Celebrities Deaths and Obituaries

What’s Happening, Rerun? The Cast, Seasons, Episodes, Fred Barry’s Life, Age, Death Cause

What’s Happening, Rerun? The Life and Legacy of Fred Berry

An image of Fred Berry, 'What’s Happening's Rerun?'
Fred Berry was a charismatic actor who played Rerun on What’s Happening!! He was also a troubled soul who battled with addiction and depression throughout his life. He died in 2003 at the age of 52. In this article, we remember his life and legacy and answer some of the most common questions about him and the show/PHOTO COURTESY: Facebook

Fred Berry, also known as Rerun, was one of the most beloved characters on the 1970s sitcom What’s Happening!!

He was a talented dancer and actor who brought joy and laughter to millions of viewers.

But he also faced many challenges and struggles in his personal life, such as drug addiction, depression, and health issues.

In this article, we will look back at his life and legacy, and answer some of the most common questions about him and the show.

Why did Rerun leave What’s Happening Now?

What’s Happening Now!! was a sequel series to What’s Happening!! that aired from 1985 to 1988.

It featured most of the original cast members reprising their roles, except for Mabel King who played Mama Thomas.

Fred Berry returned as Rerun, but he was fired before the first season ended due to a salary dispute.

He demanded more money than the rest of the cast, claiming that he was the star of the show.

The producers refused to meet his demands and replaced him with a new character named Maurice Warfield, played by Ken Sagoes.

How did Rerun die?

Fred Berry died on October 21, 2003, at his home in Los Angeles.

He was 52 years old.

The cause of death was not officially released, but it was reported that he had suffered a stroke a few months before his death.

He also had type 2 diabetes and had lost 100 pounds after being diagnosed.

He was survived by his wife Essie Berry and his three children DeShannon, Portia, and Freddy Jr..

Who passed away from What’s Happening?

Besides Fred Berry, several other cast members from What’s Happening!! and What’s Happening Now!! have passed away over the years.

They include:

  • Mabel King (Mama Thomas): She died on November 9, 1999, at age 66, from complications of diabetes and a stroke.
  • Shirley Hemphill (Shirley Wilson): She died on December 10, 1999, at age 52, from kidney failure.
  • Reina King (Carolyn Thomas): She died on December 31, 1999, at age 33, from unknown causes. She was Mabel King’s daughter and Danielle Spencer’s sister.
  • Thalmus Rasulala (Bill Thomas): He died on October 9, 1991, at age 51, from a heart attack.
  • Debbi Morgan (Angie Baxter): She died on June 7, 2017, at age 60, from ovarian cancer.

What happened to Rerun?

After leaving What’s Happening Now!!, Fred Berry struggled with drug and alcohol addiction, depression, and suicidal thoughts.

He attempted to kill himself three times but survived.

He also faced financial difficulties and legal troubles.

Fred tried to revive his career by appearing in some movies and TV shows, such as In Living Color, Martin, A Different World, and Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.

He also became a motivational speaker and a Baptist minister. He claimed that he had found God and turned his life around.

What’s Happening meaning

What’s Happening!! was a sitcom that followed the lives of three teenage friends living in Watts, Los Angeles.

The title of the show was derived from the catchphrase “Hey hey hey! What’s happening?” that Rerun often used to greet his friends.

The show was loosely based on the movie Cooley High, which was written by Eric Monte.

The show dealt with various social issues such as racism, poverty, education, family, friendship, and love.

The cast of What’s Happening

The main cast of What’s Happening!! consisted of:

  • Ernest Thomas as Roger “Raj” Thomas: The protagonist of the show. He is a smart and responsible teenager who dreams of becoming a writer.
  • Haywood Nelson as Dwayne Nelson: Raj’s best friend. He is a loyal and kind-hearted teenager who often acts as the voice of reason.
  • Fred Berry as Freddy “Rerun” Stubbs: Raj and Dwayne’s friend. He is a clumsy and funny teenager who loves to dance and eat.
  • Danielle Spencer as Dee Thomas: Raj’s younger sister. She is a sassy and witty girl who often teases her brother and his friends.
  • Mabel King as Mabel “Mama” Thomas: Raj and Dee’s mother. She is a strict but loving single parent who works as a maid.
  • Shirley Hemphill as Shirley Wilson: A waitress at Rob’s Place, the local hangout for the teenagers. She is a sarcastic and outspoken woman who often insults her boss and customers.
An image of The Cast of What's Happening!!
The Cast of What’s Happening!!/PHOTO COURTESY: Facebook

Where is Dwayne from What’s Happening Now?

