Black-ish (stylized as blackish) is an American sitcom television series created by Kenya Barris. It premiered on September 24, 2014, and has run for seven seasons on ABC.[1][2] Black-ish follows an upper middle class African-American family led by Andre 'Dre' Johnson (Anthony Anderson) and Rainbow Johnson (Tracee Ellis Ross). The show revolves around the family's lives, as they juggle several personal and sociopolitical issues. The show also features the characters Zoey Johnson (Yara Shahidi), Andre Johnson, Jr. (Marcus Scribner), Jack Johnson (Miles Brown), and Diane Johnson (Marsai Martin).[3]

Blackish logo.png
Created byKenya Barris
Narrated byAnthony Anderson
Theme music composerTranscenders
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons7
No. of episodes153 (154 including unbroadcast episode) (list of episodes)
Executive producers
Camera setupSingle-camera
Running time22 minutes
Production companies
  • ABC Studios (season 1–6)
  • ABC Signature (season 7)
  • Khalabo Ink Society
  • Cinema Gypsy Productions
  • Principato-Young Entertainment (2014–18)
  • Artists First (2018–)
DistributorDisney–ABC Domestic Television
Original networkABC
Picture format1080p (16:9 HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital 5.1 with Descriptive Video Service on SAP channel
Original releaseSeptember 24, 2014 (2014-09-24) –
present (present)
Related shows
External links
Official website

In later seasons, the characters of Josh Oppenhol (Jeff Meacham), Ruby Johnson (Jenifer Lewis), Charlie Telphy (Deon Cole), and Leslie Stevens (Peter Mackenzie) were promoted to series regulars, while the character of Earl Johnson (Laurence Fishburne) makes recurring appearances.[4][5]

Throughout its run, Black-ish has received critical acclaim. The show has received Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for Outstanding Comedy Series, and a TCA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy. Meanwhile, Tracee Ellis Ross has received individual praise, winning the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress.[6] The show also ranks relatively highly among shows broadcast by ABC in terms of television season ratings, and ranks among the top ten in the United States for estimated total audience size.[7]

On May 21, 2020, ABC renewed the series for a seventh season,[8] which premiered on October 21, 2020.[9]

Ahead of its seventh season premiere, an hour-long Election-themed special was aired on October 4, 2020.[10]

The show's success has also prompted a spin-off titled Grown-ish, which stars Shahidi as her character travels to college.[11] In May 2019, ABC ordered a prequel spin-off, Mixed-ish, centered on young Bow and her biracial family in the 1980s.[12]

