Script Breakdown

The first episode of a wonderful series will be broken down for you by scene. I chose the first episode because it was the only one I could get online without downloading 4000 viruses! The first episode did not have many scenes and was greatly concentrated on the A-plot.

Scenes:

1: Will obnoxiously enters house and meets most of family. (A)

2. Will walks around house and meets more of family. (A)

3. Will is decorating room when he meets Carlton. Will jokes with Carlton and prepares for future dinner party. (A->B)

4. Hilary is seen talking with people of party. Phil and Vivian are as well. (B)

5. Will enters in a goofy outfit and begins embarrassing Phil. (A/B)

6. Party sits down for dinner and Will continue to acts obnoxious. (A/B)

7. Will is getting lectured in the living room by different members of family. (A)

8. Will bonds with Ashley. (A)

9. Will searches for bathroom. (A)

 

Yes…the entire 22 minute episode had nine scenes. The dinner and party scene were 2-4 minutes long! As you can see, the show mainly focused on the A plot and whenever the B plot was present, so was the A.

The A plot was the family trying to understand Will and keep him from being himself.

The B plot was Uncle Phil trying to impress the law firm he has over for dinner.

The two plots mixed together well because it was Will’s behavior that hinders the party.

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Series Finale

After 148 episodes and six great seasons, a very popular show came to an end. Were tears shed? Maybe, but I won’t admit anything! Here is a very quick summary of one of the greatest series finales of all time.

This is how it ends: Hilary and Ashley move to New York, Carlton goes to Princeton, Geoffrey moves back to England to be with his son, Philip, Vivian, and Nicky move East and sell the house, and Uncle Phil helps Will find an apartment so he can stay and finish his education. It was a great way to end such a popular series. Will is one of those characters you really feel for and want for him to succeed. You can tell the family has grown closer in the past 6 years, and everyone has matured. Philip has come to accept Will like his own son, hence the phrase “You are my son.” That was a bit of a tearjerker. He also really cares for Will and said that Will has really grown up, and has become a man ready to realize his potential.

Sounds like a lot of action in one episode and it would have been if it wasn’t made in to a two-part show. The main aspect of the show is having everyone move on to bigger and better places. Will seems to be the only one that struggles with that but pulls through with the help of the family. For the most part, the finale was more serious than funny. Just when you think the ending is going to end on a sad note, Carlton realizes the family is driving off without him while he was in the bathroom. So Carlton runs downstairs with his pants around his ankles yelling for the family. Couldn’t have thought of a better ending myself.

Theme Song

The majority of television shows have some sort of opening credits that involve music. Some of which that will get stuck in your head or are easy to memorize. The theme song to a show is very important and can make or break a show. If a show has a terrible theme song, who is going to want to watch that? It could be a very good show, but the first two minutes could really turn a person off. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song was written and performed by Will Smith himself. This song is easy to memorize because of how catchy it is, unlike other songs that get stuck in your head because of how annoying they are (Spongebob Squarepants). Seriously, who likes a song where the same two words are yelled throughout? The theme for The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is a rap of sorts. Compared to Will Smith’s past raps, this is a great improvement. In other words, I actually like this one. The video that goes a long with it lets people that know that what they are about to watch will be quite humorous.

The song starts off by talking about his real life when he grew up in West Philadelphia. Unfortunately for him, he got in one little fight that scared his mother into sending him to Bel-Air. We find out in the actual show that his mother does not look like the one in the intro. She is much younger and less scary looking. The graffiti in the background is also pretty funny. Will then goes on to make his way to Bel-Air where he tells the taxi driver he smells and walks to the front door of the mansion acting like a fool.

For those of you that don’t know, there is actually an extended version of the theme song only played in the first few episodes. In the extended version we actually see Will take a plane instead of just assuming he drove the taxi from Pennsylvania to California. On the plane, he gets some Grade-A treatment from the very attractive flight attendants. This also gives a hint of what to expect from the show itself;  Will is a ladies man.

The theme song isn’t just memorable, but gives a taste of what the show is about. Unlike most theme songs, it does not go through each main character awkwardly smiling or laughing at the camera (Home Improvement). If for some reason you have never heard the theme song of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, I’m not quick to judge but I do suggest you listen to it immediately.

