Martin (TV series)

Last updated

Martin
Martin TV Show logo.png
Genre Sitcom
Created byJohn Bowman
Martin Lawrence
Topper Carew
Starring
Theme music composerSteve Keitt for Kid Entertainment, Inc.
Joey Kibble II
Mark Kibble
Paul Wright III
ComposersBill Maxwell
(season 2-5)
Greg Poree
Paul Jackson Jr.
(season 1)
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons5
No. of episodes132 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producersJohn Bowman
Topper Carew
Martin Lawrence
Bentley Kyle Evans
Billy Van Zandt
Jane Milmore
Samm-Art Williams
ProducersWalter Barnett
Terry Crotzer
Mark J. Greenberg
Cheryl Holliday
Bennie R. Richburg, Jr.
Robert Lawrence
Production locations Universal City Studios,
Universal City, California
CinematographyWilliam Updegraff
Gary W. Scott
Alan Walker
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time22–24 minutes
Production companiesYou Go Boy! Productions
(1994-1997)
(seasons 3-5)
HBO Independent Productions
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original network Fox
Original releaseAugust 27, 1992 (1992-08-27) 
May 1, 1997 (1997-05-01)

Martin is an American television sitcom that aired for five seasons on Fox from August 27, 1992, to May 1, 1997. The show starred comedian and namesake Martin Lawrence as the titular character. Lawrence also played several other characters. Reflecting the rising popularity of the Fox network throughout the 1990s, Martin was one of the network's highest-rated shows during the sitcom's run.

Contents

Broadcast history

SeasonTime
1992–93 Thursday at 8:30–9:00 pm
1993–94 Sunday at 8:00–8:30 pm
1994–95 Thursday at 8:00–8:30 pm
1995–96 Saturday at 8:00–8:30 pm (September 9 – October 28, 1995)
Sunday at 8:30–9:00 pm (November 5, 1995 – February 4, 1996; February 18 – 25, 1996)
Thursday at 8:30–9:00 pm (February 8 – 15, 1996; February 29 – May 2, 1996)
1996–97 Thursday at 8:00–8:30 pm

Episodes

SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedRankAverage viewers
(in millions)
First airedLast aired
1 27August 27, 1992 (1992-08-27)May 13, 1993 (1993-05-13)#4111.40
2 27August 22, 1993 (1993-08-22)May 15, 1994 (1994-05-15)#649.29
3 27September 1, 1994 (1994-09-01)May 18, 1995 (1995-05-18)#928.11
4 27September 9, 1995 (1995-09-09)May 2, 1996 (1996-05-02)#1046.70
5 24September 5, 1996 (1996-09-05)May 1, 1997 (1997-05-01)#1106.00

Premise

Set in Detroit, Michigan the series stars Martin Lawrence in the role of Martin Payne, a disc jockey with his girlfriend Gina Waters (Tisha Campbell). Martin works for the fictional radio station WZUP and later for local Public-access television station Channel 51. A common theme of the series is Martin's selfish and free-spirited nature. Episodes often center on Martin's inappropriate behaviors and incessant smart mouth towards his friends, neighbors, and whoever else finds themselves in his presence. When all is said and done, however, Martin loves his family and friends—it just takes dire situations for him to show it. [1]

As the series progressed, plotlines saw Martin eventually move on to become the host of the talk show Word on the Street, which aired on the small Detroit public-access television station Channel 51. He retained this position until the series' final episode, in which he and Gina prepared to move to Los Angeles, from where his show would be syndicated nationally. The move coincided fortuitously with Gina's promotion by her boss Mr. Whitaker to head up his company's new Los Angeles headquarters, after having shut down the Detroit office. Gina's best friend Pam, whom Whitaker let go two episodes earlier due to this consolidation and downsizing, went on to pursue a career in the music industry as an artists & repertoire (A&R) executive at Keep It Real Records. (This plotline is the subject of a backdoor pilot episode that was included in the Martin series for a planned sitcom on Fox starring Tichina Arnold to be called Goin' for Mine (Episode 129, "Goin' for Mine"). This sitcom never materialized, however.) And at series' end, Cole proposed to his even more dimwitted, but attractive and devoted girlfriend Shanise (portrayed by Maura McDade), and they made plans to move into their own place. The only actor to appear in every episode as the same character is Thomas Mikal Ford as Tommy.

