Where Are They Now? The Cast and Characters of “Martin”

April 3, 2012  |  

I dare you to try and think of one, just one, episode of “Martin” that you could classify as your favorite. It’s hard, right? The Fox show was probably what brought folks home on Thursday nights, and is also one of the few TV sitcoms that many people actually own on DVD, even though it often appears on TV through syndication. It was just THAT funny. Maybe it was crazy Martin Lawrence and his many characters, the silly stories, or just how well the cast meshed together, but this show was THE bomb. Time to take a walk down memory lane, and also look to the present to see what our favorite cast members and characters from the iconic black comedy are up to now. And as always, be prepared to click (so don’t complain).

Martin Lawrence

Martin Lawrence did a lot of film and TV work before he landed his own show. He was on “What’s Happening Now,” in Do The Right Thing, and of course, House Party. But it wasn’t until he played insane Martin Payne that he blew up. We loved his penchant for throwing people out when they tried to play him, his hilarious dancing skills, and his back and forth banter with Pam.  He was everyone from Sheneneh Jenkins and old Otis, to Jerome and King Beef (“But first, I must dance!”). Of course, Martin had success during and after the show, appearing in the film, Bad Boys and A Thin Line Between Love and Hate, and then doing a lot of family friendly and crazy movies: Big Momma’s House, Rebound, and Death at a Funeral. It was recently announced that a possible Bad Boys 3 will be brought to theaters in the future. *Excited face*

Tisha Campbell-Martin

As Gina Waters-Payne, Tisha Campbell-Martin was both a successful businesswoman and the owner of a humongous head (remember when it got stuck in the new bed?). While Martin brought huge laughs on the show, Tisha and Martin had pretty amazing chemistry, which made the show all the more entertaining. However, a lot of rumors flew near the end of the show of sexual harassment and even stalking, and before you know it, around the fifth and final season, the character of Gina was rarely seen. She showed up for the series finale (in no scenes with her on-screen husband), but honestly, that last season was pretty random without all the characters getting along all friendly and what not. Afterwards, she was able to find pretty good work, doing the film Sprung, playing Jay on one of my other favorite shows, “My Wife and Kids,” and making guest appearances on “All of Us,” and “Everybody Hates Chris.” Her latest work was on the TV show, “The Protector,” which was canceled, and in a Mindless Behavior music video–“Hello.”

Carl Anthony Payne II

Cockroach! Well, he was Cockroach in his “Cosby Show” days, but on “Martin,” he was the uber-stupid but lovable Cole Brown. You know, the guy who loved all the hats, cleaned planes, loved him some Big Shirley and lived with his mother? That hilarious guy. When the show ended, Payne stuck to a lot of TV work, including a few episodes of “The George Lopez Show,” a guest appearance on “Girlfriends,” and most recently, appearing on a few episodes of BET’s “The Game.”

Thomas Mikal Ford

Bald head Tommy Strawn. He was Martin’s loyal friend with a lot more sense, but a lot less employment (I don’t think anyone ever figured out what he really did for a living). And on the show, he did everything from dating Pam and moving in with her, to getting jumped by Bushwick Bill of the Geto Boys over a girl. Loved him! Since then, he’s also done a wealth of TV work. Right after the show, he had a regular role as Lt. Malcolm Barker on New York Undercover, and appeared in a recurring role as Kim Parker’s father on “The Parkers.” He also worked on a show called “Who’s Got Jokes” from 2006-08 and just finished working on two films this year: The Ivy League and Unspoken Words.

Tichina Arnold

Loud mouth but loyal Pamela James. This character was best known for her man troubles, her comical “relationship” with Martin, her bad breath, and her big butt (What? They were always showing that thing off…). Since the show ended, Arnold stayed almost as busy as Martin Lawrence. She had a guest role on “The Jamie Foxx Show,” and was Breanna’s mother on the UPN hit show, “One on One.” After that, she coincidentally played Martin Lawrence’s wife in the film, Wild Hogs, starred as the hilarious Rochelle on “Everybody Hates Chris,” and just finished the first season of the TV series “Happily Divorced,” with Fran Drescher. Make that money, boo!

Garrett Morris

He was only on the show as Stan from ’92-’95, but the polyester wearing cheap and philandering boss was a memorable character. Of course, Garrett Morris had been on television for many years before “Martin,” including being an original cast member on “Saturday Night Live.” After he exited the show at its height, he went on to be a regular on a show called “Cleghorne!” from ’95-’96, and played another cheap boss on television: Junior King on “The Jamie Foxx Show.” Most recently though, he’s had a regular role on the CBS show, “2 Broke Girls.”

