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PAYNE, Martin & Gina Waters
Apartment #42
East 23rd Street
Detroit, MI

Martin is a talk show host at WZUP radio and later a TV talk show associate producer/host on Channel 51‘s “Speak Out“ [retitled “Word on the Street.”]. He is single, opinionated, and often very loud. He shares an apartment with his girlfriend, Gina Waters, an attractive marketing executive.

Whazz UuuuP!!! - Martin Lawrence as Martin Payne

Martin's personality is all about living large, waving his arms, puffing his chest and acting all macho. But deep down inside he's a sensitive man, but he avoids showing that side to anyone else but his girlfriend, Gina. When Martin is with his male friends, he's the King of his Castle and he lets his pals know that Gina knows better than to mess with him. Of course, Martin makes sure that Gina's not home when he's spouting such nonsense.

Sometimes, while on-the-air Martin will share his philosophy about women but he forgets that Gina might be listening and that when he gets home, he'll have hell to pay for his opinions. In the end, however, Martin and Gina have a "Honeymooners" kind of relationship. They might get into shouting matches with one another, but, at the end of the day, Martin and Gina do the "Baby, you're the greatest!" thing and kiss and makeup.

Tisha Campbell-Martin as Gina Waters
Gina Waters, the love of Martin's life

Martin's friends include his pal, Cole Brown, a janitor at an airplane hanger [he lives with his mother and has a girlfriend named Big Shirley who is never seen above her chest]; Tommy Strong, Martin's tall, bald best buddy; Pam James, Tommy’s girlfriend and Gina’s best friend and secretary (whom Martin detests); and Stan Winters, the owner of the WZUP radio station.

Besides their close friends (Cole, Tommy & Pam) Martin and Gina have to contend with a number of quirky neighbors including Sheneneh Jenkins, a goofy female who lives across the hall in apartment #41 (her catchphrase is “Oh no you didn‘t“); Brother Man a.k.a. "Bro-Man," a harmless neighbor from the 5th floor who enters and exits through Martin's apartment window via the fire escape, raids his refrigerator and borrows stuff from him (when asked what he is doing in the apartment Bro-Man usually says "Nothin'...just chillin'"); Hustle Man, a con artist who is always looking to make a fast buck; Dragon Fly Jones, a Black karate expert with no real martial arts ability; Otis the building's big-mouthed fat-bellied security guard; Ms. Geri, a sassy senior citizen a.k.a. "Miss Geritol" (what Martin calls her); Roscoe, the Snot-nosed 10 year-old kid who has a crush on Gina; Buckwhite, a six-foot tall white boy with an Afro; Elroy the Mechanic, a wanna-be rhythm-and-blues singer with a lousy singing voice, and Jerome, a.k.a. "Player of Players" who is always hitting on Gina when Martin's nowhere around to defend his woman.

Some Classic Martin - Pam Put downs


Pam, do you prefer to be called "Ms. or Mr."?


Do you prefer "Jack" or "a**"?


Pam, is that your breath smellin' like boiled bologna?


No, that's yo' feet eatin' through those shoes again.


Pam, your hair is so nappy Wilson couldn't pick it!


At least I'm tall enough to get on the rides at Disneyland, Martin!


Martin, where's Pam?


I don't know, probably in a river somewhere swattin' fish!


Martin, stop it!


Nah, nah, it's ok Gina. I mean, Martin did climb all the way down from that wedding cake to make this toast.

Martin’s relatives included a boisterous, oversexed Uncle Junior who had a patch over his left eye; a pilfering crook of a cousin named Sonny who acts like Eddie Murphy and Martin’s deeply religious mother, Emma who doesn‘t like Gina. But that didn't keep Martin and Gina from getting married in the spring of 1995. Gina's parents, Nadine and Dr. Cliff Waters, live in Philadelphia, and attended the wedding.

When Martin is on-the-air he uses the boisterous catchphrase “Whazz UuuuP!” with his listening audience. When upset he says “Daaaaammm!!’ or “Get ta Steppin‘!” when throwing people out of his apartment.

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