In early episodes, Lawrence began with a monologue of him speaking directly to the camera and audience from the darkened radio studio.

In 1997, Tisha Campbell filed a lawsuit against her co-star Martin Lawrence and the show's producers for sexual harassment and verbal and physical assaults, and she did not appear in most of the season five episodes. The explanation in most of the episodes Campbell did not appear in was that Gina was "out on business", though in the two-part episode "Going Overboard" it was stated that Gina had arrived too late to board the boat for the trip alongside everyone else. [2] HBO Studios eventually settled the case with Campbell so that the show's last season could be completed. [3] Campbell did return to the Martin set to film the two-part series finale of the show under the condition that she would not share any scenes with or interact in any way with Lawrence. In the episode, Martin and Gina kept entering and exiting the sets at different times and the storyline was adjusted so that the characters were both part of it but never crossed paths.

Characters

Main characters

Supporting characters

Recurring characters

Other roles played by Lawrence

One of the trademark running gags of Martin, especially early in its run, was Lawrence playing multiple characters, utilizing various costumes and prosthetic appliances. This was often done as a plot device or comic relief. Season four was the last season to feature Lawrence as multiple characters on a regular basis. This technique was rarely used in Season 5, which was the final season of the series. The only characters that appeared in Season 5 were Sheneneh, Roscoe and Elroy. Mama Payne does not appear but her voice is heard in the holiday episode "Scrooge". Most of the other characters were last seen in Season 4 and the episodes they last appeared in seemingly wrote them out of the series.

Awards and nominations

YearAwardResultCategoryRecipient
1993 People's Choice Awards WonFavorite TV New Comedy Series
1994 NAACP Image Awards Won Outstanding Comedy Series
1995 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Martin Lawrence
Outstanding Comedy Series
1996Nominated Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Marla Gibbs
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Carl Anthony Payne II
Thomas Mikal Ford
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series Tisha Campbell-Martin
Outstanding Comedy Series
WonOutstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy SeriesTichina Arnold
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy SeriesMartin Lawrence
1997NominatedOutstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy SeriesTisha Campbell-Martin
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy SeriesMartin Lawrence
Outstanding Comedy Series
1995 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards NominatedFavorite Television Show
Favorite Television ActorMartin Lawrence
1996Favorite Television ActorMartin Lawrence

Syndication

Martin went into second run syndication on August 8, 1995 airing on local stations primarily of the WB and UPN (later merged as CW) and Fox affiliates mostly near the 10:30/11:00pm timeslots.

Martin formerly aired reruns on TV One, USA Network, and MTV2.

As of August 2020, the series airs reruns on BET and VH1.

Warner Bros. Television Distribution holds the national syndication rights of Martin.

Streaming

The series is able to be purchased on Prime Video, Google Play Movies & TV, YouTube, Vudu, and the iTunes Store as of July 2020.

The series is available to be streamed on BET+.

Home media

HBO Home Video has released all five seasons of Martin on DVD in Region 1.

DVD NameEp #Release Date
The Complete First Season27January 4, 2007
The Complete Second Season27May 15, 2007
The Complete Third Season27November 6, 2007
The Complete Fourth Season27April 1, 2008
The Complete Fifth and Final Season24October 7, 2008

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References

  1. "A Macho Image for a Sensitive Soul". The New York Times. November 3, 1992. Retrieved October 18, 2014.
  2. "TV Notes". The New York Times. January 15, 1997. Retrieved October 18, 2014.
  3. "'Martin,' Campbell reconcile". Variety. March 21, 1997. Retrieved October 18, 2014.
  4. "'Martin's' Wife Leaves Fox Series". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 18, 2014.
  5. "'Martin,' Campbell reconcile". Variety. March 21, 1997. Retrieved October 18, 2014.