A poor Afro-American family make the best of things in the Chicago housing projects.
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6   5   4   3   2   1  
1979   1978   1977   1976   1975   1974  
Nominated for 3 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Willona Woods (133 episodes, 1974-1979)
...
 Michael Evans (133 episodes, 1974-1979)
...
 Thelma Evans / ... (133 episodes, 1974-1979)
...
 James 'J.J.' Evans, Jr. (133 episodes, 1974-1979)
...
 Florida Evans (109 episodes, 1974-1979)
...
 James Evans, Sr. (61 episodes, 1974-1976)
...
 Nathan Bookman (58 episodes, 1975-1979)
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Storyline

Life in the Chicago projects is never easy, However, the Evans family never gives up trying to make the best of things. While Florida and James struggle to provide for their family, their sons J.J., an aspiring painter, Micheal, the undying political crusader, causing trouble while their sister, Thelma, stands between them as the voice of reason. Living in the same building were Willona Woods, Florida's best friend from High School who provided support, love and gossip and Nathan Bookman, the overweight janitor who gave them grief and was the butt of alot of fat jokes, especially Willona who often referred to him as Buffalo Butt or Booger. Life, at least, is never boring while they fight to keep their heads above water and one day leave the projects, which they did in the series finale. Sadly, it was without James who was killed off in the 4th season. Written by Kate Tripper

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

8 February 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(133 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

4:3
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The theme song was sung by Motown artists James Gilstrap and Blinky Williams. Quincy Jones sang the original demo for the song See more »

Quotes

J.J.: Thelma, I think I got VD!
Thelma: VD! The only way you can get that is by... JJ!... well who is it?
[JJ looks at her]
Thelma: ... Mariaane Thomas? Sweet little Marianne Thomas? ooooooWOOO!
Michael: [Michael comes out of the room with his text book] JJ what you say you got?
J.J.: VD
Michael: [looking up VD] It says here you can only get VD by... ooooooWooo!
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User Reviews

Good Times Early On, But Faded In the End
26 March 2003 | by (Los Angeles, California) – See all my reviews

This was a good show for the first three seasons. If you got past all the stereotypes, you would notice that many of the episodes discussed issues that are just as relevant today as they were back then. Issues such as gun control, teen pregnancy, v.d., gangs and teen suicide. However, once John Amos left, the show was not the same and suffered as a result. It really suffered the year that Esther Rolle was off. You know a show is going downhill when they have to resort to bringing on a cute kid character.

Also, if Esther Rolle was so displeased with the show, then how come she took the part in the first place?


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