The Cosby Show

NBC (ended 1992)




Episode Guide

  • Season 1
    • Pilot
      Episode 1
      Clair is furious when Theo brings home a report card with 4 D's. He tells Cliff that he has no intention of going to college, as he feels that he is destined to be a "regular person." Cliff uses Monopoly money to teach him about the economic realities that many blue-collar workers must face. He assures Theo that he only wants him to try his best. Cliff is alarmed to meet Denise's latest beau, a former merchant marine who once spent time in a Turkish prison.moreless
    • Rudy becomes very sad after her pet goldfish, Lamont, dies. Cliff accuses the rest of the family of being insensitive to her plight, and forces everyone to get dressed up and attend a funeral for Lamont in the bathroom. The event ends abruptly after Rudy becomes bored and decides to leave to watch television.moreless
    • Bad Dreams
      Episode 3
      Vanessa goes behind her parents back and sees a scary movie, but comes to regret it.
    • Is That My Boy?
      Episode 4
      Theo makes Cliff proud when he joins the football team, until Cliff learns that Theo’s not exactly a natural.
    • A Shirt Story
      Episode 5
      Cliff forces Theo to return an expensive designer shirt, so Theo agrees to let Denise try to make a copy of the pricey duds.
    • 10/25/84
      Denise ponders her college choices and the family tries to persuade her to go to Hillman.
    • One More Time
      Episode 7
      After babysitting for a friend, Clair becomes obsessed with the idea of having another child. The kids are terrified at the implications this would have on them, and Cliff isn't too thrilled either. Clair's mother visits and suggests that she simply wait a few years for grandchildren. Theo beats Cliff at basketball for the first time. This prompts Cliff to warn Clair that they are too old to keep up with another child. He wants them to be able to spend time together and travel after their retirement. Clair tells him that she had already come to her senses.moreless
    • 11/8/84
      Discouraged by her lack of ability, Vanessa decides to give up the clarinet. She does not want to take part in an upcoming recital because she is afraid of embarrassing herself. Cliff refuses to let her quit yet, as she has made a commitment to the recital. He enlists the help of the music teacher, Mr. Hampton, to give her extra lessons. Vanessa and the other students improve enough that the audience can almost tell what song they are playing.moreless
    • How Ugly Is He?
      Episode 9
      Vanessa tells Cliff that Denise has been purposely keeping her boyfriends away from him because she feels that he is rude to them. He is the only member of the family who has yet to meet her latest boyfriend David, an intelligent young man who writes poetry. Cliff promises to behave himself, and convinces Denise to invite David over for dinner. David initially impresses Cliff by bringing him a jazz record, but soon begins to get on his nerves. He infuriates Cliff with his comments about the medical profession. Although Clair claims that she enjoys the discussion, she changes her mind after David not only puts down lawyers, but opines that Clair should stay home with the kids. Denise whisks David away for his own protection. She seems poised to dump him after he makes additional sexist comments during their date.moreless
    • Bon Jour Sondra
      Episode 10
      Sondra comes home for Thanksgiving and reveals plans to spend the summer with some friends in Paris. Clair feels that it is a wonderful idea, and gives Sondra some pointers on winning over Cliff. When Cliff hestitates to give his approval, Clair calls a family meeting. All of the children vote in Sondra's favor. Cliff takes her aside and explains that he is worried about Paris's reputation, as he fears she will party too much. He eventually agrees to let her go. Theo anxiously awaits the opportunity to carve the family's Thanksgiving turkey for the first time. Cliff has him practice on a chicken and a cabbage so that he can acquire the proper technique. He tries to blackmail Theo into siding with him against Sondra by threatening to revoke his carving privileges, but lets him do it anyway.moreless
    • 12/6/84
      Clair becomes fed up with the pressures of her job and the constant demands of the children. Cliff decrees that evening to be "You're Not a Mother Night." He takes her out to dinner and rents a room at the Biltmore for the night, leaving Denise to look after the other kids. Theo handles a call from a patient very well and gives her the number of another doctor. As a joke, the kids call up their parents' hotel room and warn them not to have another baby.moreless
    • Rudy's Sick
      Episode 12
