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Characters / Living Single

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    Group as a whole 
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: After being lovelorn and unsuccessful in other parts of their lives, everyone gets one: Synclaire lands a pilot for a new show in L.A. and she and Overton move there, Regine finds the love of her life, Kyle and Max end up together after she gets pregnant by him and Khadijah goes around the world with a returning Scooter.
  • Everyone Is Single: Obviously. Hence the series' name (at least they all are at first).
  • The Friends Who Never Hang: Everyone likes Khadijah, but rarely will you see a combination of Overton/Max, Kyle/Synclaire or Overton/Regine.
  • True Companions: There are times they are shown to be this to one another, such as being there whenever one is sick, going through relationship issues or just needs advice.
    Khadijah James 
Portrayed by: Queen Latifah

  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Her younger half-sister, Stephanie, who used expensive lipstick to deface her walls as a kid and got drunk and blew her school's big track meet.
  • Big Beautiful Woman: This coupled with her personality shows that she has no problem attracting any suitors.
  • Buxom Is Better: As she points out to Max, who claims that more than a handful is a waste.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Melancholic.
  • It's All About Me: At her worst, she comes off as haughty, unwilling to compromise and even less likely to admit to any wrongdoing.
  • Only Sane Woman: Every now and then.
  • Self-Made Woman: She created her own magazine called Flavor and is seen as eventually gaining widespread attention and fame for it.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: She is the tomboy to Synclaire and especially Regine's girly-girl. Max is also a tomboy herself.
  • Victorious Childhood Friend: Her eventual relationship with Scooter, who she ends up with in the finale.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Girl: Her relationship with her estranged father, which still effects her in the present day.
    Synclaire James-Jones 
Portrayed by: Kim Coles

  • Big Beautiful Woman: Not at first, but she plumped up quite a bit as the show went on.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: As odd as she is, it's pretty obvious that she's good at her job as the secretary of Flavor and much more crucial to her cousin than either one realizes.
  • Catchphrase: Her "Woo-woo-woo!" when trying to calm one of her friends down.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: She's certainly not the most grounded of the women, which made her perfect for Overton.
  • Flanderization: Her ditziness and naiveté, especially her troll doll obsession, overtook everything else about her.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Sanguine.
  • Genki Girl: Is a very quirky, upbeat person who is outgoing.
  • Happily Married: To Overton.
  • Nice Girl: She's the most approachable of the four friends.
    Regine Hunter 
Portrayed by: Kim Fields

  • Abhorrent Admirer: She has one in Russell, Flavor's music editor. It's more of a downplayed version, as he isn't unattractive or even a bad guy, just his flirtation with her and his pursuits are annoying.
  • Catchphrase: She says "Aww, suki-suki now!" whenever surprised or frightened. This is eventually done away with in the later seasons, though.
  • D-Cup Distress: Her breasts were giving her chronic backaches in "Her Cups Runneth Over", which leads to her getting a reduction.
  • The Fashionista: Her style is head and shoulders above her friends (a given, since she works in a boutique and became a personal shopper).
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Phlegmatic.
  • My Beloved Smother: Her mother, Laverne, whose sense of style and generally uncouth behavior annoys her, even though she really does love her.
    Maxine "Max" Shaw 
Portrayed by: Erika Alexander

  • Babies Ever After: with Kyle, in the finale. Years later, upon appearing on Half & Half, they are a couple and raising their daughter.
  • Big Eater: Yet she somehow manages to stay so thin...
  • Bedmate Reveal: After getting laid off due to making a poor decision at work, she gets drunk and wakes up in bed with Kyle.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Even through her abrasiveness and other eccentricities, she is a competent attorney, even getting her friends off at one point.
  • Catchphrase: She would exclaim "Max is in the house!" upon entering a room, although similarly to Regine this was just exclusive to the earlier seasons (or in her case, just the first season.)
  • Contrived Coincidence: She becomes pregnant by Kyle's sperm by getting inseminated at the very same sperm clinic he used years ago after having a brush with death.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She is always making snarky comments, special towards Kyle.
  • Does Not Like Men: Many times she is seen to have a very low opinion of men, even likening Freddy Krueger to the essence of every man. Turns out, it mostly stems from both the sexism she faces in the world of law and her ex-boyfriend, Greg, leaving her one day out of the blue.
  • Drop-In Character: She is always seen at the girls' apartment, to the point that seeing her own place is a rarity.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Choleric.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Downplayed. She's a close friend of Khadijah's and she has a love-hate relationship with Kyle that eventually turns to love, but the other friends merely tolerate her and Regine is downright hostile to her (albeit it's a mutual relationship).
  • Lady in Red: She is usually seen in this color, especially her power suits.
  • My Beloved Smother: She does not get along too well with her mother although she got her driven, no-nonsense persona from her.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: The very nature of her relationship with Kyle.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Not in Living Single, but on Half and Half, which is set years after Max and Kyle rekindled their relationship one of the main characters on the latter show is an aspiring attorney who idolizes Max and notes that she is the female Johnnie Cochran and also owns five of her own law firms.
    Kyle Barker 
Portrayed by: T. C. Carson

