Before Bill Cosby was convicted of sexual assault, he had been accused of the same crime by more than 60 women.
Showtime has an upcoming docuseries, We Need to Talk About Bill Cosby, which aims to analyze the disgraced comedian’s complicated legacy.
Cosby is now fiercely defending his tarnished reputation, even trying to portray himself as an ally and advocate for women.
Premiering on Showtime on January 30, We Need To Talk About Cosby documents the titular comedian’s rise and fall from grace.
Filmmaker and comedian W Kamau Bell has explained why he took on this important and sometimes painful project.
Like many generations, he grew up viewing Cosby as an entertainer and a hero. That view has radically changed, with good reason.
With ample use of archival footage and a litany of interviews, the documentary looks at the dozens of sexual assault allegations against Cosby.
Cosby was convicted in 2018 and sentenced to prison, but only served three years.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that Cosby should not have been tried for the crime because of a deal that he’d made with a previous prosecutor.
In a statement to People, Bill Cosby’s spokesperson ranted about the documentary, calling it a mere “PR hack.”
“Mr. Cosby has spent more than 50 years standing with the excluded,” the statement reads.
The spokesperson claimed that Cosby “made it possible for some to be included.”
The statement describes Cosby as “standing with the disenfranchised.”
“And,” the spokesperson continues, “standing with those women and men who were denied respectful work … because of race and gender …”
The statement says that Cosby acted as an ally “within the expanses of the entertainment industries.”
“Let’s talk about Bill Cosby. Mr. Cosby continues to be the target of numerous media,” the spokesperson claimed.
They continued: “that have, for too many years, distorted and omitted truths … intentionally.”
“Despite media’s repetitive reports of allegations against Mr. Cosby,” the statement alleges, “none have ever been proven in any court of law.”
Just to clarify, that last line is untrue.
The charges of sexual assault against Cosby were proven in a court of law.
Or does his spokesperson not understand why the disgraced comedian spent three years in prison?
“Let’s talk about Bill Cosby. In June, 2021, the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court released Mr. Cosby,” the spokesperson went on.
“And the court’s Chief Justice defined the Pennsylvania Montgomery County District Attorney’s behavior as reprehensible,” the statement described.
“Let’s talk about Bill Cosby. Mr. Cosby vehemently denies all allegations waged against him,” the spokesperson needlessly emphasized.
The spokesperson did some further whining about “prosecutorial violations,” which are a real problem … for innocent people.
“Let’s talk about Bill Cosby,” the statement added. “He wants our nation to be what it proclaims itself to be: a democracy.”
That’s a good pivot, considering how endangered voting rights are. But is it smart for Cosby to bring up?
If Cosby has one vote, he’s voting that he’s innocent.
If each of the more than 60 women accusing him of sexual assault have one vote each, that’s one to more than 60.
Now, I’m no big city political scientist, but if Cosby wants to bring up the will of the people … then shouldn’t he be in a prison cell?
Cosby meant a lot to many people, for his activism as a Black man and for the joy that he brought to children. No one questions this.
But he complicated his own legacy, both by amassing a small army of accusers and by using his past good deeds to try to shield himself from accountability.
Cosby is trying to get ahead of this docuseries because he doesn’t want people to change the way that they feel about him. That ship has sailed.