Mama's Family

Season 2 Episode 22

A Grave Mistake

Aired Unknown Apr 07, 1984 on NBC
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Episode Summary

A Grave Mistake
Mama can't get anyone to go to the cemetery with her, so she just goes by herself. After arriving and having a long talk with Carl, she notices that the grave that is reserved for her actually has another woman there. Mama is distressed by this and rushes home. When she gets home, she cries to the family and complains. Ellen, who purposely arrived late so she wouldn't have to take Mama to the cemetery, offers to go visit the cemetery to clear things up. But when they meet with an employee, he discovers that Carl's headstone was put on the wrong grave, and Carl is actually buried two plots down. Mama now feels ashamed that she has been pouring details of her life to a complete stranger. Mama has been cheating on her husband, in her opinion, and says Carl has to send her a gift that shows he forgives her. Soon after, Sonja returns from her date, upset that he was talking to a cheerleader. Her date, Michael, comes in, and after Sonja doesn't forgive him, he gives the flowers he brought to Mama. Mama believes this is the sign because she is allergic to the flowers, and only Carl would give her flowers she's allergic to.moreless

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Harvey Korman

Harvey Korman

Alistair Quince/Host (1983-1984)

Rue McClanahan

Rue McClanahan

Francis "Fran" Crawley (episodes 1-35)

Vicki Lawrence

Vicki Lawrence

Mrs. Thelma "Mama" Crowley-Harper

Ken Berry

Ken Berry

Vinton Harper

Dorothy Lyman

Dorothy Lyman

Naomi Oates Harper

Eric Brown

Eric Brown

Vinton "Buzz" Harper, Jr. (episodes 1-35)

Cliff Osmond

Cliff Osmond

Mr. Pratt

Guest Star

Steve Nevil

Steve Nevil


Guest Star

Betty White

Betty White

Ellen Jackson

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Mama is distressed by the thought of Carl cheating on her, but in the episode "The Wedding: Part 1," when Ellen asks Mama what she would have done if Carl was unfaithful to her, Mama tells her that she would have given him bus fare.

    • Mama sits beside Carl's grave and remembers when he used to bring her to the cemetery to visit her departed mother. Mama makes reference that this is around the time she got pregnant with Vint. Later on, in episode #92, "My Mama Myself," Vint reminisces about how Grandma Crowley was mean to him and his sisters. If Vint was conceived during the time Grandma Crowley was dead, how was she able to scold him?

  • QUOTES (9)

    • (Michael is begging Sonja's forgiveness)
      Michael: (whining) Come on, Sonja! Please!
      Mama: Sonja! Either forgive this creep or get down here and put him out of his misery!

    • (Mama tells Naomi that Carl and her have a spiritual relationship)
      Naomi: Well, Vint and me have a spiritual thing too. Don't we, baby?
      Vint: I'll say. Sometimes we even light candles.
      Naomi: And sometimes . . .
      Fran: PLEASE!

    • Mama: What hurts me the most, is that every single night, I would say a little prayer for Carl to be happy, and now he's got a woman lying next to him. What a hell of a way for my prayers to be answered. If he wasn't dead, I'd kill him!

    • Graveyard employee: Is that Harper with an H?
      Mama: Of course with a H; otherwise it would be Arper.

    • (Mama tells the family how Carl is having an affair at the cemetery)
      Naomi: Oh, there is life after death!

    • Employee: (as Mama rushes out upset) Is there anything I can do to help?
      Ellen: Yes, why don't you just bury people in alphabetical order?!

    • (Mama is crying because she believes Carl is having an affair)
      Fran: Carl Harper couldn't get a woman when he was alive! What makes you think he could now?

    • Ellen: Will you see to you wife, Vinton? Her muzzle slipped again.

    • Vint: How dumb do you think we are?
      Ellen: I may need a chalkboard to answer that question.

  • NOTES (3)

    • Strangely enough, this was the first episode produced for the second NBC season and ended up being the last network episode to air.

    • Shown as the 1st episode (14th overall) of the Second NBC season in syndication.

    • This episode marks Rue McClanahan's last appearance as "Fran Crowley," Eric Brown's last appearance as "Buzz Harper," and Karin Argoud's last appearance as "Sonja Harper."