This article needs additional citations for verification .(August 2018)
|Created by|| Ralph Farquhar |
Sara V. Finney
|Theme music composer||Kurt Farquhar|
|Opening theme||"Moesha Main Title" performed by Brandy|
|Ending theme||"Moesha Closing Theme" (Instrumental)|
|Composers||Kurt Farquhar, Mark Mothersbaugh (season 1-2)|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||6|
|No. of episodes||127 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||21–24 minutes|
|Production companies||Regan Jon Productions|
Jump at the Sun Productions
Big Ticket Television
|Original release||January 23, 1996 –|
May 14, 2001
|Related shows||The Parkers|
Moesha ( // ) is an American television sitcom that aired on UPN from January 23, 1996, to May 14, 2001. The series stars R&B singer Brandy Norwood as Moesha Denise Mitchell, a high school student living with her family in the Leimert Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. It was originally ordered as a pilot for CBS' 1995–1996 television season but was declined by the network. It was then later picked up by UPN, which aired it as a mid-season replacement. It went on to become the biggest success for the nascent network and one of the greatest hits over the course of the network's entire run. The series was a joint production for UPN by Regan Jon Productions, Saradipity Productions, and Jump at the Sun Productions in association with Big Ticket Television.
The show focused on the life of an upper-middle-class Black family through the eyes of a typical girl named Moesha. Her father Frank, a widower and Saturn car salesman (and later owner of his own dealership, Brothers Saturn), has married Dee, the vice principal at Moesha's high school, much to Moesha's disapproval. The series was created by Ralph Farquhar, along with the writing team of Sara V. Finney and Vida Spears. The settings for the show include the Mitchell household, the teen hangout, The Den, and in some cases, Crenshaw High School, the school attended by Moesha, Kim, Niecy, and Hakeem. The sitcom was set in the Leimert Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. Brandy has been teasing a Moesha reboot, but this is unlikely.
The show dealt with real social issues affecting teenagers, such as premarital sex, the death of a parent, teen pregnancy, drug use, race relations, sexuality, dementia, and day-to-day issues teenagers faced at home and school such as gender prejudice and inequality. In one of the most controversial episodes, "Secrets and Lies" (aired February 7, 2000), the Mitchell family learned from Aunt Hattie that Frank is the biological father of Dorian, whom the Mitchells and Dorian himself believed to be Frank's nephew. The shocking news of Frank's infidelity during his first marriage turned the family upside-down and resulted in Dorian's rebellion and Moesha moving out of the family home.
|First aired||Last aired|
|1||14||January 23, 1996||May 21, 1996|
|2||24||August 27, 1996||May 20, 1997|
|3||23||August 26, 1997||May 19, 1998|
|4||22||October 6, 1998||May 25, 1999|
|5||22||August 23, 1999||May 22, 2000|
|6||22||September 4, 2000||May 14, 2001|
|Brandy Norwood||Moesha Denise "Mo" Mitchell||Main|
|William Allen Young||Franklin "Frank" Mitchell||Main|
|Countess Vaughn||Kimberly Ann "Kim" Parker||Main||Archive Footage|
|Marcus T. Paulk||Myles Mitchell||Main|
|Lamont Bentley||Hakeem Campbell||Main|
|Yvette Wilson||Andalusia Louise "Andell" Wilkerson||Main||Does not appear|
|Sheryl Lee Ralph||Deidra "Dee" Mitchell (née Moss)||Main||Recurring|
|Shar Jackson||Denise "Niecy" Jackson||Recurring||Main|
|Fredro Starr||Quinton "Q" Brooks||Does not appear||Main||Guest||Recurring|
|Ray J||Dorian Long||Does not appear||Main|
There have been different versions of the opening credits theme song.
Although the same recording of the theme song was used for the last three seasons, two different openings were used for each of the first three seasons.
Given her popularity for four seasons on Moesha, Countess Vaughn left the show in 1999 for her own show, The Parkers , which premiered on August 30, 1999 on UPN. It centered on Kim attending community college with her mother, played by comedian Mo'Nique. Leaving Moesha, Yvette Wilson joined the cast of The Parkers as Andell Wilkerson, Nikki's childhood friend.
