Mother’s Day is here, and it’s the one day each year where we show how much we appreciate our moms.
Professional wrestling is no stranger to having mothers play roles in storylines, no matter how riveting or wacky they might have been. Wrestlezone takes a look back at some of the most memorable ‘mothers’ in wrestling history, all in honor of Mother’s Day:
Brodus Clay’s Momma
Brodus Clay talked about his momma so much, that she was mentioned in the title of his theme song. Brodus took an opportunity during his entrance at WrestleMania 28 to call his momma, who ended up surprising him by saying she was in the stadium, and came out and danced with him and the Funkadactyls on the stage.
Judy Bagwell was a WCW Tag Team Champion, had a match named after her (the Judy Bagwell On A Pole match) and allegedly called in sick to WWE on behalf of her son, Buff Bagwell. You might say she was part of some of the weakest parts of WCW and she overstepped a bit, but I see a dedicated and loving mother, one who cared enough to get in the ring and tried to give her son the best opportunities… whether they worked out or not.
Vickie Guerrero is one of WWE’s most memorable (and despised) heels, but she started off on television as a mother and not an authority figure. Vickie was first introduced to fans as Eddie’s wife during the infamous ‘Custody Of Dominic’ storyline. Vickie and her children were seen on-screen begging Eddie to stop playing mind games with Rey Mysterio and his family, and ultimately played a role in the result of the ‘custody’ ladder match at Summerslam 2005, tipping over a ladder and preventing her own husband from winning the match. The whole thing isn’t fondly remembered by fans (and Vickie’s solo work made her a star on SmackDown), but who can deny cheering a mother doing what’s best for two families?
Beaver Cleavage and Mrs. Cleavage
In one of the more bizarre relationships, former Headbanger Mosh was re-branded as ‘Beaver Cleavage’ and was paired with his ‘mother’, who he ended up liking a little bit too much. The gimmick featured black and white vignettes in the vein of the ’50s sitcom Leave It To Beaver and sexual innuendos about the relationship, but the gimmick was quickly scrapped.
Beaver ended up breaking character on TV, delivering a worked shoot promo where he shot down the character and stormed off before he revealed Mrs. Cleavage was actually his girlfriend, Marianna.
Years later, Bruce Prichard explained Headbanger Trasher’s injury left Mosh open to being repackaged, and told the story about how Mosh said people thought his driver’s license photo looked like Beaver Cleaver. The gimmick grew from there, and although it was short-lived (and led to a Headbangers reunion), it was still memorable for a number of reasons.
Another Attitude Era throwback, but Mae Young and her ‘son’ are more fondly remembered than most segments from that time in WWE. The story made some sense (…sorta), as Mae and ‘Sexual Chocolate’ Mark Henry had a fling, but then it went off the rails when Mae ‘gave birth’ to a hand. The angle has been the subject of jokes for many years, but it’s been in good fun, as it still gets a laugh from the WWE Universe. The mother and son even made a cameo appearance during RAW 1000, bringing everything full circle.
Linda McMahon is remembered as WWE CEO and now known as the Administrator of the Small Business Administration, but she was also featured on WWE TV as Shane and Stephanie McMahon’s mother (and Vince’s wife). Most of her on-screen appearances during the Attitude Era saw Vince and Linda at odds, even seeing Vince send Linda to a sanitarium, but most of the time Linda had the support of her kids, mostly Shane.
After Vince had an ‘affair’ with Trish Stratus, Shane challenged him to a street fight at WrestleMania X-Seven, capped off with Linda revealing she wasn’t sedated, and helped Shane pick up the win after leaving her wheelchair and kicking Vince in the balls. The McMahons would fight, reconcile (and repeat the process several more times), including when she threw Vince out of their home for fathering an illegitimate child. This would see Linda, Shane and Stephanie united against Vince… or as it was later explained, united to help him. No matter what, Linda is remembered as not only the matriarch of wrestling’s most powerful family, but as a respectful mother who would do the right thing for her company and family.
(…except for that time she kicked Jim Ross in the jewels and developed a demonic laugh)
Shelton Benjamin’s momma
Shelton Benjamin’s momma appeared on WWE TV in 2006, and was played by actress Thea Vidale. She came to the rescue of her son Shelton, who was on a bit of a losing streak in the preceding weeks. Momma Benjamin meant to motivate her son, but ended up berating him and said he needed to turn things around, even challenging other wrestlers to matches on Shelton’s behalf.
Shelton got on a winning streak as a fan favorite, but a run-in with Big Show led to Momma with an oxygen tank that she later used as a weapon. “The Gold Standard” ended up with another Intercontinental Championship reign thanks to his mother, but she later left WWE TV for good, with Shelton saying she had heart surgery and wouldn’t return. Momma Benjamin was only on TV for a few months, but left a lasting impression, and fans bring her up to this day.
Mr T including his mother in his 2014 WWE Hall Of Fame speech
Not a storyline, but this is still one of the most memorable ‘mothers’ in recent history for a number of reasons. Mr. T’s mother was so special to him, he made her the focus on his WWE Hall Of Fame induction speech. She was mentioned more than 70 times, saying he didn’t just love her on one single day, but he wanted her to know it every day! Mother’s Day, Election Day, St. Patrick’s Day, even Father’s Day… Mr. T loved his mother every day.
Mr T’s speech went on so long that WWE ended up cutting him off, which got the following response from the former A-Team member:
My mother taught me to stand up for what I believed in. I put a lot of care and love into my speech…
— Mr. T (@MrT) April 8, 2014
…I wanted it to inspire and motivate people when they are hurting.
— Mr. T (@MrT) April 8, 2014
Since my mother taught me to always try and take the high road, I will. If my speech helped just 1 mother & 1 son out there, thank you GOD!
— Mr. T (@MrT) April 8, 2014
Now that is love!