The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

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The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
File:Fresh Prince Bel Aire logo.svg
Genre Sitcom
Created by
Developed by
Starring
Theme music composer The Fresh Prince in association with A Touch of Jazz, Inc.
Opening theme "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" performed by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
Ending theme "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” (instrumental)
Composer(s)
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 6
No. of episodes 148 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
Producer(s)
  • Werner Walian
  • Lisa Rosenthal
  • Joel Madison
  • Leilani Downer
  • Joanne Curley-Kerner
  • Joel Markowitz
Production location(s)
Camera setup Videotape; Multi-camera
Running time 22 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
HBO Max (reunion special)
Release
Original network NBC
Picture format NTSC
Original release September 10, 1990 (1990-09-10) – May 20, 1996 (1996-05-20)

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is an American sitcom television series created by Andy and Susan Borowitz that is based on the life of Will Smith. It originally aired on NBC from September 10, 1990, to May 20, 1996. The series stars Will Smith as Will, a street-smart teenager born and raised in West Philadelphia who is sent to move in with his wealthy uncle and aunt in their Bel-Air mansion after getting bullied at the local playground in his neighborhood. However, his lifestyle often clashes with that of his upper-class relatives.

Known as Smith's star vehicle into television and later his film career, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was a top hit for NBC, running for 148 episodes over six seasons.[1][2] A reunion special/retrospective reuniting the original cast debuted on HBO Max in November 2020.[3][4] A more dramatic reboot based on the fan film Bel-Air is in active development, with a two-season order for Peacock.

Summary

The theme song and opening sequence set the premise of the show. Will Smith is a street-smart teenager, West Philadelphia-"born and raised". While playing street basketball, Will misses a shot and the ball hits a group of gang members, causing a confrontation that frightens his mother, who sends him to live with his wealthy aunt and uncle in the opulent neighborhood of Bel Air, Los Angeles.

Will's working class background ends up clashing in various humorous ways with the upper class world of the Banks family – Will's uncle Phil and aunt Vivian and their children, Will's cousins: spoiled Hilary, pompous Carlton, impressionable Ashley and baby Nicky, (introduced at Season 3, Episode 20)

Cast and characters

     = Main cast (credited)
     = Recurring cast (4+)

Main

Actor/actress Character
1 2 3 4 5 6
Will Smith Will Smith Main
James Avery Philip Banks Main
Janet Hubert Vivian Banks Main
Daphne Maxwell Reid Main
Alfonso Ribeiro Carlton Banks Main
Karyn Parsons Hilary Banks Main
Tatyana M. Ali Ashley Banks Main
Joseph Marcell Geoffrey Butler Main
Ross Bagley[lower-alpha 1] Nicky Banks Recurring Main
  1. Various actors portrayed Nicky Banks throughout Seasons 3 and 4.

Recurring

Actor/actress Character Seasons
1 2 3 4 5 6
DJ Jazzy Jeff Jazz Recurring
Vernee Watson-Johnson[lower-alpha 1] Viola "Vy" Smith Recurring
Michael Weiner Kellogg "Cornflake" Lieberbaum Recurring
Lisa Fuller Toni Recurring
Jenifer Lewis Helen Smith Recurring Recurring
Charlayne Woodard Janice Smith Recurring
Perry Moore Tyriq "Ty" Johnson Recurring
Brian Stokes Mitchell Trevor Collins-Newsworthy Recurring
Tyra Banks Jacqueline "Jackie" Ames Recurring
Nia Long Beullah "Lisa" Wilkes Recurring
  1. A different unidentified actress portrayed Will's mother in the opening title sequence.

Celebrity guest stars

The show is notable for having a heavy celebrity guest presence with more than forty celebrities guest starring throughout the series. Seasons 1 and 6 had the highest celebrity participation with over 10 celebrity guest stars each.[5]

Celebrity Episode Notes
Richard Roundtree Season 1, Episode 3 Dr Mumford, father of Will's love interest. Also played Rev. Sims in Season 6.[5][6]
Don Cheadle Season 1, Episode 5 Ice Tray, Will's best friend from Philadelphia.[5]
Bo Jackson Season 1, Episode 9 Himself.[5]
Heavy D
Malcolm Jamal Warner
Quincy Jones
Al B. Sure
Kadeem Hardison
Naomi Campbell Season 1, Episode 10 Helen, Geoffrey's date.[7]
Isiah Thomas Season 1, Episode 11 Himself.[5]
Evander Holyfield Season 1, Episode 15 Himself.[5]
Vivica A. Fox Season 1, Episode 19 Janet, Jazz's sister and Will's date.[5]
Jasmine Guy Season 1, Episode 21 Kayla Samuels, Will's girlfriend.[5]
Tevin Campbell Season 1, Episode 24 Little T, Teen idol.[5]
Queen Latifah Season 1, Episode 25 Marissa Redman, Hilary's Boss. Also played "Dee Dee" in season 2.[5][8]
Malcolm-Jamal Warner Season 2, Episode 9 Eric, Hilary's love interest.[9]
Zsa Zsa Gabor Season 2, Episode 10 Sonya Lamor, Uncle Phil's celebrity client.[5]
Bell Biv DeVoe Season 2, Episode 11 Themselves.[5]
Brandon Quintin Season 2, Episode 12 Ramon, Ashley's friend. He returns as Bryan in season 4.[10][11]
Allen Payne Season 2, Episode 15 Marcus, Will's basketball rival.[5]
Milton Berle Season 2, Episode 18 Max Jakey, Will's hospital roommate.[5]
Riddick Bowe Season 3, Episode 21 A bully that confronts Carlton, but fights Will instead.[5]
Lark Voorhies Season 3, Episode 5 Carlton's ex-girlfriend
Sherman Hemsley Season 3, Episode 6 Judge Robertson, Uncle Phil's rival. Also George Jefferson in seasons 5 and 6.[5][12][13]
Oprah Winfrey Season 3, Episode 9 Herself.[5]
Vanessa Williams Season 3, Episode 11 Danny Mitchell, Will's idol.[5]
Naya Rivera Season 3, Episode 16 Cindy, Hilary's imagined ideal baby sister.[14]
Kim Fields Season 3, Episode 17 Monique, Will's girlfriend.[5]
Tom Jones Season 3, Episode 18 Himself.[5]
DL Hughley Season 3, Episode 22 Keith Campbell, Will's comedian friend from Philly.[5]
Hugh Hefner Season 4, Episode 9 Himself.[5]
Robin Quivers Season 4, Episode 12 Judith, one of the ghosts playing cards.[5]
Boyz II Men Season 4, Episode 13 Themselves.[5]
Sullivan Walker Reverend Boyd.
Branford Marsalis Season 4, Episode 14 Himself. Also plays "Duane" a repair man in the same season.[5][15]
Stacey Dash Season 4, Episode 17 Michelle Michaels, a famous singer/celebrity.[5]
Robert Guillaume Season 4, Episode 19 Pete Fletcher, Will's boss.[5]
Ben Vereen Season 4, Episode 24 Lou Smith, Will's father.[5]
Donald Trump Season 4, Episode 25 Themselves.[5]
Marla Maples
Dick Clark Season 4, Episode 26 Himself.[5] Returned in season 6 episode 20 to co-host bloopers of the show with Will Smith.
Brad Garrett Season 5, Episode 5 John "Fingers" O'Neill.[16]
Kareem Abdul Jabbar Season 5, Episode 6 Himself.[5]
Don Cornelius Season 5, Episode 8 Himself.[5]
Ken Griffey Jr. Season 5, Episode 9 Himself.[5]
Jay Leno Season 5, Episode 10 Himself. Also in season 6 episode 5 again playing Himself.[17][18]
Isabel Sanford Season 5, Episode 17 Louise Jefferson, couple's therapy member. Returns in season 6.[12][19]
Isaac Hayes Season 5, Episode 18 The Minister, who happens to be an Isaac Hayes impersonator, assigned to officiate Will's express wedding.[5]
Robin Givens Season 5, Episode 23 Denise, Will's love interest.[5]
Chris Rock Season 6, Episode 2 Maurice, a famous actor. Also plays Maurice's sister in the same episode.[5]
B. B. King Season 6, Episode 4 Pappy, the bar's blues player.[5]
Jaleel White Season 6, Episode 7 Derek, Ashley's boyfriend.[5]
Wayne Newton Season 6, Episode 8 Himself.[5]
Dick Clark Season 6, Episode 20 Himself.[5]
Regis Philbin Season 6, Episode 21 Himself.[5]
William Shatner Season 6, Episode 22 Himself.[20]
Conrad Bain Season 6, Episode 24 Phillip Drummond, open house attendee.[21]
Gary Coleman Arnold Jackson-Drummond, open house attendee.[21]
Marla Gibbs Florence Johnston, open house attendee.[21]

Episodes

This is a list of episodes from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, an American television sitcom that originally aired on NBC from September 10, 1990 to May 20, 1996. The show starred Will Smith as a street-smart teenager from West Philadelphia who is sent to live with his wealthy relatives in a Bel Air mansion. His lifestyle often clashes with his relatives there. 148 episodes were produced for six seasons.

Series overview

Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 25 September 10, 1990 (1990-09-10) May 6, 1991 (1991-05-06)
2 24 September 9, 1991 (1991-09-09) May 4, 1992 (1992-05-04)
3 24 September 14, 1992 (1992-09-14) May 10, 1993 (1993-05-10)
4 26 September 20, 1993 (1993-09-20) May 23, 1994 (1994-05-23)
5 25 September 19, 1994 (1994-09-19) May 15, 1995 (1995-05-15)
6 24 September 18, 1995 (1995-09-18) May 20, 1996 (1996-05-20)

