The second special will boast an executive producing team of Kerry Washington, Jimmy Kimmel, Norman Lear, Justin Theroux, Brent Miller and Will Ferrell. Lear created All in the Family and developed Good Times, which was created by Mike Evans. Good Times premiered in February 1974 on CBS and followed a black family in the housing projects of Chicago (reportedly inspired by the Cabrini Green projects). Good Times made history as the first African-American two-parent family sitcom on television. The series starred Esther Rolle, John Amos, Jimmie Walker, Ja’Net DuBois, Bern Nadette Stanis, Ralph Carter, Johnny Brown and Ben Powers.
“The holiday season is the perfect time for families to come together and enjoy another ‘Live in Front of a Studio Audience’ special on ABC,” Karey Burke, president of ABC Entertainment said in a statement. “Only Jimmy and Norman can top what they accomplished the first time. From the superstar talent to the unforgettable music and the richly deserved Emmy win, their collective vision has introduced a whole new generation of people to these groundbreaking and timeless stories – and now with Good Times as part of the lineup, this will surely be another can’t-miss television event.”
While the specific episode hasn’t been confirmed, I’m hoping it’ll be an episode that features an iconic moment such as James Evans’ death (“Damn, damn, damn!”), Penny’s (originally portrayed by Janet Jackson) abuse or that episode where the woman secretly ate cat food. There’s so much to choose from.
Most likely, since the television show is a spinoff of Maude (which is a spinoff of All in the Family), it will be an episode tying the two or three shows together. The previous All in the Family / The Jeffersons live studio audience special did the same thing.
Casting choices for Good Times have not been confirmed yet, though ABC has stated all will be revealed at a later date. I can totally see Washington, who portrayed Helen Willis in The Jeffersons live studio audience special, as Thelma Evans. I’m calling it now.
Live in Front of a Studio Audience: ‘All in the Family’ and ‘Good Times’ will air Dec. 18 on ABC. In the meantime, let’s keep our head above water and listen to the great theme song: