Mama's Family

Season 4 Episode 14

The Sins of the Mother

Aired Unknown Jan 09, 1988 on NBC
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Episode Summary

The Sins of the Mother
Bubba comes in drunk from a post football party, well after his curfew (around 1:00 AM). Mama flies off the handle and promptly grounds him for 4 weeks and then quickly makes it six as her anger boils over. Iola shows up and the reason for Mama's seemingly unreasonable anger is revealed.

It seems that when Eunice was Bubba's age she begged Mama to get her on the Mother's Day show at the church, so she could showcase her singing case. The day of the event Eunice's long time crush Duke Reeves and his friends invites her on a picnic with the popular kids, and wants her to bring the food.

This makes her late for the show with Mama and when she does show up, she's drunk. Her and Mama end up getting in a huge fight in front of everyone and it ruins the day. Bubba then realizes why she was so hard on him and promises to never do it again. So she lets him go to his swim meet.moreless

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Vicki Lawrence

Vicki Lawrence

Mrs. Thelma "Mama" Crowley-Harper

Ken Berry

Ken Berry

Vinton Harper

Dorothy Lyman

Dorothy Lyman

Naomi Oates Harper

Karin Argoud

Karin Argoud

Sonja Harper (episodes 1-35)

Beverly Archer

Beverly Archer

Iola Boylen (1986-1990)

Allan Kayser

Allan Kayser

Bubba Higgins (episodes 36-130)

Heather Kerr

Heather Kerr

Young Eunice

Guest Star

Nikki Cox

Nikki Cox

Young Iola

Guest Star

Rich Kettley

Rich Kettley

Young Vint

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • In Rashomama, Mama says how Eunice was her last born and how the third time was a charm in the story Eunice told. But in this episode, Eunice is several years older than Vinton.

    • Bubba was saying how his team won, but at this time in the school year, the sports' seasons would be over.

    • Bubba says that it was Dwayne's father that drove him home. But whoever dropped him off kept honking the horn like they could have had too much to drink. Why would a father have done this or have allowed it? It was late at night and that can disrupt the whole neighborhood.

    • As young Eunice leaves the kitchen to go to the picnic with Duke, a napkin can be seen falling out of the picnic basket. She apparently didn't know that it fell out, or was too happy to care.

  • QUOTES (10)

    • Young Eunice: I didn't ask to be born!
      Mama: Well, if your daddy hadn't gotten me as drunk as you are now, you never would have been!

    • Iola: I think Thelma was reminded of the most embarrassing moment of her life.
      Vint: You mean when the mailman saw her naked?

    • *Eunice and Mama are fighting on stage*
      Eulalie: Thelma, I want this spectacle stopped at once!
      Mama: Oh, sit down and shut up, you lavender dragon! You wanted a mother-daughter show, well by golly you got one!

    • Young Eunice: The man I wanna share my life with! Mty dreams with! My bed with!
      Mama: She shares a bed with her sister Ellen, always has.
      *The Mothers and daughters gasp*

    • Mama: I guess the apple don't fall far from the tree.
      Vint: It does if the tree's planted on a hill.

    • *Bubba enters the living room to apologize to Mama who is knitting*
      Bubba: Hi Grandma. What are you doing?
      Mama: The Charleston, Bubba. What does it look like I'm doing?

    • *Eunice is being dramatic about being able to go on the picnic*
      Mama: Lord Eunice, I think you've seen one Joan Crawford movie too many.

    • Naomi: Besides, who didn't experiment with alcohol when they were teenagers?
      Iola: Me.

    • Mama: Now alcohol and acne do not mix!

    • *Vinton sneaks up behind Mama and she screams*
      Mama: You just took ten years off my life! At my age that's serious.

  • NOTES (1)

    • *Famous Guest Star Alert* Young Iola is none other than Nikki Cox, in her very first recorded role. She who would eventually grow up to star in the series Unhappily Ever After and Las Vegas and date Bobcat Goldthwait, among other things in life. One such distinction was being named #89 in a top 100 list of the world's sexiest women in a 2002 issue of Stuff magazine.


    • The title of this episode is an allusion to the idea addressed frequently in the Bible: "Sins of the Fathers." It is also a phrase used by Euripides (c. 485-406 B.C.), Phrixus, fragment 970: "The gods visit the sins of the fathers upon the children."