Monday, May 21, 2018

The 25th anniversary of the last CHEERS episode

It has been 25 years since CHEERS aired its final episode.  There have been a number of articles to pay tribute to that event and the show itself.  Thanks to both the Hollywood Reporter and Variety for including me in your pieces.   If you're a fan of CHEERS these are both fun reads.

Here's the Hollywood Reporter's story.

And here's Variety's story.

Now if you want a detailed account of just what it was like that final night, I devoted one of my podcast episodes to my first-person account of it.   You can find that here

I can never express just how lucky and grateful I am to be a part of CHEERS for 9 of its 11 years.  David Isaacs and I wrote 40 episodes and I am extremely proud of each and every one of them.  My thanks to Glen & Les Charles and Jimmy Burrows for including us in this extraordinary television show. 

24 comments :

Barefoot Billy Aloha said...

:)

Tom Quigley said...

I had my chance to visit and actually stand in the CHEERS set in March of that year, shortly before the finale was filmed and felt like I'd died and had gone to Heaven. One of the best sitcoms ever, and certainly a standard by which all future ensemble cast sitcoms will have to try and measure up to. Ken, Congratulations to you and David for your contributions to making CHEERS such a resounding and enduring success!

Peter said...

Happy anniversary to you and everyone involved in the greatest sitcom ever made!

And wasn't the world substantially less fucked up in 1993? Let's all hitch a ride in the Delorean back to 93, watch the final episode go out live, then catch Jurassic Park on opening weekend again. On the downside, we'd have to hear River of Dreams by Billy Joel every time we switch on the radio.

Doug in Dallas said...

I've always loved Cheers and would've loved to have seen the set for the show. I'm an architect, and built a virtual model of it - this is as close as I'll get!
http://pano.autodesk.com/pano.html?url=jpgs/8c7236a2-5404-4a00-8b71-c4b6d6c0db77

Johnny Walker said...

Huh! This happened to coincide with my 40th birthday!

Congrats on being involved in such a wonderful show that so many of us still love and enjoy so much.

Johnny Walker said...

Doug in Dallas, that’s great! You should put the rarely seen fourth wall there and a roof. Then we can all hang out there :)

NoHo George said...

Kudos to THR and Variety but you should also check out the current issue of Sports Illustrated. A winsome take on what 'Mayday' Malone is doing now.

Cowboy Surfer said...

CHEERS is the all-time best television comedy.

Great work Ken.



Sean R. said...

I watched the clips embedded with the article and laughed as hard as I did when I saw them for the 1st time. Still a better comedy than anything on TV today!

Anonymous said...

I think a one time "Movie of the Week" could be done. Sam is getting married to a 20-something and wants to start a family. He is ready to "retire" and sell the bar. Could work.

Pam, St. Louis

Penelope said...

Doug in Dallas, that is simply awesome! Very impressive!

Made me wish I could walk right in and hang out with the gang. Greatest show ever! Kudos, Ken.

McAlvie said...

Thanks for sharing the articles, and happy anniversary to everyone who was a part of bringing us such a great show. I was reading the articles and watching the clips, and I thought, "Huh, all these years later, and the characters are still as familiar to me as ever and the comedy still works." That's why it's a classic. Just as we will always love Lucy, even if we no longer know who the guest stars are, and we will always know where The Swamp was.

Cheers, Taxi, Friends, Barney Miller (been watching the DVDs off and on, and the laughs are still there), M*A*S*H ... how is it nobody has paid attention to what viewers really tune in for?

Ah, well, I have to go yell at kids to get off my lawn now.

Todd Everett said...

Kudos to THR and Variety but you should also check out the current issue of Sports Illustrated. A winsome take on what 'Mayday' Malone is doing now.

Couldn't find that, but there's this from a couple years ago.

Anonymous said...

I remember. I was working in a hospital in Kirksville, Mo., with the TV on in the lobby, hoping so hard that no patients would come in and I'd miss that final episode, and I lucked out. I was disappointed that Sam and Diane didn't wind up together. I had started watching Cheers after high school, through college, and then grad school and my first baby, and I was pregnant with my 2nd when the final show was on. So many conversations with fellow students and co workers through the years about Cheers. The jerk who dumped me, who had said he loved the theme song, the neighbor in my seedy apt. building who noticed I had been watching, and said, Oh, you watch Cheers? I watch it too! And then we gathered up our change, ordered a pizza and watched it together. I don't think I've ever heard anyone say they didn't like Cheers. Julie, Burlington, Iowa

Myles Warden said...

Such great articles! Happy anniversary!

Doug in Dallas said...

Sounds like a good idea! In a few episodes (like Kirstie Alley's first), we actually get to see the fourth wall.

Mike Bloodworth said...

The thing that made CHEERS one of my all time favorite sitcoms was that is was so CONSISTENTLY funny. I can't remember an episode that was "pee my pants" hilarious, but I also can't remember an episode that was a dud. Ironically, I was never really a fan of TAXI. So, when they announced, "...from the creators of..." I wasn't expecting much. Fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised. Congrats. May your current playwriting endeavors be as successful.
M.B.
P.S. 25 years! Ken, once again, you've managed to make me feel OLD.

Max Clarke said...

Still my favorite sitcom.

CHEERS did not dumb itself down for the audience. The writers had a clear respect for their viewers. You saw that in the pilot, when Sumner mentioned a couple of poets - "She had her nose in her Yeats." And who could forget the time Julia Duffy recited "Another Christmas of Agony" to Diane?

Did not see the finale of the series for a long time, not having a TV, but bought the DVD set and thought it was great. Rhea Perlman got three great laughs with three screams. Still funny, And Norm's lines near the end were perfect for Sam Malone and many of us.

And thanks to Grant Tinker, who kept the show going until the nation caught up with it.

Steve F. said...

I've read two pieces lately on CHEERS, one of which referred to it as "a nostalgic, feel good comedy from a simpler, less complicated era." Like the show was friggin' FATHER KNOWS BEST or something. Incidentally, I was a teenager during most of the time CHEERS was on. I don't remember those years as being particularly simple or uncomplicated.

The other piece, while praising CHEERS itself, was pretty much fixated on ripping the show as racist because its regulars were all Caucasian, which I suppose is a big no-no in a time when rather self-conscious diversity is pretty much de rigueur when casting a series.

Diane D. said...

Congratulations Ken!
I LOVE it that you always mention how lucky you feel and how grateful you are to have been a part of CHEERS. It’s nice to know that someone involved in its creation realizes what a rare privilege it was! I feel such sympathy for any one who doesn’t know about CHEERS, and such gratitude that I do.

Larry said...

Friday question - the making of the CHEERS finale and its aftermath are well-documented here and elsewhere. Do you have any stories about the finales of WINGS and/or FRASIER you'd like to share?

Peter said...

Steve F:
"The other piece, while praising CHEERS itself, was pretty much fixated on ripping the show as racist because its regulars were all Caucasian"

Don't these tiresome social justice warriors EVER take a day off from their boring, self indulgent virtue signalling?

Donald from Chicago said...

There is a great piece in the new Sports Illustrated reflecting on Sam Malone at 70. The article has Sam still behind the bar.
Friday question: Where do you see Sam? I would think Cheers would be the site of a Starbucks by now.

Alan Gollom said...

Ken, you considered yourself lucky to be a part of Cheers. Well we were lucky to have the opportunity to watch a marvellous series for 11 years!! Cheers was one of the best ever!!