7 Replaced Classic TV Characters We Never Got Over (Aunt Viv, Brenda Walsh, & More!)


One of the things you tend to grow to love about a good television show is the cast.  We fall in love with the characters like they’re really our mom, sister, or best friend.  And if we’re lucky every week at scheduled timing we meet them up on the same station to hang out.  But what happens when you tune is as usual and there’s some new strange face walking around in your living room because the ‘sassy mom with a heart of gold’ or ‘micheivious but well-meaning teen’ has been replaced?!  One of two things: you tune out unable to bare the loss and drop the show,  or you keep watching—if it’s good enough—and silently honor your replaced character by hating the new one forever.  Either way, you still love them.

Here are seven classic TV characters that got replaced but we never forgot!



Fresh Prince of Bel Air: Aunt Viv


We LOVED the first Aunt Viv, first played by Janet Hubert from seasons 1-3.  She was stern, fiesty, and strong enough to hold her own with a cast of popular characters.  The second Aunt Viv, played by Daphne Maxwell Reid from seasons 4-6 just didn’t hold it down playing an obviously softer more mellow Viv.

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The Cosby Show: Denise


Who didn’t love Lisa Bonet playing Denise—the most mellow Huxtable kid with a slightly boho style on The Cosby Show?  But after her spotty appearances turned to phone calls from the African Congo, they needed another character to play a free-spirited problem child.  Enter Erika Alexander as Pamela Tucker, aka Cousin Pam.  Dont get us wrong, Pam was comedy, but we never stopped missing Denise.

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Roseanne: Becky Conner


Poor boy-crazy, talking-back Becky Conner, played by Lecy Goranson from seasons 1-5, just couldn’t seem to catch a break from all that damn teen angst!  But it was great to watch.  Becky Conner married and mild, played by Sarah Chalke from seasons 6-9, no thank you!

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Family Matters: Harriette Winslow

The real upset here is that they randomly started replacing the O-G Harriette Winslow, played by Jo Marie Payton, with Judyann Elder  in the very end of the TV series.  What was that all about?


90210: Brenda Walsh


Brenda!  It’s hard for characters to bring drama and remain likable, but Shannen Doherty playing Brenda on 90210 from seasons 1-4 did it so well, tears and all.  But when she left, Tiffani-Amber Thiessen—playing Valerie Malone seasons 6-9—proved all crazy brunettes are not created equal.  She was just doing too much on that show!

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Girlfriends: Toni Marie Childs


We were heartbroken when we discovered actress Jill Marie Jones‘—aka Toni Childs—departure from Girlfriends at the end of season 6.  Who was going to bring all that ‘it’s-all-about-me’ attitude and controversy to the show?  William’s wife Monica, played by Keesha Sharp for the remainder of the show…I guess we’ll take it…if we have too.  And we did cause we loved having a hit black television series.  But it was never the same without Toni!

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The Game: Brittany Pitts


When The Game came back on, one of the first questions was “where’s Brit Brat?” and “who’s this girrrrl…acting all rude?”  The original ‘Brit Brat,’ played by Erica Gluck seasons 1-3, not only had the right vibe, she had the right look.  We believed she was the product of Jason and Kelly.  New Brittany, played by Katlynn Smith, looks like the neice dropped off by an estranged sibling of Jason’s.

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  • Mkj50

    Charm was never the same for me, after they killed off Shannen Doherty’s character. Her character Prue was just kick azz. A lot of my co-workers & myself used to watch it every Sunday. But after she left, a lot of them just stopped watching all together. And some did what I did. Would just catch it whenever. Rose McGowen was ok as Paige, but it just wan’t the same. 

    • sexcgenius

      I have to agree with you on this. Prue was no joke on that show.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Reeves/100000349124321 Michael Reeves

      i liked Page honesty i wish they killed the other one and it was Prue Piper Page xD

    • MissEmai

      They only killed off Prue because Shannon couldn’t keep her shite together, just like on 90210. Aaron Spelling gave her a second chance with Charmed, and she blew it, so she lost her job and once again, her character was written out/killed off.

