Under One Roof (1995 TV series)

Under One Roof is an American drama television series that aired on CBS from March 14 to April 18, 1995. A family drama, the series starred James Earl Jones, Joe Morton and Vanessa Bell Calloway.[1]

Under One Roof
Created byPaul Aaron
Michael Henry Brown
Written byPaul Aaron
Michael Henry Brown
Carol Evan McKeand
Rogers Turrentine
Valerie Woods
Martha Williamson
Directed byThomas Carter
Michael Engler
Eric Laneuville
Ian Sander
Michael W. Watkins
StarringJoe Morton
Vanessa Bell Calloway
Essence Atkins
Merlin Santana
James Earl Jones
Monique Ridge
Ronald Joshua Scott
Terence Knox
Theme music composerStephen James Taylor
ComposersGreg De Belles
Kurt Farquhar
Stephen James Taylor
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes6
Executive producerThomas Carter
ProducersPenelope Foster
Jeanne Marie Van Cott
Running time45-48 minutes
Original networkCBS
Original releaseMarch 14 (1995-03-14) –
April 18, 1995 (1995-04-18)


Under One Roof follows the lives of three generations of a middle class African American family sharing a two-family house in Seattle, Washington.[2] The lower unit is occupied by family patriarch Nesbit "Neb" Langston (Jones), a recently widowed police officer who has adopted a troubled foster child, Marcus Henry (Merlin Santana). Neb's daughter Ayesha (Monique Ridge) also lives with them.

The upper unit is occupied by Neb's adult son Ron (Morton), his wife and his children. Ron is a former Marine who is attempting to deal with the stress of opening his own business. Meanwhile, Ron's wife Maggie (Calloway) is having reservations about re-entering the workforce after being a stay-at-home mom for the couple's two children, son Derrick (Ronald Joshua Scott), a Type 1 diabetic, and daughter Charlie (Essence Atkins).

The series, which was a midseason replacement for CBS, was cancelled after six episodes. It later reran on cable network TV One in the mid-2000s.

Cast and charactersEdit




Many scenes were filmed in the old Ballard High School and the Phinney Neighborhood Center in Seattle.


No.Title [3]Directed by [3]Original air date [3]Prod.
1"Rooms"Thomas CarterMarch 14, 1995 (1995-03-14)101
The Langston family adjusts to the new, multi-generational living arrangements. In order to ensure that his new hardware store opens on the scheduled date, Ron breaks his promise to join Derrick in a father-son competition at school. Marcus continues to grapple with memories of his biological mother, who died of a drug overdose when he was 13. Charlie steals Maggie's credit card in order to buy a new dress for a party.
2"Daddy's Girl"Ian SanderMarch 21, 1995 (1995-03-21)103
Neb's interference complicates Ayesha's relationship with her boyfriend Roger (Michael Jace), but the biggest obstacle is Roger's womanizing. A client of the hardware store exhibits racist attitudes towards Ron, who is furious when Siggy wants to do business with him anyway. When Derrick wants to change his image, Marcus introduces him to gangsta rap music and revamps his wardrobe. Unfortunately, his attitude experiences a revamp as well.
3"Pilot"Thomas CarterMarch 28, 1995 (1995-03-28)100
Maggie finally earns her Bachelor of Science degree in Health Services Administration. Dietary choices are a major issue for Derrick, who is a Type 1 diabetic. Marcus' plan to get a new pair of shoes for the graduation ceremony backfires, as does Ron and Maggie's plan to spend the evening together alone.
4"Sophisticated Lady, Not!"Eric LaneuvilleApril 4, 1995 (1995-04-04)102
Fifteen-year-old Charlie secretly goes out with one of Ayesha's design students (Jon Clair), but finds herself way over her head when she goes back to the college man's house. Maggie goes through a minor midlife crisis after her age prevents her from landing a new job. When talking to his classmates, Derrick makes Neb's job on the police force sound much more exciting than it is in reality.
5"Secrets"Michael WatkinsApril 11, 1995 (1995-04-11)104
One of Charlie's African-American friends (Malinda Williams) lets her racist feelings show when Charlie starts spending more time with a White classmate. Problems arises when Maggie's overbearing mother (Leslie Uggams) visits. Neb goes out with a high school teacher (Joan Pringle) — his first date since his wife's death.
6"Ronnie's Got a Gun"Michael EnglerApril 18, 1995 (1995-04-18)105
After he inadvertently walks in on an armed robbery at the hardware store, Ron has difficulty coping with the trauma surrounding the incident; Siggy gives him a handgun. Marcus deduces the identity of the robbers – and that one of them is an old friend of his. Charlie tries to win the prize in a bake-off sponsored by a local morning show.

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Recipient Result
1995 Emmy Award Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series James Earl Jones Nominated
1996 NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Vanessa Bell Calloway Nominated
Outstanding Drama Series Under One Roof Nominated


  1. ^ O'Connor, John J. (April 11, 1995). "Television Review; New Black Series Is Hanging On". New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  2. ^ "James Earl Jones stars in new TV drama 'Under One Roof.'", JET, March 27, 1995. Retrieved July 16, 2010.
  3. ^ a b c From the United States Copyright Office catalog: "Public Catalog - Copyright Catalog (1978 to present) - Basic Search [search: "Under One Roof"]". United States Copyright Office. Retrieved July 30, 2017.

External linksEdit