The following is a list of episode for the first season the  NBC-TV sitcom The Cosby Show. The series aired from September 20, 1984 to April 30, 1992 with 201 episodes produced spanning eight seasons.

Series overview Peter Debut[edit | edit source]

This Season Marks The First appearance of Peter

Season Episodes Originally aired DVD set release dates
Season premiere Season finale Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
1 24 September 20, 1984 May 9, 1985 August 2, 2005
January 21, 2014 (re-release)
May 19, 2008 October 4, 2006
2 25 September 26, 1985 May 15, 1986 March 7, 2006
January 21, 2014 (re-release)
August 25, 2008 February 7, 2007
3 25 September 25, 1986 May 7, 1987 June 5, 2007 October 13, 2008  April 4, 2007
4 24 September 24, 1987 April 28, 1988 June 5, 2007 February 9, 2009 November 7, 2007
5 26 October 6, 1988 May 11, 1989 November 6, 2007 -- March 5, 2008
6 27 September 24, 1989 May 3, 1990 November 6, 2007 -- July 9, 2008
7 26 September 20, 1990 May 2, 1991 April 8, 2008 -- January 13, 2010
8 25 September 19, 1991 April 30, 1992 April 8, 2008 -- January 13, 2010

A 25th Anniversary Edition DVD set containing all 202 episodes was also released to the public on November 11, 2008.

Season 1 (1984–85) The First Time Elijahs Best Friend Clair Huxtable [edit | edit source]

  • All of the main characters appear in all episodes
  • This season comprises 24 episodes
  • This season's opening credits features the Huxtable family playing sports in Central Park. Two versions 
     of the show's theme song are used in this sequence. A long version of the show's theme is heard in the second and another episode, but a shortened version with a few bars taken out and with a different, though similar, style is used for the rest of the season. The show's theme, titled "Kiss Me", was composed by Stu Gardner and Bill Cosby.
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Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production


1 1 "Theo's Economic Lesson" (Series pilot) Jay Sandrich Ed. Weinberger and Michael Leeson September 20, 1984 0101

Cliff and Clair deal with the daily pressures of having children. Theo gets four D's on his report card, while Denise goes on a date with an older boy. Cliff illustrates the cost of living to Theo using Monopoly money.

Note In 1996, TV Guide included this episode as part of its "100 Most Memorable Moments in TV History", ranking it # 31. 

2 2 "Goodbye Mr. Fish" Jay Sandrich Earl Pomerantz September 27, 1984 0102
When Rudy's pet fish, Lamont, dies, Cliff tries to bring the family together for a funeral in the bathroom. The festivities end when Rudy gets bored and leaves to watch TV. 
3 3 "Bad Dreams" Jay Sandrich John Markus October 4, 1984 0103
Vanessa claims that she is old enough to watch a scary movie that Theo saw, but Cliff still forbids it. Vanessa sneaks out anyway, and ends up having nightmares as a result. 
4 4 "Is That My Boy?" Jay Sandrich John Markus October 11, 1984 0105
Freshman Theo tries out for the football team and makes it. Cliff is overjoyed, but his pride falters when he discovers his son will never be a star. Theo, however, is just happy being on the team. Meanwhile, Rudy believes that her older brother and sisters don't like her. 
5 5 "A Shirt Story" Jay Sandrich John Markus October 18, 1984 0108

Theo wants to impress a girl by wearing an expensive shirt by designer Gordon Gartrelle. Since Cliff and Clair will not pay for it, Denise offers to make a copy of the shirt for him.

Notes: Guest appearance by Kadeem Hardison, who years later would portray Dwayne Wayne on the Cosby Show spinoff, A Different World. The name "Gordon Gartrelle" was taken from a staff member, who eventually became a writer/producer for The Cosby Show during the final two seasons of the series. 

