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Comedian Martin Lawrence starred as Martin Payne, a sexist, wisecracking talk show host – “The Insane Martin Payne” – on Detroit radio station WZUP.
Payne’s girlfriend, Gina Waters (Tisha Campbell) worked as a marketing executive at the station and put up with him because she loved him. Gina’s sarcastic secretary, Pam James (Tichina Arnold), however, openly disliked Payne.
Payne’s friends, airport janitor Cole Brown (Carl Anthony Payne II) and Tommy Strawn (Thomas Mikal Ford) seemed to never have anything better to do than hang out at Payne’s apartment.
Garrett Morris played WZUP’s arrogant owner, Stan Winters, and Jonathan Gries played Shawn, the station handyman (and the only white character on the show).
Martin Lawrence played a second role on Martin, as Sheneneh Jenkins, a flashy bimbo who lived in the apartment across the hall from Payne and owned Sheneneh’s Hair Salon. He also appeared as several other incidental characters on the show.
During the final season, Tisha Campbell filed charges against Lawrence, claiming he sexually harassed and sexually battered her. She left the series for eight episodes, returning when the case was settled out of court.
Lawrence and Campbell subsequently filmed their scenes at different times and their characters no longer appeared together in the same scene.
Martin was one of the FOX network’s most popular shows for the entire five years it aired.
Carl Anthony Payne II
Thomas Mikal Ford