Episodes

Season 1 (1990–1991)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
code
1 1 "Pilot (The Fresh Prince Project)" Debbie Allen Andy Borowitz & Susan Borowitz September 10, 1990 (1990-09-10) 446801
Will meets the Banks family and clashes with nearly all of them. He doesn't get along with his uncle Philip, his aunt Vivian defends him, his older cousin Hilary looks down on him, his cousin Carlton wants to bond with him, and his younger cousin, Ashley looks up to him, which Philip is not pleased about when Will teaches Ashley how to rap and she raps at the dinner table.
2 2 "Bang the Drum, Ashley" Debbie Allen Shannon Gaughan September 17, 1990 (1990-09-17) 446802
After Ashley reveals to Will that she does not enjoy playing the violin, he takes her to a pawn shop in East LA and trades her violin in for a drum set. He tries to ease the blow to Philip and Vivian by also getting them gifts before revealing Ashley's new music teacher, Jazz. But the constant drumming angers everyone.
3 3 "Clubba Hubba" Jeff Melman Rob Edwards September 24, 1990 (1990-09-24) 446805
Will tries to impress a girl's father (Richard Roundtree) so that he can date her, so Philip, Carlton and Geoffrey try to teach him how to be a gentleman in a My Fair Lady. While he impresses the girl's father as "Kipp Smithers", Will finds out that Mimi prefers bad boys "from the hood". Will spends the night alternating between his images before realizing being oneself is more important than impressing others.
4 4 "Not with My Pig, You Don't" Jeff Melman Lisa Rosenthal October 1, 1990 (1990-10-01) 446806
Philip's parents come to visit for the weekend when he wins a prestigious award who inadvertently reveal his embarrassing country roots. A reporter (Kathy Griffin) comes to the Banks' house to interview Philip about his life, but plans to kill the story because she finds him boring. Will, overhearing, tells her embarrassing stories about Philip's past "barnyard life" he heard from Philip's parents. This goes down well with the newspaper editors and Philip's parents, but Philip seems ashamed until he makes his acceptance speech where he shows renewed pride in his roots.
5 5 "Homeboy, Sweet Homeboy" Jeff Melman Samm-Art Williams October 8, 1990 (1990-10-08) 446804
Will gets a visit from an old pal named Ice Tray (Don Cheadle), who, to Vivian's and Philip's dismay, warms up to Hilary. Philip and Vivian try and discourage Hilary from falling in love with him by finding great warmth to the idea until she jokingly says she just married him to gauge their reaction, which is outrage. Will confides to Vivian just how good a friend Ice Tray had been to him when he was the only studious kid from a class of drop-outs in Philadelphia.
6 6 "Mistaken Identity" Jeff Melman Susan Borowitz & Andy Borowitz October 15, 1990 (1990-10-15) 446807
While Philip and Vivian go on a trip to Palm Springs in Mr. Furth's helicopter, Will and Carlton drive Furth's Mercedes there as well. They get pulled over by a police officer (Hank Azaria) for "stealing" the car. Luckily, Will was able to get Philip's attention by telling a phony confession on TV and he and Carlton are freed. This was the privileged Carlton's first experience with racial profiling. His father and street-wise cousin leave him with much to ponder when they clue him in on the realities of the system. Meanwhile, Hilary babysits Ashley and proves to be an unhealthy influence on the young girl when she gives her too much coffee.
7 7 "Def Poet's Society" Jeff Melman John Bowman October 22, 1990 (1990-10-22) 446808
The family pressures Will to enter an after school program. Following the girls into a poetry class, he makes up a poem on the spot to impress them and claims it was written by a poet named Raphael de la Ghetto, a name he spontaneously came up with on the spot. Impressed, Christina asks to bring him to Poetry Night and after Jazz doesn't come through with an impostor, Will turns to Geoffrey to masquerade.
8 8 "Someday Your Prince Will Be in Effect" (Part 1) Jeff Melman Story: Bennie Richburg, Jr.
Teleplay: Cheryl Gard & Shannon Gaughan
October 29, 1990 (1990-10-29) 446810A
The family heads to the mall to pick up costumes for Hilary's Halloween party, while Will and Carlton place a bet to see who can find a date for the party. Philip gets held up at a gadget store. Vivian sings in a Record-A-Song booth. When Hilary forgets to take a hat off Ashley and walks out of the store with it, they get accused of shoplifting.
9 9 "Someday Your Prince Will Be in Effect" (Part 2) Jeff Melman Story: Bennie Richburg, Jr.
Teleplay: Cheryl Gard & Shannon Gaughan
October 29, 1990 (1990-10-29) 446810B
Will and Carlton both try to win Melinda over by making up stories about themselves. Special Guest Stars: Quincy Jones, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Kadeem Hardison, Bo Jackson, Heavy D. and Al B. Sure!
10 10 "Kiss My Butler" Rita Rogers Blye Sandy Frank November 5, 1990 (1990-11-05) 446809
It is Geoffrey's birthday and Will decides to set him up on a blind date with a woman named Helen (Naomi Campbell) as a gift. However, Will winds up thinking she is perfect for him and breaks up the two. Later when Geoffrey comes home, he gives Will Helen's phone number, stating she would be more fit for Will.
11 11 "Courting Disaster" Jeff Melman Sandy Frank & Lisa Rosenthal November 12, 1990 (1990-11-12) 446811
Will joins the school basketball team which Carlton is already on. Will becomes the star of the team, causing Carlton to become jealous and the two become competitive with another. In the peak of his jealousy, Carlton decides to steal the ball from Will and take the game's winning shot though he misses. Both Will and Carlton learn their lessons back at the house.
12 12 "Talking Turkey" Jeff Melman Cheryl Gard November 19, 1990 (1990-11-19) 446812
Will's mom, Vy, comes to the Banks' for Thanksgiving. She gets angry that the kids leave all of the work to Geoffrey and criticizes her sister for being too easy on the kids. Vivian then decides to make the kids cook Thanksgiving dinner. Everything goes wrong when Ashley drops the cranberry sauce on the floor, the turkey is still frozen, and a lot more accidents happen. Carlton also invites his English teacher to the dinner.
13 13 "Knowledge is Power" Jeff Melman Rob Edwards November 26, 1990 (1990-11-26) 446813
In order to get the family car instead of Will, Hilary rats him out for several things, including getting in at 3 a.m. the previous day. Will plans revenge; while going to find out where Hilary is shopping, he learns that she dropped out of college three months ago. Will uses this in order to get Hilary to slave for him while he is punished. Hilary tries to get Carlton to go against Will, but he also uses it against her. Carlton and Will both have lists of embarrassing tasks that Hilary must do at the dinner table. Will's are that when Uncle Phil takes a sip of water, she compliments him and when someone says her name, she must bark like a dog. Carlton's list is when he clears his throat, she must hit Will and when he taps his glass, she must insult Will. They both make her do this stuff at the same time causing her to panic and admit that she dropped out.
14 14 "Day Damn One" Jeff Melman Cheryl Gard December 3, 1990 (1990-12-03) 446803
Ashley and her friends ask Will to tell a scary story at their slumber party before they go to sleep. Will tells the tale of his first day at Bel-Air Academy and how he carved his name into a desk that the first students of the Academy carved into.
15 15 "Deck the Halls" Jeff Melman Shannon Gaughan December 10, 1990 (1990-12-10) 446814
Will realizes that Ashley has never experienced a real Christmas before (since back in Philly, there would be carolers, lights and neat decorations, while in Bel-Air there are only a few decorations, no carolers, and hardly anything in the Christmas spirit) and goes out of his way to let her have one. He decorates the inside of the mansion and also the outside fully with hundreds of lights, decor, and colors, upsetting some of the neighbors.
16 16 "Lucky Charm" Jeff Melman Samm-Art Williams January 7, 1991 (1991-01-07) 446816
Due to a couple of coincidences, one of Philip's clients, a very superstitious businessman, thinks Will is his good luck charm. He befriends Will, who is allowed to decide on some of his major decisions in the stock market. Will has to take upon himself to tell him that he is only in Bel-Air Academy and doesn't want this to interfere with his life.
17 17 "The Ethnic Tip" Jeff Melman Benny Medina & Jeff Pollack January 14, 1991 (1991-01-14) 446815
Will proposes a black history class be instituted at Bel-Air Academy, and gets a surprise when Vivian arrives to teach it. Many of the students enjoy her ways of teaching, except Will and Carlton when she gives them extra homework to do (since they are her two black sons). The students create a petition to keep her as a permanent history teacher and need 150 signature's but only have 148 since they though it'd be fun if the two black students (Will and Carlton) would top it off. They are hesitant and Vivian notices and rejects the idea. At home, Vivian explains that she gave the two extra homework because as the only two black students in class she thought they'd get more from the course and tells Will that unless he learns the full history behind the struggle for equal rights then he's trivilizing the subject. The show closes with a Malcolm X quote which reads: "Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs for those who prepare for it today."
18 18 "The Young and the Restless" Jeff Melman Lisa Roseenthal January 21, 1991 (1991-01-21) 446817
Philip's mother joins the family for the weekend after recovering from a cold. Philip wants her to relax for the weekend but she has other ideas. Will exposes her to some rap music by Heavy D, which she really likes. She and Will then sneak out to a Heavy D concert, which the family tracks them down and aren't too happy about it.
19 19 "It Had to Be You" Jeff Melman Cheryl Gard February 4, 1991 (1991-02-04) 446818
Jazz asks Will the favor of taking his sister (Vivica A. Fox) out on a date after she moves into town. Will does so reluctantly, until Jazz introduces the two. Will takes her on a date, but learns that she's extremely bossy and has her whole life planned out for the two already. She tells Will what to do, where and how to look, and criticizes Will for every little thing. Jazz recommends that if Will doesn't like her he should introduce her to someone else. He does so to Carlton at a club. When she displays her rudeness, Carlton can't take it anymore and straightens her out, causing her to fall in love with Carlton.
20 20 "Nice Lady" Jeff Melman Sandy Frank February 11, 1991 (1991-02-11) 446819
Geoffrey's old employer Lord Fowler and his daughter come to the Banks' house for the weekend. Will wants to use the car to go to a Ziggy Marley concert in Nevada, but Philip and Viv won't let him, so he promises to take Lady Penelope to the opera, but she winds up not being what Will thought she would be. She steals the car keys and drives to a club and started doing the "3 Card Monte" scam to gangs and dances on the tables all while she refuses go to. Will tells Geoffrey about it and go to get her, so Will doesn't get int trouble. They don't find her in the club and go back home to tell the Lord. She then appears and states how Will drove her to the opera, got a bit bored so he came home in the third act and she sat through it all.
21 21 "Love at First Fight" Jeff Melman Lisa Rosenthal & Samm-Art Williams February 18, 1991 (1991-02-18) 446820
One of Vivian's students, Kayla Samuels (Jasmine Guy) comes over for dinner and Will tries to impress her but fails. Eventually, Will wins her over and inadvertently starts taking time away from her studies so Vivian tells him to cut back on their relationship so Kayla can have a good future. Vivian winds up lecturing Kayla and revealing things about her own struggles to be successful.
22 22 "Banks Shot" Jeff Melman Bennie Richburg, Jr. February 25, 1991 (1991-02-25) 446821
Vivian goes away to Berkeley for the weekend, leaving Hilary in charge. When Will steals the car keys to go to the pool hall, and winds up losing his money and the car to a hustler, Philip must go down to rescue him. There he acts like he never played pool before and lets the hustlers win. The then plays again with Geoffrey's cue for $100 a ball. He then greatly wins over the hustlers and gets the car back. Hilary acts as a tyrant to Carlton and Ashley when she is left in charge.
23 23 "72 Hours" Rea Kraus Rob Edwards March 11, 1991 (1991-03-11) 446822
Will makes a bet that Carlton wouldn't last a weekend in Jazz's neighborhood, Compton because of the way he is. Carlton takes the bet too far by becoming very thug-like and wears, colorful clothing, shades, bandannas (like Will) and Will has to find a way to stop him from going to MacArthur Park at night. He then rats him on the parents where they go to rescue him before going to the park. At the house, Carlton wins the bet and the reason he won is because Will cared about him and didn't want him to possibly die at the park that night.
24 24 "Just Infatuation" Jeff Melman Jeff Pollack & Benny Medina April 29, 1991 (1991-04-29) 446824
Ashley's birthday is nearing and when the family asks her what she would like for her birthday, she shows them a picture of Little T (Tevin Campbell), the popular teen singer. Hilary knows T's agent so she has him come to Ashley's birthday party to perform a song for her. They hit it off and set up a date for the next day. Will and Carlton disagree with the date, so they decide to follow them on their date. They find out that all the things they heard about him were false and let them continue on with their date. At the house, as Ashley is adjusting her hair, Will thinks back to the time he taught her how to rap and how she is already growing up fast.
25 25 "Working It Out" Rita Rogers Blye Shannon Gaughan May 6, 1991 (1991-05-06) 446823
Hilary lands a new job as an assistant to an actress, Marissa Redman (Queen Latifah) who turns out to be completely disrespectful. Will surprises Hilary with Jazz in the office and Marissa takes a liking to Will, wanting to bring him to a restaurant opening and threatens Hilary with being fired in order to set up the date. Will agrees, but only if Hilary goes on a date with Jazz. Marissa gets mad at Hilary for not giving someone champagne when Jazz acts up and gets mad at Marissa for talking to Hilary like that, Hilary kisses him at the home.

