For The Cosby Show , Forum & Discussions 2 Rate and comment please... As of 2010, The Cosby Show is the third-longest running U.S. comedy with a predominantly African American cast, surpassed only by The Jeffersons and Family Matters. The show had 197 episodes (201 in syndication). The genesis of the show was in the early 1980s. Marcy Carsey and Tom Werner, two former executives at ABC, left the network to start their own production company. At ABC, they had overseen sitcoms such as Mork & Mindy, Three's Company and Welcome Back, Kotter.