Created byBonnie and Terry Turner
Opening theme"Whoopi" by Whoopi Goldberg
ComposerAhrin Mishan
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes22
Executive producers
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time30 minutes
Production companies
Original networkNBC
Picture formatHDTV 1080i
Original releaseSeptember 9, 2003 (2003-09-09) –
April 20, 2004 (2004-04-20)

Whoopi is an American sitcom created by Bonnie and Terry Turner, starring Whoopi Goldberg that aired for one season on NBC. The series premiered on September 9, 2003, and ran until April 20, 2004. It was cancelled by NBC in May 2004.[1] The series revolved around the events and people at her hotel, the fictional Lamont Hotel, in New York City.


Whoopi Goldberg starred in this comedy as one-hit wonder Mavis Rae, a cigarette-smoking, alcohol-drinking, menopausal and especially opinionated hotelier. The former one-hit wonder runs her own small hotel in New York City - and does it any way she wants. Goldberg also served as an executive producer on the series.

In 1986 Mavis had one huge, spectacular hit song, the two-time Grammy Award-winning "Don't Hide Love". Quickly realizing that her initial success was a fluke, she parlayed her finances from that hit into purchasing the Lamont Hotel in Manhattan. Mavis operates the hotel on her charm and wit while assisted by Nasim (Omid Djalili), who is a native of Iran. Also in the regular cast were Mavis's brother Courtney (Wren T. Brown), a conservative Republican, and his girlfriend Rita (Elizabeth Regen), who spoke jive and was portrayed with an exaggerated urban black stereotype despite the fact that she was white. Rita and Mavis frequently clashed over the course of the series, leading to many of the conflicts that drove the plot of each episode. Other plots revolved around political clashes between Courtney and the much more liberal Mavis, and customer prejudice against Nasim, who was often mistaken for an Arab.



