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David T. Cole

The Cosby Show

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Saw a couple classic episodes today on TVLand- the one where Cliff and Claire talk to the kids about how they should come to them if they have a problem ("Are you angry?") and the one where the Dragon Lady (Mrs. Westlake) comes to dinner.  I think these were Season 2 because Sondra is in the first one.  Loved the discussion.  Cliff uses the hypothetical of Theo being pregnant.  He says, "Well, first I would want to know who did it."  LOL  Theo was pretty awesome in the first few seasons.  I guess until he became a senior?

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I merged the two threads because they were pretty much the same.

I LOVED Theo.  I felt sorry for him sometimes having 4 sisters to contend with.  That has got to be hard for a guy.  The later seasons I watched, but wasn't into it too much.  All the outside drama about Lisa Bonet, and her on and off again appearances, and then poor Rudy getting older and replaced by Olivia, I lost my love of The Cosby Show.

One of my ultimate favorite scenes if the entire series was the anniversary of Cliff's parents where everybody did the James Brown song:

I get goosebumps.  They all looked like they were having the time of their lives.

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I like the one where they do Ray Charles' Night Time is the Right Time even better, thanks to Rudy.

Edited by Bastet
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A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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I must admit that I was not wild about Rudy. She was charming at the beginning, but sometimes she would fall into the trap of smiling after saying something precocious, even if her character wouldn't have smiled. That pulls me out of a scene. I am thinking about when Theo has to rent an apartment in his house and she is the rich lady, for instance. I also don't like the schtick of the kids being smart alecks.

As Rudy got older, they started the arc of her being a pain to Vanessa. Cliff told Vanessa repeatedly to suck it up. That drove me crazy and really made me dislike the character! I stopped watching when she became such a brat, and it's soured me on moments that I first thought were cute, like her lip-synching.

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One of my favorite episodes is when Denise makes the horrible designer shirt.

The Gordon Gartrelle episode is a classic! Malcolm Jamal Warner sold the hell out of Theo's reaction lol

One of my favorites is the episode when Rudy's goldfish Lamont dies. The funeral scene is hilarious

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What I most love about that is Keshia's real-life embarassment when Rudy explains she wants to be alone in the bathroom not to say goodbye to Lamont, but to use the toilet.

 

Some of my favorite little moments of the series were ad-libs, like Lisa Bonet riffing on Bill Cosby's "dogs get mad, people get angry" diatribe by asking, in perfect tone, "Are you angry?" after spinning her Tommy Watkins tale.  Or Bill Cosby saying to Peter's dad (as he, Peter and Rudy are on the way to the dentist), after Keshia accidentally runs into the door, "And take her to the eye doctor while you're out."

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The Gordon Gartrelle episode is a classic! Malcolm Jamal Warner sold the hell out of Theo's reaction lol

 

There are so many terrific moments in that one episode!    Cliff's reaction upon finding out the cost of the shirt ("No 14-year-old boy should have a $95 shirt unless he is on stage with his four brothers") kicks it off, but it just gets better from there.  Theo's freakout when he puts it on is pitch perfect (especially "It's tucked into my socks" through clenched teeth), and I also love his response to Cliff saying he seems to have learned his lesson:  "Oh, I've learned it, Dad.  Whatever it is, I've learned it!"

 

I also like the nice little moment when Denise asks a stunned Vanessa to come talk to her, since she's nervous about the shirt, and when Vanessa supports Denise in the face of Theo's wrath with, "It's better than I could do."  And when Cliff realizes Theo has just thoroughly embarassed himself in the living room and pretends the shirt is his.

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I did like the "Vanessa's New Class" episode. Vanessa thought that her project was good enough but found out that her friend did robotics and a guy did a twisting tornado she wanted to do it over again. Denise pointed out that she should have done more like make the planets rotate and include the moons of each planet or something like that. If Cliff only gave her $10, I don't think she would have been able to accomplish much of anything, even though her project looked like it cost a total of $5 since she borrowed Rudy's ball and made it planet Mars. 

 

I loved some episodes and I did like Clare but she irked me sometimes when she's always wanting to point out Cliff's embarrassments and mistakes more than his achievements. Like that horrible episode when she was showing Cliff play basketball with a bunch of women, she was mostly showing all his flops and barely anything good.

 

Sondra & Elvin's first house I didn't get, how the hell do they have a house with no cabinets. Where did they put their plates and food that didn't need to be refrigerated?  I was also asking where the hell is their bedroom? It must have been on the other side of the apartment because that was just ugly. I did LMAO when Cliff & Clare came over for dinner and Cliff was stabbing the veal and when the microwave blew up Cliff and Clare hit the ground thinking it was possible gunshots.

 

The Last BBQ, oh my god who styled Sondra, she looked a hot ass mess while Denise was very pretty in that episode.

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I remember when Vanessa got in trouble for sneaking out with Jeremy and Clare said that all these years Vanessa was the responsible one. I was like WTH?? Same girl who wore makeup when Clare told her not to, stole Denise's sweater when Denise told her she couldn't wear it and got a D, got in a fight at school, The Wretched episode, etc. Vanessa was more like the troublemaker. 

