TV legend Bill Cosby is returning to small screen stand-up for the first time in decades.
If you grew up in the 1980's or 90's, you probably don't need an introduction to Bill Cosby. Cosby's landmark sitcom 'The Cosby Show' delighted audiences far and wide from 1984-1992. 'The Cosby Show' served as one of the earliest portrayals of a well educated, upper class African-American family in broadcast TV history, representing a clear dividing-line from previous depictions of black families on network television. 'The Cosby Show's mix of good natured humor and Cosby's deadpan quips carried the program to the top of the Nielsen ratings for five consecutive seasons, earning Cosby a fan-following that crossed all boundaries of race, gender, or political affiliation.
Before all that though, Bill Cosby was one of the most beloved stand-up comedians in America. Sure, he had been acting regularly since the 70's in films and shows like 'I Spy,' but it was his gift for making people of every creed and color laugh that made Cosby a household name. Cosby began releasing comedy albums in the mid-60's, and moved to TV comedy specials in the latter part of the decade. These continued at a fairly regular clip until 1983's 'Bill Cosby: Himself,' widely considered one of the landmarks in the long history of televised stand-up performance.
Cosby's unique brand of stand-up comedy has been sadly missing from TV screens for the last thirty years since 'Himself' first aired. That all changes this November, thanks to Cosby and Comedy Central. The new special will be entitled 'Far From Finished' and will draw material from a series of shows that the 76-year-old Cosby performed at the Cerritos Performing Arts Center in California earlier this year. Veteran comedian/actor/director Robert Townshend ('Eddie Murphy Raw,' 'Hollywood Shuffle,' 'The Meteor Man') will sit in the director's chair for the project.
'Far From Finished' will make its debut Sunday, November 24th on Comedy Central. If you just can't wait until then for your Cosby comedy fix, Bill is embarking on a lengthy stand-up tour over the summer and fall.
Are you excited to check out Bill Cosby's return to televised stand-up?