A The Cosby Show Community
NBC (ended 1992)

One of NBC's big programming initiatives heading into the fall 2013 TV season was to repair its broken comedy slate by going broad (fewer edgy, Community-ish sitcoms, more wacky neighbors and laugh tracks) and thawing out tried-and-true stars from our youth (that kid from Family Ties, that gay guy from Will & Grace) to headline new sitcoms. I'm going to be nice about the whole thing and say it was a total disaster. The Michael J. Fox Show and Sean Saves the World have left stains on NBC's schedule and reputation, and though they were supposed to put the must-see back in NBC's once-famed Thursday-night comedy block, they've been outperformed by pretty much everything, including those types of comedies that NBC was moving away from. Lesson learned, right?

Maybe not. NBC just can't pry that dunce cap off its pointy head, and has dusted off another relic from the '80s to wipe away its woes. Although to be fair, it IS one of the biggest sitcom stars in history. I'm talking about Mr. Pudding Pop himself, Bill Cosby. 

Cosby and NBC are partnering up on a new family sitcom starring the Cos as the grandpa of a multi-generational family, with Cosby's take on parenting serving as the focus of the series, according to Deadline. The project is currently just in development, with Cosby's old pal Tom Werner (of the Carsey-Werner Company) on board to produce.

This is an absurd idea and the same trap that NBC just hasn't been able to resist. I understand the allure of bringing Cosby back to NBC. After all, The Cosby Show kept the network afloat in the mid-'80s and broke ground as the most successful African-American family in primetime history. But the world is a different place than it was when King Cosby roamed the Earth, and NBC just can't seem to understand that the old TV landscape and all its relics were devastated by the metaphorical meteor that is the rise of cable and niche networks that have their fingers on the throbbing pulse of what's cool (not to mention what's NOT really old). We're all assuming that this new show would be an easy-going family comedy and not, like, Bill Cosby as a treasure hunter or an aging superhero, right? The wider NBC casts its net with broad comedies, the bigger the holes are in that net for viewers to escape through.

Unless Cosby is reinventing himself for today's times, there's no way this will work. The Cosby Show ended in 1993, meaning today's 21-year-olds weren't even alive when it was last on the air. How is THAT going to bring in young audiences? But that notion won't sink into NBC's noggin, as the network has totally lost touch with the last three generations, and it'll probably commit to 22 episodes of a new Cosby sitcom with an early series order. 

For the record, I would totally watch a show starring Bill Cosby as a rugged treasure hunter or old superhero on FX or something. But a broad NBC comedy? No thanks. 


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 5/19/2002

Season 8 : Episode 26

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I think the clever way to do this would be to make Bill Cosby a secondary character, then bring in some new talent to take the lead.
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Bill Cosby's Meeting with NBC:

Cosby: Frizzle Frazzle Rizzle Razzle. Listen Mr. Greenblatt, we've got to get a show going that can show off the parenting styles of the previous generations and how they conflict with today's youth. (makes a face) I'm tired of seeing the current generation's crazy faces (he starts mimicking another face) and how they seem to act so deserving of everything these days.

Bob Greenblatt: Yes, I have absolutely no idea how to develop quality television and am desperate. Here's some money!

Cosby: Because in my generation, you didn't talk to anyone like that. Reeble Robble Weeble Wobble. If we gave them a look like this (Cosby makes another face and Cosbyish sound) they'd wouldn't put up with it. Also I need to find another way to hawk pudding products. (Cosby starts doing his typical Cosbyish dance and holding the money Greenblatt gave him above his head)

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WTF picture of Olivia and not Rudy? Olivia was on the show 2 seasons, Rudy was the shit for the whole run. Olivia is the Cousin Oliver of the show, hence the name similarity. She's not even a fucking Huxtable!*

* - heh heh, I love the internet, that was the stupidest fake angry rant I've ever written.

Annnyway, yeah, you are being nice by calling it a total disaster. You forgot the part where they clearcut the majority of other shows including critical success "Go On".

Putting Cosby back on TV is a mistake, his series after The Cosby Show were pretty middling - The Cosby Mysteries and "Cosby" both sucked the life out of TV, despite CBS keeping the latter on the air 4 seasons.

I wanted to like Cosby's Comedy Central special last year, but it was unbearably slow and awkward, and his wonky eye was incredibly distracting.

Then there is the controversy of his Brown vs. Board of Education anniversary speech that still looms to this day and leaves a bitter taste in a lot of mouths.

The idea that NBC can't see what a mistake it is further cements the NBC executive management as an utterly useless entity that needs to be completely removed from power there. The fact that investors have not revolted only goes to show that having a giant parent company means it's easy to get overlooked.
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I think it's important to note that of all of Cosby's sitcoms, only the Cosby Show was really ever very successful. Keep that in mind!
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Exactly. It tapped into a zeitgeist at a very specific moment in our culture, and that moment is long past now.
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I was very eager to watch M J Fox on TV when it was first announce. I stopped watching after 4 episodes. I am not very excited to see Bill Cosby back on TV.

Actually it really depends on the material. The M J Fox show is not particularly funny and does not invent anything new.

