STUDIO: Sony Pictures
MSRP: $29.95
RUNNING TIME: 572 minutes

The Pitch

Season 6 of George, Weezie, door slams, zebra and white jokes.

The Humans

Sherman Hemsley, Isabel Sanford, Marla Gibbs, Roxie Roker, Franklin Cover, Paul benedict, Mike Evans, Berlinda Tolbert.

"You know, Weezie, the ’70s suck. I can’t wait till next century when things like an unjust war,
racial divisions and high gas prices are just a bad memory…"

The Nutshell

George and Louise Jefferson are movin’ on up, to the east side. To a deluxe apartment in the sky. They’re movin’ on up. To the east side. They finally got a piece of the pie. Their fish don’t fry in the kitchen; the beans don’t burn on the grill. Took a whole lotta tryin’ just to get up that hill. Now they’re up in the big leagues, gettin’ their turn at bat. As long as they live, it’s him and her baby. There ain’t nothin’ wrong with that. They’re movin’ on up, to the east side. To a deluxe apartment in the sky. They’re movin’ on up. To the east side. They finally got a piece of the pie.

The Lowdown

A couple of years back I riffed ad infinitum, ad nauseum, ad carpal-tunnelum on Season 3 of this particular show (here). What’s changed between now and then? Well considering that the show ended over 20 years ago, not much. The Jeffersons was well into its highly successful 10-season run, buoyed primarily by Hemsley’s acerbic title character and his frequent sparring with Gibbs’ sassy Florence. Doors were still slammed in the faces of Ralph the doorman, Tom and Helen Willis, and Mr. Bentley. But the big change in Season 6 was that the Jeffersons were to become grandparents as their son, Lionel, who had married the Willis’ zebra (thought you’d never know by looking at her) daughter, Jenny, announced that they were expecting their first child. This was the theme for the entire season as George and company had to make way for the kid’s arrival. Other than that, things pretty much went on as usual.

"Hey I just wondering, when you people go Number 2, is it white? ‘Cause mine’s sorta brown…"

In the season opener, “The Announcement,” The Jeffersons learn of the pregnancy while trying to comfort Mr. Bentley during his time of grief…over the death of his parakeet. Subsequently, in “The Expectant Father,” Lionel freaks when they go shopping for baby furniture. In “Baby Love,” Florence starts hearing the biological clock ticking when she spends time around Jenny, so she joins a dating service. And in the two-part episode, “The Arrival,” George gets stuck taking Jenny to Lamaze class, where she unexpectedly goes into labor. He then has to accompany her into the delivery room, much to his chagrin and exasperation.

Aside from the whole baby Jefferson backdrop, there were several memorable episodes this season, including “A Short Story,” a hilarious episode where George is being honored by a small businessmen’s association, only to discover that it’s not an honor for being a small business owner, but being a small business owner – meaning stature. There’s also another two-parter, “Now You See It, Now You Don’t,” where Louise pulls a Rear Window by seeing a murderer – in a bunny suit – during Halloween. In “Joltin’ George”, George has to climb into the ring with a boxer after a run in at the gym. And in “Once Upon a Time,” George reads a bedtime story to his new granddaughter and imagines himself as King George, with all his friends and family as members of his royal court (yeah, it was one of those episodes).

Hands down the weirdest Jeffersons episode ever was the funeral for John Holmes’ penis…

In umpteen reviews I’ve stated umpteen times that sitcoms are dead and buried for me, and happily so. There’s very few I can sit through without wanting to test the height of my balcony. But I immensely enjoyed The Jeffersons when I was a lad and it’s still very watchable today. This was the show at its peak here and the laughs are still as good now as 25+ years ago.

The Package

The show looks fine, in fact better than I remember, but that’s considering that back in the day I watched it on a 13” black and white set with shitty reception. Of course it’s on 30-year-old tape, full screen and laugh-tracked out the ass, but what are you going to do? There’s no special features, cause the man won’t let us have none. Damn honkey…

"You know Berlinda, I might be inclined to have the producers write in an ‘accident’ for Weezie.
Then this could be The George and Jenny Show…if you asked me really nice…"

7.0 out of 10