While ABC has announced a series of cancellations — including fan-favorite musical drama Queens starring Brandy, Naturi Naughton, Eve, and Nadine Velazquez —NBC has announced the renewal of one of their critically acclaimed comedy series. Grand Crew is coming back for a second season. The show follows a group of Black friends who dish on life at their favorite hangout spot, a local wine bar. It stars Echo Kellum, Justin Cunningham, Grasie Mercedes, Carl Tart, Aaron Jennings, and Nicole Byer – and is the brainchild of writer-producer Phil Augusta Jackson, who previously worked on hits like Insecure and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Jackson and Goor executive produce the series.
The first season of the series attracted 17 million total viewers across all platforms. The premiere episode was NBC's top digital comedy launch on its streaming platform, Peacock. The characters registered with viewers and were something unlike anything most NBC viewers had seen previously.
NBC has ordered a second season of comedy series ‘Grand Crew’ https://t.co/zMv3uU5coh— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) May 12, 2022
There's the hopeless romantic too eager to settle down with Noah; Nicky, a hustler in real estate who's adventurous in romance; Sherm, a brilliant genius who plays the dating odds; Anthony, whose true love is his career first; Wyatt, who's relieved to be married and out of the dating scene; and Fay, who's recently divorced and looking to start fresh in LA.
In an interview with Shadow and Act, Jackson spoke about the place the show has in today's world, and the gap it filled in the content bubble. "I would say overall that there is room for more Black content period. My hope is that there's more Black content period moving forward," he said.
He continued: "I think overall with this show specifically that was not top of mind for me. It wasn't about filling a void. However I am a black man, I do hang out at a wine bar with my friends and we do unpack the ups and downs of our lives and that felt like the most exciting and honest idea to bring to the table at NBC. So if it does fill a void for people, I think that's incredible but at the end of the day, I hope people find it fun, funny, and endearing. I want it to be a feel-good show just given the environmental landscape that we live in today. There is space for a show that's like, 'Hey, this is funny, it feels good to watch, and there's some good jokes in there.' That's the core."
More than anything, he was proud of the representation of the men and women on the show: "The beautiful thing with the show is that three out of the six cast members had been longtime friends of mine. I've known Nicole Byer since 2009," he noted, explaining he'd been connected to much of the cast since before the show and was happy to work with them again in such a capacity.
He continued: We still perform together, not as much recently, but we perform together. [And] Echo and Carl, I've known those guys for the better part of a decade. And then when it came to Gracie, Justin and Aaron, they were such a natural fit and they all have such great chemistry together. That crew felt right for this show specifically. And I'm thankful that we got people that I do know and also people that I didn't know before this moment that I'm tremendous fans of now."