Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby

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Bill Cosby is an American comedian known for creating the 1980s sitcom television series The Cosby Show, in which he starred as the patriarch of an affluent African-American family. Online, Cosby is often featured in Internet memes mocking his appearance in Jell-O pudding commercials, his penchant for wearing sweaters and several sexual assault allegations raised against the comedian in 2004.


After graduating from Temple University in 1962, Cosby began performing stand-up comedy at various clubs in Philadelphia and New York City. In 1963, Cosby appeared on the late-night talk show The Tonight Show. In 1965, Cosby became the first African-American to co-star in a dramatic television series when we was cast in the adventure program I Spy (shown below, left). In 1969, Cosby starred in the television sitcom The Bill Cosby Show (shown below, right).

After receiving an MA degree from the University of Massachusetts in 1972, Cosby hosted the Saturday morning television show Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids (shown below, left). In the 1970s, Cosby made the comedy films Uptown Saturday Night (1974) and Let's Do it Again (1975) with actor-director Sidney Poitier. In 1984, Cosby created the television sitcom The Cosby Show, which was inspired by Cosby's own family life and based on routines from his stand-up act (shown below, right).

Online History


On May 1st, 2004, YTMND user Shitman created the "Bill Cosby Likes Drugs", featuring an audio clip of Cosby saying "Let's get high and have fun." On August 14th, 2005, YTMND user Sir-Suicide-Note create a page titled "Bill Cosby Pokemon", which included audio from a Simpsons parody of the comedian. As of November 2014, there are over 1,900 YTMND search results for the keyword "cosby."[1]

House of Cosbys

On January 30th, 2005, animator Justin Roiland released the first episode in the House of Cosbys animated web series, in which a scientist clones several different copies of Cosby (shown below).

In June of 2005, Cosby's attorney John P. Schmitt issued Roiland a cease and desist:

Dear sirs, we are counsel for Mr. William H Cosby, Jr. We have just learned that you offer a deeply offensive animated film that you created, entitled "House of Cosbys". […] As you are certainly aware, none of you are licensed or in any way authorized to use Mr. Cosby's voice, name, or likeness. […] Therefore, we demand that you immediately cease and desist from any use of our client's name, voice, and likeness, including the development and distribution of the "House of Cosbys" series.

Very truly yours,
John P. Schmitt

The Science of Cosby

On June 26th, 2009, the webcomic Nedroid released the results of an experiment posted on Livejournal,[3] which tested if readers would illustrate Cosby wearing sweaters and eating Jell-o brand pudding (shown below).

15 19 52 Sweater Jello Gbberish Sweater Gibberish Sweater/Jello confusing and 8 weird Facing the left with hands clasped 4 10 21

Now of course, science is unpredictable. As it turns out, our hypothesis was incorrect. Out of a total of 190 Cosbies, only 8 had both a sweater and Jell-o pudding. Baffling, right? That’s only 4.2%! What a shock!

Here is the scientific data we collected:
Cosbies wearing sweaters: 52 (out of 190)
Cosbies with a Jell-O Product: 21
Cosbies spouting gibberish: 10
Cosbies with sweaters and Jell-o: 8
Cosbies with sweaters spouting gibberish: 4
Cosbies with sweaters and Jell-o and gibberish: 0, can you believe it?
Cosbies that confused us: 19
Cosbies facing left with hands clasped which were clearly based on the first Google Image Search result for “Cosby”: 15

On June 30th, 20 of the illustrations were highlighted on the Internet humor blog The Geek Pad, referring to the drawings as "the Bill Cosby meme."

Social Media Presence

On July 27th, 2009, the verified "Bill Cosby" Facebook[5] page was launched. That month, the @BillCosby Twitter[6] feed was created. In the next five years, the Twitter feed accumulated more than 3.93 million followers and the Facebook page gathered upwards of 430,000 likes. On June 7th, 2011, Cosby launched the TheOfficialBillCosby YouTube[4] channel, which gained over two million video views and 15,500 subscribers in the next four years.


Sexual Assault Allegations

In November 2006, Cosby settled a civil lawsuit with a woman who claimed he had drugged and sexually assaulted her in 2004. By the end of the settlement, 13 other women had come forward claiming he had sexually assaulted them. In October 2014, comedian Hannibal Buress called Cosby a rapist during a stand-up performance in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in reference to the lawsuit.

"He gets on TV, ‘Pull your pants up black people, I was on TV in the 80s. I can talk down to you because I had a successful sitcom.’ Yeah, but you rape women, Bill Cosby, so turn the crazy down a couple notches."

On November 10th, 2014, Cosby tweeted featuring a photograph of himself with the caption "Happy Monday!" along with a link to a meme generator style website and inviting Twitter users to make their own Cosby image macros with the hashtag "#CosbyMeme"[7] (shown below).

Bill Cosby: @BillCosby Follow Go ahead. Meme me! #CosbyMeme HAPPY MONDAY #COSBYMEME

Twitter users subsequently began tweeting photos of Cosby with captions referencing assault allegations against the comedian along with the "#CosbyMeme" hashtag (shown below). That day, the original Cosby tweet was deleted.

