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Mrs. Robinson

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"Do you find me undesirable?" "Oh no, Mrs. Robinson. I think, I think you're the most attractive of all my parents' friends. I mean that."

"For shit's sake Mother, how short is the list of guys you haven't screwed?"
Sterling Archer, Archer ("Heart of Archness, Pt. 3")

No, not that Mrs. Robinson. Or that one. Or that other one.

Older women with a taste for the younger kind (no, not that young — well, not usually...).

Mrs. Robinson is usually much older than her lover, and her lover may or may not be willing. Even if the younger party is unwilling, not all people are sympathetic to their plight. In some cases, the boy is just some Unlucky Everydude, feeling isolated and looking for love. In more comedic situations, a Casanova Wannabe or Chick Magnet may attract the attention of a much, much older woman — which he desperately does not want!

With the genders reversed, you almost always end up with a Dirty Old Man on one side and an innocent girl on the other. Since Mrs. Robinson is sometimes portrayed sympathetically, this may be an example of a Double Standard.


Unlike Mum Looks Like a Sister, where an older woman retains enough of her youthful beauty and vibrancy to pass for someone twenty years her junior, Mrs. Robinson is clearly and visibly in the twilight of her girlhood glory, making her need for validation even more sympathetic (or pitiful) to the audience.

Unlike a May–December Romance, it's not the actual age which is problematic, but rather the apparent age that causes so much Squick.

This is an Evolving Trope, since society is gradually becoming more appreciative of the sex appeal of women outside of the 18-28 age range. Some now refer to older women who still have active sex lives as "cougars" (about 40+) and "pumas" (mid-30s), especially when they actively pursue younger lovers. The related term is "MILF", which can mean either a tempting target for someone who likes them a little bit older or a Stacy's Mom — an older woman that everyone agrees is still attractive.


Compare to Hot for Student, White-Dwarf Starlet (seeking younger men is one way for a fading actress to sustain her illusion of youth).

Fille Fatale and Likes Older Women are inversions. Contrast Dirty Old Woman, who's even older and Played for Laughs.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Used for a quick gag in Digimon Adventure; back in the real world and in pressing need to get to Odaiba, the Chosen Children are forced to hitchhike after wasting their travel money on lunch. After Tai, Izzy, and Joe fail to get a ride, Matt gives it a try. The minute he sticks his thumb out, a hot woman in a sports car pulls up and beckons suggestively. This moment was notably cut out of the English dub.
  • In Billion Girl, there's a case of this... which is disturbing, since it's between lead male Taiga and his aunt, and it's more or less implied to be rape. Made even more disturbing by the fact that he resembles her son to where they look like twins.
  • Dragon Ball. Bulma's mother has flirted with Yamcha, Goku, and Vegeta, who brush her off. This even provoked Bulma's jealousy at one point! It doesn't help that despite everyone else in the series aging semi-realistically, Bulma's mom has remained identical to how she looked when she was introduced. This means she hasn't changed appearances for a good 20+ years!
  • Allegedly 19 year old Haruko from FLCL borders on shotacon when she flirts with 12-year old Naota, it is heavily implied that she's just manipulating him for her own purposes and that she did the same to others, including Amarao, in the past.
    • The sequel seasons show her doing the same to Ide (to have use of his abilities) and Sasaki (to make Kana, who has a crush on him, jealous and possibly activate her powers.)
  • Gantz Sei Sakuraoka is one. Kei Kurono is 15, and she appears to be anywhere from 5 to 15 years older than him. She approaches him, flirts with him, and sleeps with him...twice.
  • Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex somewhat uses this in an episode in which the Major (who if she were more biological would be in her 30s) meets a teenage (14-15) drug dealer in Taiwan by way of rescuing him from a group of thugs. When she gets a room for both of them in an upscale hotel, the receptionist's assumptions are quite clear. When asked about the sexual capabilities of a cybernetic body, her offer to show him seems pretty genuine, but the boy declines; thereby spawning about a half dozen H-Doujins where he takes her up on that offer.
  • Kaito from Himegoto - Juukyuusai no Seifuku is in his late teens and sleeps with middle-aged women who like to see if they're still attractive to men.
  • Played for drama in Karneval where Mine, a much older Valga woman, attempts to rape the young boy, Nai, in the first chapter. She ends up getting killed off a bit later, though.
  • Played horribly straight by Nami's mother in Kasei Yakyoku. She attempts to rape an almost catatonic Taka who's in his mid-to-late teens tops... and her husband shows up and kills her right there.
  • Mei Terumi (a.k.a. the Fifth Mizukage) in Naruto also counts as one. She spends her entire conversations with Sasuke pointing how he is to her taste (Mei is in her 30s, while Sasuke is 17). There's also her very peculiar attention to her teenage bodyguard, Chōjūrō (who's only a little older than Sasuke) — which he doesn't exactly mind.
  • Kane Ohtori's mother Mrs. Ohtori in Revolutionary Girl Utena is almost a textbook case of this, and like most things in Utena is intended as a deconstruction, specifically of the Fallen Princess trope. Mrs. Ohtori's husband is ill, so she tries to find validation in the worst possible way, mainly sleeping with Akio, the Big Bad, who's also her daughter's fiance, something Akio enjoys reminding her of as they're about to do it.
  • In Rising × Rydeen Aria tells Takara, who's fifteen, that she's very open to the idea of a relationship with him. While Takara does find her attractive, he's a bit taken a back, citing the age difference between the two. Which, as Aria reveals, turns out not to be that huge. While Aria looks likes she's in her mid-twenties, she's actually eighteen.
  • In Stardust Wink, out of emotional security, art teacher Mari Kobayashi latches onto her 15-year-old student, Hinata, who reluctantly lets the casual relationship happen to displace his feelings for Anna, on whom his best friend Sou also has a crush. The farthest they've ever gone was a peck on the lips, though.

