Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The most highly anticipated new sitcom of the 2005-2006 season, UPN's Everybody Hates Chris was the brainchild of comedian Chris Rock, who served as executive producer and narrator. Set in the early '80s, the series purported to chronicle the teen years of young Chris Rock (played by youthful Rock lookalike Tyler James Williams) as he used his wits and his razor-sharp sense of humor to survive his hardscrabble existence in the tough Bed-Stuy section of New York. Most of the action occurred at Corleone Junior High, the school to which Chris was bussed every morning in the largely Italian-American community of South Shore. As the only black kid in an all-white school, Chris was an easy target for bullies and louts, but he generally managed to use funny words and fast moves to keep his enemies at bay -- and besides that, he had a staunch ally in his best pal and fellow "outcast," Greg (Vincent Martella). Back at home, Chris was compelled to tow the line for his stern mother, Rochelle (Tichina Arnold), a part-time realtor, and his penny-pinching dad, Julius (Terry Crews), who worked several jobs to make ends meet and made sure that his children knew it! Also on hand were Chris' younger brother, Drew (Tequan Richmond), who was frustratingly taller and more self-confident than our hero, and his spoiled kid sister, Tonya (Imani Hakim). Given the series' premise and the omnipresence of Chris Rock's low-key narration, comparisons between Everybody Hates Chris and the classic The Wonder Years was inevitable, though Chris set its own course early on with such blockbuster comedy lines as "Much like rock & roll, school shootings were invented by blacks and stolen by the white man." Everybody Hates Chris debuted September 22, 2005.
family, middle-school, preteens, working-class