A Different World

NBC (ended 1993)
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  • show Description
  • In this spin-off from the popular sitcom The Cosby Show, Denise Huxtable enters her sophomore year at Hillman, alma mater of her parents and grandfather, where she moves into Gilbert Hall and shares a dorm room with 26-year-old Jaleesa Vinson and talkative new roommate Maggie Lauten. Also included in the first season cast were obnoxious and extremely wealthy dormmate Whitley Gilbert, ladies' man Dwayne Wayne and dorm director Stevie Rallen. Lettie Bostic later replaced Stevie as the new dorm director. At the end of the first season, Denise would return home (and to The Cosby Show) after dropping out of college. In the fall of 1988, new students Freddie Brooks and Kim Reese entered Hillman College. Freddie was a "hippie-child" who developed a crush on Dwayne; and Kim, an aspiring med student, became Whitley's new roommate. Giving Dwayne a hard time was his math professor, Col. Bradford Taylor. Also, Ron Johnson and Walter Oakes became regulars in the second season after appearing occasionally during the first season. Vernon Gaines, chef at the campus hangout, The Pit, became a regular in the third season. Whitley and Dwayne began an on-again off-again relationship before they became married at the end of the fifth season. Stories dealt mainly with college-themed issues such as racism, fraternity pledging and on-campus romances. NBC Broadcast History September 1987 - May 1992 - Thursdays 8:30 PM September 1992 - November 1992 - Thursdays 8:00 PM December 1992 - January 1993 - Thursdays 8:30 PM May 1993 - June 1993 - Thursdays 8:00 PM July 1993 - Fridays 8:00 PM A Different World airs on BET, weekdays at 11 & 11:30 PM EST. Theme Song: I know my parents love me. Stand behind me come what may. I know now that I'm ready. Because I finally heard them say! It's a different world from where you come from. Here's a chance to make it. If we focus on our goals. If you dish it we can take it. Just remember you've been told... It's a different world from where you come from. It's a different world from where you come from.moreless

  • Latest News
  • Episode Guide
  • S 6 : Ep 25

    College Kid

    Aired 3/18/14

  • S 6 : Ep 25

    College Kid


  • S 6 : Ep 24

    A Rock, A River, A Lena

    Aired 3/18/14

  • S 6 : Ep 24

    A Rock, a River, a Lena

    Aired 7/8/93

  • S 6 : Ep 23

    Homie Don't Ya Know Me

    Aired 5/1/14

  • Cast & Crew
  • Jasmine Guy

    Whitley Marion Gilbert-Wayne

  • Kadeem Hardison

    Dwayne Cleophus Wayne

  • Dawnn Lewis

    Jaleesa Vinson-Taylor (seasons 1 - 5)

  • Lisa Bonet

    Denise Huxtable (season 1)

  • Cree Summer

    Winifred "Freddie" Brooks (seasons 2 - 6)

  • Photos (2)
  • Top Contributor
  • TrickMeNot

    User Score: 1263


  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (263)

    • Stevie: Whitley's the only girl still here without a roomate. Denise: I think there could be good reason for that.

    • (First words spoken on the series) Dwayne: Hey, how you doing? Listen, if there is anything I can do to make your stay here at Hillman more enjoyable...

    • Whitley: Dwayne, you'll have plenty of more chances to be nice to me, I promise.

    • Whitley: I wish I could have found a wheelchair...You put one in the back of your car. That's about the only way you can find a parking place that isn't out in the boonies. Denise: Whitley, that's awful. Whitley: Should I be punished because I can walk?

    • Dwayne: How is it that we always keep bumping into each other? Denise: Because I'm always late and you're always in the way.

    • Dr. Harris: If I recall, this isn't the first time your checks have bounced since you started at Hillman. Denise: Yeah, I've had two or three... Dr. Harris: Try four or five. Denise: Has it been that many? Dr. Harris: Bounce city.

    • Cooper: Excuse me, Dr. Harris, but aren't five chapters and a paper a lot of homework? Dr. Harris: That's a good question. The answer is "Yes."

    • Jaleesa: (referring to Maggie moving in) I feel sorry for her. Denise: Why? Jaleesa: Because she'll have to get used to living with you.

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    Notes (252)

    • "Uptight (Everything's Alright)" by Stevie Wonder and "Where Did Our Love Go?" by the Supremes play on the radio in the dorm room as Jaleesa and Denise have their fight.

    • Hillman was not a real college. The outside footage with students and buildings was actually shot at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia.

