What's Happening!!

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ABC (ended 1979)

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SrRui

User Score: 272

What's Happening!!
8.4
out of 10
User Rating
294 votes
10

SHOW REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Show Summary

What's Happening!! was first seen in August of 1976 and was yet another urban situation comedy that came out in the 1970's and joined the ranks of Chico and the Man and Good Times. The series was loosely based on the 1975 movie Cooley High. The series centered around three black teens, Roger "Raj" Thomas, Dwayne Clemens, and Freddie "Rerun" Stubbs. Rerun had gotten his nickname because he kept on having to repeat high school courses that he had flunked. Also, by the end of the first season, Dwayne's last name had been changed to Nelson. The stories revolved around them struggling to grow up in a lower-middle class neighborhood. Others in the cast include, Raj's divorced mother, Mabel "Mama" Thomas who had her hands full with working full time and handling Raj and his bratty little sister Dee Thomas. Shirley Wilson was the sassy waitress who worked at the local hangout, Rob's Place. Raj and Dee's dad, Bill Thomas, was seen occasionally during the first two seasons. In the third and final season, Raj and Rerun had graduated high school and they moved in together and shared an apartment. By that time, the character of Mama had been dropped and Shirley was now living in the Thomas household. In 1985, the series returned in syndication under a new name, What's Happening Now!!. The revamped series had almost all the original stars returning to their roles and ran until 1988. First Telecast: August 5, 1976 Last Telecast: April 28, 1979 Episodes: 65 Color Episodes Theme Song: "What's Happening!!" Written by: Henry Mancini Performed by: Henry Mancini (Instrumental) Spin-offs: What's Happening Now!! ABC Broadcast History August 1976----Thursdays----8:30 p.m. November 1976-December 1976----Saturdays----8:30 p.m. December 1976-January 1978----Thursdays----8:30 p.m. January 1978-April 1978----Saturdays----8:00 p.m. April 1978-January 1979----Thursdays----8:30 p.m. February-March 1979----Fridays----8:30 p.m. March-April 1979----Saturdays----8:00 p.m. Nielsen Ratings: (Top 30 or Better) #25 in the 1976-1977 Season #29 in the 1978-1979 Seasonmoreless
Shirley Hemphill

Shirley Hemphill

Shirley Wilson (1977-1979)

Ernest Thomas

Ernest Thomas

Roger "Raj" Thomas

Fred Berry

Fred Berry

Freddie "Rerun" Stubbs

Mabel King

Mabel King

Mrs. Mabel "Mama" Thomas (1976-1978)

Haywood Nelson

Haywood Nelson

Dwayne Nelson

Danielle Spencer

Danielle Spencer

Dee Thomas

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Hey Hey Hey This show went off the air when I was 1 1/2, but I remember it like it was yesterday.

    10
    OK I'm just kidding around, but I watched this show all the time in re-runs (no pun intended) I forgot about it, until I watched an old Scrubs episode last night that mentioned this show. This show was a classic show. It was a show that had something for everyone. Shows still use references from the this show, like Scrubs as I mentioned, and I saw a reference on an old episode of Friends too, even in music, the Bloodhound gang makes a reference to What's happening as well. That just goes to show how good the show was it was funny, but appealed to alll ages. What's Happening Now, wasn't that bad either.moreless
  • This show has to be one of my all time favorite telivision shows ever.

    10
    This show has to be one of my all time favorite telivision shows ever. i have all three seasons. i cant find whats happening now. i love that show so much. rest in peace fred berry, mable king, and shriley hemphill without you the show would have i would have never watched this show. raj had the brains. rerun had the love. dwain had the looks. dee had the laughs. and mable king my favorite. without mable king i probably wouldnt have watched the first episode. she was such a beautiful person. i love u all. u lit up my life. Justnmoreless
  • A show that had about as many laughs as gaffes, but remains notable for its place in TV comedy history.

    6.2
    What's Happening is memorable, though not quite a classic. It was funny, but never hilarious. Its situation was never unique, but it did have heart. The fact that this show had an African American (Black in those days) cast, and lasted more than a few episodes is noteworthy. Compared to Sanford and Son, Good Times, and the Jeffersons, the "What's Happening" Gang always seemed to be the sad sack of the bunch. Still, one could tell in subsequent viewings that the cast became better and better paid, and the challenging social commentary quickly reverted to weak I Love Lucy plotlines hashed over and powdered brown.



    Dee, the little sister was the breakout character, eclipsing Mama, Raj, and even Rerun, who became the butt of her jokes. It's nice to have a breakout star, but this little girl was a cloying little witch who never got enough of her just desserts.



    Still, the show had it's engaging moments, and served as light hearted fun in the pre-TGIF days of 1970s TV.moreless
  • "Hey, hey, What's happening?" This show was a really great portrayal of a group of really good friends, all with good hearts This is a great show show for anyone.

    9.3
    I recently just rediscovered this show at my local DVD store. I was so excited, I bought all 3 seasons that are out. Although I only really remember the first season, i was so glad to re-kindle my love of this show. The thing that I really love about is that it's a group of black kids growing up in the hood. But the stereotype's are not there, that are visible in shows that came after it. These kids could be white, brown, chinese or latino. And I think that's what works for this show. You can really identify with any of the characters, Raj, the brain of the group, Dwayne, the dim-witted one, and of course Rerun, the fool's fool. Even the supporting characters were great. Who could forget Mama, she was a great character and sorely missed in the following seasons. Or Raj's troublesome sister, Dee, played to delicious perfection( I swear she was my sister), and of course, my favourite, Big Shirley. She was hoot. I think that this show still has a lot of heart, and I love that the characters were genuine. Give it a try. The first season is by far the best, but the second one is not too bad either. I'm still working my way through season 3, so I'll let you know once I'm done.moreless
  • It was crap back when originally aired and still is today

    2.0
    One of the dumbest shows I have ever watched. This show was worse then NBC's 'QUARK ' or ABC's 'Holmes and Yo-Yo' . I will admit that I watched this show every week but not because it was funny but because I was young and would watch shows that airred around shows I liked.

    ABout the only character that I enjoyed was ' Dee ' and how she would always put her brother and his loser friends, especially Rerun in their place. ' Shirley ' was another great character who also liked putting Rerun where he belonged.

    There were far better African-American shows out there and no means should this show ever be considered as a classic.moreless
  • READY FOR SOME LAUGHS? CHECK OUT THE COMEDY CENTRAL RELEASE HOME GROWN THIS WEEK. HURRY AND CATCH UP WITH ARMY WIVES: SEASON ONE SO YOU CAN STAY CURRENT WITH SEASON TWO, AND DON'T FORGET TO CHECK OUT THE FUNNY TBS SITCOM MY BOYS.

    June 10, 2008 DVD Releases

  • SONY CUTTING DOWN "CLASSIC" PROGRAMS LIKE SILVER SPOONS, FACTS OF LIFE TO MERE MINUTES FOR ONLINE DIGESTION.

    '70s, '80s shows to be shrunk for Net

    • © 1978, 1979 CPT Holdings, Inc.
    • © 1978, 1979 CPT Holdings, Inc.
    • © 1978, 1979 CPT Holdings, Inc.
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    More Info About This Show

    Categories

    Comedy

    Themes

    Sitcoms, surviving high school, crazy neighborhood, for the nostalgic, feel good comedy