Cast and charactersEdit

Main castEdit

Actor Character Seasons
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Anthony Anderson Andre "Dre" Johnson Sr. Main
Tracee Ellis Ross Dr. Rainbow "Bow" Johnson Main
Yara Shahidi Zoey Johnson Main Recurring Guest
Marcus Scribner Andre "Junior" Johnson Jr. Main
Miles Brown Jack Johnson Main
Marsai Martin Diane Johnson Main
Jenifer Lewis Ruby Johnson Recurring Main
Anna Deavere Smith Alicia Johnson Recurring Guest Main
August and Berlin Gross Devante Johnson Does not appear Mentioned Main
Jeff Meacham Josh Oppenhol Recurring Main Recurring Main[13]
Peter Mackenzie Leslie Stevens Recurring Main
Deon Cole Charlie Telphy Recurring Main
Katlyn Nichol Olivia Lockhart Does not appear Guest Main
  • Anthony Anderson as Andre "Dre" Johnson: a wealthy advertising executive at Stevens & Lido, who wishes to ensure a balance of black culture is intertwined with his family's upper middle class, ultra-suburban upbringing.
  • Tracee Ellis Ross as Dr. Rainbow "Bow" Johnson: an anesthesiologist and Andre's wife, who wishes to retain a place in her children's lives. She comes from a bi-racial family where her father is white and her mother is African-American.
  • Yara Shahidi as Zoey Johnson (starring seasons 1–3; recurring seasons 4–5; guest season 6-7): Andre and Rainbow's oldest child. Shahidi left the main cast at the end of season 3 for a couple seasons to star in her own spin-off series Grown-ish.
  • Marcus Scribner as Andre "Junior" Johnson Jr.: Andre and Rainbow's self-proclaimed "nerdy" second oldest child. He typically lacks teenage savvy, but is very smart and is taught these things, albeit with a hint of disdain, by his relatively shallow and self-aggrandizing father and siblings.
  • Miles Brown as Jackson "Jack" Johnson: Dre and Rainbow's third oldest child and fraternal twin of Diane. He is 13-years-old and typically aloof, but also idolizes his father, and is Diane's older twin brother.
  • Marsai Martin as Diane Johnson: Andre and Rainbow's second youngest child and fraternal twin of Jack, who considers herself smarter and more mature than him and is Jack's younger twin sister.
  • August and Berlin Gross as DeVante Johnson: Andre and Rainbow's youngest child who appears in seasons 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7. Rainbow found out she was pregnant with him in "Daddy Dre-Care". He is born in the episode "Sprinkles".
  • Anna Deavere Smith as Alicia Johnson: Rainbow, Santamonica and Johan's widowed mother
  • Deon Cole as Charlie Telphy (recurring seasons 1–3; starring seasons 4–present): Dre's eccentric co-worker and adulthood best friend. Cole also features as part of the main cast of Grown-ish.
  • Jenifer Lewis as Ruby Johnson (starring season 2–present; recurring season 1): Andre's mother, who does not get along with Rainbow. She is heavily religious and pro-black on several issues.
  • Jeff Meacham as Josh Oppenhol (starring seasons 2 and 6–present; recurring seasons 1, 3–5): Andre's co-worker, who is often disrespected and undervalued by his peers.
  • Peter Mackenzie as Leslie Stevens (starring seasons 3–present; recurring seasons 1–2): Andre's boss and co-owner of Stevens & Lido, who engages in hipster racism and provides implicit bias in regards to social issues.
  • Katlyn Nichol as Olivia Lockhart (guest season 6; starring season 7): Junior's girlfriend.

Recurring castEdit


SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
124September 24, 2014 (2014-09-24)May 20, 2015 (2015-05-20)
224September 23, 2015 (2015-09-23)May 18, 2016 (2016-05-18)
324September 21, 2016 (2016-09-21)May 10, 2017 (2017-05-10)
424[a]October 3, 2017 (2017-10-03)May 15, 2018 (2018-05-15)
523October 16, 2018 (2018-10-16)May 21, 2019 (2019-05-21)
623September 24, 2019 (2019-09-24)May 5, 2020 (2020-05-05)
7TBAOctober 21, 2020 (2020-10-21)TBA
  1. ^ Twenty-four episodes were produced for season 4, but the thirteenth produced episode (titled "Please, Baby, Please") was shelved by ABC due to its controversial content, hence only 23 episodes were aired. "Please, Baby, Please" later debuted on Hulu on August 10, 2020.


Development and castingEdit

Black-ish first appeared on the development slate at ABC in October 2013, when it was reported that the project, which would star Anthony Anderson, had received a script commitment.[14] On January 16, 2014, ABC greenlit the pilot episode.[15] Two weeks later, Larry Wilmore joined the show as showrunner.[16] In mid-February, Laurence Fishburne was cast as the father of Anderson's character, and Tracee Ellis Ross signed on as the female lead.[17][18][19]


On May 8, 2014, ABC picked up the pilot to the series for the 2014–15 television season.[1][2] A few days later, Anderson announced that Larry Wilmore would be stepping down as showrunner early in the show's run due to his forthcoming late night show, The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore.[20]

On May 7, 2015, ABC renewed the series for a second season. On March 3, 2016, ABC renewed the series for a third season.[21] On May 10, 2017, ABC renewed the series for a fourth season.[22] On May 11, 2018, ABC renewed the series for a fifth season.[23] On December 14, 2018, ABC picked up 2 additional episodes for the fifth season bringing the season total to 24 episodes. On May 2, 2019, ABC renewed the series for a sixth season.[24] On May 21, 2020, ABC renewed the series for a seventh season.[8] On October 23, 2020, ABC picked up 6 additional episodes for the seventh season bringing the season total to 21 episodes.[25]


