The Good

This is just a great, fun filled show that speaks a lot to the social commentary of the day.

The Bad

No episode commentary tracks or behind the scenes featurettes.

The Fresh Prince of Bel Air: The Complete Third Season works because it started to pick up the slack as The Cosby Show started to wane. While personally I love both of these shows (and at that time I watched The Cosby Show and not The Fresh Prince of Bel Air), I can see how the charm of Will Smith would make people, especially younger people, veer off more in his direction.

This is pretty simple show. Smith plays Will Smith, a kid who has been sent to live with his wealthy family in Bel-Air. As he is from the tough streets of Philadelphia, there is a natural clash between these two cultures. While everything plays out in a pretty cookie cutter way, I really enjoyed seeing the early 1990s again. Also, as this is the third season of this show, everyone seems to have their groove as far as their characters are concerned.

Features

Best of the Bel-Air Upper Crust

On this special feature we get a mix of some of the best moments from Season Three, as well as cast trivia that randomly comes on the screen. For instance, did you know what college some of the characters went to?Did you know what the characters did when this show ended? Did you know that actor James Avery (father Philip Banks on the show) also voiced the character of "Shredder" on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles?

Bel-Air Bloopers

Standard bloopers are on display here but they are still fun to watch. We see characters mess up lines, trip and fall all over the set and generally witness the normal things one might expect to go wrong when shooting a TV show. Is it just me, or did James Avery grow a little tired of Will Smith's on set antics?

Video

Standard Version presented in a format preserving the aspect ratio of it's original television exhibition. Simply shot with bright, soft light, I think that the compression on this four disc set looks really good. This is a very colorful show. From the locations of the set, to the colors of the clothes it all just jumps of the screen. That look and freshness has been retained for this DVD release.

Audio

Dolby Digital - English: Stereo. On all the discs, I didn't hear any audio problems. Sometimes with so much content (clocking in here at 554 minutes), you will find audio problems deep within the discs. I didn't come across any drop outs and even though this is a sitcom, and great pains are made to get across every joke, I never felt like any of the actors were simply delivering lines for comedic effect.

Package

In a photo Will Smith wishes had probably been burned, we see him decked out in fluorescent green, wearing a similar colored hat, a walkman and shades. To make matters worse, he seems to be doing a dance of some sort. If nothing else, this front cover clearly sums up the early 1990s. The back features a shot of some members of the cast, a brief description of what the show is about, a "Special Features" listing, a cast list and some technical specs. All four discs are housed inside even more colorful pull out artwork, that sadly, other than listing the episodes and their airdates, doesn't give the viewer any other information about the 24 shows that make up this set.

Final Word

Why has Alfonso Ribeiro never become a bigger star? Sure he is known, but truthfully, it seems like it's more for his role in Silver Spoons than it is for his work on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. I know that Will Smith is the main attraction of this show, but he seems to only be playing himself. There are emotional scenes here and there but for the most part it is Smith being Smith. Now, I don't know Alfonso, but I am willing to bet that he is nothing like the character he portrays here. This four disc set of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air: The Complete Third Season is worth owning just for that alone.

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was released .