AMERICA'S FAV DAD BV DAY SERIALRAPIST BY NIGHT sailor goon @meowmanifesto Follow CosbyMeme RT @Bilicosby: Go ahead. Meme me! # 6:10 PM - 10 Nov 2014 12 RETWEETS 4 FAVORITES WHEN THE ROOFIE TOO WEAL AND SHE AKES UP Coolian Whipopoulus @CoolWhiplV Follow Reasonably sure Bill ot in troublk: for thai kkfore. RI @hueyknew. #CosbyMeme @BillCosby" 6:12 PM- 10 Nov 2014 8 RETWEETS 2 FAVORITES MY TWO FAVORITE THINGS JELLO PUDDING &R--- Q @J.Coughli Follow ejc #CosbyMeme Oh Boy! 5:54 PM- 10 Nov 2014 223 RETWEETS 183 FAVORITES 14 ALLEGATIONS OF R---?! ZIPZOPZUBITYBOP! #COSBYMEME Cornhole West Follow @Floyd_Banks Oh man, these are making my day! #CosbyMeme 6:09 PM - 10 Nov 2014 240 RETWEETS 133 FAVORITES THAT FEELING YOU GET FROM BEING AMERICA'S MOSTBELOVED SERIAL R----- sideshowRaheem @sideshowRaheem Follow Be Careful what you wish for. #CosbyMeme 5:59 PM- 10 Nov 2014 13 RETWEETS 11 FAVORITES 다★ NOW WAIT A MINUTE THESE ARE NOT AT ALLTHE TYPES OF MEMES WAS EXPECTING #COSBYMEME Overdue Refunds Follow might as well join the mob #CosbyMeme @BillCosby 6:48 PM- 10 Nov 2014 RETWEETS 5 FAVORITES わ ★

"Not a Meme"

On November 2nd, 2016, Cosby's defense lawyers argued that their client's failing eyesight prevented him from recognizing his accusers. Additionally, defense attorney Angela Agrusa called for dismissal of her client's charges, stating that Cosby was "not a meme":

"My client is not a meme. He's a human being. And his rights have been trampled. By ego and ambition. I think the discussion stops there."

That day, Redditor WildAnimus submitted a post about the meme quote to /r/nottheonion.[19] In the coming days, several news sites published articles about Agrusa's statements, including NBC News,[20] The Daily Dot,[21] Esquire[22] and MSN.[23]

"America's Dad"Tweet

On June 16th, 2019, Bill Cosby's Twitter account tweeted an older video of Cosby discussing racism in America's history, along with the caption "Hey, Hey, Hey…It’s America’s Dad…I know it’s late, but to all of the Dads… It’s an honor to be called a Father, so let’s make today a renewed oath to fulfilling our purpose --strengthening our families and communities. #HappyFathersDay #RenewedOathToOurFamily" (shown below).

Cosby spokesman Andrew Wyatt told USA Today[8] said that Cosby requested from prison that a Father's Day message be tweeted. He stated, "Mr. Cosby’s (message) consisted of telling these men who have been incarcerated for many years, but are up for parole soon…to…take the word “disadvantage” and remove the “dis,” and start focusing on the advantage. That advantage is to be better fathers and productive citizens." The post was quickly descried by Twitter users. User @TeflonGeek[9] posted an Oh Not Baby, What Is You Doin? GIF in response, gaining over 530 retweets and 3,300 likes (shown below, left). User @ShalaRey[10] posted a GIF of a scared baby expressing her reaction to the tweet, gaining over 500 retweets and 2,400 likes (shown below, right).

The High Evolutionary @TeflonGeek Waking up to see Bill Cosby tweeting from jail and trying to reclaim 'America's Dad' mantle h no baby what is you doing?23 G 6:31 AM Jun 17, 2019 Twitter for iPad pia @shalarey *Logs on Twitter Bill Cosby: "Happy Fathers Day" gifak-net GIF 1:15 AM Jun 17, 2019 Twitter for iPhone

Personal Life

Cosby was born on July 12th, 1937 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he was raised as one of four sons by mother Anna Pearl and father William Henry Cosby Sr. In July 1997, Cosby revealed in court that he had given $100,000 to a woman named Shawn Upshaw to keep her from publicly revealing their affair. In 1999, Upshaw's daughter Autumn Jackson was sentenced to 26 months in prison for attempting to extort $40 million from Cosby, whom she claimed was her biological father.

Search Interest

External References

[1] YTMND – cosby

[2] Encyclopedia Dramatica – Bill Cosby

[3] Livejournal – nedroid

[4] YouTube – TheOfficialBillCosby

[5] Facebook – Bill Cosby

[6] Twitter – @BillCosby

[7] Twitter – #CosbyMeme

[8] USA Today – Bill Cosby posted for Father's Day – leaving many to diss 'America's Dad'

[9] Twitter – TeflonGeek

[10] Twitter – @Shalarey

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Recent Images 127 total

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