Season 2 (1991–1992)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
code
26 1 "Did the Earth Move for You?" Ellen Falcon Winifred Hervey September 9, 1991 (1991-09-09) 446901
The Banks family gets tickets to the Oscars, but on the way there, an earthquake happens. The parents are stuck in Uncle Phil's workplace, Will and his girlfriend are stuck in the house's basement, and the rest are stuck in traffic. Will finds out more about his newfound love than he wanted to. Kathleen (Tisha Campbell) begins to reveal her true self. They decide to break up because they can't be together. This episode is referenced in "M is for the Many Things She Gave Me" in season four.
27 2 "The Mother of All Battles" Ellen Falcon Bryan Winter September 16, 1991 (1991-09-16) 446902
Ashley is being bullied by a Paula Hoover at her school and turns to Will and Carlton for help. Will attempts to teach her how to fight while Carlton tries to teach her how to bribe. Paula and her parents visit Uncle Phil and Aunt Viv and the two sets of parents also clash. The two girls are sitting in the kitchen when they realize that Paula hated Ashley because she bumped into her while she was slow dancing with a boy she liked. Paula thought Ashley did this on purpose, but Ashley says it was because the boy she was dancing with liked Paula and wanted to get closer to her. They then become friends. After a yo Momma joke directed at Uncle Phil that takes things too far, Uncle Phil punches Paula's father.
28 3 "Will Gets a Job" Ellen Falcon Efrem Seeger September 23, 1991 (1991-09-23) 446903
Phillip mistakes Will for Carlton accidentally several times and offers to pay for Will's Homecoming dance expenses, causing Will to become paranoid that he is becoming exactly like Carlton and totally living off of Uncle Phil's help and money. Will decides to secretly get a job at a pirate-themed restaurant to pay for the Homecoming expenses himself. Will excitedly tells the news to Uncle Phil, who then grounds him for "not telling the truth" for his missing basketball practices, sleeping in class, and skipping school. Ashley knows about this, and takes the family to the restaurant Will works for. Due to the costume, Uncle Phil originally doesn't recognize Will, who tries to get away with some insults. When Uncle Phil tells the pirate server (Will) about how rude he is being, Will takes the costume off. In the end they make up once Uncle Phil realizes why Will wanted to get a job, and Will realizes it is okay to get help from Uncle Phil to succeed. As a subplot, Ashley's friend Tina has a massive crush on Carlton when she sees him in a swimsuit. She follows him around until she sees Will in the costume.
29 4 "PSAT Pstory" Ellen Falcon Marcus Jamal Gaines September 30, 1991 (1991-09-30) 446904
Will is a picture of confidence, while Carlton is a frazzled bundle of nerves over preparing for college aptitude tests. Carlton is basing his whole future on one test score, while Will does not think too much of it. Will beats Carlton, scoring in the 91% tier while Carlton scores in the 90% tier. Carlton pesters Will about the scores and tries to say what could have gone wrong, and concludes that his nervousness distracted him. The next week, during a pop quiz by Coach Smiley, Carlton copies Will's paper when the pressure gets to him. He is caught by Coach Smiley and sent to the office. Will tricks the coach into thinking Carlton had a sports injury where he could move his neck toward Will when faced with stress. They believe this, until Carlton thanks Will for getting him out of cheating. Meanwhile Geoffrey works hard towards getting a raise by cooking and planning a blueprint for a gazebo. When he does not get one, he quits. The family tries to bring him back and offers him $100 a week; he takes it and Uncle Phil apologizes for taking him for granted.
30 5 "Granny Gets Busy" Ellen Falcon Cheryl Gard October 7, 1991 (1991-10-07) 446906
Hattie comes over to the Banks' place for a while. Everyone introduces Hattie to a neighbor who is very boring. That night, Vivian wants to have sex with Phil and bought a brand new nightgown, when he notices a note on the bed saying Hattie went over to play cards with the neighbor. Philip goes to check on her, but He is shocked when he spies on her and finds her kissing the handyman, Ed. The next night, they talk and they both realize that after a year of being a widow, it's time for Hattie to start dating again. Meanwhile, Will and Carlton have a bet with Hilary and Ashley to see who can do something that the opposite gender can do better. Will and Carlton must sew a dress and Hilary and Ashley must build an exercise bike. The kids finish their bet and it ends in a draw for both.
31 6 "Guess Who's Coming to Marry?" Ellen Falcon Samm-Art Williams October 14, 1991 (1991-10-14) 446905
Tensions spill over just before the wedding of Will's Aunt Janice when Will's mom meets Janice's intended, who is a white man. Vy refuses to attend the interracial wedding, and forbids Will to, but she is eventually convinced to go. Aunt Janice happily marries her fiancé.
32 7 "The Big Four-Oh" Ellen Falcon Lisa Rosenthal October 21, 1991 (1991-10-21) 446907
Vivian is terrified to turn 40 years old. She rethinks her past and what some of her goals were. She remembers back to a time when her soul and main purpose was to be a dancer. She rededicates herself to dance and manages to pull off a star performance at an audition, although she returns to being a professor.
33 8 "She Ain't Heavy" Ellen Falcon Lisa Rosenthal November 4, 1991 (1991-11-04) 446908
Will is getting tickets to a Lakers basketball game when Uncle Phil decides to give the other tickets to his boss' daughter. Will hits it off with the full-figured friend named Dee Dee (Queen Latifah), but her size keeps Will from asking her to the dance. Though Will likes her, he takes the shallow way out as soon as his friends start teasing him. At a pizza place, his friends from the place and school make fun of her size, which Dee Dee hears it when she comes out of the washroom. She ignores Will for a while. He has a very boring date who talks too much, and so does Dee Dee. When he sees her at the dance with another guy, he sees more clearly that it's what's on the inside that counts more than the outside.
34 9 "Cased Up" Ellen Falcon Bennie R. Richburg, Jr. November 11, 1991 (1991-11-11) 446909
Hilary finally meets the man Uncle Phil has wanted her to date, Eric. He is young, dashing, rich, and the things that Hilary is looking for in a man. All is going well until there is a small car accident caused by Will's new car. Since Will is underage and uninsured, Eric sues the Banks instead.
35 10 "Hi-Ho Silver" Ellen Falcon Ed Burnham & Elaine Newman November 18, 1991 (1991-11-18) 446910
When Viv has a guest over and the silverware goes missing, Will and Carlton assume the silver has been stolen by the guest, Sonya L'Amour, a famous TV star. Will and Carlton do a little investigating in her house to find the culprit. They notice she has the same cutlery used by Sonya. They steal back the silverware and return home to explain the good news, only to realize the caterer brought back the stolen silverware and they stole Sonya's. They then have to sneak back into Sonya's and return the spoons and forks.
36 11 "The Butler Did It" Ellen Falcon Bryan Winter November 25, 1991 (1991-11-25) 446911
Geoffrey and the parents are away for a while, leaving the kids alone. Ashley's attempt to drive her Girl Scout troop ends in fail. Bell Biv DeVoe, as themselves, shoot a video at the Banks', courtesy of Carlton, who rents out the house while his parents are away. Will walks into their music video sheet, Ashley's Girl Scouts walk in (they are all huge fans of them), and Will and his friend dance into the shoot. All the furniture was taken outside to make space for the shoot. It thens starts to rain, causing everything to get soaking wet. At their hotel, Uncle Phil and Aunt Viv are very cross at their neighbor because he is buying out the bellboys, leaving them to do their own work. The neighbor ends up being Geoffrey. They then decide to return early, leaving kids to scramble to put the house back in order.
37 12 "Something for Nothing" Ellen Falcon Bill Streib December 9, 1991 (1991-12-09) 446912
Will and his young friend play basketball often and his friend says how he is currently doing little jobs around the area to get money for basketball camp. Hilary is in charge of preparing a Monte Carlo fundraiser night. Will really shows that he has luck in his favor by winning high amounts of money on every turn. He also wins a prize of $1000! He learns that he must give the money back as a donation for a special charity as a tradition. Will refuses to give it back and breaks the decade-long tradition. Uncle Phil demands that Will give it back; instead of giving it to the casino, he gives it to his friend for basketball camp.
38 13 "Will's Christmas Show" Ellen Falcon Winifred Hervey December 16, 1991 (1991-12-16) 446913
On a family ski trip, the kids are left home alone while the adults are skiing the slopes. Will is persuaded by Hilary, Carlton, and Ashley to let a stranger in their cabin. Will records him saying "Merry Christmas" to the camera. The stranger then says "Nobody move, this is a stick up!" and the camera irises out. The stranger steals everything and leaves them with nothing, so they must find a way to give gifts from the heart. Carlton is traumatized about it and realizes that life isn't some game and learns to cherish it and love everyone.
39 14 "Hilary Gets a Life" Shelley Jensen Eunetta T. Boone & P. Karen Raper January 6, 1992 (1992-01-06) 446914
After viewing the credit card bill, Phil snaps Hilary's credit cards in half to prevent her from over-spending anymore on shoes. Not knowing what to do or how to look for a job, Hillary asks Will and his friend Tyriq to help her.
40 15 "My Brother's Keeper" Ellen Falcon Bennie Richburg, Jr. January 13, 1992 (1992-01-13) 446915
On the basketball court, winning is everything to Will, as it is to an opponent from Malibu Prep, Marcus Stokes, who can't afford to lose due to his need for a scholarship. Will always goes for pre-game haircuts to add a little spice to his game and there he learns that Marcus was very poor growing up. Marcus comes in with his toddler son. Will thinks how hard it must be to have a child and to have so much pressure for his education, family, and scholarship. Will is torn between wanting the glory of winning for himself and letting the other player have his chance at success. He lets Marcus beat him by pretending to miss an easy chance to stop him. After the game, Will earns that even though Marcus loves basketball with a burning passion, he needs his scholarship for education opportunities and that's what he'll use to take care of his family, a good job that lasts a lifetime. He also mentions that if anyone offers him great amounts of money for dribbling a basketball then he'll take it.
41 16 "Geoffrey Cleans Up" Ellen Falcon Lisa Rosenthal January 20, 1992 (1992-01-20) 446916
Geoffrey falls hard for a neighbor he believes is a housekeeper, but who turns out to be very wealthy.
42 17 "Community Action" Ellen Falcon Cheryl Gard February 3, 1992 (1992-02-03) 446917
When Hillary is ordered to do community service at a free clinic, the doctor in charge becomes the antidote for her marriage-mindedness. Jazz abuses the Banks' generosity by sleeping in the pool house with Carlton's supposed girlfriend, stealing Uncle Phil's bathrobe and Ashley's CD player.
43 18 "Ill Will" Ellen Falcon Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon February 10, 1992 (1992-02-10) 446918
Will fears the scalpel when he enters the hospital for a tonsillectomy, while The family fears a steamy exposé when Geoffrey begins to write his memoirs.
44 19 "Eyes on the Prize" Ellen Falcon Bryan Winter February 17, 1992 (1992-02-17) 446919
Needing a game show partner, Will must choose between his bickering friends.
45 20 "Those Were the Days" Rita Rogers Samm-Art Williams February 24, 1992 (1992-02-24) 446920
Philip and Vivian welcome a '60s radical, who arouses the FBI's interest and influences Will and Carlton to take action over the firing of a nonconformist teacher.
46 21 "Vying for Attention" Malcolm-Jamal Warner Efrem Seeger March 2, 1992 (1992-03-02) 446921
Will dislikes his mother's new boyfriend Robert though he does everything to get Will to accept him. As it turns out, Will is afraid of sharing his mother with someone else.
47 22 "The Aunt Who Came to Dinner" Rae Kraus Jerry Ross March 23, 1992 (1992-03-23) 446922
Aunt Helen arrives unexpectedly and upsets Will and Carlton's plans for a rendezvous with two gorgeous French women and the parents plans for a Jazz Festival. Aunt Helen needed some time alone after she noticed that her husband might be seeing another woman. It turns out, it was his psychiatrist.
48 23 "Be My Baby Tonight" Shelley Jensen Lisa Rosenthal April 27, 1992 (1992-04-27) 446923
Ashley cringes when the family oohs and aahs over her relationship with her boyfriend Kevin. They both have these "feelings and emotions" about having sex with each other. Ashley keeps trying to ask Will about sex but he keeps choking every time. He and Carlton visit the pregnancy counseling center to learn how to give a proper sex talk. Ashley learns that it is okay to have questions at her age and Aunt Viv and Uncle Phil answer them.
49 24 "Striptease for Two" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon May 4, 1992 (1992-05-04) 446924
Will and Carlton accidentally lose their shirts investing on an insider trading tip and take jobs as strippers to recoup their losses and get Vivian's bracelet back.

