Good Times

The Family Tree

Season 3, Ep 15, Aired 12/23/75
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  • Episode Description
  • Thelma researches her family tree for a school project and discovers James's father is very much alive and living in the Chicago area. However, when James learns that Thelma has invited him as a surprise for his birthday, he refuses to see him. This leads Florida to discover the truth as to why James lied about his father still being alive.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Ja'net DuBois

    Willona Woods

  • Esther Rolle

    Florida Evans (1974-1977), (1978-1979)

  • John Amos

    James Evans (1974-1976)

  • Jimmie Walker

    James "J.J." Evans, Jr.

  • Ralph Carter

    Michael Evans

  • Fan Reviews (1)
  • Great Acting By James & A New Dimension to the Character

    By iamtheloved1, Nov 30, 2008

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (5)

    • (referring the Thelma's cooking) J.J: Well, around here, we call Thelma "old salt." Because everything she cooks tastes old and salty.

    • Michael: Ma, I don't care what kind of ice cream you get, as long as you get chocolate.
      Florida: Michael, we always have chocolate. I'm gonna get vanilla this time.
      Michael: Ma, I can't get down if my ice cream ain't brown!
      Florida: Well, I'll take your portion, and bar-be-cue it!

    • Henry: (to James) My, you sure have grown. James: Well, what'd you expect, it's been over 35 years!

    • (Florida and the kids are trying to make excuses for James not coming out to see Henry) Florida: He was so excited, he's probably in the bedroom changing into his other suit. J.J.: But dad only has ONE suit!

    • James: Hey wait a minute. Uh, the kids are having some ice cream and cake. You might as well stay for the party. Henry: Are you sure, Jimmy? James: Well, you're the one that was always sayin', "don't waste no food" didn't you?

    Notes (3)

    • This episode was videotaped on November 20, 1975.

    • This episode almost has a sense of closure to it not only due to the fact that James is reunited with his father, but due to the fact that within a few months John Amos would be gone from the show.

    • Richard Ward makes his first appearance as James' father, Henry Evans.

    Trivia (2)

    • When Michael asks Henry about the places he's traveled in the world, instead of naming renown cities, he oddly names continents.

    • Ironically, John Amos' character's name on Maude was Henry.

    Allusions (1)

    • Roots: While telling the kids the importance of knowing their family tree, Florida mentions the Alex Hailey novel "Roots". In January 1977, just over a year after this episode aired, Good Times's star John Amos would co-star in the groundbreaking seven part ABC miniseries version of that story.

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