March 18, 2022
Photo by: Leon Bennett/Contributor
Family Matters star, Jo Marie Payton appears to be on the same page when it comes to reuniting the Winslow family. Portraying the character Harriette Winslow, who played the family matriarch, Payton, however, wants to make major changes first.
Payton and fellow cast members Reginald Vel Johnson who played the character Carl Winslow, Kellie Shanygne Williams who played Laura Winslow, and Darius McCrary who played Eddie Winslow attended the ’90s Con, which honored television stars and series from the 1990s, according to People.
The hit show’s biggest star, Jaleel White, who played Steve Urkel on the comedy, was not present.
When asked if the cast would consider bringing back their iconic roles from the hit 1990s sitcom, Payton stated she would only do so if the part of Judy Winslow, portrayed by actresses Valerie Jones and Jaimee Foxworth the family’s youngest child who suddenly vanished in the fourth season, was brought back into the show.
“I said, ‘You guys need to tell me something that is not only creative but also politically correct to straighten out this situation because there’s nowhere in the world a family — You gave me three kids, you took away my baby,’” Payton expressed.
“If you had taken away my oldest child, we could have always come up with [different excuses in each episodes] that she was at the mall or with her friends.”
When she asked why write Judy off the show, she was told, “‘nobody would notice.’”
The 71-year-old actress revealed that she wouldn’t be as excited if Judy isn’t a part of the reboot.
She stated that “the very first episode has to be that [Judy] comes down those stairs.”
Payton added: “because the worst feeling in the world for a parent is not to know where your child is.”
Williams responded to Payton’s response by saying that the actress has always been very enthusiastic about her fellow Family Matters cast members.
“I just want you guys to take in that amount of love and passion,” Williams expressed. “I mean, y’all always asking … That’s what it was! That kind of love, that kind of compassion, that kind of mothering — and fathering — it was a real thing. You feel it? She meant every word of that!”
After its premiere on ABC on September 22, 1989, Family Matters became one of the longest-running Black family sitcoms.
The cast members that reunited at 90s Con looked enthusiastic about the prospect of reprising their roles as the Chicago-based family regularly harassed by nerdy neighbor Steve Urkel.
Would you want to see Judy reappear in the Family Matters reboot?