Season 3 (1992–1993)

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50 1 "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" Shelley Jensen Winifred Hervey September 14, 1992 (1992-09-14) 446951
Will returns home from spending the summer in Philadelphia with a new look that does not sit well with Philip. It angers Phillip even more when Ashley starts to pick up Will's habits.
51 2 "Will Gets Committed" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon September 21, 1992 (1992-09-21) 446952
Philip and Vivian organize a cleanup effort in the riot-torn remains of their old LA neighborhood. Vivian announces that she is pregnant.
52 3 "That's No Lady, That's My Cousin" Shelley Jensen Bryan Winter September 28, 1992 (1992-09-28) 446953
Enrolled at the newly co-ed Bel-Air Prep, Ashley begins dressing to entice guys, using Will's preferences in women as her examples. Guests, Garcelle Beauvais appearance and Larenz Tate.
53 4 "Hilary Gets a Job" Shelley Jensen Efrem Seeger October 5, 1992 (1992-10-05) 446954
Hilary gets a job on television as a weathergirl and finds herself attracted to the anchorman, Trevor Collins (Brian Stokes Mitchell).
54 5 "Mama's Baby, Carlton's Maybe" Shelley Jensen Michael Fry October 12, 1992 (1992-10-12) 446956
Carlton prepares for a dinner date with his former girlfriend, Cindy (Lark Voorhees), forgiving her for rejecting him several months earlier, but when she arrives with a newborn baby named Carlton Jr., the entire Banks family is stunned.
55 6 "P.S. I Love You" Shelley Jensen Linda M. Yearwood October 24, 1992 (1992-10-24) 446955
Philip intends to railroad the ineffectual Judge Robertson (Sherman Hemsley) off the bench while Will becomes the "love slave" of a flamboyantly generous plain student. Will accepts many expensive gifts off her including tickets to the Los Angeles Lakers game, a Harley-Davidson and even a jacket emblazoned with a motif of his hero Malcolm X! In the end she reveals she does not even like him. She was just doing this for his attention, because he was captain of the basketball team and lots of other girls do like him.
56 7 "Here Comes the Judge" Shelley Jensen Samm-Art Williams October 26, 1992 (1992-10-26) 446958
Will is arrested for numerous parking tickets he claims he did not get as Philip runs for judge against incumbent Judge Robertson. Once Will sees the tickets funds, he realizes that he left the car with Jazz for the summer and he is the one who got the tickets, not him. He gets very furious with Jazz for not telling him about the tickets because friends don't keep things like that from each other and tells him that they are no longer friends and he is no longer welcome in the home. However, they work things out, and get back together as friends in the end.
57 8 "Boyz in the Woods" Chuck Vinson Samm-Art Williams November 5, 1992 (1992-11-05) 446957
Philip takes Will and Carlton on a camping trip that turns out to be a disaster when snow traps the unhappy campers.
58 9 "A Night at the Oprah" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon November 9, 1992 (1992-11-09) 446959
The Banks are invited on The Oprah Winfrey Show as a replacement family, but what Will does not know is that there is no room for him to go. He disrupts the show and it leads to Uncle Phil's public ratings to go down.
59 10 "Asses to Ashes" Shelley Jensen Bryan Winter November 16, 1992 (1992-11-16) 446960
Election results are in and Philip fights to remain cool amid lies by Judge Robertson, which prompt Will to confront the outspoken incumbent. Chaos ensues when the judge dies after Will tells him to drop dead. Uncle Phil must give the eulogy at the funeral, where to Will's and Uncle Phil's surprise, everybody hated him and are glad he died. After the funeral, Phillip gets a call from the Governor and is appointed Supreme Court Judge.
60 11 "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon November 23, 1992 (1992-11-23) 446961
At Vivian's Lamaze class, Will cozies up to a pregnant sportswriter (Vanessa L. Williams), who takes him to a game, and delivers more than just fun. She then has her baby in the back of the limo, Will must put what he learned about breathing to the test for her.
61 12 "The Cold War" Michael Peters David Steven Simon December 7, 1992 (1992-12-07) 446962
Carlton is very depressed after being rejected by Paula, unaware that she has left him for Will. Meanwhile, Philip and Vivian receive an envelope from their doctor containing an ultrasound picture revealing the sex of Vivian's fetus. Not wanting to spoil their surprise in the delivery room, they entrust the sealed envelope to their butler, Geoffrey. Then curiosity gets the better of them.
62 13 "Mommy Nearest" Shelley Jensen Efrem Seeger December 14, 1992 (1992-12-14) 446963
Will's mother tells Will that she has broken her engagement to Robert and eagerly awaits her son's graduation so they can return to Philadelphia together. A shocked Will is afraid to tell her that he wants to attend college in California and remain with his Bel-Air family and friends, and suffers a nightmarish fantasy of what it would be like still living with his mother when he is 72 years old.
63 14 "Winner Takes Off" Shelley Jensen & Werner Walian Casey Maxwell Clair January 4, 1993 (1993-01-04) 446964
Will and Carlton decide to play a trick on Geoffrey as revenge for an earlier prank and convince him that he has won a multimillion dollar lottery. However, this backfires when Geoffrey immediately quits his job after insulting the whole family. Telling him the truth, Geoffrey is left so embarrassed he decides to leave anyway. He goes to work at a restaurant and the boys try to get him to come back home by doing other embarrassing things to make him crack such as stealing others food and pretending like he is their father.
64 15 "Robbing the Banks" Shelley Jensen Winifred Hervey January 18, 1993 (1993-01-18) 446966
Philip is quick to judge an ex-con Will urged him to hire as a handyman and temporary assistant after the house is robbed.
65 16 "Bundle of Joy" Shelley Jensen Myles Avery Mapp & K. Snyder January 25, 1993 (1993-01-25) 446974
As Vivian's delivery date approaches, the family fantasizes about what the baby will mean to each of them: Ashley feels all but invisible, Geoffrey feels overwhelmed by the family's demands so he tricks Vivian into thinking she is having triplets.
66 17 "Best Laid Plans" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon February 1, 1993 (1993-02-01) 446965
Will tries to dupe a girl (Kim Fields) into intimacy. His girlfriend will not have sex with him unless they are married, so Will arranges for Jazz to impersonate a priest and performs a fake marriage ceremony. In the end Will has an attack of conscience and backs out.
67 18 "The Alma Matter" Shelley Jensen Bryan Winter February 8, 1993 (1993-02-08) 446968
A representative from Princeton University begins interviewing students at Bel Air Prep. When Will makes a good impression in his interview and gets a conditional acceptance by acting naturally, Carlton thinks that is trickery so he decides to imitate him... only for this to backfire badly and earn him an outright rejection. After initially lying to his family he got in on a scholarship, he soon tells the truth to his furious family. Feeling utterly depressed and suicidal, Carlton soon gets a visit from his guardian angel Tom Jones, who helps him see the light.
68 19 "Just Say Yo" Shelley Jensen Efrem Seeger February 15, 1993 (1993-02-15) 446969
While juggling basketball practice, education, home life, and his social life, Will is offered amphetamines, known as Speed, by a friend. After debating whether or not to use it, he doesn't and stores the drugs in his locker. While at the prom, Carlton finds the drugs, thinking its Vitamin E, takes the bottle, and ends up in the hospital.
69 20 "The Baby Comes Out" Shelley Jensen Winifred Hervey February 22, 1993 (1993-02-22) 446967
Vivian's baby is a week late, but family members and her visiting sisters Vy and Janice are nowhere to be found (at a beauty salon) when it is time to rush to the hospital. Uncle Phil and Will are stuck in an elevator with a smoker. The only people left in the house are Geoffrey and Ashley. Geoffrey can't handle a car, so Ashley, although 13, knows how to drive. The baby comes out and the family decide HIS name. The all come up with names like Nicholas, Andrew, Sha-bang, Rufus, Brad etc.
70 21 "You Bet Your Life" Chuck Vinson Samm-Art Williams March 1, 1993 (1993-03-01) 446970
Heavyweight boxing champ Riddick Bowe wreaks havoc with Carlton's mind and Will's face at a funky cafe-casino in Nevada, where the cousins have stopped on their way to check out a college for Will.
71 22 "Ain't No Business Like Show Business" Shelley Jensen Story: Will Smith & Jeff Pollack
Teleplay: Jeff Pollack
April 12, 1993 (1993-04-12) 446971
Will lands a spot in a comedy showcase after accompanying a comic friend (D. L. Hughley) to an audition.
72 23 "The Way We Were" Maynard C. Virgil I Michael Fry May 3, 1993 (1993-05-03) 446973
Series clips illustrate family recollections as the kids put together a scrapbook for Vivian and Philip, who want to renew their vows on their anniversary.
73 24 "Six Degrees of Graduation" Shelley Jensen Bryan Winter & Efrem Seeger May 10, 1993 (1993-05-10) 446972
Vy anticipates Will's graduation with enthusiasm, but there may be discord when she learns Will is failing music. To pass his music class, Will must sing at the graduation ceremony with a class of children.

Season 4 (1993–1994)