Everything I Know About Girls, I Learned From The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

One of the main highlights of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is how much of a sweet talker Will Smith is. His pick up lines are one of a kind and that of which every guy should use. In essence, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is not just a sitcom but an educational show on women. Yes, it took 148 episodes to get a better understanding of the complexity of women. And we barely made a dent…

Will’s pick-up lines were probably the most helpful aspect of impressing a lady. How could a woman resist a man that says, ” Girl, you look so good I wish I could plant you and grow a whole field of ya’ll!”? I would instantly fall in love with the person who said that to me. Some other classic pick up lines are “I believe I saw your picture somewhere. That’s right! It was in the dictionary next to ‘Kablaaaaam’!” and “Jean Claude Van DAM you look good!”. I have tried using these in real life and they always end up with the girl cracking up. I guess that’s better than getting clocked in the face. So yes men, it works. Will also knows how to treat a lady after the initial contact with the pick up line. Will is always dressing up and taking his “honnies” on dinner dates. What a stud! He is constantly complementing their beauty and always seems to know exactly what to say in every situation.

Then there is Carlton. He teaches us how not to act around a woman. His “pick up lines” are no where near the level of Will’s. He also seems to get even nerdier whenever he is around a girl. He tries to impress them by using big words and talking about subjects not many people care for. An example of his lack of knowledge about women comes up when he goes up to a cheerleader and says, “Hi. I’m Carlton Banks. The Carlton Banks.” This may get a good laugh out of the girl but for the wrong reasons. You want the woman laughing with you, not at you.

Yet another reason The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air should be watched by all. It is an educational program.

BREAK THE HEX, MAN!

Out of the 148 wonderful episodes of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, my favorite would have to be Episode 7 Season 4. “Hex and the Single Guy” is probably the funniest of all the episodes. Each and every cast member has at least one very funny one-liner. The show starts off as any other. Hilary’s former fiance, Trevor, has been dead for two months and she is still miserable. It is Halloween night when she suggests that the family go to a seance. The show quickly starts off with one-liners by Geoffrey and Carlton. Vivian says “Thank God Hilary seems to be doing better. For a while there, she just seemed to crushed.” Carlton quickly replies with a “Not as much as Trevor.” For those of you that don’t know, Trevor died from a bungee accident.

Since it’s Halloween, the majority of the cast is dressed up. Will is Dracula while Carlton is MaCaughly Culkin.

After Carlton goes trick-or-treating, the family goes off to the seance. At the seance, the family meets the very odd Scorpious. Will and Uncle Phil exploit his weirdness by cracking jokes throughout the scene. Wills continuous bashing of Scorpious leads to Scorpious placing a hex on Will and whoever he cares about. The hex starts off by getting Uncle Phil  suspended from the bench (he is a judge) for allegedly taking bribes. You can see Carlton’s reaction to the news above.

By the next morning, Carlton’s hair had turned all different colors to where he looks like a snow-cone. Also quite humorous. Then we see Hilary kissing Jazz in the living room. When Uncle Phil attempts to toss him out, like he does in many episodes, we actually see Uncle Phil flying out the door instead. It’s always funny to see Jazz fly out the door, but seeing Uncle Phil is just priceless. The scene can be seen here. Will then goes back to Scorpious to convince him to break the hex. When Will returns to the house, it is completely different. Scorpious is still there but he is dressed normally and there is no sign a seance would ever take place in the house. Will starts begging him to break the hex but Ralph Scorpious has no idea whats happening. The scene then cuts to Will waking up from what was all a dream. He walks into the kitchen all happy that is wasn’t real. Unfortunately for Will, the entire first scene of his dream is starting to happen again. Will tries to stop it but the episode fades out on him screaming. The whole “bad things happening to everyone” style of the show makes it hilarious. The mannerisms of Will in this episode are also great. He tends to make funny faces and run like he has broken legs, but it is very exaggerated in this episode.

For someone that has never seen the show or very little, I suggest watching this one episode to get you HOOKED!

Changes Through The Years

A fair amount of shows change their structure throughout the seasons depending on the different producers and ratings of the show. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is no exception. The show started with a very basic three plot structure, but later transformed to a two act plot and sometimes even one. Nearing the finale, it was obvious that certain plots would be present throughout many episodes instead of just one. This is unlike earlier in the show, when random situational problems seemed to highlight the show. A good amount of this change probably had to do with the fact that the show had nine different executive producers throughout the show’s six seasons. Change is bound to happen. Luckily, this change did not affect the shows quality.