Jon Gries

Another temporary cast member, Gries was only on the show from ’92-’94 as bumbling WZUP worker Shawn McDermott (you know, the lone white character on the show). They always had him talking about moving his trailer over the weekend and doing some of the most random of things. When he bounced from the show, Gries did a lot of guest roles on shows like “Beverly Hills, 90210” and “Lost,” as well as a regular role on “The Pretender” and currently as Uncle Rico on the animated comedy, “Napoleon Dynamite.” And if you saw the movie, Napoleon Dynamite, then you know he also played the creepy has-been football star Uncle Rico in the feature film.

Tracy Morgan

I first was exposed to the very crazy Tracy Morgan when he played the hilarious Hustle Man on “Martin.” He was always trying to sell somebody something, conning folks, and was even seen playing a kazoo attached to a saxophone, talking about “Pick up the pieces!” His short appearances on the show always brought a great amount of laughs. Afterwards, we all know that he pretty much blew up. He acted in the film, Half Baked, appeared on “Saturday Night Live” for 10 years as a wealth of famous folks, and even had his own show, “The Tracy Morgan Show” for a short time. He also did films like the hilarious, First Sunday, and Death at a Funeral. Currently, he’s still doing it big as Tracy Jordan on the very funny NBC comedy, “30 Rock.”

Jeri Gray

I had to do it. Miss Geri showed up and threw down with Martin so many times for so many random reasons, when you saw her you knew some drama was going to unfold–in a funny way of course. Whether Martin was trying to cut her at the DMV or trying to take some change from her at the bus station, she was ready, purse in hand, to bust him upside his head. The actress only did the film Sprung after “Martin” ended, but before then and during her time on the show, she popped up on “Sister, Sister” and “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” Jeri Gray passed away in 1997 at the age of 72.

Reginald Ballard

Brother Man, or Bruh Man was a notorious character for popping up in Martin’s apartment, wearing his clothes, watching his TV, eating his food, and of course, “borrowing” his CD player. If Bruh Man from the fifth floor (*holds up four fingers*) had his own show, I’m sure that would have made everyone pretty happy, because he was a damn fool. Bruh Man never realized when he was crossing the line, and that’s probably what made his character so hilarious. After “Martin” was over, he had some guest TV roles on shows like “Caroline in the City,” “The Show,” and a regular role on “The Bernie Mac Show.” Recently, he showed up in the film, Horrible Bosses.


Bentley Kyle Evans

Even if you don’t remember the face, I’m sure you remember Bentley Kyle Evans’s big crazy self as the see-through raincoat wearing man in the DMV trying to flirt with “Martin.” “Look at you, you so almond-y!” That scene was probably one of the funniest scenes on that show hands down, especially when Martin told him off: “First of all, my name ain’t no damn almond!” But don’t get it twisted, that fella was actually the co-executive producer of “Martin.” After the show ended, he became an executive producer for “The Jamie Foxx Show,” a consulting producer for the short-lived “Orlando Jones Show,” and was an executive producer for Tatyana Ali’s web series, “Love That Girl” in 2010.

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  • Travis

    My favorite episode is hands down the getaway vacation! Haha “That ain’t no damn puppy”! Has me in tears every time lol

  • Chris

    Yes the funniest sitcom ever, comedy at its finest. my funniest episode when Martin finally took his 5 minutes of fame and walked out singing on Jodeci set on the Tommy Davidson talk show, im laughing right now trying to type this was so funny!!!!!!! Wow brings back so many good memories lol

  • Philip Powell

    Ain’t no Prince Oochie gon be hitting my wife’s coochie!

  • K.R.

    We are going to you not. Hahaha, Pam voice. The best show ever.

    • Josie

      My favorite Martin episodes were : The Credit cards fraud, when they bought the house, when Gina had to work for and many more……………..

  • Dwilliams0291

    I cry laughing every time i see martin its so funny.. 

  • Dwilliams0291

    I cry laughing every time i see martin its so funny.. 

  • TDR25_Forever

    Like everyone in the mid-90’s, if it was Thursday at 8-9 O’Clock, you were watching Martin from somewhere, whether it was your home or someone else’s. His Dragonfly Jones episodes were funny as hell, and how he always got beat up by his fellow student/con-man KENJI! made it even funnier.

    • GLTMngt

      LOL @ the person that said, “rent-em spoons.”  These comments were hilarious.  My favorite characters were Bruh Man and Hustle Man.  I was on the floor when as Bruh Man was about to leave Martin looked at him and then yelled out, “Hole Up, Hole Up”  No you do NOT have on my robe!”  Also, when Martin and Gina got Stan and Myra as their new hang out partners, “Ain’t that right girlfriend?”