 

Theo really irked me in that one episode where Howard breaks up with Julia and Theo wanted Denny to ask her out for him and instead Julia asked out Denny. Theo gets upset and makes fun of Denny about his weight. Why did he want Julia when he had a beautiful woman in Justine? Justine was beautiful and so was Julia but Theo was just stupid and then he sits in the kitchen in the dark sipping juice and acting like a total douche and Cliff had to call him out on it.

 

Also when Theo and Justine agreed to see other people, he gets upset because Julia was at the cafe with another guy and the other guy calls him out on seeing him with other women and Theo says it's not the issue.

Edited by ShadowSixx
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I might be nitpicking but in the episode "Rudy Takes a Walk on the Wild Side". This is where Rudy stole money from Claire to buy that ugly fish sweater. Her friend Danielle said the shirt only cost $5.00. Rudy only had $2.70 saved, so she takes $2.30 off the counter that Claire was gonna pay the dry cleaner with. Rudy had $5 even but she would still be short because of a thing called TAX. Danielle didn't say if the sweater was tax free.

 

When Claire said that Rudy was gonna pay her back, Rudy had the money that Theo gave her when he stopped by, so why didn't she just hand it over right then and there? Also, I don't understand why Rudy didn't test the sweater out before buying it to make sure all the lights light up on it. Why would Claire leave $18.50 lying on the counter when she just got done talking to Vanessa about money? Claire could have left that money in her wallet, now I know she probably thinks that her kids would never steal from them since they never had an incident like that before, but still as many times as their kids asked for money (mostly Vanessa) I would be wary just leaving it out.

 

In the episode as well Vanessa is asking Cliff for money so she can buy a CD. Cliff said that he'll pay her to clean the garage. They live in a brownstone, so they don't have a garage.

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Rudy had $5 even but she would still be short because of a thing called TAX. Danielle didn't say if the sweater was tax free.

Well, what kid thinks about tax? Pennsylvania doesn't have sales tax on clothes. The Canadians come here in droves because of it. ... OK, I had to look it up and according to the Official Website of the City of New York, there is no sales tax on clothing or footwear if it is under $110. So, yes, Rudy was fine. A thief in her own home, but fine at the store.

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Well maybe I should move to NY then lol. I did read it's on eligible clothing and footwear, so don't know if that ugly sweater is eligible or not lol. 

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What bugged me (later when i thought about it) was who pays the dry cleaner $18.50?? Wasn't he personally delivering/picking up? No tip? I would have just left a check for $20...$25...?

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The eps where Sondra has the twins have always bugged me from a medical standpoint. Probably because I come from a medical family (though not an OB-GYN).

What bugs me about them--or at least the 1st ep (I think)--is where Theo takes the phone call from his parents after they're at the hospital &, when he hangs up, he tells Howard, Justine & Julia(?) Sondra "had a false alarm"....

But instead of leaving the hospital & going home, at that point, like normal after a pregnancy "false alarm", Sondra stays in the freakin' hospital & actually delivers the twins soon after!

When you do the above, oh not-so-great Cosby Show writers, you're NOT having "a false alarm"; you're just not at the point in labor you need to be at to actually do the pushing & other stuff that results in the freakin' birth!

That has always bugged, & always will bug, they clearly described something that was other than a "false alarm" as exactly that.

On another note, "Gordon Gartrelle", the name they used for the designer of the expensive-ish shirt Theo wanted, but Cliff wouldn't pay for so Denise tried to copy it, was actually the name of a real guy who eventually became a Producer (& maybe something else on the staff) of The Cosby Show. I think he has that credit in the season where the opening includes that mural drawn by local kids in the background, Cousin Pam is a character, & the opening credits use a child-like printing, if he doesn't have the credit before that season.

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Another episode that bothered me was the Thanksgiving episode. Clair sends Cliff out to get some things that she doesn't have to cook with. My thing is, why in the hell didn't Clair think about this days before Thanksgiving took place. Cliff needed to get eggs for the cornbread and when he comes back for the final time Clair says she just borrowed the eggs from next door neighbors. She would have been kicked out the door. Also what bugged in the episode is when the eggs fell out of Cliff's bag it was packed in a plastic bag and not an egg carton. I was like who puts eggs in a plastic bag?

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On Saturday, April 11, 2015 at 2:50 PM, ShadowSixx said:

I might be nitpicking but in the episode "Rudy Takes a Walk on the Wild Side". This is where Rudy stole money from Claire to buy that ugly fish sweater. Her friend Danielle said the shirt only cost $5.00. Rudy only had $2.70 saved, so she takes $2.30 off the counter that Claire was gonna pay the dry cleaner with. Rudy had $5 even but she would still be short because of a thing called TAX. Danielle didn't say if the sweater wa s tax free.