      Clair prepares for an interview with her firm's senior partner, which will determine whether she makes partner. She wants to bring in a babysitter to look after the ailing Rudy, but Cliff insists that he can handle things. Mr. Halifax, the man interviewing Clair, rambles on endlessly. The interview goes on for so long that Cliff has to move Rudy down to the living room so that she will be closer to his basement office as he goes into work. He tries to help a father-to-be who faints at the mere mention of his wife's labor. Clair finally walks out on the interview after Mr. Halifax falls asleep, but later learns that she has made partner.moreless
    • Father's Day
      Episode 13
      Clair notices that Cliff is still wearing his worn-out old pajamas and wonders why he doesn't wear the ones she gave him for Father's Day. This sets Cliff off on a speech about how no one gives fathers what they really want or need for Father's Day. He digs out a box of gifts the children have given him over the years, and shows off an array of ties, belts and hats that light up. He walks around the house in the tacky clothing and asks the children to put some thought into their gifts the next time Father's Day comes around. The kids agree that they haven't been thoughtful, and set out with Clair to buy him some better Father's Day presents--even though it is two weeks until Christmas. Meanwhile, Cliff encounters a macho father-to-be who insists that he is the boss of the household and must always get his way. Cliff sets him straight, explaining that he and his wife must band together to keep the children from taking over.moreless
    • Independence Day
      Episode 14
      Theo reveals to Denise that he got his ear pierced, courtesy of a friend's younger sister. He claims that the earring is a symbol of independence, but he is actually trying to impress a girl. Denise notes that his ear is infected, and urges him to seek help from Cliff. He refuses, but Denise drops a hint to her parents so that Cliff will discover the truth. Cliff treats Theo's problem and decides to punish him by turning him over to his visiting grandfather, who is very conservative. However, Russell proves to be surprisingly understanding. He shares that a teenage Cliff once tried to impress Clair by straightening his hair, only to burn off all his hair. Cliff's mother chimes in with a story about Russell. He decided to have her name tattooed on his chest, but was suffering from a cold at the time. The artist misunderstood him and tattooed the name of Anna's chief rival, Adda. Anna forced Russell to have the tattoo removed, leaving him with a permanent scar. Russell, Cliff and Theo bond over their antics.moreless
    • 1/17/85
      Cliff prepares to receive the Physician of the Year award. The entire family gets dressed up, and Cliff teaches Theo how to shave for the occasion. Just as the Huxtables are about to leave, Cliff receives a phone call from a woman who has gone into labor. As she is a first-time mother, he decides to go to the hospital to reassure her, rather than sending a substitute. The woman turns out to be much closer to delivery than Cliff had anticipated, and he must miss the ceremony. He has Theo read his speech and accept the award on his behalf.moreless
    • Jitterbug Break
      Episode 16
      Cliff and Clair make plans to go dancing with some friends. Clair admits that Cliff's dancing embarrasses her. Denise tries to convince her parents to let her sleep on the street in the hopes of getting tickets to a concert. Cliff refuses to consider this. Denise's friends come over and admit that their parents also turned them down. However, an acquaintance has agreed to stand in line and buy tickets for everyone. The teens decide to hang out at the Huxtable house instead. They move the furniture so that everyone can dance in the living room. Theo shows off his breakdancing skills. When Cliff and Clair's friends arrive, the adults take to the floor and compare moves with the kids.moreless
    • Theo and the Joint
      Episode 17
      Clair accidentally knocks one of Theo's books off the kitchen table and discovers a joint. Clair initially jumps to the conclusion that Theo is a drug addict and that all of his friends are dangerous criminals. Cliff tries to calm her down. They confront Theo, who adamantly declares that the joint is not his and that he has never done drugs. Cliff and Clair insist that they believe him, but Theo is furious that he was subjected to accusations because of someone else's actions. He discovers that the joint belongs to classmate Anthony Braxton, who shoved it into the book to hide it from a teacher. Theo is prepared to fight the much larger Braxton to convince him to come to the Huxtable house and confess. He tells Cliff the truth and agrees to consider counseling. Cliff assures Theo that he did not need to put himself in danger, as he did believe his denial. Braxton seems impressed by the level of trust between father and son, and joins the other neighborhood kids in their touch football game. Meanwhile, gossip Vanessa annoys Cliff and Theo with her constant pathetic attempts to pry information about Theo's situation.moreless