Besides plots, characters also changed. The most noticeable change would have to be Vivian, considering she is played by a completely different actress after the third season. Must have been convenient that after the third season Uncle Phil divorced one Vivian and quickly married another before the fourth season started! If I didn’t have a keen eye, I may have never noticed this. Of course, the original Vivian left for personal reason and because she apparently hated Will Smith. This I do not understand. How can anyone with a pulse detest Willard Smith? Baffling. Although the actual actress changed, the character of Vivian did not.

I can not say the same for Carlton and Geoffrey who have a noticeable change from the first season to the last. Carlton may stay preppy and nerdy throughout the entire show, but the emphasis on it lessens as the show goes on. In the first season, Carlton is expressed as a goody-two-shoes who would never do anything wrong and is the complete opposite of the overly ghetto Will. By the sixth season, Carlton is out partying and partaking in dangerous things along with Will and Jazz. Carlton never would have snuck out of the house to see a Ziggy Marley concert like he does later in the show. Geoffrey is very similar. He claims that he is required to call Will “Master William”. Geoffrey is very well-mannered and never cracks jokes in the first season. Eventually Geoffrey is caught saying “Willy” instead of the formally known “Master William”. Geoffrey also takes over Will’s role of making fat jokes about Uncle Phil. His British accent truly makes his insults and sarcasm even funnier. This is a move I am glad the producers made.

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was not a show of consistency, but I’m not one to complain about it!

Behind The Camera

Who are Andy Borowitz and Quincy Jones? Not the easiest of questions to answer. If you were to name Producers and Creators of a television show, most people would have never heard of them. People only know the names of the on-screen cast. Andy Borowitz, along with his sister Susan, were the creators of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Andy is known for his stand-up comedy and political satire. Andy, since his time with television, has become more famous. He founded the Borowitz Report which was recently voted the #1 twitter account for 2011. He also currently blogs for the Huffington Post and The Daily Beast. He has also participated in small television roles including The Daily Show. In a recent profile on CBS News Sunday Morning he was called “one of the funniest people in America”.

Quincy Jones has worked with a plethora of amazing talent throughout his life. Quincy is an American record producer, conductor, film composer, television producer, and trumpeter. His career spans five decades in the media industry and has the record of 79 Grammy nominations. He is best know for his role as producer in the album Thriller by Michael Jackson. Quincy has also worked with Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. His vast knowledge in showbiz helped him build a show around Will Smith whom had never acted before. He has been called a genius for his confidence in this decision and I would have to agree with these people.

What Happened To The Rest?

Practically everyone in the world knows who Will Smith is, even if it’s not because of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. I feel the majority of people do not know what happened to all the other cast members. What have they done since, if anything? For the most part, they have not had any major roles since. The cast has done a lot of cameos, but not much more.

Alfonso Ribeiro, Carlton Banks, is the only one besides Tatyana Ali to be a star in another TV show after The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. He was the host of Catch 21 on GSN. Even so, I bet a lot of people have never even heard of this show.

Karyn Parsons, Hilary Banks, only major role other than in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was in Major Payne. Major Payne was actually filmed during the time that The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was still being created. Other than that, she has only done cameos and actually hasn’t been in front of a camera since 2004.

Tatyana Ali has been busy since her role as the innocent Ashley Banks. She has since starred in movies such as Glory Road and Hotel California. She is also currently the lead role in the TV ONE original sitcom Love That Girl. As also made a guest appearance in the always popular kids show Are You Afraid of the Dark? Tatyana has also created two hit singles that have reached the Billboard top 10 list in the United Kingdom. It would seem that her music is no where near as popular in the great country of America.

James Avery has yet to be in such as major role as he was playing Uncle Phil. He has made guest appearances in more movies and TV shows than most people can count to. Don’t be surprised if he shows up on your favorite tv show one day or possibly already has.

The always entertaining Geoffrey Butler, played by Joseph Marcell, has not done many American related movies/television since. After The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air had it’s final episode, Joseph moved back to Britain where he currently lives with his family and continues to act. None of the movies he has had a role in have become famous in the United States.

