Friday, September 05, 2014

SitcomsOnline Book Club - Cosby: His Life and Times; Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of September 8, 2014)

Cosby: His Life and Times

SitcomsOnline Book Club Review - Cosby: His Life and Times

by Skees

Bill Cosby is, by all means, one of the greatest and most well-known comedians of the past fifty years. In fact, he is considered by many to be an American icon. Many of his fans know of his work on television and stand-up comedy (or as he prefers, sit-down comedy), and perhaps they know a little bit about his background. Through it all, though, Cosby has never quite had a major biography written about him. That is, until now, as former CNN managing editor Mark Whitaker has finally taken on the task of writing a through and detailed (and authorized) biography of the legendary actor and comedian, complete with actual stories and accounts of the life of Cosby directly from Cosby and many of his closest friends and associates.

The average Bill Cosby fan remembers that he got his start on television series I Spy, and look at the great things that happened in his life from that point forward. But Cosby's life took on so much more before he went into this role, and much of it was far from perfect. His ancestors spent their lives in slavery, and freedom from the slavery was not complete freedom in life. Eventually, his family made their way to Philadelphia. In 1936, Anna Hite and William Cosby were married, and gave birth to their son, William Henry Cosby Jr., almost a year later. Everything appeared to be going well for the family on the surface, but at home, he was dealing with an abusive father who also happened to be an alcoholic, which lead to a childhood of living in the Philadelphia housing projects.

Naturally, his childhood was not the perfect way to grow up, but he repeatedly showed potential throughout school. Unfortunately, there were a lot of distractions along the way, which ultimately caused him to leave high school… but he was determined to go on, and he does in the Navy and eventually to Temple University, where he becomes a bartender at a bar called the Cellar, and it was here where he discovered his talents, and was on to become comedian and eventually a much beloved actor. In fact, his comedic success ended up leading to an appearance on The Tonight Show in 1963 that a sixteen-year-old Rob Reiner happened to be watching. The appearance impressed the young Reiner so much that his father, Carl, had to meet Cosby, which ended up leading Cosby to a meeting with Sheldon Leonard, and of course, most Cosby fans know what happened from that point.

And that is just a (very) small part of what Whitaker captures in the first 1/3 of his book. From this point, readers get to experience the person Cosby is best known for today, including his experiences and anecdotes from I Spy, The Bill Cosby Show, Fat Albert, The Cosby Show, Cosby, and even The Cosby Mysteries… and beyond. Every detail that a fan could possibly want to know is in this book. It tells of his successes in standup, as well as some of his less memorable events of life, such as a revival of the Groucho Marx series You Bet Your Life. And of course, there is a significant amount of material in the book dedicated to his son Ennis Cosby, and the tragedy of his death in 1996 and other family struggles. The only thing missing from the book is what will come in the future.

Personally, I've never been a huge fan of biographies, but this is one that is well worth reading. At 468 pages, along with a complete "Cosbyography" of everything he has done and a gallery of 38 photos, virtually every detail that any fan would want to know about Cosby's life can be found here. This is a book that will take a while to read and has moments of triumph as well as tragedy, but every last detail is worth reading. So far, Cosby has lead a fascinating life and the details are great, and even though this book is most likely incomplete given that he seems to have quite a future ahead (as seen in the recent resurgence in interest in his stand-up comedy appearances and a potential new sitcom that could be in the works). But for now, fans of Cosby can read this book, which would be more aptly titled Bill Cosby: His Life and Times (So Far).

(5/5 stars)

To purchase this book, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Amazon.com

Mark Whitaker Discusses Bill Cosby:
The History of the Cosby Sweater
Bill Cosby's Take on Race Relations in America
A Personal Connection to Cosby



It's Friday, so it is time for "Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows" for the coming week. This is where we list what sitcom stars are appearing on talk shows for the coming week, the stars are both current and past sitcom stars, so this is for all sitcom fans of all eras!
For the week of Sept. 8-12, 2014, we have many current sitcom stars and past sitcom stars on TV talk shows! All times listed are Eastern. So get your DVRs (or whatever you use) ready! Ready? Here is all what you need to know for the coming week!