The NEW Cosby show got to have really good material. A big star from the 80s would not be enough.
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Would you like a Jello pudding pop?
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Sean Saves the World cancelled and replaced by Bill Saves the Network (which is canned 22 episodes later).
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Strap yourself in, we're going backwards people.
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Will be canceled after one season or less. It's just a different generation with a different mindset and culture. It might appeal to the 50+ crowd who remember Cosby from the I-SPY and Cosby show days. But I just don't think it will last.
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I completely agree. The people you need watching for the ratings won't show up for this. The Goldberg's seems to be a family comedy that works on audiences these days, and what you see in that show would never occur on a Cosby Show, Family Ties, Family Matters or Full House.
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I'd welcome Bill Cosby back into another sitcom!Why not,he's a comedic icon with charisma and talent(unlike some of today's sitcom actors).Sometimes television needs a good old fashion kick in the ass.Now whether his sitcom will be good,we'll have to wait and see but I won't judge Mr.Cosby just because he's 77,we here should be so lucky that when we get to be 77,we're still active and productive and not laying around waiting to die.I know I won't!!Don't forget,we're all going to get old one day and the last thing you want to hear is the young generation telling you there's no place for you in the world.It's insulting and mean-spirited!Remember...karma's a bitch,want goes around,comes around!Words I live by!
On a side note,if we learned anything from The Golden Girls,it's that people can still be funny past their prime.Age is a number,but talent is talent!!
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People don't like family sitcoms anymore? Or must everything be geared towards tweens or nerds. Not everything needs to edgy to be enjoyable. And I'm sure they are not going to try to skew this to any 21 year olds.

This show will live or die by the quality of the casting and writing. If it's funny, it's funny.
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The thing is, people DO like family sitcoms, but they watch them on Disney and ABC Family Channel usually, the audience for family sitcoms has become just as much a niche as sci-fi fans and cooking viewers and so forth, they can just go to a channel that caters to them and likely won't air inappropriate content directly after (or before) their family sitcom the way network does.
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Well... the nostalgia factor is tempting, always did love Bill Cosby, but it'll need actual good writing to keep me tuned in for the long run.
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OMG when is NBC going to get with the program? vampires , werewolfs , witches etc.... cop shows and half hour comedies are lame these days. Grimm and Dracula are all they have left?
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That's what you have FOX and the CW for.
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Not nearly enough IMO. Other networks are bringing great shows to the table as well. I don't limit myself just to USA shows. Check out: The Musketeers " from BBC.
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I've seen bits and pieces of it. i meant that for the people with no attention span who care about vampires , werewolfs , witches. Meaning the little emo kids with no friends
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Well. Now I think it's a really safe bet that Jerry Seinfeld will get another NBC show when he is 74 and diseased.

Also, I think it's a bit sad that out of the long, impressive, successful career Cosby had, people only remember him for his pudding ads.
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For the record, I would totally watch a show starring Bill Cosby as a rugged treasure hunter or old superhero on FX or something. But a broad NBC comedy? No thanks.

THIS.
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Sadly, Cosby hasn't been funny for years.

As for Michael J Fox, I REALLY wanted to like that show. I gave it a real shot. But, YUCK! Horrible show. Just horrible.

So, I agree. This is not going to work for NBC. At. All.
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Hey NBC, TV Land called, they want their concept back. :-) What's next a comedy with Max Wright as the main-character, for those who is only 20 years old he played the dad Willie Tanner in a sitcom called ALF.
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I will probably watch it and to be fair, it doesn't sound like such a horrible idea. Maybe the old family comedy becomes the new trend. Heck, Hipsters rule the world at the moment so anything is possible. As far as the NBC's constant attempts to revive their Thursday nights comedy block, I only have to say one thing. CBS. It ain't gonna happen NBC, try another night.
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I will probably watch it a couple times. I loved the Cosby Show, maybe they can recapture some of the magic... but I doubt it.
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I'll wait and see, but I'm not hopeful
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After the tremendous success of "The Michael J. Fox Show," this makes perfect sense.
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Depends on the concept and writing, etc., but MJF is just not that good. I tried to like it but it never came together for me. One problem I think people have is Fox's Parkinson's. He seems irritated and/or tired because of it, which the show's lack of creativity isn't helping to cover. In short, despite his sense of humor, Fox has lost some of his charm and I think people see that and would rather not watch him week after week. Sticking to appearances on shows like The Good Wife would have been a better decision for him, as people / fans of his more likely appreciate and respect that more.

Cosby is still funny and seemingly healthy, just older. He has a tendency to not finish his routines when on late night talk shows that bugs me, but his recent comedy special on Comedy Central was pretty amusing. NBC will make a mistake if they do to him what was done to Harry's Law in that they basically stated they did not know how to market to older viewers of that show despite good ratings for those viewers, which is retarded. It's all going to depend on concept, writing, casting, and overall chemistry, which is true of any show. Maybe they'll go for a Goldbergs type of series, which seems to be doing fine for ABC. As someone noted below though, it would likely be a hit on TV Land, but he may not get the budget he would on NBC.
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This is just a guess, but I think BadCode was being sarcastic.
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Yes, I know.
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Nope, sorry NBC, not gonna work (and I still love the original Cosby Show).
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It would be a hit for TVLand!
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I don't think it's such a bad idea, being one of the few, as it would be the perfect sitcom that families can watch together, and it might start something new in NBC's line of (mostly failed) programming. I don't think it will be a big hit, but I think it will sustain itself. I think it's ridiculous that everything has to go for the Netflix/MTV/18-34 demographic, and why some programming can't go for the 35-54 crowd and be a success like Harry's Law was (even though that got cancelled). I think this is going to be one of those shows, and I'm fine with that.
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Hopefully the show is a comedy that just happens to have Cosby as the grandparent and not be just about Cosby. If the other generations in the show have good casting it could work
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I for sure will watch it, or at least start to, because Bill Cosby is a true comedy legend. I hope it turns out to be humorous and successful.
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*is waiting for a Perfect Strangers reboot*
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Doon't be reedik-alus.
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Full House, Family Matters, etc.
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