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74 1 "Where There's a Will, There's a Way" (Part 1) Shelley Jensen Gary H. Miller September 20, 1993 (1993-09-20) 60031
Will and Carlton begin their first year of college by moving into their own apartment, while Philip and Vivian enjoy their newborn son. Trevor plans to propose marriage to Hilary while bungee jumping on his TV news show, but is met with a sudden death.
75 2 "Where There's a Will, There's a Way" (Part 2) Shelley Jensen Gary H. Miller September 20, 1993 (1993-09-20) 60032
Will accuses Jazz for sending rappers to his party who got him and Carlton kicked out of their rooms by a grouchy and uncaring old landlord. Hilary has difficulty dealing with Trevor's death.
76 3 "All Guts, No Glory" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams September 27, 1993 (1993-09-27) 60033
Will withdraws from a difficult college philosophy class then regrets his decision when he discovers that the professor is the most stimulating teacher he has ever known. He chooses to return to that class even when having to forfeit the credits it should give him.
77 4 "Father of the Year" Shelley Jensen Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon October 4, 1993 (1993-10-04) 60034
When Will tries to impress a beautiful college girl by pretending to be a single father and using his new infant cousin as his son, he is forced to accept the honor of "Campus Father of the Year". Jackie (Tyra Banks) makes him feel ashamed and he confesses when offered a prize of plane tickets to Hawaii, so he hands them over to the other student-father, who then confides to Will that he also is lying.
78 5 "It's Better to Have Loved and Lost It…" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman October 11, 1993 (1993-10-11) 60036
Carlton meets Jo Ann, a beautiful woman on the college campus. They end up spending the night together and Carlton finally loses his virginity. This also helps give him confidence as he prepares again to apply for Princeton. However, Carlton's shot at greater merriment is short-lived, as Jo Ann turns out to be married (to a man who could have helped Carlton get into Princeton) and reveals to Carlton that she was actually using him for a one-night stand.
79 6 "Will Goes a Courtin'" Shelley Jensen Bill Boulware October 18, 1993 (1993-10-18) 60037
Will defies his uncle by throwing a pool party in the yard after he makes his rent payment conditional that Philip repairs the air conditioner in the pool house, which Philip nonetheless demands in exchange for that freedom. The next day, Philip sues, unprepared for them to plead their cases in court before Judge Reynolds. Philip and Will/Carlton paint very different pictures before the judge, who rules in Philip's favor as A/C is not an essential housing requirement.
80 7 "Hex and the Single Guy" Shelley Jensen Barry Gurstein & David Pitlik October 25, 1993 (1993-10-25) 60038
When the Banks family attends a seance so Hilary can contact her dead ex-fiancé Trevor, Scorpius, the spiritualist (Glenn Shadix) gets so frustrated with Will's mockery and skepticism that he curses the family with a hex that brings them all bad luck: Uncle Phil is put out of business because of assumed evidence that he was taking bribes, Ashley breaks an ankle just before her tennis match, Carlton's hair gets bleached as a result of his Macaulay Culkin Halloween costume, Geoffrey gets deported, and Jazz and Hilary plan to get married. Will must convince the psychic to break the curse but when he returns, he realizes the man who cursed the Banks looks like a nerd, his real name is Ralph Scorpius, and he has none of what he had when he placed the curse. Will then wakes up from this dream but the day starts just like it did like an endless timeloop.
81 8 "Blood is Thicker Than Mud" Chuck Vinson Devon Shepard November 1, 1993 (1993-11-01) 60039
Will and Carlton pledge Phi Beta Gamma, a black fraternity whose president (Glenn Plummer) is a friend of Will's. They are given humiliating tasks as part of their initiation, and Carlton is subjected to additional hazing (for instance being forced to eat a live trout while Will and the other pledges eat goldfish) due to the president's personal prejudice against Carlton and his wealthy family, since he equates being black with being working class and from the 'hood. Carlton accepts his hazing silently, earning the respect of many members, but the president denies membership to him while accepting Will. Will refuses to join, and the president is ousted.
82 9 "Fresh Prince After Dark" Shelley Jensen Eddie Gorodetsky November 8, 1993 (1993-11-08) 60035
When Hilary is invited to pose for Playboy magazine, Will and Carlton get to meet Hugh Hefner and the beautiful bikini-clad "bunnies" at the Playboy mansion. Philip is furious and retreats to his self-styled hermitage. When he finally sees the publication, he at first seems pleasantly surprised that the pictures are tasteful as promised by Hugh, until he sees the centerfolds that are more revealing.
83 10 "Home is Where the Heart Attack Is" Shelley Jensen Eddie Gorodetsky November 15, 1993 (1993-11-15) 60040
After struggling to lose weight, Philip has a serious heart attack while eating a cheeseburger that he bribes Will to buy for him. The entire family arrives at the hospital to help Philip get through this except for Carlton. Will confronts Carlton to visit his father by telling the story of his own dead-beat father, reminding Carlton that he has a father who is there for his kids, and saying that he's just being self-centered. Carlton eventually comes to comfort his father and reveals to him that he is just like Superman to him and was frightened to watch his father suffer. Phillip, realizing how self-centered he had been acting as well, apologizes for letting him and his family down and pledges to take losing weight more seriously.
84 11 "Take My Cousin – Please" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman November 22, 1993 (1993-11-22) 60041
When one of Will's college professors (Phil Morris) gets depressed over his recent divorce, Will hopes to improve his own failing class grade by introducing him to Hilary, who is still grieving Trevor's death. They hit it off but then after a short time, Hilary starts not liking him for strange reasons such as a mole or Adam's Apple. Will ensures that she isn't seeing the professor, she sees Trevor.
85 12 "You've Got to Be a Football Hero" Shelley Jensen Bill Boulware November 29, 1993 (1993-11-29) 60042
When Will is challenged to a drinking contest by Jackie's boyfriend, a popular college football player, he gets drunk, collapses in a cemetery on the way home, and is trapped in a mausoleum with four philosophical ghosts. He learns how foolish it can be to get so very drunk when he meets the ghost of a child killed by a drunk driver.
86 13 "Twas the Night Before Christening" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams & Eddie Gorodetsky December 20, 1993 (1993-12-20) 60043
Surprised by the expensive gifts that the Banks family bought for baby Nicky's christening on Christmas Eve, Will foolishly promises to provide a live performance by the R&B music group Boyz II Men. Vivian chooses Geoffrey ahead of her sisters as the child's godfather. Philip recounts this as a bedtime story to toddler Nicky in 1998, to which time this episode travels forward. This episode contradicts the latter timeline of the sitcom, as Geoffrey leaves for England and the Banks move out of the mansion in the finale episode.
87 14 "Sleepless in Bel-Air" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams January 3, 1994 (1994-01-03) 60054
Will and Carlton try to concentrate on their schoolwork while surrounded by the noisy late-night distractions of the Banks family. Carlton ends up irritating Will by revealing that the assignment he was working on was purely optional whereas Will's test will be mandatory.
88 15 "Who's the Boss" Shelley Jensen Barry Gurstein & David Pitlik January 10, 1994 (1994-01-10) 60044
When Carlton becomes the new manager of the campus restaurant, Will refuses to work as his employee. He attempts to do so, and when it does not work out, he gets a job at a sports bar a few blocks away.
89 16 "I Know Why the Caged Bird Screams" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman January 24, 1994 (1994-01-24) 60045
When Carlton, the mascot of the university's football team, is abducted by the students from a rival college, Will wears Carlton's peacock costume to inspire the team during a championship game. It does not work because they are so attached to Carlton already and his inspiring speech puts even more of a damper on their team spirit.
90 17 "When You Hit Upon a Star" Shelley Jensen Michael Soccio January 31, 1994 (1994-01-31) 60046
Will's love affair with a superstar singer, Michelle Michaels (Stacy Dash), is threatened when he meets her handsome former lover. Will learns that glamorous flings are not as fulfilling as meaningful relationships.
91 18 "Stop Will! In the Name of Love" Maynard C. Virgil I Gayle Abrams & Jenji Kohan February 14, 1994 (1994-02-14) 60048
Ashley asks Will to chaperone her on a date, thinking that her father would be too overprotective. He turns out to be just as overprotective, and when her date takes off, Ashley rebels, running away from Will. Will's date, whose name he cannot remember, leaves him on account of what she calls his double standards. Guest Amy Hunter as Samantha
92 19 "You'd Better Shop Around" Shelley Jensen Devon Shepard & K. Snyder February 21, 1994 (1994-02-21) 60047
Will withdraws from his university classes to become a successful car salesman by the place's owner (Robert Guillaume). His mother becomes furious when she finds out and comes to LA, and gets him to re-enroll at college by threatening to enroll herself.
93 20 "The Ol' Ball and Chain" Shelley Jensen Rich Hosek & Arnold Rudnick February 28, 1994 (1994-02-28) 60049
On the day of Jazz's wedding, his bride-to-be makes sexual advances towards Will.
94 21 "The Harder They Fall" Shelley Jensen Devon Shepard March 14, 1994 (1994-03-14) 60050
Will finds himself stranded in a mountain forest with his new girlfriend (Cree Summer)'s disagreeable father (John Witherspoon), Augustus after having crash-landed. He escapes from there and leaves him to it because he is somewhat unsettled by his overbearing personality and protectiveness of Lisa.
95 22 "M is for the Many Things She Gave Me" Shelley Jensen Gary H. Miller April 25, 1994 (1994-04-25) 60060
When Philip's former college girlfriend, Janice Robertson (Pam Grier), visits the Banks family, she attempts to seduce an unwilling Will, who is supposed to be getting to know the daughter, Wendy (Elise Neal). Vivian is openly jealous of Janice's presence (made worse by overhearing Phil saying he "settled" for Vivian after Janice showed no interest), but when Philip finds out that Will slept with Janice, he apologizes to her and makes it clear that he values his marriage more than anything Janice tempts him with. She accepts his apology (but still has him sleep on the couch for his flirty behavior).
96 23 "Mother's Day" Madeline Cripe Leslie Ray & David Steven Simon May 2, 1994 (1994-05-02) 60051
When Jazz and his wife, Jewel (Karen Malina White), try unsuccessfully to conceive a child, they ask Will to "father" the baby. Meanwhile, Phillip challenges the kids to put more thought into their Mother's Day gifts for Vivian.
97 24 "Papa's Got a Brand New Excuse" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman & Bill Boulware May 9, 1994 (1994-05-09) 60053
Will is reunited with his father, Lou Smith (Ben Vereen), for the first time in 14 years.
98 25 "For Sale by Owner" Shelley Jensen Harrison Boyd May 16, 1994 (1994-05-16) 60061
The Banks family is offered a $1 million profit by an unknown buyer, who wants to buy the family house. Clips are shown of previous memorable occasions. The only person who really does not want to move even for the money is Ashley, who shows the most sentimental attachment, a complete opposite to her brother Carlton who'd like to take the money and leave.
99 26 "The Philadelphia Story" Shelley Jensen Eddie Gorodetsky & Maiya Williams May 23, 1994 (1994-05-23) 60052
Will and the entire Banks family vacation in Will's hometown, Philadelphia, and learn a surprising secret about Will's reputation in the neighborhood. Will tells Carlton about a dangerous gang leader called Omar, who Will is determined to fight. However, Will learns that Omar has grown up and so should he. Will stays behind with his mother for the season.

Season 5 (1994–1995)

