There are the good, All-American moms. "The Brady Bunch's" Carol Brady -- played by Florence Henderson -- always knew the right thing to say and had the warm hug to give. Her daughters -- Jan (Eve Plumb, left), Marcia (Maureen McCormick, center) and Cindy (Susan Olsen) -- looked up to her.
Not all moms are as perfect as June Cleaver (Barbara Billingsley, here with Jerry Mathers as the Beaver), but she's a tough act to follow, whether you're a TV mom or a parent in real life. But then there are the moms who appear less than loving...
"Downton Abbey" would be much less entertaining without the cutting Dowager Countess, played by Maggie Smith. There's love in her heart -- she did raise Robert and Rosamund (with the help of servants, of course) -- but her mouth says things such as, "I will applaud your discretion when you leave."
Betty Draper -- later Betty Francis (January Jones, here with Marten Holden Weiner) -- tries to be a polished, grown-up mother on "Mad Men," but the years have shown that her glamorous sheen hides a brittle interior.
Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter) doesn't even try to hide her brittleness. The "Arrested Development" matriarch abuses underlings -- that would be almost everybody -- and has been known to enjoy a drink. Or several.
And Estelle Costanza (Estelle Harris)? She was a perpetual thorn in the side of her son, George (Jason Alexander), on "Seinfeld." However, on at least one occasion, he was master of his domain.
Other mothers have their complexities. Carmela Soprano (Edie Falco) cared about her children and loved her husband Tony, but she tried to turn a blind eye to his business (which wasn't really waste management) and was known to consider straying.
Lorelai Gilmore (Lauren Graham, left) may have been mother to Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel), but she wasn't always the adult on "Gilmore Girls." Since she gave birth to Rory when she was 16, she had a lot of growing up to do.
On "Roseanne," Roseanne Barr (left, with Sara Gilbert) could be brash and sarcastic, but she was good with her children -- often while being brash and sarcastic.
Alicia Florrick (Julianna Margulies, right, with Makenzie Vega as daughter Grace) on "The Good Wife" has been through a lot: her husband's infidelity, challenges at her law firm, up-and-down relationships. She can be mercurial, but as a mother, she's steadfast and protective.