 

When Claire said that Rudy was gonna pay her back, Rudy had the money that Theo gave her when he stopped by, so why didn't she just hand it over right then and there? Also, I don't understand why Rudy didn't test the sweater out before buying it to make sure all the lights light up on it. Why would Claire leave $18.50 lying on the counter when she just got done talking to Vanessa about money? Claire could have left that money in her wallet, now I know she probably thinks that her kids would never steal from them since they never had an incident like that before, but still as many times as their kids asked for money (mostly Vanessa) I would be wary just leaving it out.

 

In the episode as well Vanessa is asking Cliff for money so she can buy a CD. Cliff said that he'll pay her to clean the garage. They live in a brownstone, so they don't have a garage.

What bugged me most about that IThat ep IS how ClaiRe acted like she was losing her mind looking for the money. It was so obvious she was puttingon an act To make Rudy feel guity

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But she wasn't putting on an act.  It was really bugging Claire that the money was missing.  Because the money was missing she immediately started to doubt herself, which is what sent her on the wild goose chase to find it. 

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The women who took pictures and sold them to a tabloid is a dick. "Elvin from The Cosby Show is a cashier Trader Joe's! Ha! Ha!" Eff you Fox News. Not everyone who's been on sitcoms are millionaires. Acting is a tough career. Geoffrey Owens is just trying to earn a living. I'm glad most people on Twitter are dragging the assholes shaming him on it and there are tweets like:

Edited by VCRTracking
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16 minutes ago, RealHousewife said:

I loved the episode Theo got his ear pierced. 

Theo grew up and got a job as a parole officer in Sneaky Pete. I'm sure he's been in other things, that's just the only one I've seen.

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I know a lot of people's favorite Clair rant is when she goes off on Vanessa for sneaking off to Baltimore to see the Wretched. My favorite one though is when she goes off on Vanessa and her friends when they come down to perform their routine to Locomotion. I've included some of the lines below.

Clair: Did you see Miss Kara with that bra on on top of her leotard? Tell me...
Cliff: Did I see it? I ...
Clair: We have made a mistake! We have planted roses but we keeping getting these weeds.
Cliff: See now ...
Clair: Sondra's in the wilderness, Denise is in the jungle, and she's on the locomotion? [Yelling upstairs] You'd better take that war paint off your faces! [Turning back to Cliff] Before the mothers come in here and see ME; they'll be BLAMING ME!
Cliff: Yeah, well that's ...
Clair: Running around here dressed in NOTHING. Jumping around like they just hopped off the hot seat. Suppose some fool comes along, sees that, takes them seriously? Vanessa could end up on a stage somewhere across the country Cliff, in a smoke filled cafe singing and dancing and gyrating like that, and I won't be around to take the tissues out then! I'm not...
Cliff: No. See th-
Clair: What do they know? What do they know? Easy as doing the ABCs? Miss fourteen hundred on the S.A.T., I got your locomotion down here in the living room with a SCIENCE BOOK!
Cliff: Right!
Clair: AND TAKE THAT MAKEUP OFF!
Cliff: That's right.
Clair: I can see it now, sitting in a Hollywood swimming pool with a remote phone in her hand calling me up. "Hi, mom, babe. Let's do lunch." I'll not have it!
Cliff: And that goes for me too!

Everything about Phylicia Rashad's reading of those lines and frenzied pacing during that scene sold her on her madness. It just totally seemed like something my mother would say and do. Also, before the part I posted above Clair snatches tissue out of Vanessa's bra after Cliff questions why they're suddenly "swollen in places they weren't swollen before." OMG, the secondhand embarrassment I get during that moment is palpable.

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Another great one when Elvin and Sondra decide they don't want to be a doctor and lawyer respectively and open a wilderness store instead.
 

Quote

Sondra: I decided not to go to law school

Clair: What do you mean you "decided" not to got to law school?

Sondra: Well this is our dream. So I'm going to take a temporary job while the Wilderness Store opens then I'll be working side by side with my husband

Clair: Sondra, what are you saying? You have always wanted to go to law school, you havn't talked about anything else!

Sondra: I changed my mind.

Clair: Change it back! After all that money we spent sending you to Princeton? Sondra, you owe US seventy-nine thousand six hundred and forty-eight dollars and twenty-two cents! And I want my money NOW!

The way Claire said "decided" was awesome. I also loved "Empty her pockets!"

As great as Phylicia Rashad is in the Creed movies as Apollo's widow I would have loved to see her go off like Claire. Like when Adonis("Donny") wanted to give up working in an office to become a fighter like his dad or when he wanted to challenge Ivan Drago's son to avenge Apollo!

Edited by VCRTracking
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I was just watching some clips of Sonia Braga as Mrs. Westlake from that episode when she comes over for dinner. What a great supporting character/performance. Braga's delivery is perfect in the monologue about the kind of teacher she tries to be. It actually sounds like something a person might say, and of course she spoke beautifully accented English.  

Eventually, the show got over the top with its lectures on Cosby's personal passions and preoccupations, with "responsibility" sometimes taking precedence over humor, as in the notorious commencement episode. But in the first couple seasons, the balance was just right.

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