Several Moesha cast members (including Brandy Norwood, Shar Jackson, Sheryl Lee Ralph and Marcus T. Paulk) made crossover appearances on The Parkers . Lamont Bentley, being the most frequent, appearing in three episodes.
Though not direct spin-offs of Moesha, the shows Girlfriends and The Game were created by Moesha writer Mara Brock Akil and exist in the same universe as Moesha. The character Maya Wilkes (Golden Brooks) from Girlfriends lives in Leimert Park like the characters of Moesha, and appeared in an episode babysitting for her sister-in-law Barbara Lee, who happened to be Dorian's birth mother. Niecy later appeared in an episode of Girlfriends.
The Game was spun off from Girlfriends with the loose thread of main character Melanie Barnett (Tia Mowry) being a cousin of Girlfriends main character Joan Clayton (Tracee Ellis Ross). Though this was never mentioned again on The Game, the Melanie and Derwin characters re-appeared in the Girlfriends Season 7 finale episode for a cameo. On Moesha, Brandy played herself as a celebrity doppelganger to Moesha, and ironically Brandy joined the cast of The Game in its fifth season as Chardonnay Pitts, further complicating the notion of the shows existing in the same universe.
By the sixth season, ratings for Moesha had dropped and UPN opted not to renew or air the series for a seventh season. The series ended on an unresolved cliffhanger with Myles being kidnapped by a rival of Dorian, Moesha considering moving in with Hakeem, and a positive pregnancy test being found in the trash at Moesha's dorm room, without positive identification as to whose it was. Entertainment Weekly put out a rumor that certain plots were to be resolved on The Parkers ,but those plans never came through, and the storylines were ultimately never resolved.
On November 3, 2017, the cast reunited on The Real and have expressed interest in reviving the show. "Absolutely, we need a reboot to this show, because we ended on a cliff," Norwood pointed out.On August 2020 Norwood revealed that she has been in talks for a reboot to happen, citing its success on Netflix.
The show aired in syndication on UPN, Fox, and The WB affiliates. The series aired on WGN America (now NewsNation) from 2005 to 2008, The N from 2005 to 2009, Up TV, BET Her, and BET until mid 2016, and Fuse until 2019. On Up, it was edited for content to make it more "family-friendly" and was often edited heavily for broadcast on BET and BET Her due to airtime constraints. Bounce TV currently airs the series.
In the UK, Moesha aired on Channel 4 from 1996 until 1998, with only the first three seasons being broadcast. It also aired on Nickelodeon from 1996 to 2000, who only showed episodes from the first four seasons which were edited so they would be more suitable for broadcast on children's television. Paramount Channel aired the series from 2000 to 2003, as did Trouble from 2003 to 2006. From 1 November 2019, the programme started airing on Trace Vault following its rebrand from The Vault.
Since 2008, the show has been airing in international syndication in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Israel, the Middle East, Russia, France, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium, Ireland, South Africa, Latin America, Brazil, and Australia. In Spain, it ran on Disney Channel from 2005 to 2011 in an edited format deemed suitable for children's television.
The series is currently streaming on Netflix in the US, while spinoff series The Parkers is available to stream on the platform as well.The series is also available to stream on Paramount+, BET+, and Hulu.
On September 27, 2011, CBS Home Entertainment released Moesha: The First Season on DVD in Region 1 via Amazon.com's CreateSpace program. This is a Manufacture-on-Demand (MOD) release, available exclusively through Amazon.com.
