CHEERS: ONE FOR THE ROAD {SERIES FINALE} (TV)

Summary

The finale episode in this comedy series about a group of regulars at a Boston bar. In this episode, the gang watches the CableACE Awards on TV, hoping for a glimpse of supermodel Kim Alexis, though they suffer through a number of other celebrities first. Woody, having been elected to city council, asks the eloquent Frasier for help with his speech. Sam arrives, still attempting to avoid all mention of sex and romance, much to the others' awe. Carla flirts with Rebecca's plumber beau Don, and when Rebecca realizes that Don is about to propose, "coaxes" it out of him with champagne. When he finally spits it out, she joyfully refuses, then reacts with shock at her own words. He asks repeatedly, but she cannot seem to accept, and he leaves, hurt. She begs Frasier to chase him down, but then wrestles with indecision. Kim Alexis finally appears and they are all stunned when she presents a writing award to their very own Diane Chambers, no one more so than Carla, who believes it to be a nightmarish hallucination. Diane gives a long and pretentious acceptance speech, and Sam decides to send her a congratulatory telegram, despite the others' disapproval. Diane soon calls Sam to thank him, and he lies extravagantly about having a successful family life when she explains that she is now married with children, and invites her to stop by the bar the next time she is in Boston, assuming that her own fibs will prevent her from coming.

Cliff tells the gang that he wants a promotion at work, but refuses to brownnose in order to get it. Frasier attempts to help Woody with his speech, growing frustrated at his lack of talent with words. Norm warns Woody about "cronyism," saying that he may have down-and-out friends who are begging him for a job with the city, and Woody takes the hint and promises to look for a position for Norm. A disheveled and despondent Rebecca mopes over Don, who has not returned to her. Everyone is shocked, particularly Carla, when Diane suddenly arrives in their midst, and when she mentions that she brought her husband along, Sam panics and persuades Rebecca to pose as his wife. Diane checks in with the gang, skeptical about Woody's achievements and amused at Cliff and Norm's total lack of change, and then encounters Frasier, who unconvincingly declares himself to be over her. She then meets Rebecca, whom Sam has attempted to "clean up," and they meet her husband, Reed, after which they all head off for lunch. Rebecca claims that she is an attorney and quickly ad-libs details about their four children, but the meal is interrupted by Don, who arrives dramatically and proposes yet again. This time Rebecca is able to say yes, much to Diane and Reed's surprise. When they leave, Sam admits his lie, but they are then joined by Reed's male partner, who is displeased with the shenanigans, and Diane's cover is blown too.

The gang downstairs gossips about Sam and Diane's antics, watching as the couples chase each other through the bar. Left alone with Diane, Sam assures her that he is not "lost and alone" without her, claiming to have a full, exciting life and saying they are a "total mismatch." She admits that her plans for a novel fell through and she was reluctant to return without having achieved success, adding that she is lonely. Sam reconsiders and invites her to stay for dessert, which soon turns into a more meaningful innuendo. The next day, Woody's wife presents the new city councilman to the bar, and they all celebrate him. Rebecca and Don arrive and reveals that they have gotten married, though Rebecca frets that she has married a plumber who will soon dump her because of her instability. Cliff reveals that he got the promotion, though he resorted to sucking up to get it, and Frasier declares it "the best day in the history of Cheers." They are all horrified, therefore, when Sam and Diane arrive and announce that they are engaged.

Carla denounces their reunion as a terrible idea, though she is slightly mollified when Diane reveals that she based her would-be screenplay on Carla's life. Sam then reveals that he is leaving Boston and moving to California to be with Diane, causing Cliff to share his conspiracy theory about earthquakes. The others attempt to talk Sam out of it, but he retorts that he has nothing else in his life and has always supported their choices, reminding them that the bar is not their home. On the airplane, Sam and Diane reassure one another of their plans, though the flight is delayed and they both begin to receive warnings "from above" against being together, and they both reconsider and decide to part. Sam returns to Cheers with a box of cigars, and the others pretend to leave before returning and celebrating with him. Rebecca stops in before leaving for her honeymoon and gives Sam a kiss goodbye, promising to visit. The others ponder the meaning of life, with Cliff pointing out that the world's great thinkers all wore sensible shoes. Carla talks about the joys and woes of motherhood, Frasier muses over life as a "cosmic accident," and Woody says that he thinks of them all as family. After a heartfelt moment, the others finally head out, and Norm tells Sam that life is about loving someone or something "totally, completely and without judgment," hinting that the bar itself is his one true love. Left by himself, Sam takes a moment to marvel at his luck. Commercials deleted.

Details

  • NETWORK: NBC
  • DATE: May 20, 1993 9:24 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 1:24:50
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: B:65390
  • GENRE: Comedy
  • SUBJECT HEADING: Boston
  • SERIES RUN: ABC - TV series, 1982-1993
  • COMMERCIALS:

CREDITS

    • Dan O'Shannon … Executive Producer
    • Tom Anderson … Executive Producer
    • James Burrows … Executive Producer, Created by, Director
    • Glen Charles … Executive Producer, Created by, Writer
    • Les Charles … Executive Producer, Created by, Writer
    • Dan Staley … Co-Executive Producer
    • Rob Long … Co-Executive Producer
    • Tim Berry … Producer
    • Tom Leopold … Co-Producer
    • Mary Fukuto … Associate Producer
    • Craig Safan … Music by
    • Judy Hart Angelo … Theme Music by
    • Gary Portnoy … Theme Music by
    • Ted Danson … Cast, Sam Malone
    • Kirstie Alley … Cast, Rebecca Howe
    • Rhea Perlman … Cast, Carla Tortelli
    • John Ratzenberger … Cast, Cliff Clavin
    • Woody Harrelson … Cast, Woody Boyd
    • Kelsey Grammer … Cast, Dr. Frasier Crane
    • George Wendt … Cast, Norm Peterson
    • Tom Berenger … Cast, Don Santry
    • Jackie Swanson … Cast, Kelly Boyd
    • Mike Ditka … Cast, Himself
    • Kim Alexis … Cast, Herself
    • Mark Harelik … Cast, Reed Manchester
    • Anthony Heald … Cast, Kevin
    • Paul Willson … Cast, Paul
    • Mitchell Lichtenstein … Cast, Waiter
    • Tim Cunningham … Cast, Tim
    • Steve Giannelli … Cast, Steve
    • Alan Koss … Cast, Alan
    • Shelley Long … Cast, Diane Chambers