Monday, September 8, 2014
  • Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother) - Watch Jason on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Steve Harvey (The Steve Harvey Show) - Steve appears on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC. He will also be on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am. Finally, he is a guest on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Lena Dunham (Girls) - Lena stops by Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Ben Schwartz (Parks and Recreation/House of Lies) - Ben talks about his new film This Is Where I Leave You on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Katey Sagal (8 Simple Rules/Married with Children) - Katey visits The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Max Greenfield (New Girl/Modern Men) - Max is a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. He will also be on LIVE! with Kelly and Michael, so check your listings.
  • John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - John drops by The Colbert Report at 11:30pm on Comedy Central.
  • Michael J. Fox (The Michael J. Fox Show/Spin City/Family Ties) - Michael chats with the ladies of The View on a repeat on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Zosia Mamet (Girls) - Zosia is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo. She will also be on Morning Joe sometime between 6-9am on MSNBC. Finally, she is a guest on HuffPost Live at 4pm.
  • Jennie Garth (Mystery Girls/What I Like About You) - Jennie talks about single parenting and her BFF Tori Spelling on the Better Show, so check your local listings.
  • The Cast of The Carol Burnett Show - Carol Burnett, Tim Conway, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner and costume designer Bob Mackie reunite on a repeat of of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Danielle Fishel (Girl Meets World/Boy Meets World) - Danielle talks about her new book (Normally, This Would Be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness) on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Donal Logue (Grounded for Life/The Knights of Prosperity) - Donal talks about Gotham on NBC's Today in the 9am hour.
  • Judith Light (Who's the Boss?/Phenom) - Judith will be on HuffPost Live at 3:30pm.
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
  • Debra Messing (Will & Grace) - Catch Debra on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Michael Strahan (Brothers) - Michael visits The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Louie Anderson (Life with Louie/The Louie Show) - Louie drops by The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother) - Jason is a guest on The Colbert Report at 11:30pm on Comedy Central. He also talks about his book (Nightmares!) on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Anna Faris (Mom) - Anna appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Jason Bateman (Arrested Development/The Hogan Family/It's Your Move) - Jason visits ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am. He also talks about his new film This Is Where I Leave You, on LIVE! with Kelly and Michael, so check your listings.
  • Keke Palmer (True Jackson, VP) - Keke discusses her role in Broadway's Cinderella on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Chris Rock (Everybody Hates Chris) - Chris appears on a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Steve Harvey (The Steve Harvey Show) - Steve joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • George Lopez (Saint George/George Lopez) - George is a guest on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch) - Tune in to see Florence on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Zosia Mamet (Girls) - Zosia will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • Connie Britton (Spin City/The Fighting Fitzgeralds) - Connie is a guest on HuffPost Live at 12pm.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
  • Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation) - Watch Nick on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Queen Latifah (Living Single) - Queen Latifah visits Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Connie Britton (Spin City/The Fighting Fitzgeralds) - Connie is a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. She will also be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Cheryl Hines (Suburgatory/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Tune in to see Cheryl on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair (Playing House/Best Friends Forever) - Lennon and Jessica are guests on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Seth Green (Dads/Family Guy/Greg the Bunny) - Seth appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Steve Harvey (The Steve Harvey Show) - Steve stops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Nick Jonas (JONAS L.A.) - Nick is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family/The Class and Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family) - Jesse and Eric chat with the ladies of The View on a repeat on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Justin Long (Mom/Ed) - Justin drops by LIVE! with Kelly and Michael, so check your listings.
  • Sarah Jessica Parker (Sex and the City/Square Pegs) - Sarah appears on a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Kim Wayans (In the House/A Different World) - Kim shares the inside scoop of her new movie role on a repeat of Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Josh Charles (Sports Night) - Josh talks about Bird People on NBC's Today in the 9am hour.
  • Danielle Fishel (Girl Meets World/Boy Meets World) - Danielle talks about her new book (Normally, This Would Be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness) on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.
  • Judith Light (Who's the Boss?/Phenom) - Judith will be on Morning Joe on MSNC sometime between 6-9am.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
  • Jason Bateman (Arrested Development/The Hogan Family/It's Your Move) - Catch Jason on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Jeffrey Tambor (Arrested Development/The Larry Sanders Show/The Ropers) - Watch Jeffrey on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC. He can also be heard on EW Live on EW Radio on SiriusXM at 10:30am.
  • Josh Charles (Sports Night) - Josh visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Nick Jonas (JONAS L.A.) - Nick is the musical guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Kunal Nayyar (The Big Bang Theory) - Kunal stops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Ben Schwartz (Parks and Recreation/House of Lies) - Ben visits Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • George Lopez (Saint George/George Lopez) - Catch George on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • David Spade (Rules of Engagement/8 Simple Rules/Just Shoot Me!) - David appears on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Sara Gilbert (Roseanne/The Big Bang Theory/Bad Teacher) - Sara is a guest on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Danielle Fishel (Girl Meets World/Boy Meets World) - Danielle chats about her new book (Normally, This Would Be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness) on Wake Up with Taylor on SiriusXM Stars Channel 109 sometime between 7-10am.
  • Michael Strahan (Brothers) - Michael will be on SI Now at 1pm.
Friday, September 12, 2014
  • Mindy Kaling (The Mindy Project/The Office) - Watch Mindy on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS. She talks about The Mindy Project on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am. She will also be on LIVE! with Kelly and Michael, so check your listings. Finally, she is a guest on HuffPost Live at 11:45am.
  • Justin Long (Mom/Ed) - Justin appears on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Sarah Silverman (The Sarah Silverman Program) - Sarah is a guest on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Connie Britton (Spin City/The Fighting Fitzgeralds) - Connie talks about her new film This Is Where I Leave You on LIVE! with Kelly and Michael, so check your listings.
  • Michael Strahan (Brothers) - Michael joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Jennie Garth (Mystery Girls/What I Like About You) - Jennie discusses her new book (Deep Thoughts from a Hollywood Blonde) on a repeat of Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Nick Jonas (JONAS L.A.) - Nick performs live on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am. He will also be on in the 9am hour.
  • Danielle Fishel (Girl Meets World/Boy Meets World) - Danielle discusses her new book (Normally, This Would Be Cause for Concern: Tales of Calamity and Unrelenting Awkwardness) on Windy City Live in Chicago on WLS-ABC7 at 11am CT.
All listings are subject to change. Visit our blog and main site for daily updated listings. Leave us comments on our message board or Tweet/Facebook us to let us know what you think of this Friday feature! We do listen!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Monday, October 15