|DVD Name||Ep #||Release dates|
|Region 1||Region 2||Region 4|
|The Complete 1st Season||14||September 27, 2011||N/A||N/A|
The following table summaries the U.S. television ratings for the series:
|Season||Season premiere||Season finale||TV season||Ranking||Viewers|
|1st||January 23, 1996||May 21, 1996||1996||#141[ citation needed ]||3.5[ citation needed ]|
|2nd||August 27, 1996||May 20, 1997||1996–1997||#134[ citation needed ]||3.5[ citation needed ]|
|3rd||August 26, 1997||May 19, 1998||1997–1998||#141||4.0|
|4th||October 6, 1998||May 25, 1999||1998–1999||#137[ citation needed ]||3.3[ citation needed ]|
|5th||August 23, 1999||May 22, 2000||1999–2000||#130[ citation needed ]||2.4[ citation needed ]|
|6th||September 4, 2000||May 14, 2001||2000–2001||#130||3.3|
|1997||NAACP Image Awards||Outstanding Youth Actor/Actress||Brandy Norwood|
|1998||NAACP Image Awards||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series||Countess Vaughn|
|2000||SHINE Awards||Comedy Episode||For episode "Let's Talk About Sex"|
Brandy Rayana Norwood, better known by her mononym Brandy, is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. Born into a musical family in McComb, Mississippi, Norwood was raised in Carson, California, beginning her career as a backing vocalist for teen groups. After signing with Atlantic Records in 1993, she released her self-titled debut album the following year, which sold six million copies worldwide. In 1996, Norwood began starring in the UPN sitcom Moesha, created and written by Ralph Farquhar, as the title character, which lasted six seasons and resulted in numerous other roles. She resumed her music career in 1998 with the wildly successful duet with fellow R&B contemporary Monica, "The Boy Is Mine", which went on to become one of the best selling female duets of all time. Her second album, Never Say Never, featured two number one singles, and earned Norwood her first Grammy Award.
The Parkers is an American sitcom that aired on UPN from August 30, 1999, to May 10, 2004. A spin-off of UPN's Moesha, The Parkers features the mother-daughter team of Nikki and Kim Parker.
Living Single is an American television sitcom that aired for five seasons on the Fox network from August 22, 1993, to January 1, 1998. The show centered on the lives of six friends who shared personal and professional experiences while living in a Brooklyn brownstone.
The Hughleys is an American sitcom that aired on ABC from September 22, 1998 to April 28, 2000 and on the UPN network from September 11, 2000 to May 20, 2002. It starred comedian D. L. Hughley as the main character, Darryl Hughley, and Elise Neal as Yvonne, his hard-working wife, who move their family from the inner city to suburban Los Angeles.
Sharisse Jackson is an American actress and singer, best known for playing Niecy Jackson on the UPN sitcom Moesha. She was crowned the winner of MTV reality show Celebrity Rap Superstar in 2007.
William Ray Norwood Jr., known professionally as Ray J, is an American singer, songwriter, rapper, television personality, actor, and entrepreneur. Born in McComb, Mississippi and raised in Carson, California, he is the younger brother of recording artist and actress Brandy Norwood and the first cousin of rapper Snoop Dogg. In January 2017, he competed in the nineteenth season of the UK reality television programme Celebrity Big Brother.
Artimus Lamont Gardison Bentley, better known professionally as Lamont Bentley, was an American actor and rapper best known for his role as Hakeem Campbell on the UPN sitcom Moesha and the spin-off The Parkers. Bentley was also known for his role as Crazy K in the 1995 horror film Tales from the Hood and C-Money in the 2001 film The Wash featuring Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg.
Countess Danielle Vaughn is an American actress, singer and television personality. She is best known for her role as Kim Parker on the UPN sitcoms Moesha and its spin-off The Parkers, also as Alexandria DeWitt on 227.
Marissa Jaret Winokur, sometimes credited as Marissa Winokur, is an American actress known for her Tony-winning performance as Tracy Turnblad in the Broadway musical Hairspray, an adaptation of John Waters's film, as well as her work on the Pamela Anderson sitcom Stacked. Some of her other TV credits include Curb Your Enthusiasm,Moesha,The Steve Harvey Show,Just Shoot Me!,Felicity, and Dharma & Greg.
Kellie Shanygne Williams-Jackson is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Laura Lee Winslow, the middle-born child of Carl and Harriette Winslow on the ABC/CBS television series Family Matters which ran from 1989–1998.
