LA neighborhoods

Would someone please explain the whole LA neighborhood thing? I hear jokes like you’ll be selling BMW’s in the valley. Is living in the San Fernando Valley a bad thing? Aren’t there good neighborhoods in the valley? Where is Beverly Hills, Bel Air? What about “The Hills”? Is Watts in the valley? Santa Monica, Brentwood? What are some well known neighborhoods that are in canyons?

I live in “the Valley” (a.k.a. San Fernando Valley). The particular neighborhood I live in is Van Nuys, which is actually a city unto itself like many of the other “neighborhoods” or the greater L.A. area. And yeah, this particular part of the Valley kinda sucks, but not all of the Valley is that way.

Basically you have Los Angeles County, and Los Angeles proper (the city). Most people consider everything in Los Angeles County to be part of “L.A.”, which is also sometimes called the greater Los Angeles Metro area. It’s all continuous, but many are incorporated cities with their own city councils, police forces etc. According to Wiki there are 88 incorporated cities in Los Angeles County, including the city of Los Angeles itself.

Yeah. Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Valley Village (kinda) are nice. Then out toward the edges of the Valley is where you have some really nice multi-million dollar homes (the kinds always going up in gigantic blazes of smoke from wildfires), such as Calabasas. There are other nice parts of it as well.

To the west of L.A. Beverly Hills is an incorporated city, but Bel Air, I recently learned, is not its own city - just a neighborhood of Los Angeles.

If you are talking about the Hollywood Hills, that is also part of L.A. proper and it’s an area off the 101/Hollywood freeway roughly between Hollywood itself (by the way there is a West Hollywood and a North Hollywood as well, although no East or South) and Studio City, heading toward the SF Valley.

Hell no. Watts is in the true hood, which IME starts a few miles south of downtown L.A. (what was formerly called South Central, but they have moved away from that name due to negative connotations) and continues all the way to Long Beach. Compton, a fairly notorious “bad” part of L.A. is also in this area.

Both upscale areas on the west side. Santa Monica is its own city, Brentwood is a neighborhood of Los Angeles.

Topanga Canyon comes to mind.

Reference to a map of the Los Angeles area might answer a good number of these questions. :wink:

Some helpful maps: cities and LA neighborhoods, interactive LA city neighborhoods.

One thing to understand is that the city of Los Angeles has a honking big mountain range running right through the middle of it. On the ocean side of the mountains you have “The Basin” and on the opposite side you have “The Valley”. This isn’t just a trivial little set of hills. It’s really rugged terrain and large stretches of it are uninhabited.

Downtown is in the Basin, as are a lot of the ritziest neighborhoods – the Sunset Strip, Beverly Hills, Brentwood, Bel Air, Holmby Hills, Malibu etc. So there’s a general feeling that the center of gravity for the city is on the ocean side of the mountains. The Valley often complains that it’s not being treated like an equal part of L.A., and there was actually a movement a few years ago for the Valley to split off into an independent city.

Omigawd! That’s like totally bogus! Bag your face!

At our last family reunion, my sister announced she had just bought a place in (Name of community deleted) in Simi Valley. One of my cousins said, “Oh, is that the trailer park?”

That will be our last family reunion for some time.

Van Nuys is part of the City of Los Angeles. It is not separately incorporated.

ginman999, many of these neighborhoods were actually separate cities which were annexed by the City of Los Angeles. These neighborhoods then retained their original names for vernacular purposes (and certain other purposes, such as mailing addresses). But these neighborhoods are not incorporated cities in their own right. You basically need to look at the maps to figure out whether a neighborhood is its own city or part of the City of Los Angeles.

There has also been a trend to give a particular neighborhood its own name, so that it ceases to be associated with a neighborhood that’s considered trashy. It’s basically a trick to push up property values in a particular area. I think Valley Village was created because of this.

You can see in the maps that LA annexed a strip of land running south to enable them to annex part of the harbor and set up the Port of Los Angeles. San Pedro really doesn’t feel like part of LA.

