Super TV Shows: Cheers (1982-1993)
As far as Super TV Shows go, very few have contributed to entertainment as much as the show Cheers. The show which aired for 11 seasons and currently still enjoys a healthy syndication run, pitted us in the heart of a basement Boston Bar with a largely unknown cast at the time. This every man setting offered a familiar neutral center for the focus to be on the story. Rarely, ever-changing the setting of the show made this a second home for people around the United States to gather and share a thirty-minute laugh.
What Makes Cheers So Special?
Ted Danson, starred as Sam Malone a former Boston Red Sox pitcher, recovering alcoholic, and owner of Cheers. Rita Perlman joins the cast as tiny spitfire barmaid Carla Tortelli. George Wendt as “NORM!” or “Normie” or “NAHHMMY” depending on who is saying the name. Shelley Long as Diane Chambers, Sam’s paramour, and haughty barmaid. One of the most loveable characters is the grandfather of the bunch, endearing goofball Coach, acted out by Nicholas Colasanto.
1982: A Show About A Bar? Really?
Yeah, that seems to have been the public view of this shows announcement. The early promos while cute and well-cut, but they just didn’t make one think “This show will own television.” How wrong we all were. The instant NBC delivered that opening sequence the audience was hooked, not at the show you see, the song itself. “A place where everybody knows your name” was catchy as all hell. Nearly forty years after it first transmitted over the airwaves, millions across the planet can still sing most of it word for word.
Season Three: The Cliffy Meets A Woman Episode: ‘Fairy Tales Can Come True’
SPOILER ALERT: For me, honestly, this episode is the best ever Cheers episode, and there are many to choose from. The amazing talent in the writing room for Cheers saw a great opportunity to take the show in a direction none of us expected. Cliff has a date! Cheers’ own in-house know it all mail carrier who lives with his mom, is a super fan of knee-high white cotton socks for every outfit and occasion.
At this point, Kelsey Grammer has joined the show and brings his Frasier character as part of a relationship with Diane, he opens up the episode and offers a baseline intro, where the set-up happens for the rest of the episode. Cliff having returned from a trip to Florida gets teased about his love life, he brags a bit and it goes awry as one can expect. Yet, even with this expectation, the writers and producers still make the moment and the disaster that ensues a memorable one.
The cast of Cheers grows and evolves throughout the seasons, with such a large ensemble of actors, change is needed to bring new dynamics and angles to the show. Sam and Diane are the initial focal point of the show as the romantic part of the show, but with each passing season, you get more background on the supporting cast and start to see them as not support but as prominent characters. With its comedy and social commentary, this show introduced us to many actors who went on to be successful in their own regards.
Here is a montage of video clips featuring Cliff Clavin