One on One is an American sitcom that aired on UPN from September 3, 2001, to May 15, 2006. The series stars Flex Alexander as a single sportscaster, who becomes a full-time father when his ex-wife decides to accept a job out of the country and his teenage daughter Breanna moves in with him. The series was set in Baltimore for the first four seasons before changing settings to Los Angeles for the final season. The series was a joint production of the Greenblatt/Janollari Studio and Daddy's Girl Productions in association with Paramount Network Television.
Clueless is an American teen sitcom based on the 1995 film of the same name. It originally premiered on ABC on September 20, 1996, as a part of the TGIF lineup during its first season. The series then spent its last two seasons on UPN ending on May 25, 1999. Alicia Silverstone had a development deal with Columbia-TriStar at this time, and did not reprise her role from the film.
Yvette Reneé Wilson was an American comedian and actress. She was known for her role as Andell Wilkerson, the shopkeeper of the local hangout on the UPN sitcom Moesha (1996–2001); and restaurant owner and Nikki's best friend on its spinoff The Parkers (1999–2004). She had appeared in many comedy films such as House Party 3, Friday, and on Russell Simmons' Def Comedy Jam. Wilson died from cervical cancer at the age of 48.
William Allen Young is an American actor and director who has starred in over 100 television, stage, and film projects, including two Academy Award-nominated films, A Soldier's Story and District 9. He is best known for his roles as Frank Mitchell on UPN's Moesha, Dr. Rollie Guthrie on the CBS medical drama Code Black, and as Judge Joseph Ratner on CBS's CSI Miami. His other television credits include ABC's The Day After, General Hospital, CBS's Madame Secretary, JAG, Atlanta Child Murders, and The Women of Brewster Place, among other shows. He is also credited with helping to diversify the ranks of writers, actors, directors and producers in Hollywood through the landmark 2000 TV Network Agreement, which he helped broker while serving as a former co-chair of the African-American Steering Committee of the Directors Guild of America.
Kara Denean Brock is an American television and film actress best known for her recurring role as Regina Foster, the sorority-sister of Kim Parker in the UPN sitcom The Parkers. She was born in Long Beach, California, but was raised primarily in Kansas City, Missouri. She is the younger sister of TV writer/producer Mara Brock Akil. Brock is a graduate of California State University, Los Angeles, where she earned a bachelor's degree in theater arts.
This is a list of Brandy products.
Ashley Monique Clark is an American television actress best known for her role as Sydney Hughley on the ABC and UPN television program, The Hughleys.
As an actress, Brandy Norwood has appeared in feature films and television shows. She made her television debut in 1993 in the ABC sitcom Thea, as the daughter of a single mother. Broadcast to low ratings, the series ran for only one season, but earned her a Young Artists Award nomination for Outstanding Youth Ensemble alongside her co-stars. In 1996, her short-lived engagement on Thea led Brandy to star in her own show, the UPN-produced sitcom Moesha, in which she played the title role of Moesha Mitchell, a Los Angeles girl coping with a stepmother as well as the pressures and demands of becoming an adult. The program debuted on UPN in January 1996, and soon became their most-watched show. The network decided to cancel the show after six seasons on the air, leaving it ending with a cliffhanger for a scrapped seventh season. Brandy was awarded an NAACP Image Award for her performance. In 1997, Brandy was hand-picked by producer Whitney Houston to play the title character in Rodgers and Hammerstein's television version of Cinderella featuring a multicultural cast that also included Jason Alexander, Whoopi Goldberg, and Houston. The two-hour Wonderful World of Disney special garnered an estimated 60 million viewers, giving the network its highest ratings in the time period in 16 years, and won an Emmy Award the following year.
Zoe Ever After is an American sitcom starring Brandy Norwood as Zoe Moon, a recent divorcee who starts her own cosmetics company. The show was Norwood's first leading role in a television series since Moesha (1996–2001) premiered twenty years prior. The show premiered on BET January 5, 2016. It is filmed in Atlanta, Georgia. The series ended on February 16.
Vida Spears is an American television producer and writer. She is best known as the co-creator, with Ralph Farquhar and Sara Finney-Johnson, of the UPN sitcoms Moesha, starring Brandy, and The Parkers, starring Countess Vaughn and Mo'Nique.