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227 (NBC 1985-1990, Marla Gibbs, Hal Williams)

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In 1985, Marla Gibbs “moved on up” to her own series. After playing Florence for nine years on The Jeffersons, Gibbs got her own apartment, her own family and friends, and her very own show. Based on a play by Christine Houston that had been presented at Marla Gibb’s Crossroads Theatre, 227 cast Gibbs as Mary Jenkins, who lived with her contractor husband Lester and their teenage daughter Brenda in a Washington, D.C. apartment numbered 227.

Most of the show took place in the building, involving Mary with her neighbor Sandra Clark, landlady Rose Lee Holloway, and Rose’s daughter Tiffany. Sandra, fast-talking and man-hungry, soon became the breakout character. Although Mary and she really didn’t get along, the writers always found some reason for them to be together. Brenda’s boyfriend Calvin Dobbs also lived in the building with his grandmother Pearl Shay.

Although the Jenkins didn’t have another baby (as many TV families did in the eighties), a precocious child named Alexandria did live with the family for a year (1988-89). Several new characters were brought on for the last season, including building owner Julian Barlow and the apartment’s first white tenant Dylan McMillan, who just happened to be Regina’s history teacher. His roommate was another new character, Travis Filmore.

The series, which lasted for five seasons, showed a less idyllic portrayal of an African-American family than The Cosby Show did. The result was a more realistic, though still positive show that was both successful and critically praised.

production details
USA / NBC – Columbia Pictures / x25 minute episodes / Broadcast 14 September 1985 – 28 July 1990

Theme Vocal: There’s No Place Like Home sung by Marla Gibbs.

cast
Marla Gibbs as Mary Jenkins
Hal Williams as Lester Jenkins
Regina King as Brenda Jenkins
Jackee Harry as Sandra Clark
Helen Martin as Pearl Shay
Alaina Reed Hall as Rose Holloway
Paul Winfield as Julian Barlow
Countess Vaughn as Alexandra DeWitt
Curtis Baldwin as Calvin Dobbs
Toukie A. Smith as Eva Rawley
Stoney Jackson as Travis Fillmore
Barry Sobel as Dylan McMillan

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TV

You Can’t Fight Christmas (TV One 2017, Brely Evans, Andra Fuller)

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You Can't Fight Christmas TV One

You Can’t Fight Christmas begins with the annual holiday decorating of the Chesterton Hotel by interior design expert Leslie Major (Evans). She is hard at work managing the transformation when she meets and develops a crush on the hotel owner’s handsome grandson, Edmund James (Fuller). Soon she discovers that Edmund and his uptight business partner, Millicent (White), have secret plans.

They intend to completely revamp the hotel into an upscale business resort once Edmund inherits it from his grandfather. Scheming Millicent also has plans for Edmund that involve a wedding ring.

Is he ready to take their partnership to the next level? Can Leslie save the hotel and its Christmas legacy? Will Edmund find his Christmas spirit?

You Can’t Fight Christmas also features appearances by Travis Winfrey (Single Ladies), Porsha Coleman (Hollywood Today Live), and cross-over appearances by Ash and Davis Jr.

cast
Brely Evans as Leslie Major
Andra Fuller as Edmund James
Persia White as Millicent Williams
Porscha Coleman as Belinda King
Travis Winfrey as Kevin Boudreaux
Nathan Davis Jr. as Thomas Wallace
Dedrick Bonner as Darren Rollins
Matthew Jones as Arnold Willis
Larry Poindexter as Jasper
Richard Gant as J. J. James
Marla Gibbs as Beverly Lawrence
Erica Ash as Regina Young
Ava Elise Farmer as Brie Wallace
Nicholas Anthony Reid as Waiter
Glen Marzillo as Tony

crew details
Director: Kenny Young
Writer: Marnie Martin
Producers: Elizabeth Cullen, Sean Dwyer

production details
Country: USA
Network and Production Companies: TV One – Poke Productions
Duration: 1×120 minute episode
Aired From: Sunday 10 December 2017

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TV

Royal Christmas Ball, A (ION 2017, Tara Reid, Ingo Rademacher)

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Royal Christmas Ball ION

Dateless for the Christmas ball, 39-year-old bachelor, King Charles of Baltania, tracks down his American college sweetheart, only to discover Allison has never been married, yet raised a 17-year-old daughter, Lily, who mathematically might be Charles’ biological princess.

cast
Tara Reid as Allison
Ingo Rademacher as King Charles
Mira Furlan as Rosa
Haley Pullos as Lily
Faune Chambers Watkins as Eva
Mykel Shannon Jenkins as Sam
Marc Anthony Samuel as Marcus
Christian Olivo as Victor
Miles Burris as Emile
Kennedy Lea Slocum as Taylor
Claire Cohen as Lorena
David Meza as Waiter
Cesar Cipriano as Florist
Stan Bly as Paparazzi
Brian Nolan as Paparazzi

crew details
Director: David DeCoteau
Writer: Suzanne Dunn
Story: Jeffrey Schenck, Peter Sullivan

production details
Country: USA
Network and Production Companies: ION – Hybrid Films
Duration: 1×120 minute episode
Aired From: Sunday 10 December 2017

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Runaway Christmas Bride (ION 2017, Cindy Busny, Travis Milne)

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Runaway Christmas Bride ION 2017

A runaway bride, Kate, making herself scarce for the holidays, meets a ski patrol rescuer, Jason, at a resort. Her December days begin to brighten, until her parents and jilted fiancé, Alex, show up at the mountain to reset the wedding for Christmas.

cast
Cindy Busby as Kate
Travis Milne as Jason
Christos Shaw as Mike
Karen Kruper as Lily Paulson
Mark Milburn as Alex Atkins
Bruce Dawson as Rick Atkins
Roz Murray as Kim Atkins
Trent Pryor as Wedding Rehersal Guest
Holly James as Wedding Guest

crew details
Director: David DeCoteau
Writer: Brian Skiba

production details
Country: Canada
Network and Production Companies: ION – Odyssey Media
Duration: 1×120 minute episode
Aired From: Saturday 9 December 2017

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