A Mother’s Day Salute to 8 of Our Favorite Black TV Moms

 A Mother’s Day Salute to 8 of Our Favorite Black TV Moms

As Mother’s Day approaches, many of us are preparing to honor the mother figures in our lives. These women inspire us to embrace our true selves as powerful and confident melanated queens. To mark this occasion, The Buckeye Review has compiled a list of Black TV moms who have left a lasting impression on us all. 

From the ambitious Nikki Parker to the beloved Trudy Proud, these maternal figures have captured our hearts and continue to inspire us beyond our television screens. Join us as we celebrate these iconic characters and the women who brought them to life.

Mo’Nique as “Nikki Parker”

In The Parkers, Nikki Parker stood on business as a fashionably independent, confident, and outspoken woman and mother. She took up college studies years after dropping out to raise her daughter, Kim Parker. Throughout the series, the mother-daughter duo embraced college life together, while Mama Parker didn’t hesitate to check her haters or jump into mama bear mode by any means necessary. 

Janet Hubert as “Aunt Viv”

In the sitcom classic, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Janet Hubert played Aunt Viv for the first three seasons and remained a fan favorite. Best known for her regalness, elegant style, and explosive dance moves, Aunt Viv leveraged her quick-witted nature to take down anyone who crossed her family.

Sheryl Ralph Lee as “Dee Mitchell”

Although Dee and Moesha had a rocky relationship, the pair worked at it in the most heartwarming ways. Dee entered the Mitchells’ lives and embraced her stepmother role with pizzazz. She taught her bonus children valuable lessons on morality, integrity, and honesty while helping to build a strong family foundation in the house.

Paula Jai Parker as “Trudy Proud”

In the Disney animation series Proud Family, Trudy had her hands full with Penny, BeBe, and CeCe, her husband Oscar, mother-in-law Suga Mama, and brother-in-law Bobby Proud. She portrayed an intelligent veterinarian and protective mom. She showed us what it was like to navigate work and family life as the matriarch of a house full of family members varying in age, interests, moods, and personalities. 

Photo Credit: Anna Shvets 

Phylicia Rashad as “Clair Huxtable”

In The Cosby Show, Clair Huxtable was class-personified and forthright when advocating for her beliefs. However, managing a demanding career and fulfilling family obligations was no easy feat. As a successful lawyer during the day and a wife and mother to five children, her character showed us how to maintain composure and handle the challenges of raising a large family with style and grace. The confident and unapologetic matriarch always knew that she was a safety net for her children during tough times.

Esther Rolle as “Florida Evans” 

Good Times, a legendary sitcom, featured an unforgettable performance by Esther Rolle, who portrayed Florida Evans, the wife and mother of four. She was the super glue that kept the family together and remembered for her catchphrase, “Damn! Damn! Damn!” Despite supporting her husband, who was often unemployed due to difficult economic times raising her children, Florida also devoted her time to housekeeping, working part-time, and returning to school to obtain her high school diploma. As a Black mother navigating her way through Chicago, Florida’s resiliency, unwavering love, and dedication to her family and community continue to hold a memorable place in the minds and hearts of viewers decades later.

Zara Frances Cully as “Mother Jefferson”

Beloved for being a shady queen, Mother Jefferson was a sassy, classy, petite woman who represented the role of an overbearing and judgmental mother-in-law in The Jeffersons. She often insisted that her daughter-in-law Louise was not good enough for her son, George, and stole the show with her impeccable timing and delivery of lines. Mother Jefferson’s character will always remain memorable for bringing excitement, charisma, and relatability to the show. 

Jackée Harry as “Lisa Landry”

Lisa Laundry portrayed the adoptive mother of twins with vivaciousness, wit, and flair. Her compassion as a mother and her love of fashion design offered viewers a different narrative than what was displayed on our television screens at the time. Moving in with her daughter’s twin sister and father took time to adjust, but Lisa smoothed out the transition with comedic relief and gave audiences a glimpse into a healthy co-parenting relationship. 

‘Tis the season for mothers and all the maternal figures in our lives. May we celebrate them not just on Mother’s Day but all year round because their tireless efforts and sacrifices deserve appreciation every day. Let’s cherish and honor these exceptional women who shape our lives with their unconditional love and support.

Atiya Jordan

Related post