Season 3, Episode 7
Disgraced Harvard philosophy professor, Jack Griffin, winds up teaching high school A.P. Biology while probably learning very little from his students, aside from coming up with more ways to make fun of them. This episode is no exception when one of them is forced to reveal his desire to become a pro wrestler.
2015 wasn’t the greatest year for wrestling legends in terms of breaking news stories. Two of the greatest entertainers, Dusty Rhodes and Roddy Piper, passed away. Jimmy Snuka was arrested and charged with third-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter of his then-girlfriend, Nancy Argentino, 32 years after the fact. And, even though former Hulkmaniacs thought it impossible, Hulk Hogan was able to further desecrate his legacy and contribution to professional wrestling by adding to his already long list of personal failures and embarrassments his dropping of the n-word. Multiple times. Seriously, you would’ve thought it was one of the Hulkamania commandments after “take your vitamins.”
Thankfully, this site focuses on wrestling in pop culture. So even when it’s bad, it’s not going to leave you depressed and questioning everything you kayfabe believed in. And luckily, 2015 was a good year for pro wrestling within the canon of pop culture.
Wrestling fans love to know about celebrities who actually enjoy watching wrestling. It makes them more like us! However, we don’t care for the ones that were somehow coerced into being at a WWE event, despite getting awesome front-row seats, for the sole purpose of reminding non-wrestling fans how mainstream and culturally relevant WWE is. Nor do we care for the ones that are guest hosting Raw for the simple reason of pimping out their latest movie/show. No, we like the ones that actually watch on their own accord and are fans of the product. Whether they’ve just gotten on the bandwagon or have been fans for years. It’s even better when those fans happen to be comedians. Especially, when you consider the several parallels between the lives of professional wrestlers and stand-up comedians. Plus, it helps to have a sense of humor and a healthy dose of self-hatred when watching wrestling. Which is why it makes sense that comedians would be legit wrestling fans. And here’s a PWI 500-ish ranking of them.
While Mama’s Family will never make any top ten sitcom lists, or be revered for breaking any ground as a sitcom or, hell, for being an entertaining sitcom for that matter, it was still a sitcom I regularly watched as a kid. Which will tell you that I spent most of my childhood without cable TV. Upholding the long-standing tradition of working class/white trash family sitcoms, Mama’s Family also happened to have a wrestling episode that involved Harper matriarch, Thelma, and daughter-in-law Naomi competing inside the ring. The show also decided to go the much more realistic route of having their TV characters, that have never wrestled before, win their matches against seasoned pros. And yet, we still wonder why the WWE books celebrities the way they do.