|Full Name||Geoffrey Barbara Butler|
Olympic Runner (formerly)
Oxford University Student (formerly)
|First seen||The Fresh Prince Project|
|Last seen||I, Done (Part 2)|
Geoffrey Barbara Butler is the Secondary Tetargonist on The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air. He is portrayed by Joseph Marcell.
Born in London, Geoffrey serves as the Banks family's cynical, sardonic butler. Geoffrey's personality seems to differ, depending on with whom he's interacting. Sometimes he has been cynical, other times he has been dutiful and gentlemanly. Despite his frequent insults and frustrations with the laziness of Will and the Banks family and their dependance on him doing all the work, he cares deeply for all of them.
He is cynical, educated, optimistic, friendly, witty, rational, encouraging (at times), most of the times, professional, independent, bold, quite understanding, trusting, righteous, gentle, efficient, organized, fearless, free-spirited, reasonable, empathetic, hospitable, thoughtful, level-headed, even-tempered and respectful.
- "That's the secret shame I've kept in 17 years."
- ―Geoffrey after showing his shameful past to the Banks family
In addition to four years at Oxford University and a long career working for British aristocrats, Geoffrey was an Olympic runner several years before being hired by the Banks family but fled his home country in shame after cheating in a race and being slapped by Queen Elizabeth II. His athletic failure seemed to have mixed adverse effects. Although disgraced in his native country of England, the British band Led Zeppelin hired him as their butler sometime in the 1970s. In the episode Nice Lady, besides telling Will he was a Greco-Roman wrestler, he had also worked for one British nobleman named Lord Fowler.
Things came to a head when Lord Fowler paid Philip Banks a visit and Will was instructed to look after Lord Fowler's daughter Penelope. Sometime in the 1980s, Geoffrey got a job in the United States as a sparring partner for Chuck Norris, and also butlered for him. Presumably, later he was hired to butler for the Banks family, where he worked for a long time. Geoffrey did seem to have a soft spot for Ashley Banks. In the episode "The Butler's Son Did It", his middle name is revealed as Barbara (a family name) and that he also has a tattoo of Queen Elizabeth in an area that is never revealed on the show, but is presumed to be on his buttocks.
- Joseph Marcell, the actor who played Geoffrey, said part of why his character's personality differed was that it was hard to find an appropriate character, as American audiences were generally unused to seeing Black Englishmen. James Avery, who played Uncle Phil, said part of his training for drama was studying in England, where he did Shakespearean plays alongside Black subjects of the United Kingdom, later remarking that he was exposed to the multiracialism of the UK. "As a boy," he admitted, "I figured Blacks only came from Africa or the US, and this was a good experience to show diversity."
- It is implied through the show that Geoffrey has a strange fascination, or perhaps full-on fetish, towards the nude, male body. In the show, he has mentioned how he loves covering his nude body with ointments, asks "I wonder what I would look like if I shaved my entire body", and most importantly, it is revealed in Season 3 Episode 20: The Baby Comes Out, that he enjoys running naked around the house.