Elizabeth Jennings (The Americans)
We've seen moms lead double lives on TV before, but none have been so jarring as Keri Russel's portrayal of Elizabeth Jennings. This is a woman who got married to a fellow spy and had kids as part of her KGB cover, so it's no wonder that we're constantly asking if she's capable of loving anything or anyone more than her homeland.
Renata Klein (Big Little Lies)
Renata has high-powered career in Silicon Valley and can't be around for every little moment of her daughter's school life, but that's not what had viewers cringing. It's how myopic she is when it comes to her kid, refusing to believe that little Amabella could be lying about who hurt her, and then bullying the accused kid and his mom.
Valerie Meyers (Casual)
Val is not a bad mom. Without a doubt, she loves her daughter, but the frustration lies in her constant string of missteps in navigating her life post-divorce. We're cheering for her despite it all, which sets her apart from many of the other mothers on this list.
Livia Soprano (The Sopranos)
Livia was a force to be reckoned with. She'd hide behind her old age and frailty while attempting to order a hit on her son. A mother who was constantly lamenting that her kids didn't love her, she was manipulative and emotionally abusive, and a large part of what drove Tony to seek the help of Dr. Melfi.
Leslie Dean (Marvel's Runaways)
Leslie is the head of the new-agey Church of Gibborim, and while she preaches light and love, she's also the head of PRIDE, a charity organization that's a front for ritual sacrifices to restore a mysterious benefactor. While she tends to target runaways that wouldn't be missed, not even her own child is safe from fulfilling Lesle's agenda.
Roseanne Conner (Roseanne)
Roseanne has never been known as a warm, supportive, shining example of motherhood. In the recent reboot of the series, we see that she's still up to her bullying ways and it's now extended to her grandchildren as well as her kids.