Bill Cosby, Phylicia Rashad, Keisha Knight Pullian, Malcolm Jamal Warner, Raven-Symoné, Geoffrey Owens, and Earle Hyman reunited on NBC’s Today to commemorate the 25 year anniversary of the phenomenally popular eighties sitcom The Cosby Show and discuss how they’re portrayal of a middle class African American family impacted society.
Conspicuously absent from the Huxtable gathering was Lisa Bonet who portrayed daughter Denise Huxtable. Bonet who recently had a second child with boyfriend Jason Momoa was also a no-show on the 2002 reunion special and the 2008 reunion on The Oprah Winfrey Show.
Matt Lauer hosted the first half of the special while Al Roker, dressed in one of Cosby’s signature sweaters, hosted the second half where the cast answered viewer questions. A talkative Bill Cosby spoke about Rashad’s character as “the mother with the eyes,” his insistence that Geoffrey Owens not play the chauvinistic Elvin as a “butthole,” the special pin he wore on the show in honor of Sammy Davis Jr., and director Jay Sandrich’s unique editing,
When asked whether they were out to depict and American or an African American family, Rashad eloquently answered, “We were always an African family. An African American family is an American family, and that’s who we always were. This American family has existed for decades and centuries. We were just new to television.”
Cosby urged for people to “write decent scripts…stop trying to be profanity laden, and [using] all the sexual parts, and what you call reality, which is not really reality. Good decent writing never hurt anything.”