    Comic Books 
  • Pepper Poptart, Cherry's mom from Cherry Comics, who has a habit of seducing her 18 year old daughter's boyfriends.
  • In the Silver Age and the Bronze Age of Comics, Black Canary was this to a younger Green Arrow. A later story retconned things so that she was actually the daughter of the original Black Canary, with her mother's memories magically implanted into her, so as to explain why a superheroine who should have been in her 60s didn't look a day over 30. She also served in this role, after Green Arrow's death, to a younger hero — The Ray.
  • In A Contract with God by Will Eisner, one of the characters, who's a teenager, loses his virginity to a beautiful older woman. Her husband shows up and then proceeds to have sex with her in front of the adolescent boy.
  • Black Canary:
    • Dinah Drake; when originally dating Green Arrow in the Silver Age, she was the older of the two. She was a cougar before they had a word for it!
    • Dinah Lance, in the Bronze Age onward, is typically depicted as being only in her twenties, so she's usually the opposite. She did express interest in Nightwing (who isn't that much younger than her, roughly no more than five years), and probably slept with The Ray who was roughly the same age as Nightwing, but besides that isn't shown dating anyone notably younger than her.

    Fan Works 
  • In Along Came a Spider, the 89-year-old Natasha Kerensky orders a 21-year-old Santin to be in her quarters that night.
  • The Bolt Chronicles: Applies in part to Bolt’s mother and puppy mill resident Cheyenne in “The Seven,” given that she is twice Blaze’s age. Partly inverted however, given that Cheyenne only mates with him because she mistakenly thinks Blaze is a breeding stud, telling him he’s “not her type.”
  • has an X-rated comic titled Family Guy: Naughty Mrs Griffin in which Lois and Meg's boyfriend Anthony get it on.
  • In Fire and Shadow, Firefang falls for Mistyfoot. Firefang has barely been made a warrior, while Mistyfoot is several moons older than him and already has had kits with an unspecified male. The two split up because they're from rival Clans, but not before Mistyfoot becomes pregnant with their son Bluekit.
  • A minor example for Katie Bell in The Power of Seven, who admits that she's had a minor crush on Harry since her third year when Harry was only twelve, imagining how she might help him out of his shell. Later on, Apolline Delacour- Fleur's mother- tries to seduce Harry even knowing his relationship with Fleur and Gabrielle's crush on him, but Harry rejects her despite her allure.
  • Violet Kincaid from Roman's Empire is a mob boss in her fifties who's hobbies include sleeping with younger partners whenever she can get her hands on them. She's a Silver Fox as well as a proud Ms. Fanservice, and seems to have no issue getting people of both genders to sleep with her.
  • Zig-zagged and deconstructed in A Growing Fire In My Heart. Ember, who is stated to be 103 years old, develops a crush on Spike shortly after meeting him, who is less than 20 years old and still considered a baby by dragon standards. Although it is shown how all of their friends support the two of them getting together and it is implied Spike feels that same way about Ember, she doesn't want to risk starting a relationship with him due to both potentially ruining their friendship and coming off as a pervert due to their massive age difference. By the ending though Spike undergoes some Rapid Aging when he has a rage and age potion forced on him by Lord Redskull and Queen Chrysalis, planning to set him loss on Equestria. Ember, Twilight, and their friends manage to use a cure on him to return him to normal, but it doesn't revert him to his original age and size, with him having now skipped a few years in his lifespan to now technically being only five years younger than Ember, with a much bigger adult body. Ember finds Spike's new body attractive, and since Spike kept his original personality before the potions effects, the two of them start a relationship shortly afterwards, upon realizing their feelings for each other.

    Films — Animation 
  • The Emperor's New Groove:
    • In the original movie, we're told that Yzma has a revolving cast of hot young male assistants ("Every decade or so she gets a new one. This year's model is called Kronk."), and it doesn't take much to infer that Yzma is keeping Kronk around for some December-May lovin' (it's all in the delivery):
      Kuzco: So. He seems nice.
      Yzma: H-he is....
      Kuzco: He's, what, in his... late twenties?
      Yzma: I'm not sure....
    • Played with in Kronk's New Groove, where Yzma is trying to get Kronk's help in selling her fake youth potion.
      Yzma: [pushes Kronk back onto a sofa and climbs on top of him] I've been watching you, Kronk. And I have... a proposition for you.
      Kronk: ...blech!
      Yzma: ...a business proposition.
      Kronk: Oh. Phew!