  • Sveltegirl

    Actually my favorite episode is when Martin, Gina, Tommy and Pam go to Chilligan’s Island and fight with the mongoose or rat, whatever it was.  I still crack up to this day.

  • So_What

    Awwww!  We all still watch Martin in the reruns.  All of the shows were funny, but the funniest was when Gina had to go and work at Shuh-nay-nay’s hair shop.  And she had to powerdrill Myra’s toenails down! 

    I just saw that the other day.  I had tears in my eyes —- everytime.  I wish that they would do a reunion show.

  • Jaljor11

    You forgot about Nipsey!!!  He was actually funny.  Remember when he was responsible for the food for Pam’s fake wedding.

  • Longleggs50

    I first saw Tisha Campbell-Martin on “HOUSE PARTY’.

  • IJS

    Best episode… David Allen Grier as Rev. Leon Lonnie Love singing “I got the feeling everything is gonna be alright” down the church aisle.   Pure comedy.  Even DAG couldn’t help laughing.

  • uniquefashionista

    One of the funniest shows on the air, ever! I can still sit and watch every episode today and laugh like I have never seen it before. What about Shanice, Cole Brown’s crazy girlfriend? She was hilarious. This is one show that I would love to see a reunion happen. I wish Martin and Tisha could squash their differences and make that happen. Glad to see that everyone is doing ok.
    RIP, Ms. Gheri! She was funny!

    • Geniadaydream

      Loved that show and still do I Believe they did squash their beef I remember a couple of years ago Tisha and Tichina presented Martin with an award on BET

  • Love Milkduds

    My favorite episode was when martin and gina were trying to figure out what tommy’s job and caught him stripping.  I nearly choked when they called him a bald-headed lie, lol.

  • emily

    one of my faves was when martin went on the radio and told a secret about pam and all hell breaks loose.  Another fave was when Tommy Davidson came on the show twice.  DID YOU MISS ME?  And that song he sings to a caller on the radio show, i still can’t get enough!  Love you Martin!

  • C485

    You say that Jon Gries was the “lone white character” on the show, but I didn’t expect him to be the lone person on this list without a “before” picture. You even did a screen shot of Tracy Morgan, a guest star. C’mon Madame Noire, put a before picture of Jon Gries up there!

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  • Antique

    TTommy worked at a chop shop!

  • Sammilu1224

    Ok y’all go waaay back in your memory museum on this one.. Cole aka Cockroach was on someone’s music video back in the day where he played a junkie.. what song/video/artist was it??

  • FromUR2UB

    That show had the funniest mix of characters on it, with Martin Lawrence playing half of them himself.
     
    I remember Garrett Morris as one of the original members of Saturday Night Live.  There weren’t a lot of sketches written for him in those days, though.  I thought he was his funniest as cheapskate Stan on ‘Martin’.

  • Thugstress326

    “COLE SIT YA $5 A** DOWN BEFORE I MAKE CHANGE!!!!!!!!!!!!”

    • movie quote man

       rent’em  spoon!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Slward1971

    My favorite episode is when Martin goes to court and has a jury for a speeding ticket. That ridiculous episode has me screaming every time I see it.  Ri-dic-u-lous!!

    • Donna

      especially when he start singing “Do the pocket knife” I died laughing..LOL

    • Jessica

      That is my favorite episode hands down. I still laugh so hard when I see that especially when he puts the cop on the stand, accuses him of being a racist until he realizes the cop has a black wife. The look on Martin’s face is priceless! I also love the “Pretty Ricky” episode!

  • eyeEEsha

    They were trying hella hard not to laugh during that scene at the DMV!! I’m crying!!

  • Stacy L

    I will NEVER get tired of this show!!! I can def quote damn near every line, lmaoo.. it’s hard to pick a fav episodes but one of my top 5’s is when Martin and Gina basically stalked Tommy to try and find out his “job”.. w/ the cat eye and that drunk woman!!! *dead and buried*

  • BM1

    “Martin” is one of the greatest sitcoms of all time!  Glad to see all the main cast members still doing well and prospering!

  • Jay

    I wasn’t even though of when this show started in 1992, but I kind of remember it from when I was little.  I love this show and Shenehneh Jenkins.  I always watch the re-runs on MTV

  • Lady G

    My favorite is when Martin, Tommy, and Cole went to their class reunion. “Pretty Ricky what they call him”. Who knew we were being introduced to Wendy Rachel in that episode. Gina showing up to the reunion looking busted and cursing out everyone. Classic!

