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"Too Old Blues"
Season 1, Episode 1
Number (#1) in series (133 episodes)
Too Old Blues.jpg
At a job interview, James learns that he's too old to join the company's union in "Too Old Blues" in Season 1 (series pilot).
Tape date January 21, 1974
Air date: February 8, 1974
Network/Country: CBS-TV
Written by: Bob Peete
Directed by: Donald McKayle & Bob LaHendro
Production code: 101
IMDb logo.svg IMDB Too Old Blues
Cast Information
Starring: Esther Rolle
John Amos
Jimmie Walker
Ja'net Dubois
Bern Nadette Stanis
Ralph Carter
Guest starring: Woodrow Parfey
Matthew "Stymie" Beard
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Too Old Blues is the pilot episode of Season 1 of Good Times. The episode was written by Bob Peete and directed by Donald McKayle and Bob LaHendro. It originally aired on February 8, 1974 on CBS-TV.

"Too Old Blues"
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Full Credits Transcripts More Images


James is excited because he's sure he's going to get a high paying job. However, at the interview, he learns that he's too old to join the company's union. Meanwhile, Florida and the kids get ahead of themselves and throw a celebration party for James unaware that he was rejected.

Scene excerpts[]

Quotes from scenes

  • Willona: Willona Woods: Oooeee. The hawk is really bitin' out there this morning. It's so cold out in that hallway I rubbed my face and cut my finger on my eyelashes.

[after a pause and receiving cold stares from James and Florida]

  • Willona: I can get a warmer welcome at a Klan meeting.

  • Florida: James, I'm so sorry.
  • James: For what, needing your appendix out?
  • Florida: But that operation cost all the money we had. Now you work all day and take a second job and work all night. I'm so sorry.
  • James: Baby, you say you're sorry one more time and I'll give you something to be sorry about.

  • Willona: It's so cold out in the hall, I rubbed my face and my finger froze to my eyelash.

  • Florida: Who would've thought they wouldn't give us the loan because James made $100 too much last year? I didn't know $4200 was the limit for a family with three kids.
  • Willona: Well I've got an idea, if you had a fourth kid...
  • Florida: I'm willing to listen but I'd need a 9 month notice.

  • Michael: [to the furniture movers] You're upsetting my sister. Thelma, please don't faint!
  • Jamea: Thelma's gonna faint?
  • Michael: Thelma, PLEASE don't faint.
  • Thelma: Oh my! I do feel weak! All the blood is rushing from my head!

[falls on the floor] Michael: Get back, give her air.

  • J.J.: This poor child ain't had nothing to eat for the last two weeks, except for some rotten oatmeal.
  • Thelma: Where am I?
  • J.J.: Marshall Fields. Oh! Did you hear that? The poor child thinks she's in Marshall Fields!

  • James: Now Florida, move.

(James picks Florida up and moves her away from the door and leaves)

  • Florida: Damn, that man always could MOVE me!!

Guest starring[]

  • Woodrow Parfey as Interviewer
  • Matthew "Stymie" Beard as Monty (as Stymie Beard)


  • For this show, John Amos' character name has been changed from Henry to James...which is odd, considering that the character Henry Evans last appeared on Maude three days before this episode aired!
  • Co-creator Eric Monte originally envisioned the Evanses as a 4-person family, excluding Michael, and it was going to be titled The Black Family, with the family's last name being Black. Co-creator Mike Evans, known for his role as the original Lionel on The Jeffersons, came up with the idea for a 3rd child, a little boy. After debating on a name for the boy, they decided to go with Michael, named after Mike Evans. They later decided to give the family the last name Evans as well, and the name of the show was retitled Good Times.
  • Stymie Beard makes his first appearance in the recurring role of Monty.


  • Willona states her ex-husband is named Alvin. In the fourth season, he is named Ray.