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Agnes Moorehead and Elizabeth Montgomery
The red-haired bad witch Endora (Moorehead) was mother to Samantha (Montgomery), a nose-twitching good witch who tried in vain to be a normal suburban housewife. Endora made that impossible by casting spells on Samantha's ad-man husband.
Barbara Stanwyck and Linda Evans
Hollywood icon Stanwyck was Victoria Barkley, the widowed matriarch of a powerful ranch-owning family in 1870s-era California. The story revolved around Victoria, her three sons and feisty cowgirl daughter, Audra (Evans), in this old-fashioned Western.
Susan Olsen, Geri Reischl, Maureen McCormick and Florence Henderson
We know now that in real life the Bradys -— or at least the actors who portrayed them — were not quite as they appeared (Dad was gay, Greg had a crush on Mom, etc.). But on TV, perky Carol Brady (Henderson) was flawless, just like her annoyingly perfect oldest daughter (McCormick), "Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!"
Shirley Jones and Susan Dey
Jones played a widow and one of the coolest TV moms ever as bandleader to her singing flock of five, including lovely eldest daughter Laurie (a lip-synching, ultra-thin Dey, pre-L.A. Law).
Jean Stapleton and Sally Struthers
Stapleton was Edith, bigot Archie Bunker's long-suffering wife, and Struthers played their daughter, Gloria. While both women came across as a bit flighty, Gloria was more likely to protest her father's appalling behavior.
Bonnie Franklin and Valerie Bertinelli
Ann Romano (Franklin) was no Carol Brady: She was a feminist divorcee with money troubles, boyfriends and two problem-beset teenage girls, including Bertinelli as the more wholesome daughter, Barbara.
Phylicia Rashad and Lisa Bonet
Free spirit Denise (Bonet) — she of the evolving hairstyles and funky clothes — tested the patience of the supremely competent, dryly witty Clair Huxtable (Rashad), the true boss of the family. "America's Dad," Cosby stole most of the laughs.
Estelle Getty and Bea Arthur
Sophia (Getty) played the diminutive Italian-born mother to Dorothy (Arthur) in this sitcom based on four older women sharing a house in Miami. Sophia threw one-liners at her eye-rolling daughter and, some fans say, made the show.
Katey Sagal and Christina Applegate
High school airhead Kelly (Applegate) often conspired with her big-haired shopaholic mom, Peg (Sagal), against her boorish dad (Ed O'Neill) in what was surely the most dysfunctional family on TV since the Bunkers.
Roseanne Barr and Sara Gilbert
Barr's character has been called the world's first believable TV mom: loving, bossy, controlling, middle-class. Sparks flew between Roseanne and her daughter Darlene (Gilbert), but their shared sharp sense of humor made the relationship work.
Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel
Graham played Lorelai Gilmore, manager of a Connecticut inn. Loyal fans appreciated the witty dialogue between Lorelai and only child Rory (Bledel). Their relationship included lots of coffee drinking and mutual respect.
Warner Bros./Getty Images
Laura Carmichael, Elizabeth McGovern, Michelle Dockery and Jessica Brown Findlay
McGovern is Cora Crawley, the wealthy American wife of the Earl of Grantham. She provides a steady shoulder for all her daughters to cry on throughout this high-toned soap opera.
Mike Daines/Camera Press/Redux Pictures
Sally Field and Calista Flockhart
Matriarch Nora Walker (Field) ruled the family dinner table and was the glue that held Kitty (Flockhart) and her often-squabbling adult siblings together during so many crises and celebrations one wondered when Nora slept.
We were inspired to commemorate these great mother-daughter TV pairs by the fun we're having watching two legends this season: daughter Reba McEntire and mom Lily Tomlin on Malibu Country. Read all about Reba and her family, then watch our slideshow featuring a walk through Reba's career as it might be seen by a hairdresser. See if Reba and Lily measure up to other great mother-daughter TV duos and combos in our slideshow above.
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