  • MannieCarlo_SS

    I really enjoyed this 

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  • miche

    what?!!…I still watch this show EVRY’ day!…I have always had a crush on “Cole” since his days on Cosby…he STILL looks good…yall see him on The Game?..umph….this was, is and always will be hands down my favorite show…I feel a little sad tho when I watch the episode with Martin fighting Tommy the hitman Hearns because it was my mother’s favorite episode…she would call me and we would watch it together on the phone…she’s gone now, but I sometimes feel the urge to call her when it comes on. I find myself laughing and crying at the same time… I love Martin!

    • MissDiva05

      I’m sure your mother had a wonderful personality then. That was THE most hilarious episode ever…. I cry laughing whenever Martin comes out with his head all swollen and lumpy…. LOL. And Gina blew him the kiss. LMAO just thinking about it.

    • Shoeluvah81

      Awwww, I started crying when I read your comment. This is my favorite show too! I own the dvd’s. I watch EVERYDAY along with my 5yr old neice. God bless you. When I watch tonight I know I will think about you and your momma.

    • David

      Its gone be alright u beta go girl keep yah head up

  • Lindsay_natasha

    I loooooooooooooooooooooooooooo ok ooooooooooooove MARTIN show. Just watched it last night. I have my kids loving it also. They should have gotten an award for that show.

  • Bylaw99

    My favorite martin episode was when White man bob from sales crashed Ginas batchlorette party….”Eh yo martin you need to get down here Ginas tearing the pants off some stripper….I’ld like to order 2 large pizzas and charge it to the room..I dont know buddy which ever room I’m calling from. LMAO

  • LGadson

    I have two episodes that I love. Any episode with Sheneneh Jenkins in it, and when Dragon Fly Jones used to get his butt kicked EVERY TIME by the same dude!! LOL Miss that show…

  • christielove

    I loved that show”Martin”, Shenehneh Jenkins was one of my favorite characters. The Halloween episode was so funny,Tommy pretended to have caught the evil spirit and was flickering his tongue as all hell broke loose. The wedding episode was so touching and beautiful. My kids now love “Martin” too.

  • Miss_Understood

    This is my hands-down favorite show! I am a super fan and own all seasons (although I can’t watch the last season because it makes me sad lbvs)…I still question Tisha’s reasoning for leaving-it ruined the show, was the last successful acting job most of them had and was just odd that after all those years he suddenly began sexually harrassing her around the same time that she got married in real life…hmmmm…

    • David

      I thought dey had an affair but she stoped wanting him

  • Hollywood 256

    I LOVED Martin!!! Fave ep was when Bruh man “borrowed” his cd player and Martin made everybody dress in black and he had that fake dog, walking it around barking at people! I die laughing every single time! Mart-IN is the best!

  • Smiff-N-Wesson

    OK #dontjudgeme, but I just realized (like 2 weeks ago) that Cole is Cockroach from the Cosby Show. Hands down, Martin was one of the best shows…EVER!

  • @msredbonebrite

    My fav episode of Martin always has and always will be when he proposed to Gina! I still cry my eyes out when Brian McKnight came out the bushes and sang “Never Felt This Way”! The way he had all their friends in on the plan was LOVE!!

  • Omg. Bentley Kyle Evans. Lol I remember him as the gay guy that always wanted Martin. Lmao. That show was too much.

  • IllyPhilly

    Get to steppin’! LMAO!!

  • Butta_flyme

    My favorite show hands down. did not know Ms. jeri died.. That was my girl.. Myra was on David E Talbot’s play “What goes around comes around”

  • K.C

    Tommy was a lawyer, he had his own firm, with his last name in it and it was stated that he was a possibly a lawyer when he decided to defend himself against Sheneneh when she tried to sue him. Really loved Martin, wish TV was like this today. *sigh*

    •  Wait…Tommy on the show? Or Tommy Ford in real life? That’s so crazy cause I never remembered them ever revealing what he did for a living.

    • Miss_Understood

      Tommy said he “went to law school for a year” so he wasn’t a lawyer.

      I think he was a teacher because in season one, he was working at an elementary school, remember when Martin dressed up as Santa and kept gettin into it with “Water Head” lol

      • Shoeluvah81

        No, he worked with children at a Community Center in the 1st season. lol… How cute is it that we are all talking about “Tommy” like he was not a character. That just shows you how brilliant Martin Lawrence is and how we all were apart of that show. Shout out to Martin, You Go, Boy! Love you!

  • Love_Sexy

    Martin is the BOMB and watching him now as I read this article…Love that man!

  • Divan1986

    Where’s Myra?

    • Ladychicap

      Myra (Bebe Drake Massey) is still working. She was the landlord in “Friday After Next” and has done voice over work on “The Boondocks” (Funniest appearances: Smoking with Cigarettes and The Hateocracy).