As previously reported in our Oscar recap, baby bumps are one of the biggest “trends” this Spring (I use quotes because I’m hoping these actresses are having kids for reasons other than trendy gowns and baby clothes… though those are a plus). When celebrities are expecting, they usually experience twice the amount of press and paparazzi, and when they’re TV stars they experience the joys of trying to hide their baby bump on screen. Or if they’re lucky, the writers/producers of their series will write the pregnancy into the show, but normally, that’s not the case. Inspired by Kerry Washington’s ever-growing baby bump on Scandal, here’s a list of our most memorable TV pregnancy situations.
Kerry Washington: Scandal The last couple of episodes of this hit ABC show have become a “spot Kerry’s baby bump” game. Instead of making our favorite “fixer” Olivia Pope pregnant (with the President’s child perhaps? that would be scandalous), the show decided to use camera angles, random objects and even baby Teddy to hide the pregnancy.
Ginnifer Goodwin: Once Upon A Time Ginnifer, who plays both Snow White and Mary Margaret on Once Upon A time, is expecting a child with her costar Prince Charming (Josh Dallas)— isn’t that just magical? The show opted to make Mary Margaret pregnant as well, but her alter ego Snow isn’t. As a result, when in the Enchanted Forest she wears big, fairytale dresses and overcoats to hide her ever-growing bump, and shows it off when she’s in Storybrooke.
Alyson Hannigan: How I Met Your Mother When Alyson was pregnant with her first daughter, the show poked fun at attempts to hide her belly and even showed it when her character Lily was bloated after a hotdog eating contest. The second time Alyson was pregnant, HIMYM blessed Lily and Marshall with a child too.
Ellen Pompeo, Jessica Capshaw and Chyler Leigh: Grey’s Anatomy Another ABC show (maybe this network should consider a no pregnancy clause in their contacts?), many Grey’s Anatomy stars have been with child throughout the series run. Remember when Meredith decided to donate a liver to her father and was forced to stay in bed for many episodes? That was the writers hiding Ellen’s pregnancy. Remember when Arizona left Callie and Seattle Grace for Africa, breaking all of our hearts? That’s because Jessica needed time to give birth to her daughter. As for Chyler’s pregnancy, the writers went the more traditional route of hiding her belly in baggy scrubs and made fun of her character Lexie always stress eating.
Sarah Jessica Parker: Sex and the City I think it’s obvious that making Carrie Bradshaw a mother would be a bad idea, so the SATC writers went with a more realistic approach when SJP was expecting: fashion. Carrie’s signature style that season became Sarah’s custom-designed flowy dresses. HBO also decided to shorten the episode count from 13 to 8 (incase you’ve ever wondered why season 5 of SATC is shorter than the others).
Courtney Cox and Lisa Kurdow: Friends In an ironic twist, while her character Monica was struggling to get pregnant and pursuing adoption, Courtney was expecting her daughter Coco. The show used baggy clothes and random objects to disguise her belly. A couple seasons earlier, when Lisa was pregnant, the writers didn’t want Phoebe to become a mom, and instead made the hilarious choice to make her a surrogate for her half-brother. The unusual decision proved successful, and I think she had some of her funniest material when she was carrying those triplets.
Kelly Rutherford: Gossip Girl Lily van der Woodsen’s love for handbags and designer coats proved useful when Kelly became pregnant, and her bump was successfully hidden. However, when Kelly became too pregnant, the writers sent Lily to take care of her sick mother (which explains her absence in the beginning of season 3).
Bethany Joy Lenz: One Tree Hill The second time Haley James Scott was pregnant, Joy was too. This explains how Haley seemed to magically lose the weight (and have no problem dancing to the Spice Girls) right after she gave birth to Jamie, in comparison to her taking it slow when her second child, Lydia, was born.
Claire Danes: Homeland Taking a different approach from the other shows above, Homeland decided to give Claire’s Carrie Mathison a ‘Belly-Double’ to make sure she didn’t appear pregnant on screen. They did the same thing when Morena Baccarin– Brody’s wife— was pregnant the next season.