Movies and Television

My Five Favorite John Witherspoon Performances

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I’m a little late on this, but couldn’t ignore the passing of one of my favorite comedic actors.  Here’s a list of 5 of my favorite John Witherspoon performances.

  1. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air episode “The Harder They Fall” – I had seen Mr. Witherspoon on TV and in movies before this, but this is the first time he really stood out to me.  On this episode from 1994, Mr. Witherspoon played the father of Lisa (Cree Summer), who Will (Will Smith) was dating.  His character tries to intimidate Will during a plane ride and ends up getting them stranded in the woods.  He’s so funny (calling Will Wilbur and saying momentum as only he could) on this episode and has excellent chemistry with Will Smith.
  2. Boomerang – I still quote Mr. Witherspoon’s lines from this 1992 movie.  Boomerang has such an amazing cast, including Eddie Murphy, Halle Berry, Robin Givens and Martin Lawrence, but Mr. Witherspoon manages to be a scene stealer.  I just said, “The rabbit’s gettin’ old” last week to refer to a worn out item of clothing.  If you’ve never seen it, it is absolutely worth watching.
  3. Friday – Mr. Witherspoon is both a comedic element and the voice of reason in this classic movie from 1995.  There are too many funny moments in this movie to name.  It is definitely on my must watch list.
  4. The Wayans Brothers – few people can stand out next to the outrageous Marlon Wayans and Mr. Witherspoon was one of those people. In this TV show that ran from 1995 – 1999, he is just as funny as the leads.
  5. The Boondocks – Mr. Witherspoon lent his unmistakable voice to this controversial animated show.  The humor on this show isn’t for everyone, but he never failed to make me laugh.

To John Witherspoon, thank you so much for making me laugh for at least the last 25 years and bringing your unique brand of humor to both the big and small screens.


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