That's My Mama (1974–1975)
Rarely seen series from the 70's starring Clifton Davis
25 March 2004
This is a show that needs to be seen again! This was one of the lost forever sitcoms of the 1970's that had African-American characters in prominent roles. However,the 1970's rolled-out a ton of quality-themed African-American shows,which some were instant hits and classics like "Sanford and Son","The Jeffersons","Good Times",What's Happening?",to the ones that were good but only lasted one season like,"Baby,I'm Back", "Rollout","Get Christie Love",and not to mention,"That's My Mama".

And the ones that didn't last long,quickly faded into our memories. However,one of those shows,"That's My Mama",provided some good laughs and some hilarious hijinks. Clifton Curtis(Clifton Davis)is barbershop owner who lives in Washington,DC who shares a house with his mother Eloise(Theresa Merritt)and his sister Tracy(played by Lynne Moody in the early episodes and then later by Joan Pringle)who was married to Leonard ,a stiff,unhip accountant(played by Lisle Wilson in the earlier episodes). Clifton's friends were Earl(Teddy Wilson),a mailman who later became his partner in the barbershop,and Junior(Ted Lange),a boisterous college student. Wildcat(Jester Hairston) and Josh(DeForest Covan)were two senior citizens who hung out in the barbershop,just for conversation and sometimes mischief. Theresa Merritt's character of Eloise,was billed as the main character,but the focus was more on Clifton and the comical support was more on Junior,who supplied most of the hijinks on the show. Eloise was basically the mentor who basically gave advice whenever the other characters got into trouble,and it most of the time she had to bail Clifton out of a tight situation.

This series was the starting point of for two of its actors,since after this series went off the air,Clifton Davis and Jester Hairston would star together in the series "Amen" which ran on NBC-TV during the mid-1980's,early 1990's. Also it is to note that actor Ted Lange would go on to "The Love Boat" as Issac,and would make himself known as an great director of several TV and movie projects. It is also interesting to note that actress Joan Pringle would go on to do "The White Shadow",and later on in the late-1980's make her mark in the all-black daytime serial,"Generations". As for actor Teddy Wilson,most viewers would recognize him as the street hustler Sweet Daddy from "Good Times" who would make several appearances not on "Good Times",but other black shows of that decade including appearances on "The Jeffersons",and "What's Happening!"

It is sad to note that Teddy Wilson,Theresa Merritt,Jester Hairston,and DeForest Cowan are no longer with us. There memories of this show will lived on,since "That's My Mama" is seldom seen in syndicated markets in repeats,probably because it only lasted one season when it ran on ABC-TV from 1974-1975. Only 39 episodes were produced on this series in which 26 episodes were produced in Season 1 and 13 episodes were produced for Season 2. The series premiered on September 4,1974 on ABC's Wednesday night prime-time schedule where it faced strong competition from CBS' "Tony Orlando and Dawn",and the NBC powerhouse drama "Little House on the Prairie". The series was abruptly canceled on Christmas Eve of 1975 due to poor ratings. ABC replaced the series with "The Bionic Woman"
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