Now that the storied reunion of the full cast of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air has happened, the Internet can’t get over the fact that the original Aunt Viv, Janet Hubert-Whitten, her replacement Daphne Reid and Will Smith have all met and reconciled, there was another cast member that seemed MIA on set during one segment that fans noticed – Alfonso Ribiero.
In the past, Will admitted he didn’t even want to revisit the show on his own time. His reasoning was because he couldn’t stand to watch his acting that early on in his career. Will Smith previously did an appearance on British talk show The Graham Norton Show, in which he explained to Norton exactly why he couldn’t watch any The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air re-runs.
“It was my very first role, and I was very, very focused on being successful, so I learned the whole script and everyone else’s lines. If you watch the first four or five episodes, you can see I’m mouthing other people’s lines. It’s terrible and I can’t bear to watch it.”
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air became a part of everyone’s lives and impacted many careers. We know now that Will and Jada even met on the set of the NBC show, but it seems as if Black Hollywood is truly small enough that even Jada and Alfonso Ribiero, aka “Carlton Banks,” even went on a date once.
What you may not have known is that Will initially asked Alfonso about Jada because he thought the potential of their relationship was “exponential,” and the two discussed it on an episode of Red Table Talk, Jada’s hit show. “I actually think I dated Alfonso,” Jada admitted to Will. “I think I went on one date together with him.”
“He took you on a motorcycle or something,” Will responds, agreeing and remembering bits and pieces himself. Of course, Alfonso weighed in later, sharing that he has a different recollection than Jada.
“I just remember him being cheerful and fun,” she amused. “And it was simple. I think we just went out to get something to eat? At that point, I was living in LA, I [hadn’t] done Different World yet. Alfonso is probably like, ‘Did we go out?’”
Cast recollections aside, many fans remembered the shadiness that Hubert-Whitten had thrown not just at Will, but also Alfonso over the years. At one point in many of her rants at the time, Hubert-Whitten reportedly called Ribiero Smith’s “tampon,” clearly showing that there was residual bad blood between the two of them as well.
While Will and Janet hashed it out on the screen after over 27 years of well-known strife and animosity, fans wondered why Alfonso was nowhere to be seen during these discussions between the two, knowing that they also had beef. Hubert-Whitten seems to have been graciously treated by the whole production and there was speculation maybe Ribiero was asked to not be on set.
However, the OG Aunt Viv allayed all such fears by responding to a tweet in which she made sure to say that there was nothing but love and healing happening that day, with Ribiero simply still being an in-demand and working actor in the biz, too.
#FreshPrinceReunion I am so thankful for all the love being shown and the understanding. Will and team let me participate in whatever I wanted and felt comfortable doing. After 27 years of disconnect we are all different people. It was great seeing everyone, life is too short! pic.twitter.com/2vwDIgH1lV— Janet Hubert (@OGJanetHubert) November 20, 2020
“Don’t think I didn’t notice that Alfonzo [sic] left the set once Janet came on. I guess all old wounds haven’t healed yet,” wrote one viewer on Twitter.
“Don’t assume, he was working and I wasn’t there,” she replied. “Let it go sweetie, we have.”
Don't assume, he was working and I wasn't there. Let it go sweetie, we have.— Janet Hubert (@OGJanetHubert) November 20, 2020
Check out more responses below:
Did anyone else notice when (Aunt Vivian) Janet Hubert came on the reunion to say hi to everyone that (Carlton) Alfonso Ribeiro wasn’t in the room anymore …. #FreshPrinceReunion— J Stew (@KingJstew) November 19, 2020
Alfonso Ribeiro when he heard Janet Hubert was coming on set. pic.twitter.com/C6LQW3Ur9t— It’s PAST not PASSED. (@LivinLaVidaYoda) November 19, 2020