Cheers (season 7)

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Cheers (season 7)
Cheers season 7.jpg
Region 1 DVD
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 22
Broadcast
Original channel NBC
Original run October 27, 1988 (1988-10-27) – May 4, 1989 (1989-05-04)
Home video release
DVD release
Region 1 November 15, 2005 (2005-11-15)
Region 2 May 18, 2009 (2009-05-18)
Region 4 April 27, 2009 (2009-04-27)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 6
Next →
Season 8
List of Cheers episodes

The seventh season of Cheers, an award-winning American television sitcom, originally aired on NBC in the United States between October 27, 1988 and May 4, 1989. The show was created by director James Burrows and writers Glen and Les Charles under production team Charles Burrows Charles Productions, in association with Paramount Television.

Background[edit]

This season premiered on October 27, 1988, after the longer period of reruns, indirectly led by the 1988 Writers Guild of America strike.[1] At the time of premiere, Night Court moved to Wednesdays, prompting the new series Dear John to fill in the spot. Besides Cheers and Dear John, other series in the Must See TV Thursday lineup for the 1988–89 season were The Cosby Show, A Different World, and L.A. Law.[2]

Season synopsis[edit]

After Evan Drake left for Japan at the end of the previous season, Rebecca tries to impress his replacement, but is fired in favour of Sam. Sam feels sorry for Rebecca and persuades the Lilian Corporation to put them jointly in charge. However, this does not last as the new head of the corporation is fired and replaced with a very young, but very rich man who falls for Rebecca, making her manager again. He proposes to her, sending Sam to Mexico to run a bar there when Rebecca pretends to be in love with him. Sam soon returns to Cheers and continues to make advances towards Rebecca, to no avail.

Rebecca's suitor is replaced as head of the Lilian Corporation by an older man, Mr Gaines, but Rebecca's plans to impress him go wrong when Woody dates his daughter Kelly, who is just as simple as he is. Frasier and Lilith are now married, and she becomes pregnant. Cliff finally gets a date - a trainee postal worker, Maggie O'Keefe. Carla and Eddie are further apart when he begins touring in an ice shows occur outside Massachusetts, while Norm begins a new career as a house decorator with a little help from the Cranes.

Cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

No. No. in
season
Title[3] Directed by[3] Written by[3] Original airdate[3] Rating / share
147 1 "How to Recede in Business" James Burrows David Lloyd October 27, 1988 (1988-10-27) 24.4 / 38[rat7 1]
Rebecca's life suffers a further disruption when Evan Drake's replacement makes Sam the new manager of Cheers. 
148 2 "Swear to God" James Burrows Tom Reeder November 3, 1988 (1988-11-03) 21.8 / 33[rat7 2]
Sam makes a rash promise to God that he'll remain celibate if only someone else is the father of an old girl friend's baby. 
149 3 "Executive Sweet" James Burrows Phoef Sutton November 10, 1988 (1988-11-10) 23.5 / 35[rat7 3]
Rebecca puts Sam off by telling him that from now on she'll only date men who can advance her career, and then she meets her younger-than-springtime new boss. 
150 4 "One Happy Chappy in a Snappy Serape" James Burrows Cheri Eichen and Bill Steinkellner November 17, 1988 (1988-11-17) 21.4 / 31[rat7 4]
Sam goes to Mexico to open a new bar for the company, robbing Rebecca of her "fiance" and her only defense against the marriage proposal of her baby boss. 
151 5 "Those Lips, Those Ice" James Burrows Peter Casey and David Lee November 24, 1988 (1988-11-24) 17.3 / 31[rat7 5]
Carla throws a jealous fit when she suspects that Eddie is fooling around with someone from the ice show. 
152 6 "Norm, Is That You?" James Burrows Cheri Eichen and Bill Steinkellner December 8, 1988 (1988-12-08) 23.7 / 37[rat7 6]
Norm tries to hide the fact that he's become an interior decorator. 
153 7 "How to Win Friends and Electrocute People" James Burrows Phoef Sutton December 15, 1988 (1988-12-15) 23.7 / 37[rat7 7]
Cliff drastically alters his personality after no one from the bar comes to visit him during his hospital stay with appendicitis. Sam gives Lilith driving lessons. 
154 8 "Jumping Jerks" James Burrows Ken Levine and David Isaacs December 22, 1988 (1988-12-22) 20.6 / 34[rat7 8]
The gang decides to take up sky diving as a diversion. 
155 9 "Send in the Crane" James Burrows David Lloyd January 5, 1989 (1989-01-05) 25.1 / 37[rat7 9]
Sam finds himself attracted to both an old girlfriend (Sandahl Bergman) and her grown daughter (Chelsea Noble) while Woody volunteers to be the clown at the boss' kid's birthday party Rebecca is planning. 
156 10 "Bar Wars II: The Woodman Strikes Back" James Burrows Ken Levine and David Isaacs January 12, 1989 (1989-01-12) 25.4 / 38[rat7 10]
Cheers' gets another chance of losing a contest to their cross-town rivals at Gary's Old Towne Tavern; this time the contest is for "Boston's Best Bloody Mary." 
157 11 "Adventures in Housesitting" James Burrows Patricia Niedzialek and Cecile Alch January 19, 1989 (1989-01-19) 22.7 / 34[rat7 11]
Rebecca offers to housesit for one of the company executives and calls on Sam and Woody for help when the man's beloved dog runs away. 
158 12 "Please Mr. Postman" James Burrows Brian Pollack and Mert Rich February 2, 1989 (1989-02-02) 24.7 / 37[rat7 12]
Cliff's loyalties are tested when his new ladylove, a fellow postal employee, commits a rule infraction on his behalf. 
159 13 "Golden Boyd" James Burrows Cheri Eichen and Bill Steinkellner February 6, 1989 (1989-02-06) 17.3 / 25[rat7 13]

Woody decides to steal Kelly, a rich snob's girl, away when the man humiliates him.


This episode originally aired on Monday, February 6, 1989, at 10:00pm Eastern / 9:00pm Central.[4] Ronald Reagan's Presidential Address was broadcast live three days later at 9:00 pm Eastern / 6:00pm Pacific.[5] 
160 14 "I Kid You Not" James Burrows Teleplay: Rod Burton
Story: Rick Beren
February 16, 1989 (1989-02-16) 22.8 / 35[rat7 14]
Lilith and Frasier practice their parenting skills on Carla's precocious six-year-old son. 
161 15 "Don't Paint Your Chickens" James Burrows Ken Levine and David Isaacs February 23, 1989 (1989-02-23) 23.3 / 35[rat7 15]
Rebecca tries to impress corporate headquarters by using her marketing skills to promote Norm's one man painting business and Sam tries to keep up with a sweet young thing wild about all kinds of sports. 
162 16 "The Cranemakers" Andy Ackerman Phoef Sutton March 2, 1989 (1989-03-02) 24.3 / 37[rat7 16]
Lilith persuades Frasier to give up everything urban and move with her to a cabin in the wilds. 
163 17 "Hot Rocks" James Burrows Ken Levine and David Isaacs March 16, 1989 (1989-03-16) 22.7 / 36[rat7 17]
Sam introduces everyone to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (guest appearance by Admiral William J. Crowe), an old fan, but Rebecca later believes the old man stole her diamond earrings. 
164 18 "What's Up, Doc?" James Burrows Brian Pollack and Mert Rich March 30, 1989 (1989-03-30) 24.3 / 37[rat7 18]
Sam actually fakes a case of impotence to get close to a therapist Lilith and Frasier introduced to him. 
165 19 "The Gift of the Woodi" James Burrows Phoef Sutton April 6, 1989 (1989-04-06) 22.2 / 36[rat7 19]
Woody's rich girl friend doesn't fully appreciate his inexpensive but heartfelt birthday gift and Rebecca transforms herself to further her career prospects. 
166 20 "Call Me Irresponsible" James Burrows Dan O'Shannon and Tom Anderson April 13, 1989 (1989-04-13) 22.3 / 36[rat7 20]
Woody gets gambling fever and tension mounts as Carla waits for Eddie to surprise her on their second anniversary. 
167 21 "Sisterly Love" James Burrows David Lloyd April 27, 1989 (1989-04-27) 20.8 / 34[rat7 21]

Sam tries to reconcile Rebecca and her sister Susan (Marcia Cross).


