Classic TV Moms: Marion Cunningham in Happy Days (1974-84)

Classic TV Moms Marion Cunningham in Happy Days

It’s another entry in our occasional series profiling TV’s favourite moms. Step forward Mrs C. from Happy Days.

Who else in Milwaukee could get away with calling the Fonz “Arthur”?

Not only did Mrs. C (Marion Ross) bring Richie (aka actor-director Ron Howard) into the world, she can take much of the credit for turning leather-clad happy daysmotorcycle toughs Fonzie (Henry Winkler) and his cousin Chachi (Scott Baio) into bigger nerds than Potsie (Anson Williams) and Ralph Malph (Donny Most).

And the motherhood didn’t stop when Richie left for the Army. Mrs. C made sure her annoying nephew Roger (played by annoying actor Ted McGinley) felt at home when he moved to town to teach vocational school.

We can discount the fact that Joanie (Erin Moran) was a brat for half the series and basketball-loving adult son Chuck (Gavan O’Herlihy) ended up on a milk carton after Happy Days’ first season–and Marion never once mentioned his name. (Hey, even moms have their dark secrets. Leave the woman alone. She probably suffered in silent agony.)

She still cleaned house, made “frisky” Howard happy and kept Richie and the gang flush with milk and cookies. Maybe it’s nothing but a nostalgic monument to mythic momdom, but we’re all entitled to our happy days–especially moms.

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