The Atlanta-based Bounce television network will return reruns of “The Cosby Show” to its lineup starting Dec. 19, even as lead star Bill Cosby is set to stand trial on sexual assault charges. Cosby is charged with assaulting Andrea Constand in 2004; dozens of other women have come forward to levy similar accusations.
Bounce said its viewers demanded the return. In a statement to the Huffington Post network officials explained:
“Following the results of a qualitative research study which indicated demand from a vast majority of Bounce viewers to see The Cosby Show on television again, the network has made the decision to begin airing the series next month. While we take very seriously the accusations against Bill Cosby, our research showed that African-American consumers see a distinction between Bill Cosby, the man, and the iconic TV character Cliff Huxtable. Research and direct viewer feedback were the deciding factors in the network’s decision to move forward. The desire among African Americans to see the show on TV again is being reinforced on social media based upon overwhelmingly positive viewer response since the announcement.”
The network announced its decision to return “Cosby” to the air via social media:
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