Most Memorable Episodes: Martin!
Martin is the show that defined my high-school years and shaped my personal brand of comedy – we often forget how revolutionary it was at the time. Martin Lawrence didn’t mind cussing, he didn’t mind playing stereotypes, and he didn’t mind intense physical comedy, which is what really made Martin a genuine success (until Gina left the show and it jumped the shark). My past Most Memorable Episodes” posts have had 5 episodes each, but for Martin I had a hard time narrowing things down so I had to add a few bonus clips. But the best part is that hundreds of episodes are available on YouTube for your viewing pleasure, so if you have time to watch them there is so much more out there to enjoy.
5. “The Romantic Weekend”. The physical comedy in this clip is just too much. When this first aired I laughed so hard I couldn’t hear any of the hilarious ad-libs so it’s a treat to get watch it sanely today. The way that Tichina Arnold and Martin wrestle with the giant rat that invades their vacation is such a great example of how what seems like plain old coonery is often physical comedy at its best.
4. “Holiday Blues”. Miss Geri and that damn tuna at 5:30. May my boot never do that to a sandwich.
3. “Your Arms Too Short To Box With Martin”. Who doesn’t love little people? Not only does this clip feature the black midget Tony Cox, but Bushwick Bill gets in on the action, too. “I dunno…why don’t you go ask yer MOMMA?!” It still hasn’t stopped being funny after all of these years.
2. “Check, Lies, and Videotape”. David Allen Grier is one of the most underrated black comedians out there and his guest spot as Reverend Leon Lonnie Love was classic black corrupt church coonery. I mean, Creflo Dollar much? The way that he does the cabbage patch in this clip…priceless…
1. “Baby You Can Drive My Car”. This is the episode where the gang all puts in for a raffle ticket to win a car, and when they win the car they decide to share it throughout the week. This allowed Martin Lawrence to play all of his characters including, my favorite one, Otis the security guard. Yes, I did get the phrase “ain’t got enough money to put cheese on a Whopper” from this scene. This character is pure astute genius – SO MANY security guards are just like this. “I’m gettin ready ‘take ya down bwoy!” is my FAVORITE MOMENT ON THIS SHOW EVER. Before that though, check out Kim Coles and Yo-Yo as Sheneneh’s ghetto friends on the way to the club. Classic.
Bonus: “Martin Fat Like Dat”. Although the good part doesn’t come until near the end of this clip (6:10), Martin on his fitness freak tip yelling “SWITCH!” is too much for me to handle. And, um, Kimberly Reese? Click here.
Bonus #2: “High Noon”. “Mad Dog’s A’Comin!” I’ve always had a crush on Nipsey (1:30). And Gary Cloleman…well…
Bonus #3: “Baby, It’s You”. This is the episode where Martin catches a baby like a football and we realized that this show was ready to do anything – breaking the fourth wall and speaking to the audience about the accuracy of a show is THE admission of ridiculousness. This is also the “Don’tcha Know No Good” episode. Can you tell me what bit part the actress playing the pregnant woman played on another black sitcom?
Which favorite moments of yours did I leave out?