Philebrity reminds us that Bill Cosby’s got a comedy special airing this coming Saturday night for the first time since “Bill Cosby: Himself” aired in 1983. Here are the three clips of the show, “Far From Finished” that his YouTube channel has made available.
He’s still sitting in a chair, as he was 30 years ago. From the looks of these three clips, however, the performance itself doesn’t hold up quite as well. The delivery is molasses-slow–no surprise there–but by the time he gets to the punch line, you’re not sure if what you heard actually was a punchline or not. It might have just been Bill Cosby saying something plausible about his life that isn’t all that funny or surprising, all while making a slight face. Now if that’s what you like, as New York’s Matt Zoller Seitz appears to, you might dig the show.
Far From Finished isn’t an instant classic on the order of Bill Cosby: Himself or his stand-up albums Revenge, Why Is There Air?, and Wonderfulness. It’s more like a pencil sketch by a master painter or a late film by Woody Allen or Clint Eastwood: Which is to say that it’s Old Man Art and that a big part of its pleasure comes from seeing how economically the artist expresses himself and how intuitively he reads and manipulates the room.
Saturday night, 8 p.m, Comedy Central.