Happy Mother’s Day to the mothers of sci-fi, space and tech. There’s a special challenge involved with mothering in the future, and it goes beyond the regular parenting perennials of diapers and driver’s ed. Here we salute some of the ultra-modern moms and the families they founded.
The mom we can’t bear to blame: General Leia Organa
It’s tough to think of the sassy princess turned general and not miss actress Carrie Fisher, who died in December at just 60. We don’t know much about Leia as a mother from “The Force Awakens,” though we do know a lot about her son with Han Solo, Ben aka Kylo Ren. Leia, we love you, but where did you go wrong? At least Anakin can blame his turn to the Dark Side on losing his mother at an early age, but where were you when Ben was subscribing to Sith Lord magazine and dropping out of Jedi Academy to attend Bad Guy Community College? Where was Han, for that matter? OK, never mind. Stuff happens.
Let’s just pretend Leia as a mom was every bit as spunky as Fisher in real life, and that Ben was just one of those kids that no one could handle.
The badass mom: Ellen Ripley
Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) has a tragic mom backstory. When she came out of hypersleep in “Aliens,” her daughter Amanda had died without ever seeing her again. (Trivia: The photo of an elderly Amanda shown to Ripley is Weaver’s own mother.) So it’s no wonder that when young Newt (Carrie Henn) is in danger, Ripley’s mothering instincts kick in and she goes up against the Mother of all Aliens in her power-loader (which you can now buy as a Christmas ornament, because… it’s so jolly?)
Ripley, if we ever needed to go up against the fourth-grade bully on the playground, you’re the mom we want to come stomping off the park bench to put him in his place.
The calm, cool and collected mom: Beverly Crusher
Wesley Crusher (Wil Wheaton) scored big when he landed Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden) as his mom. She was a brainy doctor, she was beautiful and few people in “Star Trek: The Next Generation” were as rational as well as cool-headed. It’s not like she had an easy life either — husband Jack was killed on an away mission when Wesley was only 5. She managed, somehow, to juggle both regular mom duties (“Shouldn’t you be getting a haircut, Wesley?”) and the make-them-up-as-you-go rules that come with raising a son on a starship.
We didn’t see much of her with very young Wesley, but she once told Data a story about how she attempted to explain the meaning of life to her son, ending up by realizing that it was the journey, the struggle, that mattered, not the reason. Just so happened their journey took place aboard the Enterprise-D.
The mysterious mom: Dana Scully
Poor Dana Scully from “The X-Files.” Motherhood was as mysterious and heart-wrenching for her as one of her supernatural cases with partner Fox Mulder. First, daughter Emily was apparently conceived from Scully’s ova while she was abducted, and then she died tragically as well as early. Later, Scully gave up son William — whose powers included telekinesis — for adoption, believing it was the safest thing for him. And it probably was, given the track record of children in “The X-Files,” but that doesn’t mean it was one bit easy for his mom.
The magical mom: Molly Weasley
Poor Harry Potter lost his mother early, and his horrible Aunt Petunia was no substitute. Thankfully, he met Hogwarts classmate Ron Weasley, and Rob’s large, red-headed, energetic family that includes mom Molly Weasley (played by Julie Walters in “Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows: Part 2,” above). She didn’t have much money to raise her large brood, but she took in Harry like another son without thinking twice.
Molly faced some of the worst situations a mother could have in the final chapters of the Harry Potter books, but still she stood up to the evil that threatened them all, taking on the savage Bellatrix Lestrange to save her daughter Ginny. Spoiler: Harry had extra reason to be thankful for that later, when he and Ginny eventually wed, making Molly his mother-in-law.
The webcam mom: April the giraffe
OK. she’s not a sci-fi mom, but April the giraffe, from Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, NY, qualifies in the technology and science area of momhood. How would you have liked it, moms of the world, if a camera followed your every last minute of your final months of pregnancy, including the inglorious birth? Viewers even questioned whether April’s entire pregnancy was a hoax, just to add insult to injury. But happily for April and son Taj, he arrived safe and sound and most definitely un-hoaxable. Now her cam is only broadcasting on Tuesday afternoons, so fans can get their long-neck baby boost without intruding on the little family’s life.
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