  • Babies Ever After: With Max in the finale. Several years later, while appearing on Half & Half, it revealed that they had a little girl and got back together.
  • Bedmate Reveal: After a drunken night, he wakes up to find that, much to his horror, that he slept with Max.
  • Characterization Marches On: He was initially a Straw Misogynist who was convinced all women wanted him. Over time, this was toned back considerably and made him a more level-headed, friendlier person and devoted friend.
  • The Dandy: As displayed in several episodes; aside from being a Sharp-Dressed Man, he is very particular with his clothes even going as far to making sure that they are perfectly tailored to fit, tells Khadijah that she owes him a tortoiseshell button to replace the one she ruined after hitting him with a snowball and uses a baby wipe for his, ahem, bottom.
  • Formerly Fat: Was fat in his youth, which lead to him being subjected to a lot of bullying.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Overton.
  • Hidden Depths: In addition to his impeccable taste in clothing and being good with money and numbers as a stockbroker, he has a strong love and respect for African culture and is a fan of music with a huge collection of records and can sing wonderfully, too.
  • The Immodest Orgasm: It's learned that he stutters during climax. Naturally, Max proceeds to make fun of him for it.
  • Made Out to Be a Jerkass: After confronting the schoolmate who used to relentlessly bully him, he was made to look in the wrong because of how pathetic his life is in the present. Turns out, it was not only of the guy's own doing and even in the present day, he's breaking into a kid's locker to steal his sneakers which leads to Kyle tossing him in the locker instead.
  • Nice Hat: The fedora he occasionally wears.
  • Older Than They Look: Although they group of friends were all more or less the same age and Kyle turned 30 in 1995, T.C. Carson was born in 1958, making him the oldest of the group.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the red to Overton's blue.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: He has a nice collection of clothing and his style is on point with Regine's.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: His relationship with Max.
     Overton Wakefield Jones 
Portrayed by: John Henton

  • Bald of Awesome: As revealed in season two. He said that it accidentally happened while screwing up giving himself a fade, but he looked all the better with it.
  • Brutal Honesty: He's not afraid to tell any of his friends what he thinks.
  • Gentle Giant: He's well-known for being big and friendly.
  • Happily Married: To Synclaire.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Kyle.
  • Mr Fix It: As the building's handyman, he can pretty much fix anything. Also, he's something of an inventor, imputing a stereosystem into a basic recliner and creating something called a "Massage in a Can" (and based on Kyle's reaction to it, actually works.)
  • Nice Guy: He and Synclaire are downright friendly (and he has the added bonus of being a Friend to All Children.)
  • One Head Taller: At 6'3", he's this from everyone, especially the 5'2" Regine and 5'10" Kyle. While he is also taller than Khadijah, Synclaire and Max (the former is 5'10" and the latter two are 5'9"), his height over the others is more noticeable.
  • Parental Marriage Veto: A variation: his beloved Uncle Tibby initially disapproved of his relationship with Synclaire.
  • Real Men Love Jesus: He was a regular churchgoer and was steadfast in his faith.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: He is the calmer blue to Kyle's passionate red.
  • The Thing That Would Not Leave: After falling out with Kyle, he moves in with the women and eventually becomes a nuisance to them, even Synclaire (after he spoiled the ending of a book that she never read before.)
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He's afraid of clowns.

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