Bill Cosby returning to NBC in new family comedy

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by Amasov, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. Amasov

    Amasov Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  2. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    And it will fail just like Michael J Fox Show is.
     
  3. Starbreaker

    Starbreaker Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Can't say I'm surprised. Will it have Cosby in the title no matter what it's about?
     
  4. Romulan_spy

    Romulan_spy Commodore Commodore

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    I applaud Cosby for wanting to do a comedy that harkens back the wholesome family values of The Cosby Show. We certainly need more of that these days. I loved The Cosby Show when it aired! Having said that, I do think that it will be tricky to recapture its success. It was one of those shows that just came at the right time with the right chemistry of actors.
     
  5. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I think it'll be important that he not be the center of the show.
     
  6. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Hmm. From the article: "There is a viewership out there that wants to see comedy, and warmth, and love, and surprise, and cleverness, without going into the party attitude." I'm not sure what he means by "party attitude." I can think of lots of sitcoms on the air right now that are currently have all of the qualities he is listing. Reading his further descriptions in the article of the type of show he wants to do, it basically sounds like an 80s sitcom, which may or may not appeal to today's audience. For the nostalgia factor, yes. But there's a reason that current shows have moved away from the image of the loving, forgiving, wholesome family...it doesn't exist. It's not realistic (I especially laughed at his comment that the show will have "children who respect the parenting").
     
  7. JustAFriend

    JustAFriend Commodore Commodore

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    I like Bill's comedy and have watched him since the '60s.

    But he's getting to the point where they have to help him out on stage.
    Don't think he'll be able to take the grind of production.

    Sometimes it's just time to retire....
     
  8. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Agreed. It really came at the right time, and it certainly helped that the actors had chemistry with each other. I think a multi-generational show could work, but only with the right cast.
     
  9. Captain Craig

    Captain Craig Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Maybe in California and selected areas.
    I know lots of families where it is realistic and children respecting parents is not only expected but happens. Not saying it's universal but it's common enough. Maybe geography and nature vs nurture come into play on your experiences.
     
  10. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    I'd say that something like Modern Family is a more accurate representation of family dynamics. Or even The Simpsons or Roseanne, which is why we moved towards those types of shows and away from 80s-type family sitcoms in the first place. I don't think I've ever encountered a family that wasn't "dysfunctional."
     
  11. Captain Craig

    Captain Craig Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The gay couples I personally know and can count as friends would be done on two hands. With kids, one hand. Those are still raising there's to respect adults and authority figures. And only one of the guys is a real flamboyant type, the others give him shit for playing into the stereotype.

    I can't say the Modern Family template is one I can relate to. Again, perhaps it's our geography.

    That said I always viewed Roseanne as a more white trash, not a blue collar, type template...those I knew. No shortage of that in Nashville Public Schools.

    I wouldn't pretend to say I didn't know families with some inner upheaval but that would be some growing up. They would've been the exception. I didn't go to Public School, Private so there's that to help explain the dynamic of my statement. The public school examples I met though various other social outlets.

    Seventh Heaven is the last successful sitcom I can recall that fit into the mold of what Cosby is wanting to return to. That ended, what, early 00's?
     
  12. bbailey861

    bbailey861 Admiral Premium Member

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    Today's audience only wants to see dysfunctional. The more dysfunctional the better. I applaud what Cosby wants to do. I will certainly tune in and can only hope that it will be good.
     
  13. JWPlatt

    JWPlatt Commodore Commodore

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    I've seen this said by others in media. They often say and repeat it in the subconscious hope that if it's said often enough, even more people will believe this myth and so on... Denying the existence of families like this helps the dysfunctional boost their own self esteem at the expense of others. It's not a proud moment when we try to convince people who are happy with their lives that the world sucks by continually feeding them depressing fare until they are just as unhappy as we are. I'm tired of the dark heroes and I'd like better; optimistic. Star Trek used to be like that.

    This.
     
  14. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Star Trek is science fiction, family comedies have to be based somewhat on being real. No one lives in a Leave it to Beaver world, and if they do they should be taken care of.
     
  15. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I don't know. I watch Modern Family and I don't think that they really play on the dysfunctional angle much.
     
  16. 2takesfrakes

    2takesfrakes Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    What has NBC got to lose? When it tanks, they'll just pull it and put on something else. Bill Cosby would've been so much smarter and so much more successful, if he'd either change his image, or at least, not insist on making himself the focus of the show. Having him as the sweet old grand-dad in some edgey comedy, would seem like more of a sure-thing. But T.V. ratings do not mean what they used to, anymore. Abysmal ratings that were completely unacceptable to a network before, are now the goal they struggle to achieve. The assumption that is there that Cosby's got his own, built-in audience to justify the show isn't entirely without merit, it's simply overrated. There is no hype, here. This series will tank before it makes its 13th episode.
     
  17. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd say there's a middle ground between dysfunctional and idyllic. You don't need to have the father constantly strangling his child, and you don't need to show picture perfect children doing whatever their parents say either.

    Also, I've noticed that people who grow up with parents having money have a lower threshold for calling a family dysfunctional than people who don't. Upper middle class kids who grew up with a harmonious family tend to see that as the standard for everybody and everything else as a deviation.

    I'd definitely like to see sitcoms move away from the 'Sarcastic 20-somethings hooking up' formula. Just because it worked with Seinfeld and Friends doesn't mean every other show has to be like that for the next 20 years.

    There are far more loving, forgiving families out there now than there are wholesome ones. Show me a wholesome family and I'll show you a teenager who's really good at hiding his porn stash.
     
  18. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Dysfunctionalism is the current trend. But not every show can pull it off successfully. I think it takes great chemistry in the actors in order for them to bounce off each other in a believable manner. Otherwise you just get a bunch of talking heads that end up being irritating. I think the Micheal J. Fox show tried to be a hybrid of a loving family drama combined with dysfunction. The problem with that show is that it played it too safe and was going nowhere as a result.
     
  19. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    I wasn't even thinking in terms of gay couples or poverty level, I was thinking more along the lines of parent-child relationships. They are rarely so easy going and perfect as older sitcoms would have you believe. Real life is complicated, not solved with kind words and a hug in 30 minutes. I used to enjoy shows like 7th Heaven or Family Matters but I stopped watching because it was just too fake, too unrealistic and cheesy.


    I prefer optimistic shows as well. Who says that dysfunctional families aren't also happy? I don't see the two as being at odds. I think that a sitcom, or any show, can accurately portray dysfunction as well as love and closeness. They both exist in every family (well at least I hope there is love in every family). I don't think a show like Modern Family is depressing at all, but to me it more accurately displays a family dynamic than something like The Cosby Show.

    I think that we do families a disservice by presenting them with an idealistic vision of what the "perfect American family" should be, when they won't ever be able to live up to that and may feel like they've somehow failed. But really they haven't failed at all, it is okay and normal for families to have conflict within them. The real world just isn't so black and white, and I think people have come to appreciate media that reflects the gray areas.
     
  20. JWPlatt

    JWPlatt Commodore Commodore

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    Agreed, it can. I assumed a show about a dysfunctional family would simply stay there in darkness - black and white as you say. TV can go to extremes. Perhaps I should have considered a more optimistic outcome.

    You are indicting Star Trek in the macrocosmic sense. To wit: "I think that we do civilization a disservice by presenting it with an idealistic vision of what the "perfect society" could be, when it won't ever be able to live up to that and may feel like it has somehow failed." Is that what happened? Or did it inspire people on their career paths in various technologies, medicine and the space program, invent things to improve our lives, and to do better? Would you like to consider a more optimistic outcome? ;)