6 6 "Breaking With Tradition" Jay Sandrich Earl Pomerantz October 25, 1984 0106
Cliff's father, Russell, pays a visit and begins questioning Cliff about the kids' college choices. He asks Denise about Hillman, his and Cliff's alma mater. Denise is dead-set against it at first, until Russell tells her that the males outnumber the females there. Also Cliff reveals that he went to Hillman because of a young woman who later will be his wife. 
7 7 "One More Time" Jay Sandrich Earl Pomerantz November 1, 1984 0107

While Clair cares for a friend's baby, she begins to consider having another. Cliff desperately tries to talk her out of it, claiming that babies are "false advertising", and grow up to be a nuisance. Clair's mother, Carrie, then reminds her that the older you are when you have kids, the older you'll be if they end up having to come back and live at home.

Note: This is the first appearance of Ethel Ayler as Carrie Hanks, Clair's mother. 

8 8 "Play It Again, Vanessa" Jay Sandrich Jerry Ross November 8, 1984 0109

Vanessa plays the clarinet in the school's orchestra. Though she tries her best and practices daily, she simply cannot play the instrument. She plays an embarrassing solo at the school concert, but her parents support her anyway.

GuestDizzy Gillespie as Mr. Hampton, Vanessa's music teacher. 

9 9 "How Ugly Is He?" Jay Sandrich John Markus November 15, 1984 0110
Denise has a new boyfriend, David, but is reluctant to bring him home. She fears that Cliff will, like always, make fun of the boy and ruin her chances with him. Cliff and Clair are initially impressed with David until he expresses some unwanted opinions about medicine and the law at dinner. Kristoff St. John plays boyfriend David. 
10 10 "Bonjour, Sondra" Jay Sandrich Jerry Ross & Michael Loman November 22, 1984 0111
Sondra, the eldest Huxtable child, makes her first appearance when she visits home for Thanksgiving. She plans on going to Paris for the summer with her friends, and hopes that her parents will support the decision. While Clair, Vanessa, Rudy, Theo, and Denise agree that she should go, she barely makes it with the head of household, Cliff. 
11 11 "You're Not a Mother Tonight"

"Knight to Knight"

Jay Sandrich Karyl Geld Miller & Korby Siamis December 6, 1984 0104
Clair is exhausted from constantly caring for the children, so Cliff decides to take her out on the town for "You're Not a Mother Night". Cliff reserves a suite in the Biltmore Hotel. While there, some of Clair's motherly instincts start kicking in—but they stop in time for a romantic evening. 
12 12 "Rudy's Sick" Jay Sandrich Matt Williams December 13, 1984 0113
Clair could be named partner at her law firm if an interview goes well, but Rudy is sick! Cliff vows to take care of her while Clair works, and engages in some unique doctoring methods. Clair is named partner and Rudy is fine in the end. 
13 13 "Father's Day" Jay Sandrich John Markus & Elliot Shoenman December 20, 1984 0112
Cliff complains about the poor quality of his annual Father's Day gifts. He challenges the children to find some better presents for a December Father's Day. They give him thoughtful—if not quite attractive—presents. 
14 14 "Independence Day" Jay Sandrich Matt Robinson January 10, 1985 0114
Theo gets his ear pierced to impress a girl, but Denise thinks it might be infected. She is correct, and Theo must go to Cliff. Cliff hopes that Grandpa Huxtable will punish Theo, but the old man instead relates the story of how Cliff tried to straighten his hair to impress Clair, but ended up burning it off! Russell brags, and Anna reminds him of the time that he had a tattoo of her name placed on his chest, but ended up with a huge scar on his chest when he tried to remove it when the tattoo artist misspells Anna's name (Adda instead of Anna, which was also the name of the girl who was a rival of Anna's for Russell's affection)! 
15 15 "Physician of the Year" Jay Sandrich John Markus January 17, 1985 0115

Cliff is set to receive an important award, but a woman goes into labor right before the ceremony. Theo delivers his speech for him.

Guest appearancesAleta Mitchell as Mrs. Randall, Elisa de la Roche as Nurse, Sheldon Leonard as Dr. Wexler 

16 16 "Jitterbug Break" Jay Sandrich Matt Williams January 31, 1985 0116

Cliff tries to impress Denise's friends by teaching them how to jitterbug. Some of Clair's friends also show off their dance moves. Soon, the whole house is full of dancers.