  • Bustycaramel

    The new Viv was just terrible! She had like… Beyoncé’s personality… Boring, nothing to offer but a beautiful face!! She just did not fit that role one bit!!! She was just some light skinned lady with no energy! The old aunt Viv was IT!! I miss her! It sucks that she quit the show because she wanted a higher salary but she knew how to act

  • devotee86

    Personally the new brittany was madddd wack…too grown….too brown(hair) …..too much….y did they get rid of the other lil girl

  • Mel0515

    Honorable mention- whoever that dude was that replaced Kyle Barker on Living Single. I don’t even know dude’s name. The show wasn’t the same after that.

  • Mizzmamidc

    Yes da real Aunt Viv!!!follow me @Mizzappl3zdc

    • Tia7488

      What about claire on my wife and kids?!? Replace the smart strong willed chocolate daughter with jennifer freeman?!

      • sbrown285

        I’m not mad at that one at all. She looked great

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000567814206 Carita MrsVick Parker

    Where is Suzanne Somers??? She has to be the most irreplaceable character in sitcom history!! Cindy was a bust and Terri stuck around for a few seasons but 3’s Company was never the same after Somers left!

  • Kluv1433@Gmail.com

    Bull shut aunt viv was awesome .not loud over barring a beautiful women.sorry she’s not ur typical ninja lol

  • Youknowwhatitis

    They forgot the Claire replacement on my wife and kids.

    • TellItLikeItIs

      The replacement for Claire was BETTER than the original which is probably why they didn’t mention her….#ByeFelicia

  • Youknowwhatitis

    Oh and Stacy Dash’s replacement on Single Ladies.

  • Delta

    clair my wife and kids


    I’m on Team Janet Hubert.  She’s still going at it.  She sent a letter to Wendy Williams holding her to task for torturing Whitney mercilessly for so many years.  Janet does mouth off, but unlike so many other heffas, she’s EARNED the right to do so.  I look forward to her next quote.

  • chitchat

     The new Brit Brat was the worst.  Not only did she look way too black to be the blonde chick’s daughter with light-bright Jason but she couldn’t act for shyt!

  • Nadia

    They should have added the Vanessa’s from the Bernie Mack show and the Claire’s from My wife and kids (Just awful)

  • Joe

    I loved Valerie on 90210! I actually liked her better than Brenda, though, it would’ve been great to see them up to no good together.

    • LDUB


  • lateshia

    Everyone say Janet Hubert was the best Aunt Viv when I watched season 1 & 2 of Fresh Prince I have to agree she is the perfect Aunt Viv. Daphne was ok as Aunt Viv but she was more mellow and boring. I hated when BH 90210 replaced Brenda and don’t forget Shannon was also replaced in Charmed.

  • weavermomo

    Farrah Fawcett on Charlie Angels, Cheryl Ladd was great but the rest of the replacements sucked!

    • Lee

      Agree 100%. While Cheryl was able to step into Farrah’s shoes, the rest were dreadful.

  • Erin George

    I don’t think the point is to just list replacements that happened. Sure Jazz Raycole was replaced, but Jennifer Freeman was an excellent replacement for the old Claire on My Wife and Kids. The original Claire was boring and whiny with little to no story line. The new Claire brought life to the oldest daughter. I think people are really up in arms because the new Claire was much lighter than the old Claire. I hope colorism isn’t the reason for the replacement. Still, the change worked for the show.

  • dfjdjfhdfh

    Shannen Doherty’s character was also replaced on Charmed…surprised you missed that.

  • iHeartMarijuana

    Huh? Cousin Pam didn’t replace Denise, or she would be called Denise and not Cousin Pam. It was a new character that was introduced, not a replacement. Becky and Harriet were big mistakes. And I had no idea that Jill Marie Jones was replaced on Girlfriends. She was the most interesting character – another big mistake. Whatever they did with Britney on The Game is ridiculous, that looks so unrealistic and bizarre that they would choose that chick. Glad I don’t watch any more.

  • http://www.facebook.com/moceanu Cecelia Moceanu

    was done with 90210 after Brenda left and the mom on Will Smiths show was another bad casting move but I guess you can’t keep your job if you work with Will Smith and don’t kiss his butt

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Reeves/100000349124321 Michael Reeves

    I liked Becky number 2 and had no idea about
    Harriette Winslow how dare they

  • http://twitter.com/TBravens92 ISpeakDaTruth

    Well the fans hated the new viv but the cast hated the old viv

  • Tyler Cole

    Not only did they replace Claire on My Wife and Kids but also Junior’s girlfriend, Vanessa. To be fair, Brooklyn Sudano was far more likeable than Meagan Good.

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