Do You Remember: Fox’s All-Black-TV Thursday Night Line Up?

If you are over the age of 27, a Black person or supporter of urban-ethnic culture who lived in North America and you DON’T remember Fox’s All-Black TV show line-up on Thursday Nights, I kindly request that you leave your Black Pass & Hood Accreditation at the door with security. Right now. Now clearly if you lived somewhere where Fox wasn’t available to you then you get a temporary STAY, but the rest of y’all should be ashamed for missing what was probably the greatest weekly 2 hours of Black television since NBA on NBC.

Now I KNOW there’s a lot of people who may be reading this like “WTF?” so allow me to explain what I’m talking about. Back in the early-to-mid 90’s before Fox News became the pulpit for crazy white conservative racists disguised as political intellects, Fox was a channel that actually invested in MANY hip Black shows, some successful [In Living Color] and some not so successful [Anyone remember the PJ’s?]. This was so unprecedentedly amazing because hip-hop culture and Black television was still FAR removed from the mainstream society’s collective conscience, so getting 120 minutes of EXCELLENT programming was giving a nation of young urban youths wet dreams across the country.

But let’s just get to the point – the amazing shows. On Thursdays at 7:58 pm I would sit down in front of my television with my sister while we sat in anticipation for [in MY opinion] the FUNNIEST black sitcom EVER [YES, funnier than the Cosby show]:

8:00 – 8:30 PM: Martin

Not all the episodes were hilarious, but EVERY ONE of Martin’s caricatures was funny as hell. After me and my sis were finished DYING of laughter, we made sure to catch the start of the next show, not just because it was funny, but also because it had the BEST THEME SONG ever [Yes, even better than GOLDEN GIRLS – and that theme song is the SH*T]:

8:30 – 9:00 PM: Living Single

Sidebar: If you’re a NERD like me you watched every 2:26 of the clip above and violently bobbed your head all throughout.

Before Girlfriends was ever aired, Living Single was the program showing young Black men and women living large and in charge [remember those talks?] yet still kept a realistic balance and just was an all-around great show. After laughing our young asses off to that, we would then prepare ourselves for some drama – some hood, police drama:

9:00 – 10:00 PM: New York Undercover

Sidebar: That smooth Jazz part in the middle always makes me want to do a manly tootsie roll.

This show is classic for two reasons: 1) It was the first police drama on American TV to feature two ethnic minorities in the lead roles [this is how we got introduced to Malik Yoba and if you didn’t think he was the man you needed to KILL yourself] and 2) The show was just consistently well-written and featured characters that young Black & Latino people could FINALLY relate to. If you didn’t get a little choked up when Eddie was blown-up, you got NO damn heart.

But the main reason I’m so proud of this TV line-up was the fact that it was going head-to-head against NBC’s “Must See TV” which included megahit shows like Seinfeld and Friends, and it STILL managed to DOMINATE Black viewership with NON-coonery. And all these great shows were airing 15+ years ago – so please understand why we in the Black community get VEX when channels like BET can’t even get right what we did damn near two decades ago.

This Is Your Conscience

When Lincoln Anthony Blades is not writing for his controversial and critically acclaimed blog, he can be found contributing articles for Uptown Magazine. Lincoln wrote the hilarious and insightful book "You're Not A Victim, You're A Volunteer: How To Stop Letting Love Kick Your Ass". He is also a public speaker who has sat on panels all over North America and the Caribbean.

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