Production for the ABC series Life on Mars has finally started, after a long delay because of recasts and staff changes.  And, with it, they have announced that Lisa Bonet, otherwise known as Denise Huxtable on the 1980s sitcom The Cosby Show, has joined the cast of the upcoming series.

Bonet takes on the role of Maya Daniels, the present-day girlfriend of lead character Sam Tyler (Jason O’Mara).  This could mean an interesting love triangle—Sam gets hit by a car and finds himself in 1973, and while trying to get back to his actual time period (and to Maya) he becomes close with cop Annie Norris (Gretchen Mol).  The two girls will never meet, but quite ironically, Annie’s efforts to get beyond menial jobs and be treated as a real cop will affect Maya’s efforts to become a cop as well.  Bonet joins other co-stars such as Jonathan Murphy and Harvey Keitel.

The 40-year-old actress was best known for her role as Denise Huxtable on The Cosby Show.  The second daughter of Cliff and Clair Huxtable (Bill Cosby and Phylicia Rashād), she began her run in the show as the popular high school student whose love life is marked by her constantly having new boyfriends.  She later leaves home to attend college—a storyline which was explored in the spin-off sitcom A Different World, which explored racial topics that The Cosby Show wouldn’t have otherwise.  Bonet returned to The Cosby Show in 1989, already portrayed as an airhead, with ideas her family couldn’t comprehend.

Bonet also appeared in several films, the most notable of which include Enemy of the State, High Fidelity and Biker Boyz.  Her inclusion in the Life on Mars cast marks her first television role since the 2002 television movie Lathe of Heaven.

Life on Mars premieres on October 9 from 9pm on ABC.

-Henrik Batallones, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
Sources: ABC, Entertainment Weekly
(Image courtesy of

Henrik Batallones

Staff Writer, BuddyTV