Friday, May 22, 2009

One of those great moments as a writer

This is the episode of CHEERS David Isaacs and I wrote that featured the "Wang Chung" line. Of all the episodes we wrote, this is one of my favorites. And I learned recently that James Hues, the lead singer of Wang Chung, said in an interview that his kids were more impressed that Wang Chung was mentioned on CHEERS than in the music. How cool is that???

Some background on the episode: It's the only show we ever did where we wrote no outline. That was the exercise. We had the idea of doing Frasier's bachelor party and wanted it to be stream-of-consciousness, go in whatever direction it wanted, and have the freedom to go off on bar talk riffs. This was the result. Everybody have fun tonight...





12 comments:

A. Buck Short said...

Call the Wayans bros. and tell them you want credit for the "I'm here to pick up the baby" bit in Dance Flick.

The Milner Coupe said...

I just stopped in for a moment and ended up watching the whole thing. Thanks for the memories. You have a right to be proud. Part of the best part of TV history. Aloha

Max Clarke said...

Don't need to watch it, I remember it too well. A long string of great lines, made better by the actors' performances. After the Wang Chung reference, Frasier's telling everybody, "I had a nap!" When he says, "Liluth, I want to marry you anyway," and Bebe throws that line right back at him. Sam, when he gives a list of reasons for the single life, "No in-laws, no laws period."

Some episodes have a bit more spark than others, especially the wedding or marriage-related ones. The episode in season 5 when Sam gets his bachelor party, with Diane Chambers hiding in the huge cake while Sam obliviously mentions her shortcomings, also terrific.

Willy B. Good said...

Fantastic episode Ken, Cheers!

Raymond said...

I loved the throwaway line: Let's discuss wedding gowns. Do you think black...

Shimon said...

I am young and not at all American so it's the first time for me to watch this episode. It only proved to me that good humor stays relevant for many, many years.

Mike Snider said...

I was living in L.A. around this time and remember KNBC anchor-babe KELLY LANGE getting so swept up in the whole "Wang Chung"-thing that for awhile that she kept inserting the phrase "We're Wang Chung-ing now!" into every other segway or toss.

Frasier Fan said...

Yet another reason why Season 5 of Cheers remains my favorite!

I have used that Wang Chung line on many occasions.

Roger Owen Green said...

the Wang Chung line is good. The DELIVERY of the Wang Chung line is brilliant.

Danny said...

It's amazing how well that show holds up over time. And no outline!? I want to show all of my old writing professors that episode to prove that being funny has to do with real creativity and not structure. They don't make them like Cheers anymore. Good work, Ken.

luckyman said...

I had to watch the entire show. I miss the writing. It wasn't just the great lines, but you knew the characters and what must happen to them. Frasier just had to have the stripper be one of his patients. Brilliant, Ken.

Will said...

I think it's quite interesting that, despite the stream-of-conciousness background, the episode is still very solid thematically. Maybe by that stage you were so conditioned into sitcom writing that you couldn't help but structure it so neatly.