Notable guest stars


No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Pilot"Terry HughesBonnie Turner and Terry TurnerSeptember 9, 2003 (2003-09-09)
Mavis Rae makes room for her brother Courtney after his recent employer, Enron, suffers a small financial setback. However, her new hotel guest is in love and Mavis soon has the pleasure of meeting Rita, Courtney's white girlfriend who talks and dresses like a "sister" -- and is just too much fun for her to ignore. Meanwhile, the hotel's need for a fulltime concierge prompts Mavis to promote her reliable handyman Nasim giving him a shot at this new position.
2"Don't Hide Your Bag"Terry HughesMike Chessler & Chris AlberghiniSeptember 16, 2003 (2003-09-16)
When the nation's security threat level is elevated to an orange alert, Nasim's paranoia over an abandoned designer briefcase in the hotel lobby and fear of getting SARS from a group of Toronto tourists, carries over to Mavis, who calls the police bomb squad to blow up the attache. But when Mavis discovers that Courtney is missing his expensive new briefcase -- which was a gift from girlfriend, Rita, she scrambles to find an inexpensive knockoff.
3"Once Bitten"Terry HughesJerry CollinsSeptember 23, 2003 (2003-09-23)
Mavis has trouble getting seen at the emergency room after getting bitten by Rita's pet ferret.
4"Shout TV"Terry HughesMike LarsenSeptember 30, 2003 (2003-09-30)
Frustrated after receiving a ticket for smoking in her hotel, Mavis feels responsible when poor Nasim is also cited for spitting in public after she stuffs a hot pepper in his mouth -- but when she urges him to contest the penalty in court, the naive handyman quits, fearing deportation back to Iran. Meanwhile, Mavis' unemployed brother Courtney loses cash in an ATM and then loses his cool when he is put on phone hold for hours which only makes Rita pout.
5"Smoke Gets in Your Eyes"Terry HughesTBAOctober 7, 2003 (2003-10-07)
While at a Devils-Rangers game, Mavis meets a blind man.
6"The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy"Terry HughesLarry WilmoreOctober 14, 2003 (2003-10-14)
After a chance encounter with President Bush when his motorcade stops at the Lamont Hotel, Mavis cannot mouth off to the Commander in Chief after he recognizes her and pays homage to her singing talents -- but she clashes with Republican Courtney when Bush graciously invites her for a face-to-face meeting. Later, while out of place at a GOP function, a sassy Mavis drinks, smokes and speaks her mind -- and soon gets up-close-and-personal with the Secret Service.
7"She Ain't Heavy, She's My Partner"Terry HughesDavid RegalOctober 21, 2003 (2003-10-21)
When one of Mavis' former singing trio dies, she recoils at the sight of Florence, the other remaining member of "The Ebony Blackbirds" who arrives for the funeral looking sleek,stylish -- and scheming -- all of which re-ignites outspoken Mavis' jealousy and disgust. Meanwhile, girlfriend Rita is off-the-hook crazy when she learns that her shy Courtney was seduced by Florence years ago -- a scenario that inspires Nasim.
8"Rita Plays Poker"TBATBAOctober 28, 2003 (2003-10-28)
When hip-hop Rita joins Mavis' rowdy all-girl smoker-poker night, she shows a new side of herself that offends conservative Courtney -- but the hip girlfriend won't hop to his orders to abandon the game and walks out on him, leaving the lawyer crestfallen on the eve of a big job interview. In order to reinvigorate her zombie-like brother before the interview, Mavis recruits Nasim in a desperate bid to reconcile the mismatched lovebrids.
9"Sticky Fingers"Terry HughesMike Chessler & Chris AlberghiniNovember 11, 2003 (2003-11-11)
After unwittingly ruining Nasim's favorite shirt, a slightly guilty Mavis takes the handyman shopping for a replacement only to find herself in department store jail after mistakenly taken a belt without paying. Once word of her detention and alleged theft hits the media, Mavis' popularity skyrockets forcing her to fields interview requests from a bevy of reporters including VH1 -- who wants to use the incident to tailor a special "Behind the Music" on her illustrious career.
10"Mother's Little Helper"Terry HughesLaurie ParresNovember 18, 2003 (2003-11-18)
Mavis is stricken with dread when her domineering, obnoxious mother arrives with her dad from North Carolina, but her mom's surprising polite and charming demeanor is due to her new prescription medication -- and things change for the worse when her pills are accidentally tossed.
11"The Fat and the Frivolous"TBADavid WyattDecember 9, 2003 (2003-12-09)
Mavis is dragged into court when a corpulent man sues her after he checks into her hotel and crashes through the room's bed -- and an intimidated Courtney must represent her against a slick, high-price lawyer who always out-wits his opponent. Aware that the plaintiff makes a living off false lawsuits, Courtney stages a mock trial to prepare his loud-mothed sister for the real thing but muzzling Mavis might prove impossible.
12"American Woman"TBATBAJanuary 6, 2004 (2004-01-06)
Mavis deals with guests smoking weed in her hotel while Nasim studies for his Citizenship Exam and gets some help from Mavis.
13"Airplane"TBATBAJanuary 13, 2004 (2004-01-13)
Fear of flying besets Mavis, who's forced to confront her phobia because her poker friends and her are taking a trip to Bermuda. When Rita finds out Mavis is afraid of flying, she sends Mavis to a flight-simulator school.
14"Is Rita Pregnant?"Terry HughesTerry TurnerFebruary 3, 2004 (2004-02-03)
After Rita starts to think she's pregnant, Courtney gets a job so he can buy a ring and propose to Rita. But when she says no because it is not a true loving proposal, they start to rethink their relationship. All of this news shocks Mavis. Elsewhere, Nasim and Jadwiga try to win Connecticut's Powerball Jackpot.
15"The Last Dance"TBATBAFebruary 24, 2004 (2004-02-24)
Mavis' former choreographer from her days as a one-hit singing wonder drops by her hotel and inspires her to resume their good times-loving relationship. However, her old friend has newfound religious convictions that Mavis intends to undermine.
16"No Sex in the City"TBATBAMarch 2, 2004 (2004-03-02)
Mavis dons a blonde wig and presides over her female posse during a wild bachelorette party at a trendy night club as they celebrate Soo Lin's wedding and meet a wide variety of exotic patrons -- and as the bar bill adds up, the bride-to-be starts to have second thoughts. In another corner, designated driver Nasim is mistaken as Mavis' macho male escort and soon entertains offers of similar employment.
17"What Child Is This?"TBATBAMarch 16, 2004 (2004-03-16)
A bratty boy pesters Mavis, who's further piqued by the lad's pesky dad, a GOP functionary who offers Courtney a job with President Bush's reelection campaign.
18"Don't Hide Love"TBATBAMarch 23, 2004 (2004-03-23)
Mavis agrees to host her gay cousin's wedding at the hotel, particularly after finding out that her one hit, Don't Hide Love, has become a gay anthem in the years since she recorded it. Complications arise when Mavis's right-wing brother Courtney plans to host a meeting of the Republican Inclusion Coalition at the hotel on the same weekend.
19"The Squatter"TBATBAMarch 30, 2004 (2004-03-30)
Mavis causes havoc throughout the hotel.
20"Identity Crisis"TBATBAApril 6, 2004 (2004-04-06)
After becoming a victim of identity theft, Mavis starts to secretly suspect Rita, who has a secret of her own about a poker game she has set up to help Mavis make some fast cash.
21"Strange Bedfellows"TBATBAApril 13, 2004 (2004-04-13)
A dating service lures Nasim, whose matchup bears a startling similarity to his tormenting nemesis: the smart-alecky Jadwiga. Also, Rita's insouciance bewitches a GOP functionary, who has ulterior motives in hiring her.
22"Sins of the Sister"TBATBAApril 20, 2004 (2004-04-20)
Dirty politics entangle Mavis with an old crony, an assemblyman who's smearing an opponent, Courtney, who hasn't a clue about how to retaliate. Mavis, however, does know how to play hardball.


The debut episode of Whoopi drew 15.1 million viewers, and was ranked number 4 for the week.[2]


  1. ^ Andrew Gans (May 17, 2004). ""It's All Relative" and "Whoopi" Canceled; Donna Murphy Sitcom Retooled". Playbill. Retrieved 2021-02-23.
  2. ^ Gary Susman (September 17, 2003). "NBC's Whoopi and Happy Family are Nielsen winners". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2021-02-23.