Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day! Top 10 Worst Mothers

In order to celebrate Mother’s Day today, I thought I would come up with a list of some sort celebrating mothers. At first, I wanted to make one about great mothers, but I thought that would be too easy. Then I decided to come up with a list of the worst mothers from movies and TV (and even one real life example). So, if you feel like a shitty mother one day, just take a look at this list and realize you could be a lot worse.

10. Viola Fields in Monster in Law
Okay, so she’s technically a mother-in-law, but she’s still one of the most monstrous ones I have ever seen in a film. She’s mean and hilarious at the same time- a potent combination. Who but Jane Fonda could make pouring nuts into J. Lo’s gravy (she’s allergic) both psychotic and funny at the same time?


9. Mrs. Bates in Psycho
You never see her in the film, but just from the way Norman speaks about her we can understand why he is as screwed up as he is. She smothered him and virtually kept him a prisoner in his own home by not permitting any social interaction with anyone but herself. Even in death, she controls Norman’s life and makes him feel guilty for feeling an attraction towards Marion.


8. Julie Cooper-Nichol on The O.C.
Until she mellowed out a bit during the last season, Julie Cooper-Nichol was the most uncaring, unsympathetic mother around. She didn’t give a crap about her children’s happiness (trying desperately to break up Marissa and Ryan) and went off marrying and divorcing rich men because she needed the money.


7. Lilly Dillon in The Grifters
I haven’t seen this film in a couple of years, but it’s hard to forget what a terrible mother Anjelica Huston’s Lilly is to her son John Cusack. Just watch the last scene and you'll see what I mean.



6. Margaret White in Carrie
What a nutcase! Carrie’s religious whacko mom is one of the creepiest mothers around. I saw the film again last summer and I couldn’t believe how horrible she was to Carrie- locking her in closets and preaching the Bible like Robert Mitchum’s creepy minister in The Night of the Hunter.


5. Beth Jarret in Ordinary People
Unlike many of the other mother’s on this list, Beth’s horrible parenting is purely psychological as opposed to verbal or physical. Her son Conrad craves love from her, but she denies it to him throughout the whole movie and becomes a monster on par with Joan Crawford.


4. Gloria Hodge on Desperate Housewives
I wanted to like Gloria whenever she first made an appearance at Wisteria Lane because I thought Orson was such an awful person. But after a couple of episodes, we quickly realized that she is the monster in the mother-son relationship. I still remember my ultimate horror during her last episode and her near murder of Bree (my favorite housewife) and her whacking of Andrew on the head to keep him from saving her. Thank God she had that stroke and couldn’t move again.


3. Mrs. Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate
What kind of a mother would willingly allow for her son to be brainwashed and then control him through a deck of cards (and then sneak in a little incest on top of it)? Mrs. Iselin, of course, in both versions of The Manchurian Candidate. It’s especially jarring because the actresses who have played her (Angela Landsbury and Meryl Streep) are both so likeable and Mrs. Iselin definitely isn’t.


2. Catherine Roerva in A Child Called It
For anyone who has read this book, you know that she took the term “abusive mother” to the extreme toward her son who eventually wrote the book. The atrocious abuse she inflicted upon him repulsed me made me cringe. I never thought that a human being could be this relentlessly cruel, but she made me see that it has happened and may happen again.



1. Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest
Okay, you knew it was coming. The ultimate bad mother takes her well deserved position at number one. From her forcing her child to eat raw, bloody meat to waking her daughter up in the middle of the night because of wire hangers in the closet and her constant verbal abuse, the depiction of Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest (who knows if that’s what actually happened or the payback of a bitter child) is the absolute, most horrifying mother in cinematic history.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

How and the H--- can you say joan crawford is worse than dave pelzers mom???? If you think that something is seriously wrong with you.

Dame James Henry said...

If I was ranking the mothers in order of most severe crimes, than of course Dave Pelzer's mother would be number one by a long mile. I'm not that much of a horrible person that I think that making a kid eat a piece of raw meat is worse than some of the horrific stuff that goes on in that book. My list is fairly arbitrary and was put in order of notoriety and how much I "liked" (not exactly the appropriate word, but I think you get the meaning) the mothers.

Anonymous said...

well of course i agree with the other two people that cathrine roevra would be #1 i mean she made him eat a diaper full of crap an wanted throw him over a burning stove...!!! so i think u shuld chang it around a lil bit

Anonymous said...

that is totally wrong david pelzer's mom is the worst by far she burned him, beat him, made him live in a basement and if eating a piece of raw meat is bad how about having to eat out of the garbage and eventually eatin amonia because your own mother put it in there, how cruel is that.

dibsy said...

Dave Pelzer. Definietly.

mariuhh. said...

dave pelzers mom made him eat shit, practically gassed him, made him wear the same clothes for almost his entire life until he was saved, starved him for 10 days, beat him, stabbed him, and i havent even finished the book yet.

Anonymous said...

DAVID PELZERS MOM SHOULD B #1 by a long shot. Makin him eat crap is just...friggin crazy..

Anonymous said...

His books are great..im readin them.

Anonymous said...

DaVe PezLers MOthER ShouLd bE FIrSt thAnk GoD sHE died shES the MOst CRuELest moTHer eVer wHO doES THat TO thER oWN child.....

Anonymous said...

Why isnt Martha Alice "Mattie" Mason (The mother in Sybil) on here? She was terrible, she was so abusive Sybil (Shirley Ardell Mason)she caused her to have multyple personality dissorder. I also agree that Dave Pelzers mom should be higher on the list.

Anonymous said...

Dave pelzer's mom was a witch

chloe said...

i havent even READ the book yet! and even i know Dave Pelzers mom should be first! she birthed that boy, and she treats him like that! sick. and. twisted. messed up! she should be number one.

darkstar said...

May I mention AURORE French Canadian girl from Quebec was tortured to death by her step mother. Available on youtube