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100 1 "What's Will Got to Do with It?" (Part 1) Shelley Jensen Barry Gurstein & David Pitlik September 19, 1994 (1994-09-19) 60064
When Uncle Phil opens a record store, Will believes it is his chance to pursue a career featuring music. However, when Philip refuses him a job, Will discovers that Ashley has a talent in music. He decides to create a demo tape of Ashley, and take it to a big recording executive - who after seeing her live, gives her a $30,000 contract.
101 2 "The Client" (Part 2) Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman & John Ridley September 19, 1994 (1994-09-19) 60065
Revelling in the success of Ashley's first single, Will implements a selection of actions hoping to make Ashley North America's biggest act. However, the recording executive secretly decides that Will is incapable of handling Ashley's career and Will is fired.
102 3 "Reality Bites" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman September 26, 1994 (1994-09-26) 60063
Will reluctantly agrees to take Nicky to see his childhood hero, Dougie The Whale, when he makes an appearance at the local mall. When problems occur on stage, the actor who plays Dougie gets angry and shouts obscenities at the crew behind the curtain. However, Will finds this unacceptable as little kids are right in front of him, and decides to have a word with Dougie. This results in the pair having a fight and wrecking the curtains for everyone to see. Nicky, after seeing Will fight with Dougie, refuses to talk to Will. Will tries to inform Nicky that he was fighting the man inside of Dougie, not Dougie himself, but Nicky still believes in Dougie like he does Santa Clause. Right when Will is about to tell the truth about Santa to Nicky, a woman appears at the window. She invites Will to the poolhouse where Santa is waiting. Santa reminds Will that Nicky has his innocence and being a little kid, it is somewhat healthy for thinking he is real and also reminds Will that he used to believe in him too. Meanwhile, Hilary suffers the consequences when she parks in the spot of co-talk show host, Leeza Gibbons.
103 4 "Grumpy Young Men" Shelley Jensen Michael Soccio October 3, 1994 (1994-10-03) 60066
Will tries to invite his crush, Valerie to his house for a date but she has a cousin coming over so she doesn't have the time. Will, however sets Carlton up for a double date and so Valerie agrees to come over with her cousin, who actually has a very bad attitude. The date ends up with Carlton and Valerie kissing, angering Will. Meanwhile, Ashley gets a driver's permit but after hearing about her father's 'teaching' skills, she tries learning how to drive some other way.
104 5 "Fresh Prince, the Movie" Shelley Jensen Gary H. Miller October 10, 1994 (1994-10-10) 60062
When Will and Carlton invite Jazz over to play poker, they decide it is time for a bit of revenge that is long since overdue. They attempt to distract him from his game, by telling him a phony story of how Will was the main witness to a murder, and how this resulted in himself and the entire Banks family being forced into the witness protection program in Alabama.
105 6 "Will's Misery" Shelley Jensen Eddie Gorodetsky October 17, 1994 (1994-10-17) 60067
When Will wins a date with Lisa, he gets more than he bargained for. He discovers that she is part of a society, who find that men are the inferior gender- and are disrespectful and vile. When Will turns out to fit this description, Lisa drafts in her society colleagues who decide to play a few pranks on Will that he will never forget. She ties him up to a chair and leaves him there where he must try to burn through the ropes with a candle. This is memorable for a scene where Will finds out that the prank was Carlton's idea after escaping and Lisa telling the truth, and gets even with him by making Carlton think he killed Lisa with a rock. This prompts Carlton to run around the whole set screaming in places like the home, the academy, the audience, the cameras etc.
106 7 "Father Knows Best" Shelley Jensen Andrea Wiley October 24, 1994 (1994-10-24) 60068
Ashley reveals to Will that she has dropped out of Bel-Air Academy, and is instead attending public school. When parents' evening arrives, Ashley believes she has no choice and must confess to Uncle Phil that she has switched school. However, when Will decides to pose as Philip to save Ashley's skin, she gets more than she bargained for when he tries to land a date with her teacher, where she realizes that he was wearing a fake mustache. She must drop the news to Uncle Phil and after long thought, Philip lets her finish the semester.
107 8 "Sooooooooul Train" Shelley Jensen John Ridley November 7, 1994 (1994-11-07) 60069
Philip and Viv are invited to the 25th Anniversary of Soul Train, a musical game show, on which Phil proposed to Viv nearly twenty years ago. But Philip is not on board because he's scared he does not have the 'groove' anymore but he hides this fear by saying that he has an important meeting.
108 9 "Love Hurts" Shelley Jensen Barry Gurstein & David Pitlik November 14, 1994 (1994-11-14) 60070
Will feels embarrassed after his girlfriend, Lisa, defends him when he is attacked by a man in a bowling alley. Because of this, Will feels tense when he is around Lisa so he tries to learn Shotokan Karate. He fails so then he decides to seek help from Jazz, who organizes a fake robbery at the Peacock. However, the situation goes awry, and ends up with Will beating up a real robber.
109 10 "Will's Up the Dirt Road" Shelley Jensen Bennie R. Richburg, Jr. November 21, 1994 (1994-11-21) 60071
Will decides that it is time to find a job. When he becomes interested in journalism, he decides to propose an idea for a book - entitled 'Celebrities Houses... At Night'. In an attempt to impress the publishers, he takes a series of photographs - one of which shows Jay Leno dumping some coffee. However, Will doesn't know the editor works for a sleazy gossip magazine. After the editor screws up the picture and makes it look like as if Jay is dumping oil in the water and blames Will for the story, Jay decides to sue Will for slander. Uncle Phil doesn't give Will the money for court so he must find a way to deal with the damage himself (he sneaks onto Jay's show and apologizes publicly)
110 11 "Will Steps Out" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams November 28, 1994 (1994-11-28) 60072
Will finally realizes that he is madly in love with Lisa - but only after he has been on a date with another woman. In an attempt to hide the truth, Will bribes the girl to keep shut. Meanwhile, fitness guru Susan Powter endeavors to help Philip lose weight - but after Will cracks just one too many fat jokes, Susan compels Will into wearing a fat suit to experience just how Philip feels.
111 12 "Same Game, Next Season" Shelley Jensen David Zuckerman December 12, 1994 (1994-12-12) 60073
When Lisa invites her father down for the weekend, he takes an immediate dislike to Will, as he has to any other man Lisa has ever been involved with. However, the pair soon become friends - very good friends. This leaves Lisa feeling neglected, as her father would rather spend time with Will than her. Will and Lisa finally decide to hatch a plan to get her father to fly back to Cleveland.
112 13 "Three's a Crowd" Shelley Jensen Josh Goldstein January 9, 1995 (1995-01-09) 60074
Carlton begins to worry that Will's relationship with Lisa is affecting his and Will's friendship. In an attempt to win Will back, Carlton hatches up a plan that he hopes will get rid of Lisa for good. Meanwhile, the family celebrate when Hilary announces she is moving out.
113 14 "It's a Wonderful Lie" Chuck Vinson Gayle Abrams January 23, 1995 (1995-01-23) 60075
When Uncle Phil schedules a date for Lisa and Will, the pair of them make up excuses as to why they cannot go. When the pair end up at the same nightclub, both of them have a lot of explaining to do - however, they are soon distracted when they find Ashley canoodling in the cloakroom of the nightclub, with a college football player.
114 15 "Bullets over Bel-Air" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams & Eddie Gorodetsky February 6, 1995 (1995-02-06) 60076
While retracting some money from ATM for a night out, Will and Carlton are held at gunpoint by a robber - who ends up shooting Will. This event rocks the whole family to the core - especially Carlton, who feels that the justice system he depends on has failed, and in turn, he considers taking an extreme measure: buying a revolver.
115 16 "A Decent Proposal" Shelley Jensen David Pitlik & Barry Gurstein February 13, 1995 (1995-02-13) 60077
While recuperating, Lisa visits Will in hospital. Will decides to propose to Lisa, who after much deliberation and thought, agrees.
116 17 "Will Is From Mars" Shelley Jensen Michael Soccio & Andrea Wiley February 20, 1995 (1995-02-20) 60078
When Philip notices that Will and Lisa are having regular arguments, he decides to set them up on a course of pre-marital counselling. However, the pair soon realise that their problems are small, compared to some of the other couples that are also attending.
117 18 "The Wedding Show (Psyche!)" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams & David Zuckerman February 27, 1995 (1995-02-27) 60079

When Philip proposes plans for Will and Lisa's wedding, they plea to his better side to allow them to have a small ceremony. When he fails to listen, Lisa drafts in her father from Cleveland, in hope that he will have more reasonable aspirations. However, he turns out to be no better, so Will and Lisa decide to elope from Bel-Air and marry secretly in Las Vegas.

Special guest: Isaac Hayes
118 19 "Slum Like It… Not!" Shelley Jensen Bennie R. Richburg, Jr. March 13, 1995 (1995-03-13) 60080
In dire need of money to finance his wedding, Will persuades Philip to purchase Jazz's apartment building. The pair see the investment as a very good idea - however things soon turn awry, when Philip receives a letter telling him that the building is in very poor condition, and that he could face imprisonment on the charge of being a slumlord. Will attempts to clear his name before it's too late.
119 20 "As the Will Turns" Shelley Jensen Barry Gurstein & David Pitlik April 10, 1995 (1995-04-10) 60081
Will is excited when he lands a role in LA's biggest soap opera. He prepares for the role by purchasing new outfits and writing scripts of his own - however, he is soon brought down to earth when he is informed exactly what his role entails as he must be a gay male. Meanwhile, Philip suspects that Viv is cheating on him with a younger colleague.
120 21 "Save the Last Trance for Me" Shelley Jensen Maiya Williams & Eddie Gorodetsky April 17, 1995 (1995-04-17) 60082
When Nicky's school admissions officer visits the house, Philip informs the family that they must be on their best behavior. However, Will is hypnotized and acts like a 4 year-old child whenever a bell rings, and the admissions officer soon falls foul to Will's latest endeavor.
121 22 "To Thine Own Self Be Blue… and Gold" Shelley Jensen Story: Ernest Anderson
Teleplay: Roger Garrett
April 24, 1995 (1995-04-24) 60083
A lifelong friend of Philip's (Charlie Robinson) decides to visit the family and tries to persuade Will to do something illegal for him. Carlton and Hilary are matched together through online dating.
122 23 "Cold Feet, Hot Body" Shelley Jensen Ron Burla May 1, 1995 (1995-05-01) 60084
When Will decides to visit Lisa on her university campus he meets one of the university's most popular students (Robin Givens) - who attempts to woo Will and make him forget about Lisa. However, once he declines her, she goes to Lisa and becomes friends with her. When Will drives her home reluctantly, she attempts this again but as soon as they kiss, Will turns the tables and leaves.
123 24 "Love in an Elevator" Maynard Virgil David Hoge & Dan Cross May 8, 1995 (1995-05-08) 60085
When Will, Carlton, and Jazz become trapped in an elevator, they decide to settle their differences as he chose both as his bachelor party manager. To begin with, they reminisce about their past adventures together.
124 25 "For Whom the Wedding Bells Toll" Shelley Jensen Leilani Downer May 15, 1995 (1995-05-15) 60086
Will and Lisa's wedding day looms, with both families preparing for their children's big day. However, love soon blossoms between other members of each family - including Vy (Will's mother) and Fred (Lisa's father). When Vy announces that she is to marry Fred, the announcement causes the split of Will and Lisa, and it is implied that Vy and Fred get married although it is not shown. Will and Lisa agree to not get married, and a number of girls (Tempestt Bledsoe, Kim Fields, Garcelle Beauvais and Arthel Neville) spread the word that "Will is back on the market".

Season 6 (1995–1996)