For those of you that have never watched the show closely may not have noticed that Vivian Banks changes after the third season. Janet Hubert-Whitten was the first mother of the Banks family before having a falling out with Will Smith. Much like the rest of the cast, she has done little since. This is mostly due to her now being a mother.

Daphne Maxwell-Reid is our second Vivian Banks. Not much of a resemblance to the first one, but she got the job done. She, like many of the others, has not reached the same stardom as her role on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

You would think such a great show would have made the futures bright for at least most of the cast, but that did not seem to happen. I guess Will Smith truly is one of a kind.

Sir Willard Smith

Willard Christopher Smith Jr. is an American actor, producer, and rapper. In West Philidelphia, Will was born and raised.  He attended and graduated from high school there, but never had any intentions of college.  Will’s first claim to fame was his rap music during the late 1980’s. He started as an MC with DJ Jazzy Jeff who later became Jazz on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. He gained critical acclaim when Will won his first Grammy award in 1988. In case you have never heard his rap music before, I personally would not recommend it. Fortunately for Will, his role on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was way more popular than his rap music. Prior to starting the show, Will was $2.8 million dollars in debt. Luckily, NBC decided to build a sitcom around him.  The show ran for nearly six years. Will then moved from television stardom to the big screen and has not looked back since.

Will is the only actor to ever to have eight consecutive films gross over $100 million in the box office. His first major roles were in Six Degrees of Separation and Bad Boys. After The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was no longer being made, Will went on to make his highest grossing movie, Independence Day. The film became the second highest grossing film ever at the time and established him as a prime box office draw. Will eventually went on to make many more popular films such as: Men in Black, Enemy of the State, Ali, Men in Black II, Bad Boys II, I, Robot, Hitch, Pursuit of Happyness, I am Legend, Hancock, and Seven Pounds. Will actually was given the opportunity to play the role of Neo in The Matrix, but decided to cast in Wild Wild West instead. Will Smith is currently estimated to be worth $188 million dollars (A lot different than the massive debt he was in prior to his acting career).

Will Smith has been married twice. He was first married to Sheree Zampino in 1992, but later divorced in 1995. They had a boy together, Willard Smith III. Two years later, Will married the famous actress, Jada Pinkett. Together they have had two children, Jaden and Willow. Both children have starred in movies in which Will has has a major role. Jaden was Will’s son in Pursuit of Happyness and Willow was the daughter of Dr. Neville in I am Legend. Unfortunately, it is being rumored that this marriage may be coming to an end.

Smith, throughout his entire career, has been nominated for four Golden Globes, two Academy Awards, and multiple Grammy Awards. Smith continues working towards more nominations. As of now, Will plans on starring in more roles in the future, some of which are already in production. Men in Black III and Bad Boys III are included in this future list.

History of Show

For those of you that have never watched The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, you are truly missing out on quality television. Will Smith, the main actor, became the face of 90’s sitcoms and hasn’t looked back. The show originally aired on NBC from September 10, 1990 to May 20, 1996. The show now airs on TBS in the early morning. Will Smith plays a fictionalized version of himself, a street-smart teenager from West Philadelphia who got in one little fight. This little fight, for those of you that don’t know the theme song, sent Will on his way to live with his aunt and uncle in a mansion where his lifestyle clashes with everyone around him. The show consisted of six seasons and one-hundred forty-eight episodes. Before the show, Will Smith had actually never acted. Quincy Jones, an executive producer, had known Will for a long time and thought it would be a great idea to build a show around him because of his vibrant personality. Talk about taking a chance.

The series was originally an NBC production in association with The Stuffed Dog Company and Quincy Jones Production (LATIMES). After the show had been released to syndication in 1994, the rights of the show were now given to Warner Bros. Television. Once episodes were no longer being made, WGN and TBS immediately acquired the series to show reruns on their stations. It has been acquired by many other stations since including Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, ABC Family, and some foreign stations. The show itself and the cast won a combined nine awards from the ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards (IMBD). The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air catapulted the cast into stardom.

http://articles.latimes.com/1996-05-20/entertainment/ca-6351_1_fresh-prince (LATIMES)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098800/awards (IMBD)