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Note: This article is about the witch. For other uses, see Catherine.

How dare you raise your hand to your mother! I gave you birth. I gave up my life, so you could drag that worthless carcass around and call it living!
―Catherine Madison[src]

Catherine Madison was a powerful witch and the mother of Amy Madison. During her teenage years, she attended Sunnydale High School and was captain of the Sunnydale High cheerleading squad.[1]


Early life[]

Catherine attended Sunnydale High School in her youth, where she was a popular student and captain of the cheerleading squad. Under her leadership, the Sunnydale High cheerleading squad became tri-county champions. Her victories earned her a trophy, which would later be housed in the school trophy case, and the nickname "Catherine the Great." She was also Homecoming Queen, while her boyfriend was Homecoming King. The two got married right after graduation.[1]

Teenage Catherine

Catherine's picture in the school trophy case.

After their daughter Amy was born, Catherine and her husband began to have heated arguments. Amy often heard her father call Catherine a "witch." When Amy was twelve, Catherine's husband left the family for another woman, and Catherine started to often lock herself in her house's attic for days. During this time, Catherine also put herself through cosmetology school to support herself and her daughter, although she also forced her to eat nothing but broth if she gained a single pound.[1]

Body switch[]

During Amy's sophomore year at Sunnydale High, Catherine used her powers to exchange Amy's body with her own, in order to relive her glory days as a cheerleader. However, she was unable to compete with the others students, which left her as an alternate. Unwilling to accept this, Catherine placed dangerous curses on several other cheerleaders in order to make the squad, using dolls to focus each curse on its intended victim.[1]

These included Amber Grove, whom Catherine caused to spontaneously combust; Lishanne Davis, whose mouth was erased; Cordelia Chase, who went blind; and Buffy Summers, who was cursed with a Bloodstone vengeance spell to debilitate her immune system. By this time, Catherine kept a cat to guard her spellbook.[1]

With Buffy suffering from the curse, Rupert Giles cast a reverse spell to undo all the curses that Catherine had cast, which was also successful at switching Catherine back into her own body. Back in her original body, Catherine knocked Giles out and turned against her daughter. She was then confronted by Buffy, who was back to full health and strength.[1]

Catherine then tried to cast a curse of Corsheth on Buffy, but the Slayer deflected it back at Catherine with a mirror, who then disappeared.[1]


03 51

Catherine trapped within the trophy.

Under the effects of her own spell, Catherine became trapped within the trophy she had won as a student decades before.[1] The only signs of Catherine's presence within the trophy were her moving eyes[2] and her muffled voice.[1]

Catherine's natural powers as a witch were passed on to her daughter,[3][4] who gradually became corrupted as well.[5] Years later, during a fight, Buffy took Catherine's appearance with a magic illusion to frighten Amy, after Willow saw her dreamspace and recognized Catherine as her "nightmare."[6]

Powers and abilities[]

Catherine was notably skilled in magical abilities.


Catherine, within Amy's body, uses telekinesis.

  • Spell casting: Catherine was capable of casting potent spells and curses on those who crossed her path, such as a body switching spell, a disfiguring spell, the Bloodstone vengeance spell, and the curse of Corsheth.[1]
  • Pyrokinesis: Catherine was able to cause Amber Grove to spontaneously combust.[1]
  • Telekinesis: Catherine possessed a version of telekinesis that enabled her to move objects and beings with her mind, blasting people away or choking them from a distance.[1]

Behind the scenes[]

  • She was portrayed by Robin Riker and Elizabeth Anne Allen in Amy's body.
  • Her cheerleading images were created by superposing Robin Riker's headshots from when she was younger over images of Elizabeth Anne Allen's body.
  • A deleted scene from the episode "Doomed" would highlight Catherine still stuck on the trophy:[7]
    "[Willow] steps on another piece of debris. Close on debris: It's a cheerleading trophy, black with smoke-damage. In fact — it's Amy's mother. Still entombed, her eyes dart desperately as Willow's foot comes crashing down on her. After Willow moves off, Amy's mom glares at her despite her impotence."