Fact Check

In 'Shrek,' Did Mama Bear Become a Rug?

Decades-old spoilers incoming.

Published Jul 1, 2021

Image Via YouTube
A sad story plays out in the background of the 2001 movie "Shrek" in which the Mama Bear character is killed and turned into a rug.

The 2001 movie "Shrek" centers on an irritable ogre who teams up with a talking donkey to venture to a castle in a far off land in order to save Princess Fiona from a fire-breathing dragon in order to save his swamp from the corrupt Lord Farquaad. While this fairy-tale storyline plays out in the foreground of the movie, a sad story about the Three Bears from the Goldilocks fairy tale plays out in the background. 

In June 2021, TikTok user Queon'te Wright (q2coo) posted a video that highlighted some scenes from Shrek featuring the Three Bears. This video shows that the bears were all together at the start of the film, that they got separated when Lord Farquaad raided the forest to collect the fairy tale creatures, and that Mama Bear ultimately ended up as a rug on Farquaad's floor.

The images in this video can all truly be glimpsed in the movie "Shrek." Mama Bear, who can be identified by her pink bow, is truly seen in a cage near the start of the film, is missing during a later scene that shows Papa Bear and Baby Bear sitting sadly near the fear, and is then supposedly shown as a rug on the ground of Farquaad's castle. What's more, during the final scene of the movie when all of the fairy-tale creatures return for a wedding / dance party, Papa Bear and Baby Bear can both be seen dancing to "I'm a Believer," but Mama Bear is nowhere to be found.

The final nail in Mama Bear's proverbial coffin comes from the movie's co-director Andrew Adamson. In 2001, movie critic Susan Wloszczyna talked to Adamson about the movie's unique spin on the fairy tale genre. Adamson pointed out that there are several hard-to-catch jokes in the movie, such as the Mama Bear rug on Lord Farquaad's bedroom floor.

Wloszczyna writes: "The anything-goes attitude accounts for such hard-to-catch jokes as the rug that covers Lord Farquaad's bedroom floor. Asks Adamson: Did you notice it was bearskin? And wearing a pink bow? It's Mama Bear." In later scenes, Papa Bear is shown consoling Baby Bear."

19 May 2001, Sat Courier-Post (Camden, New Jersey) Newspapers.com
While Mama Bear truly ends up as a rug during the movie, "Shrek" is a modern fairy tale, and fairy tales often end with characters living happily ever after. Thankfully, that just may be the case for Mama Bear. 

In the DVD and VHS versions of "Shrek," there's a scene that takes place directly after the movie's end that sees Shrek and various characters from the film return on screen for a karaoke party. While this scene may not technically be considered a part of the original "Shrek" film, many of the characters are depicted dealing with the lingering impacts from various events that took place during the movie. Lord Farquaad, for example, is seen inside dragon's belly (he was eaten in the film), and the Gingerbread Man is missing a leg (he lost both legs during an interrogation scene in the film but appears to have grown a new one). And while the film appears to show that Mama Bear was killed and turned into a rug, she can be seen at the end of the movie singing and dancing with her family.

Maybe there was a happy ending for Mama Bear after all. 

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.

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