Joan Severance was originally cast as Susan Howe. She and Sam were supposed to have a whirlwind romance, and Sam was supposed to propose marriage to her. Producers found this unsuitable for promiscuous Sam. Also, Severance had scheduling conflicts. Therefore, the character and the story were rewritten as one-time, and producers picked Marcia Cross.[6] 
168 22 "The Visiting Lecher" James Burrows David Lloyd May 4, 1989 (1989-05-04) 20.8 / 33[rat7 22]

Rebecca accuses a respected authority on marital fidelity of making a pass at her.


This episode originally intended to reprise Dr. Simon Finch-Royce, John Cleese's character, from the fifth season episode "Simon Says". However, Cleese was unavailable, so this episode was re-written in order to replace his character with Dr. Lawrence Crandall.[7] 

Production[edit]

Writers and producers David Angell, Peter Casey, and David Lee left the series in March 1989 for an upcoming production company, which became Grub Street Productions.[8][9]

Reception[edit]

This season landed on fourth place with an average 22.5 rating and 35 share as of April 20, 1989.[10] The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette described the character of Rebecca Howe "annoying", and expressed pleasure at rumours that Joan Severance (originally set to play Susan Howe, a role eventually portrayed by Marcia Cross) could replace Kirstie Alley, contending that Shelley Long's departure in the fifth season was still affecting the series.[11] Another syndicate columnist Joe Stein found the sixth and seventh seasons "good [yet] somewhat watered down", and found Rebecca not as "compelling" as her predecessor Diane.[8] Conversely, Herb Caen of The San Francisco Chronicle praised this season, including the cast ensemble and their performances, but still missed departed characters Coach and Diane.[12]

Todd Fuller of Sitcoms Online called this season "strong".[13] David Johnson of DVD Verdict rated the story 90 percent and the acting 95 percent, praising its episodic approach and departure from story arcs, like Sam and Diane or Rebecca's failed attempts to win Evan Drake last season. He praised Alley as "a solid comic force" for her "over-the-top portrayal of neurosis".[14] Jeffrey Robinson of DVD Talk gave this season three and a half stars out of five and its replay value four, calling it "good" and its episodes "fun and amusing."[15] Current Film called this season a "strong roll" with "fine performances".[16]

Accolades[edit]

In the 41st Primetime Emmy Awards (1989), this series won three Emmys for an Outstanding Comedy Series of 1988–1989, an Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series (Woody Harrelson), and an Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Rhea Perlman).[17] In the 3rd Annual American Comedy Awards, Perlman was awarded as the Funniest Supporting Actress for her character Carla Tortelli.[18]

DVD Release[edit]

Cheers: The Complete Seventh Season
Set Details[15]
Release Dates
Region 1 Region 2 Region 4
November 15, 2005 May 18, 2009 April 27, 2009