No. in
series
No. in
season
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
code
125 1 "Burnin' Down the House" Madeline Cripe Joel Madison & Adam Markowitz September 18, 1995 (1995-09-18) 60101
Philip becomes nervous when he invites his boss to dinner. He informs the family that everything should be perfect, if he has a chance of earning a promotion. However, his plans go out of the window when Will burns down the kitchen, attempting to cook Flambe. Will enlists the help of Geoffrey to disguise the accident so that Philip and his boss do not find out.
126 2 "Get a Job" Shelley Jensen Mort Scrivner September 25, 1995 (1995-09-25) 60102
Hillary's talk show is looking for an assistant talent coordinator. Will and Carlton fight over who gets the job but Will ends up getting it. He gets excited when a famous star, Maurice (Chris Rock) visits their mansion to discuss doing Hilary's show. He gets more excited when he is told to take Maurice's sister out. If the sister is happy, Maurice would do the show. Will rubs the good news in Carlton's face and jumps in joy. But Will ends up getting the bad bone when he sees what Maurice's sister really looks like.
127 3 "Stress Related" Shelley Jensen Larry Wilmore October 2, 1995 (1995-10-02) 60103
Hilary becomes excited when she receives interest from a new sponsor for her prime-time talk show. However, on his date of arrival, Hilary is struck down with a serious case of the flu. When Will gives her medicine, Hillary overdoses and becomes loopy and crazy. It's up to Will to get Hillary back to normal and succeed with the sponsor, Mr. Stimple (Joel Madison). Meanwhile, Carlton awaits a phone call from his boss, who he believes will promote him.
128 4 "Bourgie Sings the Blues" Shelley Jensen Tom Devanney October 9, 1995 (1995-10-09) 60104
Carlton faces a dilemma when his success with the Princeton interviewer falls down. In an attempt to clear his mind, Carlton flees to a blues bar, where B.B. King is playing,[22] and confesses to Will that he no longer wants to attend Princeton and instead wants to live out in the bar. Will is convinced he is talking nonsense, so to secure Carlton his place at Princeton, he poses as him for the interview.
129 5 "The Script Formerly Known As…" Shelley Jensen Felicia D. Henderson October 16, 1995 (1995-10-16) 60105
Philip hits the headlines when two jurors from his latest trial are dismissed, with no reasons given. Upon his search for new guests on Hilary's show, Will encounters one of the jurors (George Wallace) – and invites him on as the next guest.[23] When he reveals his opinions about Phil and the court case live on air, Will and Hilary are left to face the consequences.
130 6 "Not I Barbecue" Madeline Cripe Matt Tarses & Kandace Yvette Williams October 23, 1995 (1995-10-23) 60106
Will and Carlton believe they have struck gold when they encounter two beautiful women (Garcelle Beauvais and Tamala Jones). When the women invite the pair back to their apartment, Will and Carlton get more than they bargained for when Mad Dog (Jaime Cardriche) – the boyfriend of one of the women – arrives. In an attempt to save themselves, the pair hide in the closet – but are soon discovered when they attempt to leave.
131 7 "Not With My Cousin You Don't" Shelley Jensen Adam Markowitz November 6, 1995 (1995-11-06) 60107
In a process of testing out the new intercom in their mansion, Will and Carlton accidentally overhear Ashley talking about having sex with her boyfriend (Jaleel White), who is going to be leaving soon. After Ashley finds out that Will and Carlton overheard her, she becomes furious and storms out of the house and leaves with her boyfriend. Ashley then tells her boyfriend if they are rushing because he is leaving, and they both agree that they are not ready. Will apologizes to Ashley saying he still has trouble seeing her beyond the little girl he first saw when he moved to Bel-Air. Ashley accepts his apology and says that it is not the worst thing to have a cousin who cares too much.
132 8 "Viva Lost Wages" Shelley Jensen Robert Bruce November 13, 1995 (1995-11-13) 60108
Will and Carlton become excited after Phil gives them two tickets to Las Vegas for Carlton's 21st birthday. As soon as they arrive, the pair hit the Casinos, but it soon goes to Carlton's head, and he becomes a gambling addict. When Will discovers that Carlton has spent all of their money – and pawned their airline tickets home – he enters the pair into a talent contest by Wayne Newton in an attempt to win money to fly home.
133 9 "There's the Rub" (Part 1) Shelley Jensen Joel Madison November 20, 1995 (1995-11-20) 60109
Hilary and Carlton volunteer to help out at a Homeless Shelter. Hilary is there so the media gives her a good image on how she likes to "help out" and Carlton wants a signature to help him get accepted into Princeton. Will's cure for Phil's back pain gets them in big trouble when they get arrested along with two prostitutes when they go to a massage parlor that is set up by a sting operation. Vivian, Helen, Vy, ask Will whose stuffing is better. Uncle Phil warned Will about arguments with women, but when Will did not take it, it lands him in some hot water with Vy, Helen, and Vivian.
134 10 "There's the Rub" (Part 2) Shelley Jensen Joel Madison November 20, 1995 (1995-11-20) 60110
Once at the shelter, Hilary hates the work she must do and her manager (a homeless lady who lives there) tells her that what she is doing is not the point of Thanksgiving. Carlton gets bossed around by a young boy and can't take it anymore. They both decide to leave but in the car, they realize that they were misbehaving and decide to return with a huge feast for the homeless people they then learn the true meaning of Thanksgiving. Phillip defends himself and Will while proving their innocence in jail and they get released on Thanksgiving Day. The Banks family enjoys Thanksgiving Dinner.
135 11 "I, Ooh, Baby, Baby" Alfonso Ribeiro Adam Markowitz & Tom Devanney December 11, 1995 (1995-12-11) 60111
When the Christmas season arrives, the family are delighted when Hilary announces that her show is going to be broadcast nationally. Hilary believes that this is the event that is finally going to make her life complete – but after reaching this milestone she still feels empty. She then makes the erratic decision to have a baby–much to the family's surprise.
136 12 "Boxing Helena" Shelley Jensen Michael Soccio January 8, 1996 (1996-01-08) 60112
When Phil signs the family up for sessions at a health club, Will sees it as his opportunity to meet new women. Nicky expresses an interest in boxing, prompting Will to sign him up for boxing lessons. Will soon encounters the instructor - who teaches him a thing or two about female boxers. Meanwhile, Carlton feels threatened by his personal trainer.
137 13 "I, Clownius" Shelley Jensen Story: David Wyatt
Teleplay: George Tricker
January 15, 1996 (1996-01-15) 60115
When Phillip starts getting threatening messages over a high profile trial he is presiding over (based on Heidi Fleiss), The Banks do whatever they can to keep him safe. When Will, Phillip and Carlton make a trip to the gas station, they get more than they bargained for when Carlton confronts a suspicious looking clown (Dorien Wilson) named Juggles – who reveals that he is wearing a bomb, and if Phillip does not cooperate (help him get a big break on TV), he will detonate it. After a huge scene at the courthouse (where Juggles forced them to take him for a show) it is revealed it was a gag bomb and he is arrested for everything he caused.
138 14 "Breaking Up is Hard to Do" (Part 1) Shelley Jensen Lisa Rosenthal February 12, 1996 (1996-02-12) 60113
Ashley gets a great modeling opportunity by Joan Van Ark if Will and Carlton stay out of the way. Phil's burgeoning political career has an unexpected effect on Vivian. He promises to tell her about it, but when his associates let it slip that he decided to follow through without telling Vivian, Viv leaves him until he can straighten out his act.
139 15 "Breaking Up is Hard to Do" (Part 2) Shelley Jensen Lisa Rosenthal February 19, 1996 (1996-02-19) 60114
Will, Carlton, Ashley and Hilary take drastic measures to get Phil and Vivian to reconcile.
140 16 "I, Bowl Buster" Shelley Jensen Michael Soccio February 26, 1996 (1996-02-26) 60117
Carlton is anxious when he receives a letter from Princeton University - but soon begins celebrations after it is revealed he has secured a place. His excitement soon turns to worry after he realizes that he will never be able to live up to the kind of achievements that Philip made when he attended Princeton. When Will introduces Carlton to the world of bowling, he makes a decision that leaves the whole family in shock. He wants to ditch the Princeton idea to become a professional bowler.
141 17 "The Butler's Son Did It" Madeline Cripe Lisa Rosenthal March 18, 1996 (1996-03-18) 60116
Geoffrey is delighted when his son, Fredrick, comes to stay at the Banks'. He soon becomes a popular figure with Philip and Vivian, leaving Carlton and Will feeling neglected. However, when Will finds out that Fredrick stole his stash of money as well as a few other things, he finds out that Fredrick only wants money from his father and nothing more. Geoffrey gives Fredrick a lot of money to go to Butler School as he thought Fredrick "wanted to follow in my fathers footsteps". He accepts only to go back to England with the pocketed money. Will tells him that even though he is taking a lot of money from his father, he will lose something even more valuable. Fredrick comes back to tell his father and they make amends.
142 18 "Hare Today…" Shelley Jensen Robert Bruce April 8, 1996 (1996-04-08) 60119
When Philip accidentally sits on Nicky's pet rabbit, he encourages the family to attend church to rid them of their sins. However, the reverend (Richard Roundtree) misinterprets Vivian's devotion to the church, and in a moment of passion, declares his feelings for her. Meanwhile, Carlton and Ashley find themselves in competition when a position arises to sing solo at the Easter service. Eventually, Nicky finds out the truth about his rabbit from Phillip, but is untraumatized, accepting that it is a part of life, but comically notes, "What a way to go."
143 19 "I, Whoops, There It Is" Shelley Jensen Tanya Ward & Mary Beth Pemberton April 15, 1996 (1996-04-15) 60124
This is a special episode where Will Smith decides to organize a clip show featuring outtakes and bloopers from the past six seasons of the series. He also records a series of interviews with the cast backstage and sends the footage to Dick Clark, which he hopes will air it on his popular primetime series.
144 20 "I, Stank Horse" Shelley Jensen Tom Devanney April 22, 1996 (1996-04-22) 60120
When Ashley receives a letter from the modeling agency asking her to appear in one of their sexy lingerie commercials, Phil immediately takes a dislike to the request and decides to enlist the help of an older, arrogant model to teach Ashley a lesson. Meanwhile, Carlton and Hilary decide to adopt an aged racehorse that is being offered for sale by a local businessman.
145 21 "I, Stank Hole in One" Werner Walian Matt Tarses & Michael Soccio May 6, 1996 (1996-05-06) 60121
When Philip appeals for a partner for a golf tournament, Carlton reluctantly agrees to give Will the position – but later regrets his decision, after Philip gives Will the position permanently. Meanwhile, Hilary becomes excited when she is offered the position to present a prime-time reality show with television legend, Regis Philbin. However, she must move to New York in order for it to happen.
146 22 "Eye, Tooth" Shelley Jensen Adam Markowitz May 13, 1996 (1996-05-13) 60118
In an attempt to secure a popular guest for her show, Hilary manages to persuade actor William Shatner to appear. However, actions caused by Will and Carlton soon leave Shatner regretting his decision. Meanwhile, Ashley pleads to her father's better side when she announces that she would like to move to New York with Hilary when Hilary's talk show begins broadcasting there.
147 23 "I, Done" (Part 1) Shelley Jensen Jeff Pollack May 20, 1996 (1996-05-20) 60122
As the Banks kids prepare to leave home, Will realizes that he has no plans for his future. Will looks for an apartment, but to no avail. Uncle Phil tells the family that they are planning to sell the house to move closer to Hilary and Ashley. This comes as a huge shock to everyone.
148 24 "I, Done" (Part 2) Shelley Jensen Jeff Pollack May 20, 1996 (1996-05-20) 60123
The Banks family prepares to move away from California, and Will confronts his lack of achievements since he moved in with them. Potential buyers (characters from Diff'rent Strokes as well as The Jeffersons) check out the mansion. Hilary moves to New York as her show has been moved there; Ashley will be living with her and will attend a performing arts school. Carlton goes to Princeton University to continue his education while Geoffrey moves back to London to be with his son. Phillip, Vivian, and Nicky move back East to be near their children. Phillip helps Will get an apartment; Will remains in California to finish off his studies.

References

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  15. "The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air "Sleepless In Bel-Air"". imdb.com. Archived from the original on February 22, 2021. Retrieved September 12, 2018.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Jensen, Shelley (October 10, 1994), Fresh Prince: The Movie (Comedy), Will Smith, James Avery, Daphne Reid, Alfonso Ribeiro, The Stuffed Dog Company, Quincy Jones-David Salzman Entertainment, NBC Productions, archived from the original on March 9, 2021, retrieved September 22, 2020<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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External links

  1. REDIRECT Template:The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air


  • This is a redirect from a page that has been moved (renamed). This page was kept as a redirect to avoid breaking links, both internal and external, that may have been made to the old page name. For more information follow the bold category link.

Development

File:The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Cast.jpg
The cast of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, seasons 1–3. From top left: Karyn Parsons, Joseph Marcell, Janet Hubert-Whitten, Alfonso Ribeiro. From bottom left: Tatyana M. Ali, James Avery, Will Smith.

In 1990, music manager Benny Medina, along with his business partner, real estate mogul Jeff Pollack, decided to market a TV story based on Medina's life. Medina had grown up poor in East Los Angeles but his life changed when he befriended a rich white teenager, whose family lived in Beverly Hills and allowed Medina to live with them. Medina decided to use this part of his life as the main focus of the show. However, given that by then a black character living with a white family was a concept that had been done multiple times on TV, Medina decided to change the rich white family to a rich black family. "That way we could explore black-on-black prejudice as well as black class differences", Medina said in an interview for Ebony magazine.[1]

Medina pitched the idea to Quincy Jones, who had just signed a TV deal with Time-Warner. Jones was impressed by the idea and arranged a meeting with NBC chief Brandon Tartikoff. Will Smith was well known by then as his music career as The Fresh Prince had put him on the mainstream radar, but he had come into debt after failing to pay taxes. At the suggestion of his then-girlfriend, Smith went to a taping of The Arsenio Hall Show where he met Medina by chance. Medina pitched the idea to Smith, but Smith was reluctant, having never acted before. Medina invited Smith to meet Jones at a party that Jones was throwing at his house in December 1989. There, Jones handed Smith a script for a failed Morris Day pilot that he had produced and challenged Smith to audition for Tartikoff on the spot. Smith did so, and the first contract for the show was drawn up that night in a limo outside. Three months later, the pilot was shot.[2]

Andy Borowitz and his wife, Susan, are credited as the series' creators. Andy Borowitz, who was on a contract with NBC, was selected by Tartikoff to write the pilot. He based Will's cousins on Quincy Jones's daughters, and named Carlton after his friend Carlton Cuse. In 2015, he remarked that "It was written and taped in about three weeks, start to finish, and somehow it worked. It was just an explosion of really good luck."[3]

The pilot episode began taping on May 1, 1990.[4] Season 1 first aired in September 1990, and ended in May 1991. The series finale was taped on Thursday, March 21, 1996,[5][6] and aired on Monday, May 20, 1996.

The theme song "Yo Home to Bel Air" was written and performed by Smith under his stage name, The Fresh Prince. The music was composed by Quincy Jones, who is credited with Smith at the end of each episode. The music often used to bridge scenes together during the show is based on a similar chord structure.

