The latest in Morgan Spurlock’s Hulu documentary series, “A Day in the Life,” focuses on will.i.am, the face of the tremendously successful hip-hop group The Black Eyed Peas. In this episode, Spurlock follows will.i.am through Paris, France on the first day of three sold-out shows the Peas will perform at the Stade de France, a venue that holds over 80,000 people. Unlike the last episode with stand-up comedian Russell Peters, will.i.am is not exactly resting up for a big show. He’s actually got a really busy schedule that has almost nothing to do with the concert.
So in the morning we see will.i.am meet with fashion designer Rynshu, whom he has teamed up with for a clothing line that he will actually model himself on the catwalk later that weekend for Paris Fashion Week. So, unfortunately, since this is just one day in the life, we don’t get to see will.i.am’s performance. It’s in this section of the episode that we find out that Will is really into fashion, and that he actually wanted to be a designer before getting into pop music.
The next part of his day is coming out to Paris’ 20th Arrondissement (20th District) and speak with kids who came from the same background as he did. will.i.am grew up in a tough section of East Los Angeles, and he gives looks to inspire with one of those “you can be the next (famous person here) regardless of where you came from” type speeches.
He’s not done. He comes out to a stage in the 20th Arrondissement to speak to a huge crowd, and gives an impromptu freestyle rap. And if you’d like to hear French rapping, this is the episode to watch, as two men come up and assist Will with their own flavor.
He has one more stop before the concert, at the U.S. Ambassador to France’s residence, a huge mansion currently occupied by Charles Rivkin. Rivkin and will.i.am know each other from the Obama campaign in California, and he’s invited Will out to a cocktail party.
Finally it’s on to the concert at the Stade de France. will.i.am speaks of his band like family. The Black Eyed Peas also include apl.de.ap, Taboo, and Fergie. Will talks about the difference between being at a show like this and a festival, where multiple artists are represented. “They’re all here for the Peas.” I liked how will.i.am talked about the group’s humble beginnings, how they used to play in front of college kids at obscure or out-of-the-way places “no one else would ever go to.” Will feels like playing those venues led The Black Eyed Peas to playing the stadiums they do today.
This is probably the most well-rounded day in Spurlock’s series. We see a popular artist with a number of interests, and we see a microcosm of that person all in one day. Richard Branson’s day is somewhat interesting but not fleshed out, and Russell Peters’ day was a laid-back, entertaining look at a performer. But here, you get more of an idea about the person. This series has taken some baby steps upward each episode.