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Trope Namer is Mrs. Robinson of The Graduate, a married mother of one who seduces recent college graduate Benjamin Braddock, and engages in a lengthy affair. Later, Benjamin falls in love with Mrs. Robinson's daughter, Elaine — who later discovers that Benjamin had been sleeping with her mother. Awwwwwkward!
  • Evolving Trope: the MILF note  phenomenon started a subversion of the initial trope. The American Pie movies introduced the word MILF to mainstream culture when (the initially highschool graduate) Paul Finch seduced his friend Stifler's mom. While she doesn't pursue her relationship with Paul, she is rather promiscuous towards others. In American Pie 3: American Wedding, Steve Stifler accidentally slept in the dark with his friend Jim's grandmother (though he surprised her, she seemed to have enjoyed the experience). And in American Reunion, Stifler finally meets Finch's mom...
  • In the film version of An American in Paris, Nina Foch takes an interest in Gene Kelly's ... painting. The actors' age difference was twelve years.
  • In Breakfast at Tiffany's, Patricia Neal takes an interest in George Peppard's ... writing. Although the actors' age difference is only two years, it is implied she is sufficiently older than he to evoke this trope.
  • Edward Scissorhands is only barely saved from the clutches of Joyce, who could be maybe 20 or 30 years older than him. Who also might technically be younger than him, since he is not apparently capable of aging, but it hardly counts, with his childlike mentality and looking like a young Johnny Depp.
  • An extreme example would be the movie Harold and Maude. Harold is maybe 18 and Maude is 80.
  • Miranda Richardson's portrayal of Rita Skeeter in the film version of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Whereas in the book, she was merely a self-serving bitch, here she appears more interested in Harry than any 30+ year old woman should show in a 14-year-old boy. She had an unhealthy interest in him in the book as well, just possibly not for the same reason.
  • In My Tutor, 17 year old Bobby loses his virginity to a puma, his 29 year old French tutor Terry.
  • In Onibaba, Kichi's mom tries to pull this on her boyfriend, Hachi, because she's afraid he and Kichi will run off together and leave her all alone.
  • In the Sex Comedy Pretty Maids All in a Row, Betty (a schoolteacher) is cajoled/manipulated by Tiger (another, male schoolteacher) into being this for Ponce (a sexually frustrated student). First, Tiger tells her that Ponce's problem is impotence, when in fact it's exactly the opposite, so when Ponce sports an erection she thinks it's an accomplishment. Second, Betty clearly wants Tiger to screw her, so instead he gets her all hot and bothered and leaves her hanging. This leads a sexually frustrated Betty to let Ponce have sex with her. It works, as both Betty and Ponce have sexual awakenings.
  • The film Summer of '42 implies that these sorts of relationships weren't all that uncommon while the grown men were all off fighting World War II. May or may not have inspired the similarly themed song "War is Hell (On The Homefront, Too)".
  • The Last Picture Show: Sonny and Ruth Popper.
  • The Rebound has Sandy (40) pursuing Aram (25). He's definitely willing though.
  • In The Secret of My Success, the company president's bored wife pursues the mail boy protagonist who is also her nephew (by marriage), though she didn't know it at first.
  • Mrs. Kebabian in America America, who is a bitter fortyish Lady Drunk, and who casts carnivorous glances at much younger Stavros from the first time she meets him. It's a sympathetic example, as she's a sad and lonely woman trapped in an unhappy marriage.
  • Psycho IV: The Beginning: One scene shows a teenage Norman Bates making out with a woman in her thirties. Since Norman was still suffering from Mommy Issues, it didn't end well for her...
  • In Ken Park, Shawn (a teen) has an affair with Rhonda, his girlfriend's mother.
  • Cruel Story of Youth: Kiyoshi is seeing a woman a good 20 years older than he is. She gets very jealous when Kiyoshi's hot young girlfriend Makoto calls.