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Stein, Joe (October 24, 1988). "Prime-time battles finally begin in earnest this week". Evening Tribune (San Diego). p. C-4. 
  2. ^ "Night Court tops Nielsens in Thursday time slot". The Daily Union (Junction City, Kansas). December 14, 1988. p. 12. 
  3. ^ a b c d Bjorklund, pp. 375–389
  4. ^ "Monday's TV Programs". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. February 6, 1989. p. 13. 
  5. ^ "Thursday's TV Programs". February 9, 1989. p. 17. 
  6. ^ "Severance pay?". Los Angeles Daily News. April 25, 1989. p. L20.  Record no. 8901190594. Under same article, "TV News & Notes - One Last Fling for Moonlighting", by Jim Benson.
  7. ^ "Why John Cleese never appeared on Cheers a second time". ...by Ken Levine. November 12, 2010. 
  8. ^ a b Stein, Joe (March 3, 1989). "Defections to Hurt Cheers: 3 Writers, Producers to Leave". The Press-Courier. Copley News Service. p. 10. 
  9. ^ "Obituaries: David Angell". The Telegraph. 13 September 2011. 
  10. ^ Feder, Robert (April 20, 1989). "NBC, ABC and CBS keep losing viewers". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 61.  Record no. CHI349816.
  11. ^ <surname illegible>, Gary (March 23, 1989). "Kirstie Alley may lose Cheers lead to `another woman'". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 21. 
  12. ^ Caen, Herb (March 23, 1989). "A Star Is Born". The San Francisco Chronicle. p. B1.  Record no. 569588.
  13. ^ Fuller, Todd (November 9, 2005). "Cheers: The Complete Seventh Season". Sitcoms Online. 
  14. ^ Johnson, David (November 15, 2005). "Cheers: The Complete Seventh Season". DVD Verdict. 
  15. ^ a b Robinson, Jeffrey (November 15, 2005). "Cheers - The Complete Seventh Season". DVD Talk. 
  16. ^ "Cheers: Season 7". Current Film. 
  17. ^ Bjorklund, p. 461.
  18. ^ "American director's 1st film wins top prize at Cannes". Milwaukee Sentinel. May 24, 1989. pt. 1, pg. 3. 

References[edit]

Ratings notes[edit]

Unless otherwise, the main source of Nielsen ratings is the newspaper Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. According to that main source, ratings of 1988-89 were based on 90.4 million households that have at least one television.

  1. ^ "Top 10: Oct. 24–30, 1988". November 2, 1988. p. 21. 
  2. ^ "Top 10: Oct. 31–Nov. 6, 1988". November 9, 1988. p. 19. 
  3. ^ "Top 10: Nov. 7–13, 1988". November 16, 1988. p. 33. 
  4. ^ "The Ratings (Nov. 14–20, 1988)". The Dallas Morning News. November 24, 1988. p. 21C. 
  5. ^ "The Ratings (Nov. 21–27, 1988)". The Dallas Morning News. December 2, 1988. p. 12C. 
  6. ^ "Top 10: Dec. 5–11, 1988". December 14, 1988. p. 27. 
  7. ^ "Top 10: Dec. 12–18, 1988". December 21, 1988. p. 25. 
  8. ^ "Top 10: Dec. 19–25, 1988". December 29, 1988. p. 15. 
  9. ^ "Top 10: Jan 2–8, 1989". January 11, 1989. p. 27. 
  10. ^ "Top 10: Jan. 9–15, 1989". January 18, 1989. p. 24. 
  11. ^ "Top 10: Jan 16–22, 1989". January 25, 1989. p. 19. 
  12. ^ "Top 10: Jan. 30–Feb. 5, 1989". February 8, 1989. p. 27. 
  13. ^ "Using this chart (Feb. 6–12, 1989)". USA Today. February 15, 1989. p. 3D. 
  14. ^ "Using this chart (Feb. 13–19, 1989)". USA Today. February 22, 1989. p. 3D.  Record no. 170085.
  15. ^ "Top 10: Feb. 20–26, 1989". March 2, 1989. p. 15. 
  16. ^ "Top 10: Feb. 27–Mar. 5, 1989". March 8, 1989. p. 21. 
  17. ^ "Using this chart (March 13–19, 1989)". USA Today. March 22, 1989. p. 3D. 
  18. ^ "Top 10: Mar. 27–Apr. 2, 1989". April 5, 1989. p. 21. 
  19. ^ "Top 10: April 3–9, 1989". April 12, 1989. p. 28. 
  20. ^ "Top 10: April 10–16, 1989". April 19, 1989. p. 21. 
  21. ^ "Top 10: April 24–30, 1989". May 3, 1989. p. 19. 
  22. ^ "Top 10: May 1–7, 1989". May 10, 1989. p. 19. 

External links[edit]