Why Guantánamo Bay Prisoners Love The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air

“Whistled for a cab” is like “boarded a plane in a blindfold and handcuffs.”

According to the Miami Herald, the 168 prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, who apparently enjoy a “28,000 book and video library,” have been watching a lot of Fresh Prince lately. In fact, it has recently become the most popular form of entertainment at the detention camp. At first glance, this seems like a bizarre entertainment choice for captives who don’t seem to have a lot in common with an inner-city black teenager who lives with his extended family in a mansion. But maybe there’s more of a connection there than initially meets the eye? Consider:

  • Both the prisoners and Will have had their lives “flipped, turned upside down.” 
  • Both were relocated far from home after getting into one little fight/jihad. 
  • Like Will, the prisoners previously spent most of their days on the playground, or at least the monkey bars. 
  • And both Will and the prisoners are in a constant struggle to free themselves from under the thumb of a controlling uncle (Uncle Phil/Uncle Sam). 

Fresh Prince: An ahead-of-its-time allegory for the war on terror.

Why Guantánamo Prisoners Love Fresh Prince