  • In Porterhouse Blue, a college's middle-aged bedder realizes the college's only research graduate student has secret feelings for her. Deciding to act on it, she sneaks into his room in the middle of the night. It ends badly for both of them.
  • In the second book of the Nightrunner series, a 16-year-oldnote  Alec loses his virginity to a considerably older woman (her age is hard to tell, though she certainly doesn't look middle-aged, and is in a sort of gold digger type relationship with a much older man herself). The situation is presented as somewhat ambiguous - Alec was drunk and under the influence of a seduction spell, and he feels used afterwards and, judging by his behaviour, maybe even a bit afraid of her; and the woman had nefarious motivations besides the mere sexual conquest. But Alec claims that the night was "great" and almost all the other characters (except for an elderly woman who'd been celibate her entire life), including the boy's mentor/friend/guardian and the woman's elderly lover have no problem with this 'seduction' at all, later even joking about the woman's "man-eater" personality and that she wouldn't go for another young male character because he isn't virginal enough.
    • Also, in Seregil's backstory, he had an affair with an ex-courtesan who was supposed to teach him courtly manners. Ages aren't given, but she was already a widow after marrying an elderly nobleman, and he probably was about the equivalent of 16-19 years old. However, he hadn't been a virgin for a long time at that point, and is implied to have worked as a prostitute himself, at least a few times, earlier in his youth.
  • Henry Fielding's Joseph Andrews has the title character pursued by his mistress (he's a servant) Lady Booby. His first name is a Meaningful Name, referencing Joseph of The Bible, who was pursued by Potiphar's Wife.
  • Mat and Tylin from The Wheel of Time books. Queen Tylin isn't particularly old (though older than 20 year-old Mat), but neither is she receptive to Mat's lack of interest. Since she's got the castle staff on her payroll and is handy with a knife, however, Mat doesn't have much choice. Mat at first panics about her adult son Beslan finding out...until he finds out that he already knows, and approves (his mother was a widow and not interested in remarrying, but taking a lover was perfectly all right). Granted, when Beslan found out that Mat couldn't leave the relationship, he expressed mild disapproval of his mother's actions (but did nothing). It's also an example of Black Comedy Rape.
  • In Leslie Marmon Silko's novel Ceremony the protagonist Tayo loses his virginity to his uncle's mistress. She comes onto him, and the anticipation freaks him out, but he sure enjoys the experience and remembers it fondly.
  • In Tom Holt's J.W. Wells & Co. books, Rosie, the mother of Mr. Tanner (one of the partners of the J.W. Wells firm) has a thing for young human men, and constantly flirts with the Hapless Everydude character of Paul Carpenter. However, as she is a goblin with the ability to shapeshift into a variety of beautiful young human women, the age and species difference is not apparently obvious unless she reverts to her true form. She gets some of the funniest lines in the books and shows a manipulative streak worthy of a Magnificent Bastard, though she schemes for fun and mischief rather than an end goal. However, she is somewhat sympathetic as she is the only character who looks out for Paul and tries to help him in dangerous situations.
  • Since Caesar and Brutus are roughly the same age in Conn Iggulden's Emperor series, Caesar's relationship with Brutus' mother Servilia fits this trope.
  • In Rule of the Bone the main character loses his virginity to his father's mistress.
  • The novel And Here's to You features a Mrs. Robinson and her boyfriend (who is half her age, but equal her intelligence) as the central couple. Surprisingly few people even comment on it at all, let alone have a problem with it, the only character in book who seems to think ill of the pairing isn't exactly a reliable moral barometer on account of her cheating on her own husband.
  • In one of the Doctor Who Expanded Universe novels, Chivalrous Pervert Fitz deals with a much-older female coworker who keeps flirting with him and playing grab-ass, and he mentions he apparently has an unwanted talent for attracting this type:
    She had masses of dyed red hair and wore short skirts and spangly tops, clearly blissfully aware [sic?] that she was several decades past the suitable age for such attire. She reminded Fitz of the mother of the girl who worked in the greengrocer’s down the road from where he grew up. She’d had a crush on him as well.
  • In Terry Pratchett's Lords and Ladies, Nanny Ogg is somewhat a case of this with Casanunda, although its not clear on whether or not they... you know. But in doubt, as the Lords and Ladies interrupted their 'romantic dinner.' Then again, given that Casanunda is a dwarf — with a lifespan several times that of a human — it's not clear whether he's younger or older than her.
    • His mother was 300 years older than Nanny. It's a safe bet that he's just a little older.
  • Invoked and averted in From a Buick 8. Sandy wonders if Fair Cop Shirley has designs on young Ned and that's why she's being so open with him, but in the end nothing comes of it but his speculation.
  • In Bad Monkeys by Matt Ruff, Jane Charlotte had a habit of sleeping with teenage boys when she was in her thirties. The organization devoted to fighting evil that she works for finds out about this and is not pleased.
  • In Fifty Shades of Grey, Christian Grey reveals that he got involved with an older woman when he was only fifteen years old. Anastasia is quick to compare her to "Mrs. Robinson".
  • In Jane Austen's early epistolary novel Lady Susan, Lady Susan is about 36 (not extremely young for Regency England), but is said to look very lovely. She tries to get it on with Reginald, a young man in his early twenties.
  • In the third Bridget Jones book, Bridget is a widow at 51 and has a relationship with a much younger man she meets on Twitter; causing them both to think of her along these lines. Lampshaded when Bridget has to decide whether to bring him as a date to her friend's sixtieth birthday party, as it turns out his thirtieth birthday is the same day.
  • In A Civil Campaign, early-middle-aged Lady Donna Vorrutyer has this (earned) reputation. Ivan is rather looking forward to the hope of a second fling with her since it'll be the first time in several years they've both been on Barrayar and local dating prospects are rather slim. Lady Donna returns as Lord Dono, having gotten a very thorough sex change on Beta Colony so he can contest the inheritance of the Vorrutyer Countship from his utterly villainous cousin, a title for which males are still only eligible on somewhat feudal Barrayar.
  • Sonny in The Last Picture Show has an affair with the middle-aged Ruth. Played by Cloris Leachman in the film adaptation.
  • Morgause in The Mists of Avalon takes many younger lovers until late in the book, when one rejects her because he reminds her of his grandmother. And not in a good way.
  • Madame Houpflé alias Diane Philibert in Confessions of Felix Krull. At twenty years of age Felix is a bit old for her tastes. She also theorizes that her proclivity for young men may in part be rooted in her wanting to compensate for not having children of her own and that her teenaged lovers want to return to the body of their mother.
  • Judge Dee: One story has a woman who sleeps around with energetic young men to draw out their life force, having successfully drawn in a kung fu master. Once her crimes are confessed, she seems to suffer Rapid Aging. Another story has a man secretly sleeping with one of his father's concubines (but they're actually around the same age).
  • Jennelle, of Uncommon Animals, is old enough to be Mina's mother and known for dating men younger than Mina herself.
  • Pan Tadeusz has forty-something Telimena flirt with high school graduate Tadeusz, although it doesn't last.
  • Violette of The Dinosaur Lords is a middle-aged woman who starts seducing Melodía from the moment the girl (still a teenager after adjusting for Paradise's shorter year) arrives in town.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 7 Yüz: Nil jokingly calls Gökçe a panther (cougar) in "Biyolojik Saat", despite having only two years on Metin himself.
  • American Horror Story: Hotel: Liz, a transgender woman who, judging by her flashback, must be in her seventies (though looking about 50) starts a sexual affair with Tristan, who looks younger than Liz' son. Unusually, this is presented as a very loving relationship, psychologically beneficial for both of themnote , and much more healthy than just about any other romantic relationship on the show. The ending even implies it's the sort of One True Love that lasts beyond death.
  • Bones:
    • Played with when the young intern-of-the week gets freaked out when Dr. Brennan asks him if he'd consider dating an older woman. Brennan's not actually hitting on him, though. She's trying to get an angle on the current case, which does seem to involve a Mrs. Robinson situation.
    • In another episode the Victim of the Week was carrying on an affair with a much older woman (the wife of the college President where he was going to school). She is explicitly referred to as a Cougar.
  • In the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode Teacher's Pet", a praying-mantis monster disguised itself as a Mrs. Robinson in order to lure male virgins for her to eat.
  • Ben and Ruthie in Carnivàle, although both admit that it was a mistake after the fact. Ruthie, who is at least in her fifties, had been trying to seduce eighteen year old Ben throughout the beginning of the series, until he is conveniently delivered into her bed, naked and in need of comforting, and she sort of takes advantage of his vulnerability.
  • Doctor Who:
    • "Love & Monsters": Jackie Tyler acts this way towards Elton Pope. The kid had no idea why things "broke" so often in her apartment.
    • In "The Impossible Astronaut", the Doctor hands out this as River Song's codename. She is older than him (at least in appearance) and is all but outright stated to be a future lover (her whole arc is based on Have We Met Yet? and Anachronic Order). She mutters "I hate you" in response.
    • This is played with in "Let's Kill Hitler", when a recently regenerated River Song catches sight of the Doctor and saucily says "Well, helloooo, Benjamin!"
  • One episode of The Drew Carey Show had Drew attending his high school band teacher's funeral. He reveals to the rest of the gang that he slept with her, and her last wish was to give him a baton to remember her by. Subverted when most of the boys in the band also received a special baton.
  • French sitcom Les Filles d'à côté has the resident Kavorka Man, Marc, who is frequently rebuffed and slapped down by all three Girls Next Door. He also has to contend with upstairs neighbour Georgette, the wife of a perpetually absent army officer, who is a neglected and sexually frustrated middle-aged woman who has taken a very keen interest in him. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Tanya Turner from Footballers Wives seduced her estranged husband's 17-year-old teammate, who is considerably younger than her.
  • An episode of Frasier centers on everyone finding out Frasier's first lover had been his much older piano teacher when he was a teen. They meet up in the present, at the end of the episode, only for him to discover she's still dating much, much younger guys, and is no longer interested in his middle-aged self. However, it's important to note that she's not that much older than he is; she just seemed that way to the late high school aged Frasier.
  • A French Village:
    • Marie gets a lot of attention from Antoine, who's only a little older than her son Raoul. Raymond, his brother-in-law, is unhappy with this and discourages her from getting into a relationship with him. She curtails his interest by having sex with someone else where he can see them (who's also much younger than her). Most of her sex partners however were not that young.
    • Suzanne is also attracted to Antoine (who's at least a decade younger) and seduces him, though he can't perform.
  • In one episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Uncle Phil's old friend seduces Will under the guise of interviewing him for her book. What makes things worse is that he had just gotten back from going on a date with her daughter. Also her name was appropriately enough Mrs. Robertson.
  • Friends:
    • Ross once kissed Mrs. Altman, his 50 year old high school librarian. "She needed help with her word jumble and one thing led to another. If you must know, Anita was very gentle and tender. May she rest in peace."
    • Ross once made out with Chandler's mother, leading to Chandler uttering the immortal line, "You kissed my best Ross!"
    • Phoebe's half-brother Frank marries his home-economics teacher, who is 26 years his senior.
  • Game of Thrones: In addition to being Lancel's cousin, Cersei is also old enough to be his mother. The same would apply to her relationship with Loras Tyrell, if not the fact that both of them are equally repulsed by their engagement to each other.
  • In the episode "The Rhodes Not Taken" of Glee introduced us to the character April, an adult. After being asked to try and make the Glee kids more comfortable around her, she is shown exiting the showers with two of the football Glee kids, with everyone smiling.
  • Nate Archibald on Gossip Girl has a way of ending up with this type of woman, to the point where Chuck Bass asks for his advice on how to bed one.
  • The Duchess of Wharfedale in the TV movie Horatio Hornblower: "The Duchess and the Devil". She tries to seduce Horatio a bit, but it's implied that their relationship is in fact quite innocent. For the most part, she just seems to enjoy teasing the uptight young officer.
  • How I Met Your Mother:
    • Barney sleeps with his mother's friend after Shannon leaves him, which acts as a catalyst for his current personality, which we find out in the episode "The Yips". The woman had a reputation for being a man-maker and she slept around with numerous young men.
    • In "Aldrin Justice", Barney spends the entire episode "huntin' cougar" in an attempt to seduce Marshall's law professor played by Jane Seymour, under the excuse that it's to get an A for him in class. Barney ends up breaking his hip, only for her to reveal that Marshall got a B+.
      Barney: B+? Marshal, after I've gone through my eight weeks of physiotherapy, I am gonna get you that A!
    • In "The Window", Barney accepted Marshall's non-challenge of getting sex while wearing Marshall's old coveralls. When it looks like he's going to fail at it, the older woman, who was Ted's lookout, takes an interest in him.
    • Discussed briefly in one episode when Robin, who is not exactly a kid-person, dated a guy with 5-year-old son. She mentions she would like to meet him rather later than sooner, hopefully when she's a cougar and he's as hot as his dad.
  • iCarly:
    • Spencer Shay as part of a sub-plot where he's trying to sneak a sculpture into a museum to impress his grandfather, ends up performing a "Shut Up" Kiss a woman who is obviously older than him due to it being somewhat realistic as she's the curator of the large scale art museum. Once the first kiss is done and his grandfather walks off satisfied, the woman then grabs him and kisses him again.
    • There are the numerous episodes which suggest a relationship between Spencer and Freddie's mother.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: "Mac Bangs Dennis's Mom"
  • Comes up a few times in Law & Order: SVU, and is pretty much always treated as incredibly twisted.
    • One episode involves a school principal seducing a middle-schooler. She's eventually let off relatively light because it's revealed she had a brain tumor that caused her to behave abnormally, but there's no suggestion that her actions are even remotely okay.
    • In another episode, a teenage boy is thought to have been sexually abused by a male teacher, but it turns out it was actually his female teacher who was sleeping with him. Rollins even notes the double-standard of the victim's father, who beat up the male teacher over the suspected abuse, but seems proud of the idea of his son having a "relationship" with a hot older woman, never mind that it's just as much abuse either way.
  • In My Name Is Earl, Earl has a drunken one night stand with Ralph's mom. To avoid being killed by Ralph, he ends up marrying her.
  • Nip/Tuck: The manipulative Ava Moore was a sexual predator who tended to go for partners who were significantly younger than her or even underaged. These include one of her students as a life coach (Matt) and her own son (Adrian). The reason for this is that Ava is a transgender woman with an incomplete vaginal cavity, and she hoped that inexperienced men wouldn't be able to tell the difference.
  • In The O.C., Julie Cooper had an affair with her daughter's ex-boyfriend.
  • In the Only Fools and Horses Series 2 episode "No Greater Love", 22-year-old Rodney Trotter dates 40-year-old Irene Mackay, to the shock and horror of his family.
  • The Practice: Judge Roberta Kittleson, who admits first to having an erotic dream about Bobby, gets sued when a much younger former clerk whom she had an affair with alleges sexual harassment, after this has a relationship with Jimmy, and then it's revealed she's had affairs with many lawyers that she's older than.
  • Parodied on Roseanne in Season 6. David stays at Jackie's house for a few days. During one scene she's just being nice but he mistakes it for Jackie trying to seduce him. She finds this hilarious. The end credits show an Affectionate Parody of the famous scene from The Graduate.
  • In Rules of Engagement, we learn that Russell's first sexual encounter was of this nature. He later becomes obsessed with sleeping with the woman again to prove to her that he has improved as a lover.
  • Saturday Night Live had a recurring bit called "The Cougar Den", which cast Kristen Wiig, Casey Wilson, and Amy Poehlernote  as talk show hosting "cougars". The joke was more on their ceaseless party girl behavior than age discrepancies between them and their men.
  • Lily acts like this towards Decko in Seacht.
  • Olivia in the camp soap Sunset Beach, to the extent that it's her sole defining trait (at least in the beginning). Also inverted; she seduced her daughter's boyfriend without realizing it was him, and became hopping mad when broke off their tryst.
  • Supernatural
    • An episode had twenty-something Sam being ogled and groped by a wealthy, lusty woman of 60+ years. He was made intensely uncomfortable by her treatment, though he managed to avoid actually being forced into having sex with her.
    • A later episode had an attractive retiree hitting on thirty-something Dean. It was a running joke throughout the episode, but was not treated derisively. While there was no indication that he had any intention of acting, Dean lightly flirted back.
  • In an episode of Who's the Boss?, Mona comes home with her boyfriend, who is in his twenties. When she starts to show off the gold brooch he gave her, which he pinned over her left shoulder, it's missing, so she thinks she dropped it. As the family looks for it, her grandson finds it, pinned over her right shoulder blade.
  • Why Women Kill: Simone reciprocates Tommy's affections (though he's just eighteen and she's probably pushing fifty if not past it). Later, we see that she also has a personal assistant/masseuse who's also decades younger whom it's heavily implied she also has sex with.
  • In her first appearance on The Young Ones, Vyvyan's mother largely ignored her long-lost son to make blatant passes at Mike.

