Sunday, July 6, 2008


About a year ago, I was at my local video store and the employee at the counter as I was checking out asked for my phone number-like they do-and I gave it to him. "2-2-7?!?" he asked, "really?" I stared back at him, probably rather blankly. "Like the T.V. show!" he said. Another "does not register" look. He may have also yelled across the room to another employee to tell him that the middle three digits of my phone number was the name of this *huge* T.V. show. I think he left it at that.

Since that encounter, I've given out my phone number to people, to some of which I have said, "yes, the 80s television show" with, really, no recollection of the show ever. I was a little young for it-most likely because "227" began when I was an infant. I have looked up the show once or twice since to see what the big deal is.

I find IMDb's only plot description of the show absolutely hilarious:

This series took place in an apartment building, numbered 227. The cast would frequently be found sitting outside on a large set of stone stairs, in some discussion that would unfold into the weekly plot line.

That has to be the most generic plot summary *ever*. I mean, really, it might as well read, "There are people in this show. They talk. Things happen." "Ooooh, so that's what this show is about! You know, because I've always wondered..." Even Wikipedia's description of the show is rather slim on details. The article explains "the series was adapted from a play written by Christine Houston about the lives of women in a predominantly black apartment building in 1950s Chicago" and "the setting of the series...was changed to present-day Washington, D.C."

An IMDb contributor writes, ""227," in my opinion, is a must-see NBC hit! Despite the fact that I've never seen every episode, I still enjoyed it. It's hard to say which one is my favorite. Also, I really loved the theme song." Firstly, there is only one season of the show on DVD and it came out 4 years ago, so I can imagine that it might not be too easy to track down every single episode. Secondly, my guess as to why she can't pick a favorite is probably due to the very bleak plot summary above. And third, she loves the theme song, so I feel the need to post it here:

The song is titled "There's No Place Like Home" and is sung by one of the series' stars, the Emmy Award-winning, Marla Gibbs. Note: I love how one of the actresses is known only as "Jackée."

Dwindling audiences in the last two seasons of the show led the show to be cancelled in 1990. Concerning the show's release on DVD, the first season underperformed dramatically in sales so we may never see the remaining four seasons.


wpetro said...

Jackee is practically from my 'hood! Did you know she was Tia and Tamera's mother on Sister, Sister?

Nikki Stafford said...

I totally watched 227... it always seemed like one of those in-between shows, in a weird way. Like the one woman had always been Florence on The Jeffersons and then was on this, and the other woman was Olivia on Sesame Street, or the daughter went on to Jerry Maguire and Ray and total stardom... but interestingly, when you gave me your cell #, it was absolutely the first thing that popped into my head. :) Ha!

Kj said...

I watched 227 a fair bit growing up. I feel like I've spent a lot of time in my life talking about Jackee' though I can't figure out why...

Also, for some reason, i remember an episode that featured a conversation with a reverend talking to someone about salvation or something and its my first memory of thinking "hey- that's not what i believe" though i have no idea what was really said or what i thought i believed (i might have been in 2nd grade) but the point is, sometimes when I'm sitting in a theology class or discussing disparate faith issues, I'll start thinking about 227. Kid memory connects weird stuff. aka Atonement theory and a "Golden Girls" sitcom competitor.