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May 24, 2017

New podcast explores Bill Cosby's road to stardom, downfall

It begins with his hometown in North Philly

The first episode of “Cosby Unraveled,” a new podcast from WHYY, was released online Wednesday.

The podcast will detail the life and rise to fame of Bill Cosby, who grew up in the Richard Allen Home projects in the Poplar neighborhood of Philadelphia, as well as the multiple sexual assault claims against him. Cosby is accused of sexually assaulting Andrea Constand; his trial begins June 5. Almost 60 women have made similar accusations of abuse against the comedian. As the verdict looms, his role as a public figure and “TV Dad” is equally under question, and “Cosby Unraveled” will explore his legacy.

The first episode, “From Philly Projects to America’s Dad,” begins with a look at the neighborhood where Cosby grew up and its current inhabitants. One current tenant is 72-year-old Mary Jefferson, who describes fondly watching "The Cosby Show" during its run and the later dissolution at the assault allegations.

The podcast promises to speak with old fans, skeptics and those who “have lost faith,” as well as explore the role of race in the public’s perception of his alleged crimes.

To listen to the first episode, visit NewsWorks.