    • Marisa Tomei didn't appear in this episode. Her character, Maggie Lauten, was first introduced in the pilot (which became episode two). This new first episode was produced to give the audience a better introduction to other characters, especially Whitley and Jaleesa.

    • Todd Hollowell previously guest-starred in the pilot of The Cosby Show where he played Denise's date.

    • In this episode we learn that Jaleesa has eight sisters and brothers and she grew up in Camden, New Jersey.

    • Bill Cosby and Keshia Knight Pulliam cross over in their roles from The Cosby Show for the first time.

    • The program that Denise was watching on the dorm's Television is "I Love Lucy" and the episode was called "Lucy Does a TV Commercial" (better known as "The Vitameatavegimin episode").

    • "Some Guys Have All the Luck" can be heard playing on the radio in the girls' dorm room.

    Show More Notes

    Trivia (124)

    • In this episode, Whitley mentions that she indeed has a sister, but we later learn that she seems to be an only child.

    • In the opening scene, when Denise is talking to Stevie, there's a gold and white sofa in the lobby and a bulletin board on the wall near the stairs. In a later scene, when Denise is talking to Maggie in the lobby, there is now a green sofa and a picture on the wall near the stairs. The gold sofa and bulletin board return for the next episode, Porky de Bergerac.

    • Although Denise is given a job in the cafeteria with Jaleesa, we never see Denise working in any other episodes. Since everyone eats at the Pit instead of the cafeteria, Jaleesa eventually works in the library.

    • In Reconcilable Differences, we learn that Whitley hates cheese and refuses to eat it. However, in this episode, she tells Denise that she will be having a tuna melt in the Pit.

    • Did Denise have to take calculus twice? In a Cosby Show episode the previous year, Denise Gets a D, Denise was home from school during her freshman year and told Cliff and Clair that she was getting a D in calculus. Now it's her sophomore year and Dwayne is tutoring her in the same subject.

    • In this episode, Denise, Jaleesa and Maggie's room number is 201. However, a few episodes earlier, in War of the Words, Dwayne announced over the radio that the room number is 20Y. The 201 room number was also shown in the pilot episode and My Dinner with Theo.

    • Denise apparently takes part in an individual event at the track meet, but Maggie says that she was in the "200 meter relay." A relay is an event in which four people each run part of the race and pass off a baton to a teammate. There are 400 and 1600 meter relays in most meets, but a 200 meter relay (4 x 50) usually only occurs at special meets where all of the races are relays.

    • It is weird that Hillman would be taking part in track meets in the fall. Cross-country season is in the fall, but consists of just a single distance race, not a bunch of short events like the 200 meters.

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    Allusions (24)

    • Whitley: Hot date tonight, Miss Piggy? Miss Piggy is one of the Muppet characters that Jim Henson created. Miss Piggy was the girlfriend of Kermit the Frog.

    • Title: Porky de Bergerac Cyrano de Bergerac is a classic play by Edmond Rostand. It has been adapted numerous times for movies and tv plots.

    • Title: Those Who Can't... Tutor This title was taken from the old saying, Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.

    • Denise mentions during her rebuttal speech that her father had to take up cooking and that the Huxtable children had to take up eating his food. This a reference to "The Cosby Show" episode's Clair's Case and Bring 'Em Back Alive.

    • Title: Sometimes You Get the Bear, Sometimes the Bear Gets You Sometimes You Get the Bear, Sometimes He Gets You is an old Aleut Indian saying.

    • : While Whitley is sleeping in her bed, she discovers the bear head under her covers and screams.
      This is a takeoff of the scene in "The Godfather" where the owner of a prized racing horse discovers the horse decapitated in his bed. Music from "The Godfather" even plays when Whitley discovers the bear head.

    • Title: Romancing Mr. Stone Romancing the Stone was a Kathleen Turner-Michael Douglas action/romance film released in 1984.

    • Title: The Gift of the Magi The episode title refers to an extremely popular Christmas short story by O. Henry.

    Show More Allusions
  • Fan Reviews (41)
  • Dr Stacie Maria Gardner

    By Dr-Stacie, Dec 30, 2013

  • I really love this show!

    By KeishaBosh, Jun 20, 2013

  • The Best Show representing college life. A reunion is needed. Bring back the cast in married life, working on campus.

    By MiltonBoo, Jan 13, 2010

  • Who knew college life could be so serious, yet funny!

    By Fmg14, Jul 15, 2008

  • I wish this show would come back, but all they did was repeat the same episodes. This show was a classic but it got even better when Jada Pinkett became a regular cast member. So underrated yet not trying to be funny like some of these false comedies.

    By LisaToddFan, Sep 10, 2007