  • Garth Brooks' "That Summer", in which a boy goes to work for a lonely widow who he loses his virginity to.
  • For an earlier Country Music example, 1982's "War is Hell (On The Homefront, Too)" by T.G Shephard.
  • Bobby Goldsboro's 1973 hit "Summer (The First Time)": She was 31 and I was 17...
  • The song "Maggie May" by Rod Stewart is about a young man who is telling his older lover that he's leaving her so he can go back to school. Also subverts Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male in that the relationship is stated in the lyrics to be downright abusive, and the song is based on Rod Stewart's own experience.
  • The Decemberists' "The Chimbley Sweep:"
    "O lonely urchin," the widow cried,
    "I've not been swept since the day my husband died!"
  • "Mrs. Robinson" by Simon & Garfunkel was originally a part of The Graduate soundtrack, before being released as a single. It wasn't originally about this trope, but the director of The Graduate was obsessed with Simon and Garfunkel's music at the time.
  • K.T. Oslin's "Younger Men" is the cougar's national anthem.
  • In the music video of Toby Keith's "You Shouldn't Kiss Me Like This (Unless You Mean It Like That)" a eighteen/nineteen yr old boy has a vivid daydream of he and his older female employer falling in love and making love with one another. The subversion/aversion comes from the fact her real personality is vastly different from his fantasy of her, and she seems to barely recognise his existence.
  • Hedley's "Don't Talk To Strangers"
  • Ronnie McDowell's "Older Women"
  • Finnish ballad "Rosvo Roope" ("Robber Robert") where an elderly widow finally tames the pirate protagonist and marries him.
  • COMMUNICATIONS: Frances Elsner, according to Word of God.
  • One possible interpretation in the last verse of Meat Loaf's "Objects in the Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are".
  • "Cougar" by Debbie Gibson.
  • "Und es war Sommer" by Peter Maffay: An unexperienced 16-year-old boy is seduced by a 31-year-old woman who makes him "a man" on the beach.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Queen Guinevere from the King Arthur legends is sometimes considerably older than her lover Lancelot. This varies from one version to another even back in the Middle Ages.
    • In one version, Queen Guinevere is much older than her lover knight Lancelot. She married Arthur some time before he was born. Though considering the age at which noble medieval women were married off, probably not as large a gap as it sounds.
    • Subverted in The Once and Future King, where Lancelot, Guinevere, and Arthur are all roughly the same age.
    • In Lancelot du Lac, the first version to give a full account of their affair (previous Lancelot romances had concentrated on just one main adventure), she is indeed much older than he is. In many later versions, including Le Morte d'Arthur (on which The Once and Future King was mostly based) tell it differently.
  • The Bible: In the Book of Genesis, Potiphar's Wife never has a specified age: given how young ancient Egyptians tended to marry, she could even have still been in her teens. But the fact that she is married and that her object of desire, Joseph, is definitely only about 17 at the time, means that she's often portrayed as this trope in adaptations of the tale, at least. For example, by 49-year-old Lesley Ann Warren in the 1995 Joseph miniseries, or by 66-year-old Joan Collins in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. According to Jewish legend, Joseph's eventual wife Asenath was her daughter, bringing her even closer to the Trope Namer.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Sherri Martel frequently showed interest in noticeably younger men, such as Shawn Michaels and Bobby Roode. The latter, who had a businessman gimmick, made it clear he was more interested in a personal relationship.
  • While Victoria/Tara's most frequent beau is Stevie Richards, most of her male partners have been considerably younger, especially Kenny Dykstra, Jessie Godderz and Generation Me(otherwise known as The Young Bucks).
  • Frankie Kazarian and Christopher Daniels accused TNA President Dixie Carter of having an inappropriate relationship with her much younger employee AJ Styles, but fortunately it turned out to be nothing more than Malicious Slander. Unfortunately, at least for the accused, they made the mistake of revealing their personal charity project Claire Lynch, who quickly became more ammo against Styles.
  • Vickie Guerrero, taking a more active role in the pro wrestling business in Eddie's absence, revealed a weakness for much younger men, "marrying" Edge and letting it slip that her business associate Dolph Ziggler was her "boyfriend".

