Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

16 Oct

The show that I chose to do for this blog was the show; The Fresh Prince of Bel-air. This show revolves a young African American kid, Will, who grew up in Philadelphia and is forced by his mother to go and live with his aunt and uncle, along with their kids, in Bel-air, California. Unlike his home back in Philadelphia, the Banks family, which his relatives, are a rich family with a butler because of their father, Phil, who is a prominent judge in the area. This goes against a lot of stereotypes in television by not having a black family live in a ghetto area or poor neighborhood like a lot of black families on television are usually portrayed. Will, growing up in the hard neighborhood of Philadelphia, sticks out a lot during the show because of the music that he listens too, the way he dresses, and the his friend Jazz that he hangs out with. The Bank’s family is a very proper family with a nice house, dresses well, and has a butler.

The article by Monk and Turner; Portrayal of Racial Minorities, does a good job explaining and contradicting this show. For one, on the portrayal of Will, it is a good example of how African Americans are shown in television as having a negative connotation as trouble makers and are not exactly something to look up too. On the other hand though, the entire Banks family shows characteristics that clash with Monk and Turner by being; proper, rich, and very well behaved. That’s why I thought that this show was a good example of how African American dominant shows are being portrayed in many different ways. Will shows how people usually think about African Americans in primetime television and the Banks family is the opposite and shows a different view on the situation.


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