Forget-Me-Nots! 10 Memorable Episodes from ‘A Different World’

November 14, 2012  |  
2 of 11

Known for being a show created by Bill Cosby, as a spin-off of “The Cosby Show,” “A Different World” went on to become one of the longest running black sitcoms.  We learned a lot of lessons from the show and had many laughs. And, who can forget those theme songs by Aretha Franklin and Boyz II Men? Here are 10 memorable episodes from one of our favorite black shows.

Forever Hold Your Peace

We all know the show had its struggles during its beginning stages before getting better once Debbie Allen came aboard. In this episode, Dwayne travels to New York and visits his longtime Hillman crush, Denise Huxtable, only to find that she has married. Realizing his hopes of ever being with Denise are now shattered, things soon begin to heat up between Dwayne and Whitley.



Cats in the Cradle

In an important episode about the ways in which we stereotype others; racist students from a rival football team get into a fight with Ron and Dwayne, after attempting to spray paint the N word on Ron’s car. The episode aired during the week of Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday to teach us we’re all the same on the inside.

As we watched them both grow and mature from the first season, we realized that Dwayne and Whitley were bound to get together— but it wasn’t easy. In this episode Whitley realizes her feelings for Dwayne, but he has a new girlfriend named Kinu. So, Ron hires Whitley as a maid and the battle for Dwayne’s heart begins between the two ladies. Patti LaBelle as Dwayne’s mother makes for more lovable comedy.

If I Should Die Before I Wake

This episode made A Different World one of the few shows to address the AIDS epidemic sweeping the nation at time. Whitley thinks she is finally ready to have sex with Dwayne, only to find out her classmate Josie (Tisha Campbell) is HIV positive, during an assignment in speech class. The episode was a reminder of the ignorance surrounding the disease, and why we all need to protect ourselves and wrap it up.

In The Eye of the Storm

A hurricane is set to hit Hillman College and everyone gathers in The Pit for safety. Meanwhile, Ron and Freddie are trapped in the school’s radio studio together, making for a interesting kiss heard all across campus through accidental broadcast.

Do You Take This Woman?

Prepared to be married, Dwayne and Whitley’s parents come to town to celebrate their engagement, but there is trouble in paradise. Dwayne and Whitley must decide whether they are really ready to marry, while their mothers (Patti LaBelle and Diahann Carroll) duke it out over wedding arrangements.

Mammy Dearest

The women of Gilbert Hall take a trip back into history, in order to learn about the struggles of strong black women throughout their history of slavery, up until modern times.  Kim struggles with her own identity, as Whitley wants to include the historical figure Mammy in the exhibit of black women. Lena also discovers that Whitley’s family once owned slaves.

Save the Best for Last, Part 2

As one of everyone’s favorite episodes, Whitley is set to marry Sen. Bryon Douglas, when Dwayne interrupts the wedding. We all cheered for him from the moment he said, “Whitley, I want you and if you want me, I want you to be my wife!” And, the rest is TV history…

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

While consumed with working all the time, Whitley feels neglected by Dwayne and tries to everything she can think of to pique his interest again. After running out of ideas, she calls the Montel Williams Show for some advice.

Homie, Don’t Ya Know Me?

Lena’s friends from Baltimore come to Hillman to visit her, and her old boyfriend Piccolo (Tupac) wants her back. Lena’s current boyfriend, Dorian and Piccolo fight and Lena’s friendships are tested.

Did you remember all of these moments? What was your favorite moment from “A Different World”?


Trending on MadameNoire

View Comments
Comment Disclaimer: Comments that contain profane or derogatory language, video links or exceed 200 words will require approval by a moderator before appearing in the comment section. XOXO-MN
  • What about “No Means No” episode. That is a memorable one to me at least. It touched on a deep subject, especially considering I don’t know of many college shows addressing that issue at all.

  • DaTruf

    This has nothing to do with anything, but I really hated Freddie. That chick was just so annoying and stupid. I really wish her character had been replaced by somebody, really anybody else.

  • Nikii

    Another great episode was when Freddie found the secret passage of the underground railroad at Hillman

  • Mikaela Walker

    When Whitley got pregnant and took like 12 pregnancy tests

  • pickneychile

    I just wanna know why when I watch the re-runs they always stop at the Lena Horne episode and then start it from the beginning again. The last episode is when Whitley and Dwayne are moving to Japan and Whitley walks out of the house they were renting and says “off to a different world”…yet they never show this one anymore! Smh

    • Does it still come on TV One? I thought they always showed them in order

      • pickneychile

        Everytime I catch the Lena Horne episode, the next one is the series opener. Lol idk why TV One does that, but I’ve probably seen that happen at least 4 or 5 times.

  • I know not too many people like the episodes with Denise, but there was the one when she had to wear that pig nose on her date. I was dying laughing.

  • Tee Shantel

    Happy Easter, Happy 4th of July! I hope you are happy with your birthday bean pie! #classicwhitleybdayepisode

  • Tee Shantel

    Happy Easter, Happy 4th of July! I hope you’re happy with your birthday bean pie! #Classic

  • Meemz

    ya’ll missed the episode with Kriss Kross as the gang bangers…good list though



    • LYRICS


  • I miss good tv. Please bring it back.

  • Still Mrs. G

    I prefer the older episodes before Jada Pinkett and the rest of the new crew came….I think I really enjoyed season 2 and season 3 the most

    • what about when whitley goes to counseling Relax..relate…release lol

    • NONEYA

      @cfe0114ec1133d51eb00333a2f67e047:disqus me too those seasons were the best, first and last the worst!