Guest appearancesBlair Underwood as Denise's boyfriend (uncredited), Judith Jamison as MarieDonald McKayle as Ralph, Gerard Cooper as Guy, Christine Langner as Girl 

17 17 "Theo and the Joint" Jay Sandrich John Markus February 7, 1985 0117

Clair discovers a marijuana joint in one of Theo's school books. She and Cliff confront him about it, and accept his explanation—another boy slipped it in. Theo confronts the boy and brings him home to confess in order to remove any uncertainty from his parents about his telling the truth. Theo and the boy actually start to become friends, but Clair starts to think Theo and his friends are part of a drug scheme.

Guest appearancesIman as Mrs. Montgomery, one of Cliff's patients. 

18 18 "Vanessa's New Class" Jay Sandrich Matt Williams & Carmen Finestra February 14, 1985 0118

Vanessa is placed in an advanced science class. She creates a model of the solar system, but learns that she will have to work harder than ever if she hopes to succeed.

Guest appearances: First appearance of Pam Potillo as Vanessa's friend Janet Meisner. William Christian as Mr. Robertson 

19 19 "Clair's Case" Jay Sandrich Winifred Hervey February 21, 1985 0119

A sneaky mechanic tries to swindle Sondra. It's Clair to the rescue as the two battle in court when the first lawyer for the case drops out.

Notes: David Langston Smyrl as the man in court, Shawn Elliott as Mr. WilsonAlan North as Judge. This is the only episode where Clair Huxtable is seen in a courtroom

20 20 "Back to the Track, Jack" Jay Sandrich Matt Robinson February 28, 1985 0120

Cliff's college track coach contacts him and asks to run in a charity event between Hillman and its rival, Norton College. Heathcliff "Combustible Huxtable" trains, but soon learns that he is not the runner he was all those years ago.

Guest appearancesAl Freeman, Jr. as Coach Ernie Scott, 1956 Olympic medalistJoshua Culbreath as Col. Sanford B. "Tailwind" Turner, Dhamiri Abayomi as Himself 

21 21 "The Younger Woman" Jay Sandrich John Markus March 14, 1985 0121

Cliff and Clair receive a visit from an old friend—and he has a new girlfriend that is half his age. They are initially suspicious, but learn that judging by appearances isn't always right.

Guest appearancesTerry Farrell as Nicki PhillipsRobert King as Dr. Mike Newcomb

22 22 "Slumber Party" Jay Sandrich Carmen Finestra March 28, 1985 0122

Rudy invites all of her friends over for a slumber party. It's Cliff's job to watch over them, and he demonstrates some unique games to wrangle the youngsters. In the end, Russell drops by and demonstrates the perfect way to deal with kids-bribe them!

Notes: First appearance of Peter Costa as Peter (the Huxtables' neighbor)Earle Hyman as Russell HuxtableAlicia Keys (billed under her given name of Alicia Cook). The show opened with a brief voiceover from Keshia Knight Pulliam explaining that this episode was meant specifically for kids. 

23 23 "Mr. Quiet" Jay Sandrich Emily Tracy May 2, 1985 0125

Cliff, Clair, and the Huxtable clan volunteer at a local community center. There, a battered boy tries to find help, and the owner—Tony Castillo ([Tony Orlando])—does his best to lend assistance.

NotesAlexis Cruz as Enrique TarronAda Maris as Selena CruzAngela Bassett as Mrs. MitchellLisa Mordente as Expectant Mother #1. This episode was a backdoor pilot for a proposed spin-off series featuring Tony Orlando's character and the community center, which never came to fruition. Also, the first episode in which Clair is shown to be fluent in Spanish. 

24 24 "Cliff's Birthday" Jay Sandrich Elliot Shoenman & John Markus May 9, 1985 0124

Cliff is turning 48, and as usual, he is trying to find out what his birthday present is ahead of time. Clair, with the help of the kids, orchestrates a huge trick. Cliff is fooled, and doesn't find about what his birthday surprise is: a visit to Lena Horne's private club, where she performs "I'm Glad There Is You".

Guest appearancesLena Horne as herself, Clarence Williams III as Clarence Thornehill

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