Fresh Prince Of Bel Air & Bel Air Comparison

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Jotella Opokwu

Some of you may know that a new reboot of the iconic ’90s, Black sitcom,Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, was released on February 13, 2022, called ‘Bel-Air’

As we all know, Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was just a show to make us laugh, a very comedic show. However, the new reboot, Bel-Air, is the complete opposite of the 90’s sitcom, which most fans loved. Bel-Air definitely tackles down the serious topics each character slightly faces in the show. From the original sitcom, in the theme song, we obviously can see that Will Smith is getting bullied by these boys on a basketball court. The lyrics say, “When a couple of guys who were up to no good, Started making trouble in my neighborhood, I got in one little fight and my mom got scared”

She said, “You’re movin’ with your auntie and uncle in Bel-Air” If you recall, in the theme song video, he simply had gotten spun around. However, in ‘Bel-Air’, Will pulls out a gun for safety, after winning a basketball match. As you can tell, there is a very big contrast between the two shows, as ‘Bel-Air’ takes the pathway of serious topics. Also, the characters who play Will (Will Smith & Jabari Banks), are differently portrayed as characters. The original sitcom’s main character Will is more serious compared to the Will played in ‘Bel-Air’. His quirky, funny personality was somewhat dumb-downed a bit. 

Carlton in ‘Bel-Air’ & Carlton in ‘Fresh Prince of Bel Air’ are completely different as well (Played by Alfonso Ribeiro & Olly Sholotan). Carlton in the original sitcom went from a more preppy, tolerable character to a hot mess. He is portrayed as having a drug problem, shown to have jealousy for Will, and has some terrible friends, stated on ew.com.

The same goes for Hilary Banks, played by Karyn Parsons & Coco Jones. We know Hilary in the original as the stubborn, privileged person. On the other hand, in this new reboot, she is more independent, trying to find a career that her mother, Vivian Banks, isn’t really fond of. 

Another character would have to be Ashley Banks, played by Akira Akbar & Tatyana Ali. We didn’t get a lot of moments of Ashley in Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, as she was seen as the “forgotten” character in the show. However, we get to see much more of Ashley in the new reboot as well as her interests. Ashley in ‘Bel-Air’, is also questioning her sexuality within the show. 

A lot of characters from the original sitcom had changed for the better or for the worse in this new reboot, ‘Bel-Air,’ including Jazz, Geoffrey, Phillip Banks, and more. After watching both shows you can definitely see the differences between these two shows.