Nielsen ratingsEdit

Season Timeslot (ET) # Ep. Premiered Ended TV Season Rank Viewers
(in millions)
Date Viewers
(in millions)
Date Viewers
(in millions)
1 Wednesday 9:30 pm 24
September 24, 2014
11.04[26] 3.3/10[26]
May 20, 2015
5.36[27] 1.6/5[27] 2014–2015 #54[28] 8.49[28]
2 24
September 23, 2015
7.30[29] 2.4/7[29]
May 18, 2016
5.05[30] 1.5/5[30] 2015–2016 #60[31] 7.22[31]
3 24
September 21, 2016
6.39[32] 2.0/7[32]
May 10, 2017
4.75[33] 1.3/5[33] 2016–2017 #59[34] 6.61[34]
4 Tuesday 9:00 pm 23
October 3, 2017
4.71[35] 1.5/5[35]
May 15, 2018
4.96[36] 1.2/5[36] 2017–2018 #84[37] 5.47[37]
5 23
October 16, 2018
4.10[38] 1.0/5[38]
May 21, 2019
2.92[39] 0.7/3[39] 2018–2019 #107[40] 4.32[40]
6 Tuesday 9:30 pm 23
September 24, 2019
3.49[41] 0.9/4[41] May 5, 2020 2.53[42] 0.4/2[42] 2019–2020 #90[43] 3.72[43]
7 Wednesday 9:30 pm (2020)
Tuesday 9:00 pm (2021)
October 21, 2020
3.09[44] 0.6/3[44] 2020–2021

Critical responseEdit

Black-ish has been met with generally positive reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives season 1 an approval rating of 86% based on 56 reviews, with an average rating of 7.3/10. The site's consensus states, "Although it seems uncertain of its target audience, Black-ish ingratiates with a diverse cast and engaging cultural issues."[45] Metacritic gave season 1 a weighted average score of 77 out of 100, based on 31 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[46] Rolling Stone′s December 4, 2014, issue called it "one of the only new network comedies worth watching," praising in particular Laurence Fishburne's performance.

On Rotten Tomatoes, season 4 holds an approval rating of 100% based on 11 reviews, with an average rating of 8.67/10. The site's consensus states, "black-ish continues to push boundaries, but with a much more celebratory tone that seeks to educate as readily as it entertains."[47]

Anthony Anderson's performance was met with critical acclaim, earning him multiple nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.




The 23rd episode of the third season, "Liberal Arts", functioned as a backdoor pilot for a proposed spin-off of the same title, starring Yara Shahidi as her character, Zoey Johnson, goes to college away from the family. Other cast members in the pilot and proposed series were Chris Parnell, Mallory Sparks, Matt Walsh, and Trevor Jackson.[48][49][50]

In early May 2017, ABC passed on the pilot, but its cable sister channel Freeform was in negotiations to move the project there.[51] On May 19, 2017, Freeform officially ordered 13 episodes of the spin-off, now under the tentative title College-ish.[52] In August 2017, the series changed its title to Grown-ish, and added Francia Raisa, Jordan Buhat and Chloe x Halle as cast members.[53] The series's pilot premiered on January 3, 2018. Parnell and Jackson reprised their roles from the backdoor pilot, while Emily Arlook was also added as Nomi, replacing the character Miriam played by Mallory Sparks.[54] The series has been renewed for a second season.[55] Also it was renewed for a third season on January 30, 2019.[56] On January 17, 2020, the series was renewed for a fourth season.[57]


On May 2, 2019, it was announced that a second spin-off, now titled Mixed-ish had been ordered to series by ABC. In lieu of this, the May 7 episode of season five would be shelved until next season. The episode, titled "Becoming Bow", would follow a young Bow and her family.[58] The series was renewed for a second season on May 21, 2020.[8]


It was announced that a new spin-off starring Laurence Fishburne and Jenifer Lewis is in the works.[59]


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External linksEdit