Review Roundup: Bill Cosby's FAR FROM FINISHED
Bill Cosby will return to television with a new special, Far From Finished on Comedy Central. Cosby celebrates his first concert special in thirty years with "Bill Cosby: Far From Finished." Whether talking about first love, marriage or raising children, Cosby has the audience roaring with laughter. Tune in Saturday, November 23, at 8:00 p.m. to catch the living legend in action.
One of America's most beloved comedians of all time, Cosby has captivated generations of fans with his comedy routines, iconic albums and best-selling books such as Fatherhood. His comedy transcends ages, genders and cultures. Cosby went around television's racial obstacles with I Spy, becoming the first African American to costar on a weekly, dramatic television series while winning three consecutive Emmys. Cosby created and produced the Emmy Award winning cartoon series Fat Albert and The Cosby Kids. Perhaps Cosby's greatest contribution to American entertainment and culture, though, is The Cosby Show, about a close-knit, upper middle income Black family. The show was in part an evolution of the routines from Bill Cosby Himself, which three decades after it originally aired is still considered one of the landmark comedy specials of all time. Cosby has also received the Kennedy Center Honors, the Presidential Medal of Freedom (America's highest civilian honor), the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor and the Marian Anderson Award.
Let's see what the critics had to say...
Brian Lowry, Variety: Bill Cosby's debut on Comedy Central is something of an occasion, and clearly one the legendary comic himself feels obligated to address right up front, reassuring audiences that just because of the venue, he will not curse. What he will do, as he has for 50 years, is gently and to all appearances effortlessly tickle an audience with seemingly universal truths, at one point asking, "You thought it was only happening to you, didn't you?" There's admittedly nostalgia in seeing Cosby perform again after a 30-year TV standup special hiatus, but he still delivers some of the old wonderfulness.
David Hinckley, Daily News: His riffs run more these days toward getting older. Otherwise, he's the same Cosby. No, he still doesn't curse. But beyond that, he's still not searching for off-the-wall comic insight into something you'd never thought of before. He isn't looking to riff off whatever was trending last night on Twitter.
Michael Starr, NY Post: Diehards will enjoy the folksy yarns spun by Cosby, which cover all the familiar bases - smarter-than-their husband wives, relationships, growing older, ordering in a restaurant - and watching him work an audience is watching an old master working his craft. That being said, Cosby's gentle humor is a bit long-in-the-tooth, and Comedy Central, known for its acerbic hosts (Colbert, Stewart) - and as the home of the irreverent "South Park" - is a strange TV venue in which to expose a 76-year-old "family values" comedian to younger viewers.
Verne Gay, Newsday: Cosby's comedy is -- always has been -- the comedy of recognition, in which you are brought around by degrees to seeing yourself. "You thought it was only happening to you, didn't you?" he says. But the magic of this material is that it is entirely specific to Cosby and Cosby alone. The subtext of the entire 63-minute special, in fact, is Camille, his wife of 49 years who is not once mentioned but who nonetheless stars -- shines, even -- behind every word, gesture and observation.
Mark Rozeman, Paste: When all is said and done, one should address Far from Finished the same way one approaches the latter-day specials of George Carlin, or a new Woody Allen film, or the recent releases from Neil Young: It may not be the best work these great artists have done, but there's something undeniably wonderful about seeing a master at work.