obviously love them. I really don't think they should be on this list!


Hey, leave Regina out of this!


Regina? I would say Cora is worse considering the fact that she killed many, harmed her daughter, messed her up, killed her boyfriend, never loved her...the list goes on and on people.


Cersei Lannister should win just for the incest and bringing up a kid like Joffrey

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Bones Quotes

Hodgins: Where's your chest hair?
Booth: I'm highly evolved!
Brennan: His pubic extension is entirely within normal --
Booth: Okay! Enough!

Booth: You know, when I say heartbreaking you say the heart is a muscle, so it can't break. It can only get crushed.
Brennan: Isn't it heartcrushing?
Booth: You want to go to his funeral?
Brennan: Yes, I would. Then she won't be alone.
Booth: You know what, Bones? Sometimes I think your heart muscle is bigger than people give you credit for.

Bones Music

  Song Artist
Fearless Fearless Cyndi Lauper iTunes
The world is The World Is... Matthew Ryan iTunes
Song Rain Or Shine Matthew Perryman Jones