What's Happening!! is an American television sitcom that aired on ABC from August 5, 1976 to April 28, 1979. The show premiered as a summer series. With good ratings and reviews, and after the failure of several other shows on the network, What's Happening!! returned in November 1976 as a weekly series. It remained a regular show until 1979; ratings were modest. The show was loosely based on the motion picture Cooley High, also written by Eric Monte.
What's Happening!! follows the lives of three working-class African-American teens living in the Watts section of Los Angeles. The show stars Ernest Thomas as Roger "Raj" Thomas, Haywood Nelson as Dwayne Nelson, and Fred Berry as Freddy "Rerun" Stubbs. Co-starring are Danielle Spencer as Roger's little sister, Dee; Mabel King as Roger and Dee's mother, Mabel; and Shirley Hemphill as Shirley Wilson, a waitress at "Rob's Place", the boys' favorite restaurant.
In "Another Bad Thanksgiving", Cleveland Brown revealed he once had a role on the show. He reenacts a scene from the show in the role of Shirley where he takes a bit out of each of the boy's sandwiches to determine which one was served to each.
In "Skip Day", Cleveland refers to Jr. as "Cleveland Raj Rerun Dwayne Brown, Jr.", using the first names of the characters from the show.