|Ralph Hart was a doorman at the Whittendale Building in Manhattan on the series.|
|Doorman at the Colby East/Whittendale Building in Manhattan, NY|
|Money-obsessed doorman who constantly hounds residents in the building, particularly George Jefferson, for tips |
friend of the Jeffersons, The Willises, and Florence Johnston
|Appeared on:||The Jeffersons|
|Character played by:||Ned Wertimer|
Ralph Hart aka Ralph the Doorman (Ned Wertimer), is the money-crazed doorman of the Whittendale Building in the high-rise Colby East apartment complex. Although he appears to be a hard-working fellow with a decent attitude, he always makes sure his hand is stuffed with a reasonable amount (in his case, a lot) of money tips. He appears in the episodes usually to deliver merchandise or mail to George, and George must always give him a big tip. The same goes true for just about every other tenant focused on the sitcom. But in later seasons, they learn to stop giving Ralph a big tip, and, if necessary, tell him to get lost.
In one episode Ralph was almost replaced by an automatic door before George along with several tenants told the building manager that they would all move if Ralph was replaced and he was allowed to keep his job. However it was revealed that none of the people actually lived in the building and that they all hated Ralph and only did it because he paid them. It is also hinted that the people that actually live in the building (aside from George) hate him so much that they wouldn't have helped him keep his job even if he did pay them. In a season 5 nightmare dream George has of the future, Ralph has so much money from George's tips that he has moved up from doorman to owner of the apartment building and remarks how $500.00 pays for a gallon of gasoline!
Ralph does sometimes seem to care for his tenants over his tipping, though. In one of the later Season Two episodes, after Lionel and Jenny have a big altercation and break up for a short while, George unknowingly pays a hooker to spend time with Lionel. When Ralph sees her and recognizes her instantly, he tells George the truth. George, clearly panicked, gives Ralph a $100 tip as gratitude. But Ralph turned it down, explaining that he's "going to need it." He would continue to join the cast for the majority of the show's numerous seasons.