Friday, April 7, 2023

What I’m Watching: Bel-Air

Bel-Air: Season 2, Episode 6 “Let the Best Man Win” (B+)

It’s both fun and informative to see the extended Banks family in action and how much the relationships are shaped by previous generations. Phil pushing Hilary to make the best pie and Carlton to play his best game showed how he so desperately wanted to beat his brother, and fortunately they were able to connect on a deeper level when he revealed how his father told him he wasn’t going to college like Phil, which in turn led him to his strong belief in the value of grit and hard work. Before they came to that important moment, Carlton realized his cousin could use a win and threw the game, making his father proud of him in the process for that act of self-sacrifice. Viv getting a sign of approval from her mother-in-law was a nice win considering how much she had to do that shouldn’t have fallen on her, and Ashley even managed to connect with the older uncle she was tasked with watching over at the party. Phil inviting Lamarcus was a forgivable transgression, but his professed plan to win Hilary back is going to make it so that she and Jazz break up even if they’re not headed towards renewed romance, unless Will can encourage Jazz to make his case. It’s a good thing that Carlton got past his initially harsh reaction to Will’s expressed desire to remain in consideration for the scholarship, and Will showed plenty of maturity in encouraging Geoffrey to try to reunite with his son rather than letting him exist merely as an imagined invention in his son’s mind.

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