Bob’s Burgers: Where’s all the love for Linda Belcher?

Photo Credit: Bob's Burgers/Fox, Acquired From Fox Flash
Photo Credit: Bob's Burgers/Fox, Acquired From Fox Flash /

Of all the characters on Bob’s Burgers, Linda Belcher is the one who gets overshadowed most. When will she finally get her time in the spotlight?

Since its inception, Bob’s Burgers has been a character-driven series. While it’s named after the restaurant, the series does a lot with its characters. Each character seems to have their own fan following besides one and that’s Linda Belcher. Linda is the glue that keeps the family, restaurant and the series together. Regardless, she’s given the least amount of attention.

It’s disheartening, to say the least, but not surprising. It goes back to an old trope of the mother/wife being the least interesting character in a story. Usually, they’re on the back burner and rarely in the spotlight. While it’s doubtful that the series intended that, Linda somehow always comes out at the bottom. In honor of Linda, let’s look at her role in the series, why she’s usually stuck in the background and some of her best moments.

As previously mentioned above, Linda Belcher is the glue that keeps the family together. Even though Bob is seen as the leader, Linda is the true leader. Not only does she run the household but she works full-time with Bob. When Bob isn’t there, Linda is in the one in charge of the restaurant. In addition to helping with the restaurant, she takes cares of the kids and her sister, Gayle.

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Throughout the series, we’ve watched as she’s taken on different roles. At one point, she had a part-time job to help with the bills. She tried to sell essential oils, became a volunteer at the library and hosted a dinner theater. Even though she ends up failing almost every time, she doesn’t give up and continues to soldier on. Her role in the series is constantly evolving but she continues to be the heart and soul of the Belcher family.

Despite being the heart of the family, Linda is always in the background. Looking back at the series, there are roughly one to two Linda-centric episodes per season. So far in Season 9, there has been one Linda episode.

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When comparing her with other characters, Linda is arguably the most underrated character on the show. Rarely do we see her getting the attention that other characters get. It’s more frustrating than anything. However, it’s not surprising.

Photo Credit: Bob’s Burgers/Fox, Acquired From Fox Flash
Photo Credit: Bob’s Burgers/Fox, Acquired From Fox Flash /

Being a mother is a very thankless job and one that doesn’t come with a lot of glamour. Similar to most moms, Linda is just doing the best she can for her family and not for the glory. If there’s one good thing to say, it’s that Bob’s Burgers does an awesome job of portraying that. Even so, it doesn’t always have to be that way. It would be nice to see Linda get her chance to shine as she’s a very complex character who has room for development.

Even though Linda is mostly kept in the background, there have been some awesome Linda moments in the past nine seasons. Throwing it back to Season 1, “Hamburger Dinner Theater” introduced us to Linda’s love of singing and she hasn’t stopped since. Some of her best episodes have arguably been ones where she teams up with the kids including “Mother Daughter Laser Razor,” “Zero Larp Thirty,” and “The Hurt Soccer.”

The best Linda moments come when it’s an episode focused on her but none more than “Purple Rain-Union.” It’s such a quintessential Linda episode including giving us a glimpse into her past while celebrating who she is now.

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Linda Belcher might not anyone’s favorite character, but she’s essential to Bob’s Burgers. The series wouldn’t be the same without her songs, her “Alriiiiight!” or how much she loves her family. Linda is one of the best-animated moms on TV and it’s time for her to be in the spotlight.

Bob’s Burgers airs Sundays on Fox at 8:30/7:30c.