"Na-na-na, gonna have a good time, Hey, hey hey!"
The show initially ran on CBS from 1972-1984, but moved to NBC in syndication for one year in 1989. The episodes revolved around the daily life lessons learned by Albert and his friends. Topics ranged from social issues to personal introspection and were blended with humor and music. Among the many great characters that inhabited Fat Albert's world were Rudy, Mushmouth, Donald, Bill, Weird Harold and Russell.
Bill Cosby lent his voice to many of the Fat Albert characters, playing Fat Albert, Bill, Mushmouth, Mudfoot and the Brown Hornet.
Live action bumpers featuring Bill Cosby were set around animated episodes of Fat Albert and The Cosby Kids, a series about a group of urban adolescents growing up in a Philadelphia neighborhood. The show was based on Cosby's 60's stand up comedy monologues about his childhood.
In 1979 the show was re-titled The New Fat Albert Show and featured a new segment called The Brown Hornet, a send-up of superhero cartoons starring a larger-than-life African-American crime fighter in outer space.
Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids enjoyed one of the longest careers in Saturday morning cartoon history, running for twelve consecutive years; a record bested only by the many incarnations of Scooby-Doo.
Perhaps the most controversial and innovative episode of this series for its time came in the show's tackling of divorce on Saturday morning TV. In this episode, Bill Cosby and the writers handle how children might feel and what they should learn. The stark reality is that parents who have a rocky relationship may not live together forever, but that this doesn't necessarily change their love for their child. But what is really surprising is that it also includes a lesson for any parents who might be watching: that their hostile behavior in declaring open warfare may be harmful to their child. This awareness in a so-called "Saturday morning cartoon" was pretty unique in 1973.
Song in this episode: "So Near and Yet So Far."
Mom Or Pop Production Information
Traditional, Hand-drawn Animation.
Alternate Title: "Mom and Pop Split Up ."
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