The Valley is the subject of some mockery within LA, because it is stereotyped as suburban, bourgeois, and declasse. It’s somewhat similar to Manhattanites looking down on people who live in New Jersey.

The Valley is, however, one of the main centers of America’s pr0n industry. I don’t know exactly how this came to be, but I assume that it has something to do with proximity to a city full of failed wannabe stars and comparatively cheap rent.

“The Hills,” as used in the title of the quasi-reality show, refers to the Hollywood HIlls, where Lauren and Audrina lived. Glamorous, wealthy. As opposed to Hollywood itself, which is a pit.

There’s actually several valleys within LA County. “The Valley” is the San Fernando Valley which was already mentioned.

San Gabriel Valley has Pasadena, Arcadia, and more. Pasadena is where the Rose Bowl is located.

I believe the area North of the San Gabriel Mountains is Antelope Valley with the cities of Palmdale and Lancaster. Southern California is often called a desert, but this area North of the mountains fits the bill much better than the rest of the county’s chaparral.

You also have to consider that the concept “LA” is bigger than just the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles County, huge and variety-filled as they are.

The adjacent or nearby counties of Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura and Kern are all partly or wholly considered part of “LA” when viewed from far enough away. When you get done, the whole shebang is about 100x100 miles in size and has ~18 million people in it.

So the “All Valley Karate Tournament” in The Karate Kid for the San Fernando Valley?

And when Ali’s parents are skeptical of her going out with Daniel because he’s from Reseda, I take it that is some social snobbery? (His rich girlfriend lives in Encino - or so I assume, since the country club that they have the dance at [the one where Daniel sneaks in through the kitchen, sees Ali being {involuntarily} kissed by the blond preppy-turned-bad-boy and dual-sport motorbike hoodlum Johnny Lawrence, of the Cobra Kai Dojo, and then, in shock, bumps into a waiter, spilling a whole bowl of spaghetti and red sauce all over himself and the hapless tuxedoed waiter, eliciting wild laughter from the entire crowd and making Daniel look like a pathetic laughable fool in front of everybody] is called “Encino Oaks.”)

Pretty much, although it’s unlikely that kids from Reseda and Encino would attend the same high school.

The community of Sepulveda, one of the poorest areas of the Valley, changed its name to “North Hills” to make it sound more glamorous. Never mind that it’s in the dead center of the Valley (so it’s not really “north” of anything) and there certainly ain’t no bloody hills there, either!

Yeah, Encino is on the good side of the 101 and goes up into the hills while Reseda is in the flatlands.

And I went to Monroe High in SEPULVEDA so it pisses me off to no end that they changed the name to stupid fucking North Hills, where it decayed into a crappy gang ridden shithole. Sepulveda was also a very famous pioneering Mexican family in California.

What the fuck then? With all the people that live in california did the people who made Karate Kid really think that nobody would catch that mistake? I heard that 1 out of every 8 people in the US lives in california…not to mention that the Karate Kid was FILMED in califnora, so woud think that they wouldn’t have such an inaccuaracy.

Man, now I’m confused. I figured since my address is Van Nuys, CA and not Los Angeles, CA, and since there’s a Van Nuys police force, a Van Nuys courthouse, etc. that this was a city. Guess I don’t even know where I live.

How many boy-meets-girl-from-different-social-class stories have been written since humans first started scawling on cave walls? There’s always some willing suspension of disbelief over the sheer unlikelihood of the two ever meeting, much less falling for each other.

How is this plot any different?

First of all, you’d have to live in relatively close proximity to Encino to know that. I’m not sure I would have known it, even though I grew up in a place that got all its news from the L.A. Times, L. A. television stations, etc. Indeed, I’d bet the basic person in Orange County doesn’t know (or care!) about the high schools in the Valley. :smiley:

Second of all, I remember the movie, and when you watch such a thing, you don’t analyze it critically for such nonsense. Maybe the kids in Encino thought it pretty stupid; most everyone else, not so much.

By the way, California is a BIG place. If you live in San Francisco, you are 8 driving hours away from Encino, more or less.

The address is Van Nuys, CA, and there is a Van Nuys courthouse, but the police is the good old LAPD.