  • The Marschallin in Der Rosenkavalier is a borderline case: she is probably just a thirty-something wife (Word of God gave her age as thirty-two), but having a torrid affair in her husband's absence with the sixteen-year-old Octavian makes her lament her age, knowing that he'll sooner or later leave her for someone younger and prettier.
  • Marcellina in The Marriage of Figaro tries to marry the title character, who is young enough to be her son. Until it turns out that he really is her son.
    • In the less popular sequel La Mére Coupable, it's revealed that Countess Rosina had a one-night stand with the teenage Cherubino and gave birth to his son.
  • John Gabriel Borkman by Henrik Ibsen has Fanny Wilton, a sassy widow who seduces Erhard, the son of the title character, and eventually elopes with him. It seems she is grooming him, because a young piano student (Frida Folldal) also travels with them. She states that Frida will be fit for him in some years, when Fanny is too old to be interesting. This play was written in 1897, making the trope Older Than They Think.
  • Hedwig, of Hedwig and the Angry Inch initiates a relationship with the 17-year-old Tommy when she is at least thirtyish. Bonus points for her name literally being "Mrs. Robinson."
  • In the Mrs. Hawking play series: the title character in part V: Mrs. Frost seems to be eyeing Nathaniel, who is twenty years her junior, the entire time he's in her captivity. It may be part of her psyop against him, but we do know she was attracted to his uncle in their youth, a man he strongly resembles.