The Neighborhood - "Welcome to the Spare Key" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Dave gives Calvin a spare key to the Johnsons’ house in case of an emergency and is pleasantly surprised when the gesture is reciprocated – or so he thinks.

Happy Together - "Let's Work It Out" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Cooper has to get in shape for an underwear ad, Jake and Claire are inspired to ditch their junk food and join his ultra-healthy lifestyle. With the help of Cooper and his trainer, Antoine (Anders Holm), Jake and Claire go on the most intense diet and exercise program of their lives.

Andi Mack - "Howling at the Moon Festival" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Friends and family gather to celebrate the Harvest Moon Festival, but Jonah's mishap may spoil the evening; Celia attempts to one-up her sister, Mei, by announcing a special event; Andi and Jonah have a heart-to-heart talk about their relationship.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of October 15)

Monday, October 15

  • Melissa McCarthy (Mike & Molly/Samantha Who?) - Watch Melissa on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. She also talks about Can You Ever Forgive Me? on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Judy Greer (Kidding/Married/Mad Love/Miss Guided) - Judy visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Jane Levy (Suburgatory) - Jane is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Heather Dubrow (Stark Raving Mad) - Heather stops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Anthony Atamanuik (The President Show) - Anthony appears on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Ike Barinholtz (The Mindy Project) - Ike drops by LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Kunal Nayyar (The Big Bang Theory) - Kunal is a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Ellie Kemper (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt/The Office) - Ellie appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Busy Philipps (Vice Principals/Cougar Town) - Busy visits Access Live, so check your local listings. She will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) - Alec gives Rach the hilarious scoop on Justin Bieber and his niece, Hailey Baldwin – and revealing if he and his wife, Hilaria, want to have baby #5 together on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Alyssa Milano (Who's the Boss?/Romantically Challenged) - Alyssa discusses the #MeToo movement one year later on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am. She will also be on ABC's GMA Day at 1pm.
  • Nico Tortorella (Younger) - Nico appears on People Now at 12pm.
  • Peyton List (Bunk'd/Jessie) and Ajiona Alexus (The Rickey Smiley Show) - Peyton and Ajiona are guests on Chatter on PeopleTV at 8pm.
  • Tyle Labine (Deadbeat/Animal Practice/Sons of Tucson) - Tyler will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Tiffany Haddish (The Last O.G./The Carmichael Show) - Tiffany appears on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Nathan Fillion (Two Guys and a Girl) - Nathan talks about The Rookie on the BUILD Series at 2pm.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (September/October)

The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Eleventh Season The Middle - The Complete Ninth Season Modern Family - The Complete Ninth Season Step by Step - The Complete Second Season Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fifth Season

09/04 - It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia - The Complete Season 12
09/04 - Mom - The Complete Fifth Season
09/04 - Silicon Valley - The Complete Fifth Season
09/04 - Superstore - Season Three
09/04 - Young Sheldon - The Complete First Season
09/11 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Eleventh Season (Blu-ray)
09/11 - The Middle - The Complete Ninth Season
09/11 - Modern Family - The Complete Ninth Season
09/11 - People of Earth - The Complete Second Season
09/18 - Community - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
09/18 - Step by Step - The Complete Second Season
09/18 - You're the Worst - The Complete Fourth Season
09/25 - Blondie - The Complete 1957 Television Series
09/25 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Fifth Season
10/02 - The Beverly Hillbillies - The Official Fifth Season
10/02 - The Love Boat - Season Four - Volume One / Volume Two
10/02 - Saved by the Bell - The Complete Collection
10/16 - Police Squad! - TV and Movie Collection
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest