Diana Ozemebhoya Eromosele
Thomas Ford, Tichina Arnold, Tisha Campbell-Martin and Martin Lawrence in a scene from Martin
YouTube screenshot

Now that we know what Tommy did for a living on Martin, thanks to Tisha Campbell-Martin (who played Gina on the show), let's indulge in even more behind-the-scene goodies that Campbell-Martin dropped during her podcast interview with Bossip last week.

Who can forget the "Chilligan's Island" episode, when Martin, Gina, Tommy and Pam went on a couples retreat to that exotic island? The island oversold how wonderful it would be on its coupon (which the Martin gang had seen on the back of a cereal box). When they got to the island, things were anything but wonderful—especially not the puppylike creature they found creeping in Martin and Gina's hotel room.


And this is where the brillance of Martin Lawrence (and his cast members) comes in and why the show had so many hilarious episodes that no other sitcom could even approach. It's because you can't teach this kind of comedic genius. You can't write it. Martin fanatics know that many of the most hilarious scenes were ad-libbed and spur-of-the-moment creations. Campbell-Martin confirms this.

"Now, Chilligan's Island, we were short," Campbell-Martin explained. "We needed to elongate the script. So Martin had come to me and he said, 'T, we're real short. Just follow my lead. Whatever I do—.' I said, 'I'm with you,' " she immediately responded to Lawrence.

"He was like, 'After you see the puppy, just go. Just go with whatever happens,' " she continued. 'I said, 'Cool, I got you.'

"That's another thing: We didn't know what we were going to do. So we just made it up," she said. "All of that running around, it was all ad libs."


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Diana Ozemebhoya Eromosele is a staff writer at The Root and the founder and executive producer of Lectures to Beats, a Web series that features video interviews with scarily insightful people. Follow Lectures to Beats on Facebook and Twitter.


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