    • 2/14/85
      Vanessa prepares for the science fair. She believes that her project is very good, but Denise warns that she may need to work harder to keep up with the kids in her new advanced class. Vanessa is shocked by the quality of the other kids' projects, and begins to feel embarrassed. She finishes 14th in the competition, and alienates best friend Janet by accusing her of getting help from her parents. Vanessa assures Cliff that she is capable of succeeding in the class, but needs to put in more of an effort. Clair tries to keep the status of the broken dishwasher a secret from Cliff. As usual, he insists on trying to repair the appliance himself. His efforts prove so disastrous that he has to replace the machine altogether. He unsuccessfully tries to hide the truth from Clair.moreless
    • Clair's Case
      Episode 19
      Sondra sues an auto mechanic after he charges her for services that he did not perform. Clair becomes angry when her colleague tries to settle the case, and insists on taking over. Cliff asks the children to take over the household chores as Clair spends all of her time preparing for the trial. The family must also endure Cliff's cooking, which seems delicious until he reveals the ingredients. Clair grills the mechanic on the stand and proves that he billed Sondra for a new engine when he had actually repaired the original engine. Cliff leaves a courtroom spectator bewildered by pretending that he and Clair are strangers and approaching her for a date during the recess.moreless
    • 2/28/85
      Cliff's college track coach recruits him to join the members of his old mile relay team for a grudge match against the Norton University team, who handed Cliff the only defeat of his career. Cliff made up a twenty-yard deficit on his anchor leg, but Norton's Tailwind Turner bumped him across the track and kept him from passing. Cliff struggles in his training and concludes that he cannot get in shape in time for the race. He changes his mind after Turner calls him up and taunts him. Cliff gets the baton with the lead, and gets revenge on Tailwind by bumping him to prevent him from passing. The race ends in a tie. An exhausted Cliff enjoys the praise of his family, but wonders if he'll ever be able to move again.moreless
    • The Younger Woman
      Episode 21
      Cliff and Clair invite a widower friend and his girlfriend over to the house. They are very surprised to discover that Mike's girlfriend is young enough to be his daughter. However, they are very impressed with the young woman, and realize that the couple is quite compatible and seems to be very much in love. They conclude that age really shouldn't make a difference in a relationship. Clair continually torments Cliff by asking him questions about whether he would ever re-marry or date if he were a widower. She inflicts bodily harm upon him whenever he gives the wrong answer.moreless
    • Slumber Party
      Episode 22
      Rudy feels left out when her siblings refuse to include her in their activities, so Cliff agrees to let her have a slumber party. Peter, a neighbor boy who never seems to say a word, ends up joining the party when he follows Cliff and the girls into the house. Cliff tries to keep the children entertained by playing a game called "bucking horse," where the kids ride on his leg as if it were a bronco. Russell comes over and bets Cliff that he can quiet the rambunctious kids within sixty seconds. He succeeds by telling the children that Cliff will give them money if they calm down.moreless
    • Mr. Quiet
      Episode 23
      Cliff and Clair volunteer at a friend's community center. Clair provides legal aid, while Cliff talks to a class of women about what to expect during pregnancy. Many of the women insist on showing their appreciation for his work by giving him food. Theo comes to the aid of a young boy being assaulted by two older kids. The boy receives treatment from Cliff, but is hesitant to speak to anyone. He refuses to reveal his name. He later calls his mother, who explains that Enrique has become reticent around strangers following the release of the man who murdered his policeman father. Enrique opens up a little to Tony, the head of the community center.moreless
    • Cliff's Birthday
      Episode 24
      Clair plans the perfect birthday surprise for Cliff, but she will need the kids to help keep their snooping Father from finding out.
  • Season 2
  • Season 3
  • Season 4
  • Season 5
  • Season 6
  • Season 7
  • Season 8