DVD Reviews | Mar 4th, 2005
Starring Ernest Thomas, Haywood Nelson, Fred Berry, Mabel King, Danielle Spencer, Shirley Hemphill
Studio: Columbia/ Tri Star
Buy on Amazon.com
I used to watch this show all the time after school, when it was in syndication. I actually don’t remember too many episodes besides the classic Doobie Brothers episode though. The biggest thing I remember from the show is the theme song. What an awesome theme! I used to play that on my college radio show all the time. But anyway, the First Season is finally on DVD and it’s hilarious!
What’s Happening is centered around 3 L.A. high-school pals Raj (Ernest Thomas), Dwayne (Haywood Nelson) and Rerun (Fred Berry). Also Raj has to deal with his snotty little sister Dee (Danielle Spencer) whenever he comes home. The fellas hang out at the local restaurant a lot and their waitress, Shirley (Shirley Hemphill), always has something snappy to say. Usually the show revolves around Raj or his friends getting into some sort of trouble and Raj’s Mama always has the last say or fixes the problem! I would be scared of Mabel King too!
After watching many episodes of this 3 Disc set, I can’t remember these episodes too well. I was too young when this first season aired on ABC but I do remember watching this in syndication. I just can’t remember particular episodes besides the Doobie Brothers episode. Man that was a great episode, I believe that’s in the second season though. Rerun is forced to bootleg the Doobie Brothers concert and he eats popcorn the whole time and that shows up on audio tape. Ahh fat jokes, can’t get enough of them haha. Most of the jokes on the show aged well because I was cracking up at a lot of them. Some of the jokes are typical and the set up is the same. Raj would tell Dee to shut up, then Dee would say to Mama, he can’t talk that way to me. Then Mama would say what Raj said and tell her to shut up. Same setup but it’s always funny to see Dee get put in her place because man, she’s a bitch. I never had a sister but if Dee was my sister, I think I’d go insane. I think my favorite character is Dwayne for some reason. I just like when he says “” with perfect timing. Rerun is a great character as well and I just can’t believe people actually wore that crap back in the 70s. Or danced the way he did haha. It’s sad to see Fred Berry pass away recently. Maybe he would have took part in a commentary or something if he was around. Raj always sat in a chair really cool, and I used to do that in school because of Raj. I’m cool like him haha. Shirley was awesome with her jokes and snaps at the guys but she always did fat jokes to Rerun. Hello, aren’t you big too? I guess that’s what made it even funnier.
Quality wise, it could have been better but it’s an old show so it’s nice to just have these all together on DVD. Sometimes the video quality is all right and sometimes it shows it’s age. There aren’t any extras on these discs and it’s a shame. They could have a done a reunion with the surviving cast members or audio commentary with the cast. Even though there isn’t any extras on this DVD set, it would still be great to get these if you liked the show.
ENGLISH: Dolby Digital Stereo CC
Standard 1.33:1 Color
Favorite Scenes: My Three Tons, Christmas, The Tickets
Rating: Rated NR
Running Time: 520 minutes