Crossovers and other appearances

During the fall 1991–1992 season, NBC gained two hit television shows to anchor their Monday night lineup (Blossom aired immediately after The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air). To gain popularity between the two shows, Will Smith appeared in the Blossom episode "I'm with the Band" as himself under his rap stage name, The Fresh Prince. That same season, Karyn Parsons appeared in the Blossom episode "Wake Up Little Suzy" as Hilary Banks. Parsons also appeared in the Patti LaBelle sitcom Out All Night as Hilary.

In the House and Fresh Prince were both executive-produced by Winifred Hervey, David Salzman, and Quincy Jones. During the second season's first episode, Alfonso Ribeiro and Tatyana Ali appeared as their Fresh Prince characters (Carlton and Ashley Banks) in the crossover episode "Dog Catchers". Later that season, James Avery (Phillip Banks) appeared as a mediator in the episode "Love on a One-Way Street".

Following Fresh Prince's conclusion, Ribeiro joined the principal cast of In the House from its third season as Dr. Maxwell Stanton. In the Season 4 episode "My Pest Friend's Wedding", Avery and Daphne Maxwell Reid (the second Vivian Banks) guest starred as Stanton's parents. Joseph Marcell, Geoffrey Butler on Fresh Prince, appeared as an officiating minister in the same episode.

Syndication

The series was produced by NBC Productions in association with the Stuffed Dog Company and Quincy Jones Entertainment (later Quincy Jones-David Salzman Entertainment in 1993). After the show was released to syndication in 1994, the series was distributed by Warner Bros. Television Distribution, which continues to distribute the show worldwide (with NBCUniversal owning the series' copyright).

Currently, reruns of the series are still aired around the world on ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks' MTV2, BET and VH1, having previously been aired on its MTV, Nick at Nite, TeenNick, CMT, and Centric channels. Other past carriers include WGN America, TBS, Walt Disney Television's Disney XD, ABC Family and ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks' Paramount Network.

The series developed significant popularity in the United Kingdom, where it aired on BBC Two between 1991 and 1996 with reruns airing on the network between 1996 and 2004, and was shown alongside The Simpsons and was later repeated on Trouble, Bravo, Channel One, Living, Sky Living Loves, Viva, MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Comedy Central Extra and 5Star. In the United Kingdom, all seasons became available on the BBC iPlayer from 1 January 2021, and also currently airs on Sky Comedy and Sky Showcase.

It also aired on CBC in Canada.

The series became available to stream on HBO Max on May 27, 2020. It streams in Canada on Crave.

Home media

Warner Home Video has released the complete series, seasons 1 to 6, on DVD in Region 1.[7] Seasons 1 to 4 have been released in Regions 2 and 4. Seasons 5 to 6 have been released in Region 2 in Germany, and in the complete series boxset in the United Kingdom.

DVD name Ep # Release dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
The Complete First Season 25 February 8, 2005[8] February 21, 2005[9] April 13, 2005[10]
The Complete Second Season 24 October 11, 2005[11] November 21, 2005[12] March 1, 2006[13]
The Complete Third Season 24 February 14, 2006[14] June 26, 2006[15] August 9, 2006[16]
The Complete Fourth Season 26 August 8, 2006[17] January 22, 2007[18] December 6, 2006[19]
The Complete Fifth Season 25 May 11, 2010[20] June 18, 2010 2018
The Complete Sixth & Final Season 24 April 19, 2011 May 6, 2011 2018
The Complete Series 148 April 12, 2011

Awards and nominations

Awards Outcome Recipient(s) Year
ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards:
Top TV Won Quincy Jones
Will Smith
DJ Jazzy Jeff
1994
Emmy Awards:
Outstanding Individual Achievement in Lighting Direction for a Comedy Series Nominated Art Busch 1996
Golden Globe Awards:
Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series – Comedy/Musical Nominated Will Smith 1994
Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series – Comedy/Musical Nominated[21] Will Smith 1993
NAACP Image Awards:
Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated 1997
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Won Alfonso Ribeiro 1996
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series Nominated Will Smith 1997
Outstanding Youth Actor/Actress Won Tatyana M. Ali 1997
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Janet Hubert-Whitten 1991
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Nia Long 1996
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series Nominated Daphne Maxwell Reid 1996
Kids' Choice Awards:
Favorite Television Actor Nominated Will Smith 1996
Favorite Television Show Nominated 1996
Favorite TV Actress Nominated Tatyana M. Ali 1996
NCLR Bravo Awards:
Outstanding Television Series Actor in a Crossover Role Nominated Alfonso Ribeiro 1996
TP de Oro:
Best Foreign Series (Mejor Serie Extranjera) Nominated 1996
Best Foreign Series (Mejor Serie Extranjera) Won 1994
Teen Choice Awards:
Choice TV Show: Throwback Nominated 2017
Choice TV Show: Throwback Nominated 2018
Choice TV Show: Throwback Nominated 2019
TV Land Awards:
Best Broadcast Butler Nominated Joseph Marcell 2004
Favorite "Fish Out of Water" Nominated Will Smith 2004
Young Artist Awards:
Best Performance by an Actor Under Ten – Television Won Ross Bagley 1996
Best Performance by an Actor Under Ten in a TV Series Won Ross Bagley 1995
Best Youth Comedienne Nominated Tatyana M. Ali 1994
Best Young Actor Guest Starring in a Television Series Nominated Larenz Tate 1993
Best Young Actor Guest Starring or Recurring Role in a TV Series Nominated Tevin Campbell 1992
Best New Family Television Comedy Series Won 1991
YoungStar Award:
Best Performance by a Young Actress in a Comedy TV Series Won Tatyana M. Ali 1997

Planned reboot

On August 13, 2015, it was reported that a reboot of the show was in development by Overbrook Entertainment, with Will Smith serving as a producer.[22][23] In August 2016, during a promotional interview with the E! television network for his then upcoming film Suicide Squad, Smith denied that a reboot was in development, saying that it would happen "...pretty close to when Hell freezes over".[24]

In 2019, a mock trailer titled Bel-Air was uploaded on YouTube, written and directed by Morgan Cooper, for a darker, more dramatic re-imagining of the sitcom.[25][26] Will Smith subsequently heavily praised the fan film, commenting that "Morgan did a ridiculous trailer for Bel-Air. Brilliant idea, the dramatic version of The Fresh Prince for the next generation", expressing interest in expanding the idea beyond the short film into a full Bel-Air reboot series.[27][28]

In August 2020, it was announced that Will Smith and Morgan Cooper would be developing a reboot of the series based on Cooper's Bel-Air. The series had reportedly been in the works for over a year since Cooper posted his Bel-Air trailer on YouTube, with Netflix, Peacock, and HBO Max all currently bidding for the series.[29] On September 8, 2020, Peacock gave Bel-Air a 2-season order.[30] In September 2021, the full cast was announced with newcomer Jabari Banks cast as Will Smith, Adrian Holmes as Philip Banks, Cassandra Freeman as Vivian Banks, Olly Sholotan as Carlton Banks, Coco Jones as Hilary Banks, Akira Akbar as Ashley Banks, Jimmy Akingbola as Geoffrey, Jordan L. Jones as Jazz and Simone Joy Jones as Lisa.[31]

Reunion

A reunion of the surviving original cast, The Fresh Prince Reunion, aired on HBO Max in November 2020. Among other reminisces, Janet Hubert appeared, also appearing around this time in a joint radio interview with Smith where the two reconcile.[32][33] More information and context were offered regarding the situation between Smith and Hubert and her exit when the two met for their conversation. Hubert discussed the turmoil in her personal life, her abusive marriage, and that she had not actually been fired by the show. She was offered what she described as a "bad deal" to return for the fourth season and she turned it down. Smith talked about how grappling with his rapidly increasing fame at such a young age led him to make decisions during that time that he now regrets and wishes he had made differently.[34] The reunion show also features a tribute to James Avery, who died in 2013, that was shown to the surviving cast. The tribute brought the entire cast to tears.[35]

Notes

References

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  2. "Will Smith Says He Became The Fresh Prince of Bel Air After Getting in Trouble with the IRS". people.com. Archived from the original on January 7, 2019. Retrieved January 7, 2019.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' Writer Andy Borowitz on Rappers and Retiring from TV". Variety. Archived from the original on November 9, 2020. Retrieved August 15, 2020.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Wolf, Matt (February 11, 1991). "'Fresh Prince' makes Marcell changed man". Kentucky New Era. Associated Press. Retrieved January 2, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Cerone, Daniel. "Rap's Prince Soon to Be TV Royalty?". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 27, 2015. Retrieved September 20, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "The Hollywood Minute". CNN. Cable News Network Inc. Archived from the original on September 24, 2015. Retrieved September 20, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air DVD news: Announcement for The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air - The Complete 6th Season". TVShowsOnDVD.com. May 25, 2007. Archived from the original on January 15, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The: The Complete First Season DVD @ DVD Empire". Dvdempire.com. February 8, 2005. Archived from the original on April 24, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air - The Complete First Series DVD: Amazon.co.uk: Will Smith, James Avery, Janet Hubert-Whitten, Alfonso Ribeiro, Karyn Parsons, Tatyana M. Ali, Joseph Marcell: DVD". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Buy Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The - The Complete 1st Season (5 Disc Set) @ EzyDVD". Ezydvd.com.au. April 27, 2005. Archived from the original on April 13, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  12. "The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air - The Complete Second Series DVD: Amazon.co.uk: Will Smith, James Avery, Janet Hubert-Whitten, Alfonso Ribeiro, Karyn Parsons, Tatyana M. Ali, Joseph Marcell, DJ Jazzy Jeff, Ellen Falcon: DVD". Amazon.co.uk. Archived from the original on March 9, 2021. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Buy Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The - The Complete 2nd Season (4 Disc Set) @ EzyDVD". Ezydvd.com.au. Archived from the original on April 13, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The: The Complete Third Season DVD @ DVD Empire". Dvdempire.com. February 14, 2006. Archived from the original on April 24, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air - The Complete Third Season DVD: Amazon.co.uk: Will Smith, James Avery, Karyn Parsons, Alfonso Ribeiro, Tatyana M. Ali, Joseph Marcell: DVD". Amazon.co.uk. Archived from the original on March 9, 2021. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "Buy Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The - The Complete 3rd Season (4 Disc Set) @ EzyDVD". Ezydvd.com.au. August 9, 2006. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. "Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The: The Complete Fourth Season DVD @ DVD Empire". Dvdempire.com. August 8, 2006. Archived from the original on April 24, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. "The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air - Series 4 [DVD]: Amazon.co.uk: Will Smith: DVD". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  19. "Buy Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The - The Complete 4th Season (4 Disc Set) @ EzyDVD". Ezydvd.com.au. December 6, 2006. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  20. "Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, The: The Complete Fifth Season DVD @ DVD Empire". Dvdempire.com. November 5, 2010. Archived from the original on April 24, 2011. Retrieved March 25, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  24. Loughrey, Clarisse (August 2, 2016). "Will Smith says Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reboot will happen when 'hell freezes over'". The Independent. Archived from the original on August 6, 2016. Retrieved August 4, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  25. Greene, Andy (March 13, 2019). "Hilarious 'Bel Air' Trailer Reimagines 'The Fresh Prince' as a Dramatic Movie". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on April 27, 2019. Retrieved April 28, 2019.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  30. Andreeva, Nellie (September 8, 2020). "'Bel-Air': Peacock Gives 2-Season Order To 'The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air' Drama Reboot From Morgan Cooper & Westbrook Studios". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on September 8, 2020. Retrieved September 8, 2020.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  33. "Will Smith 'so happy' to settle decades-long feud with Janet Hubert in 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' reunion". www.radio.com. November 19, 2020. Archived from the original on March 9, 2021. Retrieved December 7, 2020.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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Real Estate Data

External links

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