  • TanTan78

    What about the episode where the gang went to an island for Spring Break and Whitley’s second attempt at a “special night” was made, but they spent it fighting off drug dealers, Freddie’s stupid tail thinking they were interested in her, and Walter coming in, saving the day, all while Ernest was in the bathroom. Please tell me they won that Emmy! Please!

    • LOL… LOVED that episode too! Dwayne had to save her because she had knocked Julian out with the candle stick! LOL! & Dwayne & Ron were dressed in drag! That police officer in that station was SOOOOO country!!

    • DaTruf

      Man, I just HATED Freddie. I would have been ok if her character got killed off. She was just so clumsy, stupid, and dippy. SO annoying.

  • kierah

    LMAO at Kemosabe, Keekookalah, and any other name Whitley had for Kinu!

  • Jason Clark

    the “Love Taps” episode, “The College Kid” episode with Billy Dee Williams, the “Christmas Episode” with the head doctor, the Lena Horne episode, the LA riots episode, the Thanksigivng Episode where Mother Gilbert brought her fine “boyfriend” to dinner, the “X-pectations” episode where Tyrell brings a gun to class, the “Someboday say Ho” episode where tyrell is put on trial, the episode where Whitley hires the ex-convict as the janitor, the Gladys Knight episode, the episode where Shazazz writes the book “Ms. Understanding” episode. hmmm i thin I covered the best ones!

  • OOOOH, and how ya’ll gone forget the episode when Terrell brought the gun to school after him and Charmaine got chased off the rode by the truckers, and he was threatened with expulsion. Then, when he and Dorian did the project where they had to create a dialogue using only quotes from Malcolm X and MLK, Jr.!!!

  • The wedding episode, and the episode of Martin when he proposes to Gina will FOREVER be classics! I tear up on both!! LOL.. CLEARLY, I know Martin had nothing to do with this post!!

    • Cakester

      I am with you!!!!!! I loved both episodes!!!!!!!!!!

  • ADWfan

    Dwayne: You think you can get over on anybody, right? Anywhere. No not me, and not today.

    Caucasian 1: Who are you?

    Caucasian 2: That’s just it, he’s nobody.

    Dwayne: No I am an educated black man. Your worst nightmare punk.

    By far, the best line of that whole series imo. I’m a female, and yet that resonated right through my life. I sat up a little taller after hearing that line. It had me thinking…

  • RockBottom8

    Tupac!!!! Man he was such a natural….it was like he wasn’t even trying. I miss black television shows like this…now all we have is Tyler Perry, not that he’s bad

    • E-GO

      Ummm, he is bad.

  • mskayelove

    The apartheid episode made people know why its important to go to college. The episode when Charmaine was called a hoe. The episode with Heavy Diddly Diddley D, may he rest in paradise. The oldest of old episodes when gilbert hall stepped vs other dorms; this made me want to go to an HBCU sooooo bad.


    I hate how they did Jalisa Dawn Lewis character, thats why she evidentially left. Im in the minority I wasnt a fan of Dwayne n Whitley…once they got together the entire show change…for the worst!!

  • adrienne michelle

    what about the episode when Gina was dating that rapper who was beating on her?? or the episode where Freddie was dated raped?? those were good episodes

    • Tamz

      Those were very good episodes, ADW always pushed the envelope.

  • Suchalady

    When Dwayne said “Baby please” in the wedding episode, I felt it. I love & miss this show and good television as a whole.

  • BP

    Hands down favorite moment is when Dwayne interrupts the wedding! He said that baby please from his heart! One other moment I remember is the episode when it’s Whitley’s birthday and she thinks Dwayne bummed her day. I liked the birthday song they song to her lol

    • pickneychile

      Happy Christmas happy 4th of July, I hope you’re happy with your birthday bean pie!

    • pickneychile

      or was it happy easter…lol

  • Best line of the Series…..” Whitley, will you take me to have an to hold….. BABY PLEASE”….. and then I answer YES but it dawns on me that Dwayne Wayne doesn’t want to marry the Middle School version of me that first watched this episode 🙂

    And then again there is every episode where Whitley butchered Dwayne’s Japanese girlfriend’s name. Hey Nukie 🙂 Ooh I love this show, and I hate to admit it but I loved it so much better when Denise was finally gone.

    • i HATED Keynu (the spellin doesn’t matter in this case) she was so annoying and that chick got under my skin… She was cast perfectly.

    • Suchalady

      Yeah, I agree the show went uphill when she left :/

  • SheBe

    I loved any of the episodes with Ms. Patti Labelle in them as Dwayne Wayne’s mom. She was great! “My little chipmunk…”

  • clove8canela

    Loooved Mammy Dearest. Especially when they perform at the end and Kim recited that Nikki Giovanni poem. I also really liked the episode when Ron and Dwayne are pledging Kappa Lambda Nu and Dwayne drops.

  • Guest

    When Whitley tells Dwayne she’s pregnant in the final episodes, and he tells her that she has never looked as beautiful as she did right then. I hope my husband will say that to me one day ::tear::

  • ANTMilf

    My fave episode was was when Kris Kross was on there as rival gang members (I was a fan back then).

  • HoneyDipp

    Dwayne at Whitley’s wedding: “Baby, please!!!” I get chills like he was pleading with me Lol…. I still watch this show daily. Classic TV hunny!

    • YesImHere

      I get the chills too!

    • Tamz

      My best friend and I still scream at the TV like we don’t know what’s going to happen at the end when that episode comes on.

    • kierah

      That doesn’t get me, but Diahann Carroll exclaiming “Just die!” gives me fits of giggles 🙂

      • SoozyScrew

        lmao.. I was just thinking about that yesterday! That’s so weird lol

    • bigdawgman

      Oh lord, I hate that so bad I stopped watching the show for a long time! I’m getting sick just thinking about it! I wonder if it is just men that hate that episode?