|Good Times and Maude|
Good Times (1974-1979)
Type: Spin Off
Good Times spun off the character of Maude's maid Florida Evans into her own series. It was the story of a struggling black family living in the projects.
Florida was married to James Evans. They had three children. J.J. was the oldest. Played by Jimmy Walker he became a cultural icon and his constant shout of "Dynomite!" became a national catch phrase. J.J. had art skills but was constantly getting in with a bad crowd. Second oldest was daughter Thelma, who J.J. always traded insults with. The youngest was son Michael who was extremely smart. Also in the original cast was next door neighbor Willona Woods (all shows need wacky neighbors).
As the show went on, the family lost its father when James was killed off. Then in 1977, actress Esther Rolle who played mother Florida Evans also left the show. Rolle did not like the image J.J.'s character was sending out and thought he was a bad role model for young blacks watching the show. When sufficeint chages were not made, she left.
This left a family show with no parents. Willona stepped up to watch after the kids. She had not until now seemed the parental type and so she was given an adopted daughter, Penny, played by Janet Jackson to help show her as a capable mothering type.
The character of Florida did return for the final season once she was promised J.J.'s character would be improved.
As an aside I love family shows where the parents disappear. Its so awkward trying to having a family show and get around the fact there are no parents.Other Maude Crossover Links
Maude and All In The Family
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