    Video Games 
  • An option, if not the requirement, for several Dating Sims.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has as a random encounter the "werecougar", described as being "a large mountain cat which, by the light of a full moon, turns into a drunken middle-aged woman with a predilection for younger men".
  • L.A. Noire has a middle-aged actress/accident victim coming on to Det. Cole Phelps in this manner. He declines.
  • In Mass Effect 2, although Samara is interested by Shepard's advances, she lets them down gently due to commitment to being a Justicar making it impossible for them to have a future together. She also believes they deserve someone younger, since she's nearly a thousand years old. If Shepard chooses to be the Dogged Nice Guy and not see anyone else, Samara will stay with him for a single day during the Citadel content in Mass Effect 3. Nothing ever comes of it, though, given the ending.
    • Matriarch Aethyta also hits on Shepard in the second game. If romancing Liara, it becomes a lot more amusing after Lair of the Shadow Broker which implies that she's actually Liara's long-lost "father", that is confirmed in the third game.
  • Persona:
    • In Persona 3, a character believes his teacher is a Mrs. Robinson, which turns out is a complete fantasy, as said teacher is about to get married with someone her own age. It's later subverted with the main character: HIS teacher admits to him that she would love to play the role of Mrs. Robinson with him, but the subversion comes from the fact that said teacher does not knows who she's talking to, as they are communicating via avatars in a MMORPG.
    • Persona 4 has two cases:
      • It features a night shift nurse, Sayoko, who playfully flirts with the protagonist in a Mrs. Robinson fashion. However, if you progress her social link enough, she will admit that such behaviour is really a cover for her own feelings of despair, due to losing touch with why she became a nurse in the first place.
      • The Protagonist's Christmas Cake home-room teacher, Kashiwagi, attempts to invoke this trope on the protagonist and his male friends. They were squicked beyond tears.
    • Persona 5 has achieved a degree of infamy for featuring four Mrs. Robinsons for the 16-year-old protagonist to potentially romance: an alcoholic journalist, a licensed physician, a fortune-teller based out of Tokyo's red-light district, and his homeroom teacher.
  • In the "Return to Ostagar" DLC for Dragon Age: Origins, Wynne, who's at least in her sixties, flirts shamelessly (bordering on outright propositioning) with 20-something Alistair. He's rather startled. Though she warns him that "when you wake up beside me, I'll be back to reminding you of your grandmother," she also notes approvingly that it wouldn't be the first time she's had a younger man in her bed. He doesn't take her up on the offer (though Zevran certainly would).
    • During the Male Human Noble origin, Lady Landra mentions the time she got heavily inebriated at their mother's Spring Salon and spent the entire evening shamelessly flirting with them... right in front of her husband and son.
    • Flemeth is centuries old and is mentioned by Morrigan as regularly taking Chasind men to her bed, before killing them shortly afterwards. If a Male Mage Warden, Flemeth similarly remarks that it's a pity she has to send them on their way, since she wouldn't mind having them around for the next year to "teach a few things" too.
  • In Fire Emblem Awakening, after joining your party, Aversa tries to pursue Chrom sexually in her supports with the Female Avatar. When the Avatar objects, remarking to Aversa that she must be at least 12 years older than Chrom, she responds defensively that she's only 8 years older than him. And, since Chrom can be estimated to be about 21 at this point based on other information in the game,note  this means that Aversa could potentially be anywhere from 29 to 33 (which isn't actually "old" by modern standards, but would still represent a notable age difference between herself and Chrom).
  • One of the rivals in Yandere Simulator is Mida Rana, a substitute teacher with a reputation for seducing her male students. Her sights alight on Senpai next, which is why Yandere-chan must find a way to stop her. (For what it's worth, in an informal poll, most players say they would outright murder her, even in otherwise pacifistic runs.)
  • In Grand Theft Auto V, Michael De Santa's wife Amanda regularly cheats on him, usually with younger men such as her tennis instructor Kyle Chavis or yoga coach Fabien Larouche. Amanda has a profile on in-game dating website Hushmush, stating that she has "the body and mind of a girl half [her] age".

