The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

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“West Philadelphia born and raised, on the playground is where I spend most of my days…” Every Monday- Friday, 10 and 10:30 p.m. on Nick at Nite this famous theme song can be heard followed by an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. In Bel-Air California, the wealthy Banks family takes in their wild cousin, Will (Will Smith) from Philadelphia. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is still one of the “freshest” shows on air because of a jack of all trades lead character, comical writing, and a talented supporting cast.

Will Smith. How can anyone even begin to compliment this man’s talent? His versatility is the center of his greatness. He can go from being extremely cocky, to very serious, to a romantic hunk all in five minutes. In one episode he refers to himself as, “The face of and angle on the body of a god.” This cocky attitude is just one of the details that makes America love Will.

Where would Will and the Banks family be with out the writing of the show? Andy and Susan Borowitz are just two of the many gifted writers for the show. They really take advantage of each actor’s extreme and unique talent. Whether it be the comic sayings or character interactions, each episode is great in its own way. The storyline’s authenticity also adds to the winning end product. A show about a rich family taking in their goofy cousin and the problems that come as a result, it doesn’t get much better.

The supporting cast is the icing on top for The Fresh Prince. First, there is Carlton (Alfonso Ribeiro), Will’s short, unconfident, geeky cousin. For example in one episode Will says “Korana vs. Paula”, referring to Uncle Phil (James Avery) and Aunt Vivian (Janet Hubert-Whitten). Carlton snaps back saying, “Don’t make fun of Paula, she is the only women shortest to be my wife.” Then there is Hilary, (Karyn Parsons) Will’s prissy, ditsy other cousin who is also very boy and money crazy. And how could you forget the greatest butler, Geoffrey (Joseph Marcell). Geoffrey is annoyed by his job at the Banks residence, but still loves it in a twisted way. Once when Uncle Phil asked Geoffrey for a favor and his reply is, “Could you leave a note sir? It’s my day off.” These are all great actors but their chemistry on set is what wins the crowd. They make it seem that they aren’t even acting, but that Uncle Phil really is angry at Will, or that Hilary actually wants Carlton to help her pick out a new dress.

Although it’s an older show, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air has the key elements, a star lead character, great writing, and a complimentary cast, that keep it fresh. It is a great show that you will never forget over your lifetime. So, everyone should make The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air part of your weekly routine.





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