Haywood Nelson, who played Dwayne on What’s Happening!! and What’s Happening Now!!, is still alive and well.

He was born on March 25, 1960, in New York City.

He started his acting career as a child, appearing on shows such as Sanford and Son and Grady.

After What’s Happening Now!! ended, he continued to act in some movies and TV shows, such as Dragnet, The Brady Bunch Movie, and Moesha.

He also worked as a producer and a host for BET. He is married to Sheryl Nelson and has two children.

Why did Mabel King leave What’s Happening?

Mabel King, who played Mama Thomas on What’s Happening!!, left the show after the second season.

She was unhappy with the direction of the show and felt that it was not portraying the black community in a positive light.

She also wanted to focus on her movie career, as she had starred in films such as The Jerk and The Wiz.

Mabel was replaced by Thalmus Rasulala, who played her ex-husband Bill Thomas, in the third season.

How many episodes of What’s Happening Now?

What’s Happening Now!! had 66 episodes in total, divided into three seasons.

It had 3 seasons, each with 22 episodes.

The show aired from September 7, 1985, to March 26, 1988.

How many years between What’s Happening and What’s Happening Now?

What’s Happening!! aired from August 5, 1976, to April 28, 1979. What’s Happening Now!! aired from September 7, 1985, to March 26, 1988.

Therefore, there were six years between the end of What’s Happening!! and the start of What’s Happening Now!!

What’s Happening last episode?

The last episode of What’s Happening!! was titled “The Last Page” and aired on April 28, 1979.

It was the 21st episode of the third season.

In this episode, Raj graduates from high school and gets accepted into UCLA.

He also publishes his first book, which is based on his experiences with his friends and family.

However, he faces some backlash from his loved ones, who feel that he has betrayed their trust by exposing their secrets.

Raj tries to make amends with them and realizes that he still has a lot to learn.

How many seasons of What’s Happening Now?

What’s Happening Now!! had three seasons in total. The first season aired from September 7, 1985, to May 10, 1986.

The second season aired from September 13, 1986, to May 23, 1987.

The third season aired from September 19, 1987, to March 26, 1988.


Fred Berry was a talented and charismatic actor who made millions of people laugh with his portrayal of Rerun on What’s Happening!!

He was also a troubled soul who battled with addiction and depression throughout his life.

Fred died in 2003 at the age of 52.

He left behind a legacy of joy and entertainment that will always be remembered by his fans and friends.

What’s Happening!! was a sitcom that captured the essence of the black community in the late 1970s.

It featured a cast of memorable characters who dealt with various social issues with humour and heart.

It spawned a sequel series called What’s Happening Now!!, which followed the lives of the characters as adults in the mid-1980s.

Both shows are considered classics of American television history.

READ ALSO: Is Vin Diesel Gay? The Truth About His Sexuality, Dating History & Response

About the author


Hi, I'm Diana, a freelance writer and a passionate fan of all things pop culture. I love to keep up with the latest trends, gossip, and news about celebrities from different fields and genres. Whether it's music, movies, TV, sports, or fashion, I have a keen eye for spotting the most interesting and juicy stories that will keep you entertained and informed.

As a writer, I have a knack for creating engaging and captivating content that appeals to a wide range of audiences. I can write in different styles and tones, depending on the topic and the platform. I have a strong command of grammar, spelling, and punctuation, and I always proofread and edit my work before submitting it.

I have been writing for various online publications and blogs for over five years, covering topics such as celebrity news, entertainment, lifestyle, and more. Some of the platforms I have written for include:

Cnyakundi: A leading online destination for celebrity and entertainment news, where I contribute weekly articles on the hottest topics and trends in the industry.
Celebvide: A popular blog that produces viral content, quizzes, and lists, where I wrote several pieces on celebrities, pop culture, and humor.
As an article writer for a celebrity news-writing blog, I am committed to delivering high-quality and original content that will satisfy readers and clients. I am always on the lookout for new and exciting stories that will spark interest and curiosity among your audience. I am also flexible and adaptable to needs and preferences.







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