Dyn-No-Mite! See What Has the Cast of ‘Good Times’ Been Up To

Good Times Ralph Carter, Jimmie Walker, Esther Rolle, BernNadette Stanis, 1974-1979
Everett Collection

Good Times was truly “dy-no-mite!” The Norman Lear series ran on CBS from 1974 to 1979 and focused on the Evans family, comprised of very different characters in inner-city Chicago. It was one of the top shows of the 1970s but experienced a setback when main character John Amos left the show over creative differences. Have you ever wondered what the cast is up to, so many decades later?

Before we learn what the surviving cast members are up to, let’s take a minute to pay tribute to the Good Times stars who are no longer with us. Esther Rolle (Florida Evans) passed away in 1998 at the age of 78. Johnny Brown (Nathan Bookman) passed away in 2022 at the age of 84, and Ja’Net DuBois (Willona Woods) passed away in 2020 at the age of 74.

Jimmie Walker (James “J.J.” Evans Jr.)


Good Times Jimmie Walker, 1974-1979

Everett Collection

Jimmie Walker was cast as the oldest son who catapulted the phrase “Dy-no-mite!” into pop culture. After the show, he struggled to get roles and returned to his roots of stand-up comedy. He began doing tours and did quite well. He also appeared on many game show episodes in the ’70s and ’80s including Match Game and Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour.

Jimmie Walker attends The 6th Annual URBAN ONE HONORS: Best In Black presented by TV One at Coca Cola Roxy on January 20, 2024 in Atlanta, Georgia

Paras Griffin/Getty Images for TV One

In recent years, he made many cameo appearances in shows such as The Fall Guy, The Drew Carey Show, Scrubs, George Lopez, Everybody Hates Chris, and more. He also appeared in several movies including the iconic 1980 comedy Airplane! Walker has also been a radio show host and wrote a memoir called “Dyn-o-mite! Good Times, Bad Times, Our Times – A Memoir.”


John Amos (James Evans)


Good Times John Amos, 1974-1979

Everett Collection

John Amos played the patriarch on Good Times and the show stumbled when he left. He claimed, “I left because I was told that my services were no longer needed because I had become a ‘disruptive element. ‘ In other words, I didn’t have the diplomacy that I think I’ve cultivated over the last 10 or 15 years.” After Good Times, he earned an Emmy nomination for his role in Roots and appeared in several movies including Coming To America and its sequel, Madea’s Witness Protection, and more.

John Amos during ABC All Star Party 2006 - Arrivals at Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, United States

SGranitz/WireImage/Getty Images

In recent years, Amos has been in the news because of a new docuseries with his son and drama with his daughter. He accused her of elder abuse, and said, “She would be the primary suspect — if you would. I don’t know if that’s the right term to use or not. But she’s the one that I would attribute my elderly abuse to. It’s definitely a case of elderly abuse.” However, he added that “the love is still there” and they are working on healing their relationship.

John Amos (right) and daughter Shannon during Cure Autism Now Celebrates Third Annual "Acts of Love" - After Party at Lucques Restaurant in Los Angeles, California, United States

J.Sciulli/WireImage for Cure Autism Now/Getty Images


Ralph Carter (Michael Evans)


Good Times Esther Rolle, Ralph Carter, in 'Black Jesus' (Season 1, Episode 2, aired February 15, 1974), 1974-79

Everett Collection

Carter played the youngest son and is mostly known for the role. After Good Times, he returned to the theater and now works with an organization that pays tribute to Black Theater in New York City. In the ’70s, he also recorded an album and released several songs including “When You’re Young and in Love” and “Get it Right.”

Ralph Carter attends The 6th Annual URBAN ONE HONORS: Best In Black presented by TV One at Coca Cola Roxy on January 20, 2024 in Atlanta, Georgia

Paras Griffin/Getty Images for TV One

More recently, he appeared in “Ain’t Supposed to Die a Natural Death” for the Classical Theatre of Harlem Company.


BernNadette Stanis (Thelma Evans Anderson)


Good Times BernNadette Stanis, 1974-79

Everett Collection

Stanis played the family’s only daughter and after the show, she focused mainly on becoming an author. She wrote five books while also appearing in smaller movie and TV roles including the show Black Jesus. She has been married four times and has two children.

Actress Bernadette Stanis attends the 2nd annual Steve Harvey Foundation Gala at Cipriani, Wall Street on April 4, 2011 in New York City

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Steve Harvey Foundation

She appeared on an episode of Centric’s Being and discussed her life and career. She also appeared as herself in Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Good Times.


Janet Jackson (Penny Gordon Woods)


Good Times Bob Delegall, Janet Jackson, Ja'net DuBois, in 'The Evans Get Involved: Part 1 & 2' (Season 5, Episode 1 and 2, aired September 21st, 1977), 1974-79

Everett Collection

Of course, Janet Jackson is the sister to the late Michael Jackson and has a very successful singing career. She became a huge pop star in the ’80s and ’90s and continued to act here and there. In 2019, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and continues to release music and tour. In 2022, a two-part documentary about her life came out, showcasing her struggles, successes, and controversies including that infamous moment at the Super Bowl with Justin Timberlake. She is currently on tour.

Janet Jackson performs during the sold-out World AIDS Day concert event presented by the global, non-profit HIV/AIDS service organization, AHF at the NRG Arena on December 01, 2023 in Houston, Texas

Bob Levey/Getty Images for AIDS Healthcare Foundation

Tell us, who was your favorite character from Good Times?

1974 (50 Years Ago)
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