The Jeffersons was the first time I saw an interracial couple. It was the first time I saw black people interacting with people from wildly different cultures (if you can call England wildly different). It gave me a sense of black history as a tangible thing, not just something you read about in books —even if George tended to exaggerate his upbringing, calling himself the son of a sharecropper. It showed me how diverse black people can be within a single program: Weezie was different from Florence, and they both were different than Helen. And nothing, I mean nothing, beats that theme song.
The significance of this show wouldn’t register in my mind until much later in life, but looking back, I can appreciate how much it meant to me back then — and for that I can thank Norman Lear.