    Visual Novels 
  • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney has Wendy Oldbag (she's a really old and short tempered woman who works as a security guard) constantly hitting on The Rival Miles Edgeworth. She even calls him "Edgey-Poo" and sends him flowers, to his annoyance. What's irked up more is that there's a possible indication that she's married (or at least has been) when fans of the series pointed out she has a ring on her finger if you look close enough. During one of her Motor Mouth moments, she mentions that she has a grandson. She also seems to have a thing for Jack Hammer and Juan Corrida, two of the series' victims, who are in their 30's and 20's respectively, though not nearly to the degree that she crushes on Edgey-poo.
  • While Rosé from Spirit Hunter: NG keeps her age under wraps, she makes it clear that she has no interest in older men, and instead is attracted to cute young men like the high-school protagonist.


    Web Original 
  • Sarah and Taylor's mother in lonelygirl15. She's always flirting with — and sleeping with — men in their 20s.
  • Dragon Ball Z Abridged: In the Bad Future where Bulma, Gohan and Trunks are the only cast members still alive, Bulma (who's in her 50s by then) tries to sleep with an adult Gohan. While Team Four Star didn't go through with it, they did record the scene (where Gohan fires an energy wave on climaxing) that became a Running Gag with other Saiyans (and as of the end of Season 3, Krillin.)
  • RWBY: In Volume 7, Jaune gets assigned to escorting children to pre-primary school, and finds himself fawned over by a gaggle of young mothers. One even goes as far as to repeatedly offer him home cooking, practically shoving the dish into Jaune's arms.

    Western Animation 
  • Animaniacs: The Goodfeathers cartoon "Pigeon on the Roof" implies that Sasha is much older than her boyfriend Squit, although she beats him up if he mentions her age. He even calls her "Mrs. Robinson" at one point. "Miami Mama-Mia," another Goodfeathers segment from the same episode, also has Pesto and Shasha's elderly mother marrying a 20-something seagull – apparently Sasha inherited her taste for younger men.
  • Invoked in Family Guy in the episode "Lois Comes out of Her Shell". When Lois is trying to seduce Justin Bieber, she refers to herself as Mrs. Robinson. Justin misses the reference.
  • Vague Age obscures it slightly, but on Rocko's Modern Life, in an episode later censored for getting so much Crap past the Radar, the Cranky Neighbor's wife Bev Bighead — who has an adult son — tries to seduce twenty-ish Rocko.
  • Parodied in The Simpsons episode "Lisa's Substitute," in which Mrs. Krabappel is seducing Mr. Bergstrom, voiced by Dustin Hoffman himself:
    Mr. Bergstrom: Mrs. Krapabbel, you're trying to seduce me.

Dee, dee-dee-dee dee dee, dee-dee dee dee, dee-dee dee...


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): The Cougar, Cougar


Marilyn the Cougar

Gianni Russo recounts how Marilyn Monroe claimed his V-card. She was 31 and he was 15 going on 16.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

Main / MrsRobinson

Media sources:

Main / MrsRobinson