PDA

View Full Version : "Cheers" vs. "Seinfeld"



Crash Davis
09-15-2005, 10:09 PM
Avid readers of the "Sportsguy", Bill Simmons, may remember his breakdown of Cheers vs. Seinfeld...among his other breakdowns which include gems such as: who would win in a game between "Hoosiers" and "The White Shadow"?

ESPN2 has recently put much of Simmons' work on the Insider portion of the website, but they are currently running the Cheers vs. Seinfeld article in their vault.

Here goes:

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/vault/020221

We've all been dancing around the most controversial breakdown of our generation. Yeah, that's right ... "Cheers" Vs. "Seinfield." Dr. Jack, the floor is yours. -- K. Fitzgerald, Manchester, Conn.

SG: Damn. And you thought the "Who would win between Hickory High and Carver High in a seven-game series?" question from last summer was tough.

All right, let's break this down, Dr. Jack-style:

Stars: Jerry Seinfeld wasn't really acting, was he? Wasn't he basically playing himself and shifting his nightclub act to the small screen? Wasn't he more of a straight man, a facilitator? As for Ted Danson, he created a memorable, multi-dimensional, likable, hysterical character. ... I mean, it didn't get much better than Sam Malone. Jerry needed the actual material to make you laugh; Sammy could make you laugh without saying a line. I would even call him a borderline comedic genius. And he could go serious on you, too. Frankly, it's no contest. EDGE: "Cheers."

Supporting Cast: Elaine, Kramer and George. That's a murderers' row. You could make a case that Elaine was the funniest female TV character of all-time; Kramer was the funniest "wacky sitcom character"; and George was the funniest TV character of all-time, period. Who was funnier than George Costanza? He's the only sitcom character who ever made me consistently laugh out loud ... and yes, I'm including Screech, J.J. Walker, Joey Tribbiani and Jack Tripper. He kills me to this day.

And I liked all of the running fringe characters (George's parents, Newman, Puddy, etc.) except for Mr. and Mrs. Seinfeld (who never brought anything to the table and should have been put out to pasture after the two-part raincoats episode). "Cheers" probably matches them for running fringe characters though (Harry the Con Man, Eddie LeBeck, Nick Tortelli).

As for the "Cheers" supporting cast, Norm Peterson was my second-favorite sitcom character of all-time (nobody had a better entrance). Diane Chambers worked perfectly in the early years, but ultimately became overbearing. Cliff Clavin was a tour-de-force, one of the more original sitcom characters out there. Same with Frasier (do you realize Kelsey Grammar is going on 17 years playing that guy? Has to be a record). I enjoyed Carla as long as they weren't revolving an episode around her. The only characters I never really liked were Rebecca Howe and Lilith, but "Cheers" was running on fumes for those last few years.

And then there was Coach, the heart and soul of that show; it was never the same after he left (Woody was a poor man's version of him). I always thought "Cheers" was a show until Coach died, then it became a sitcom, if that makes sense.

At gunpoint, I have to go with the "Seinfeld" cast. I just can't imagine any scenario in which the Elaine-Kramer-George trio could be topped. It's impossible. EDGE: "Seinfeld."

Best Celebrity Cameo: Both shows played this card beautifully over the years -- Kevin McHale, Keith Hernandez, Roger McDowell, Jon Voight, Wade Boggs, George Steinbrenner, Terry Hatcher, Marlee Matlin, etc. -- but the best celebrity cameo was from the two-part "Seinfeld" episode when Hernandez dates Elaine ("I'm Keith Hernandez ... I won the MVP in '79"). Other than Joe Montana's doing the "That's OK ... I'm going upstairs to masturbate" sketch on SNL in the mid-'80s, Hernandez's appearance destroys everything else I can remember -- that was one of the five best "Seinfeld" episodes of all-time. You know it's good when I'm ranking it ahead of McHale playing for the "Cheers" hoops team. EDGE: "Seinfeld."

Main Set: Jerry's apartment versus the bar from "Cheers"? Puh-leeeze. Throw in New York versus Boston and it's no contest. EDGE: "Cheers."

"Jump the Shark" Factor: "Seinfeld" jumped when Elaine straightened out her hair and Kramer revealed that his first name was "Cosmo"; "Cheers" jumped when Sam and Diane got engaged. Both of them were still watchable after these things happened ... they just weren't nearly as good. Hey, it happens. "Cheers" might have jumped sooner than "Seinfeld," but "Cheers" did a better job of integrating new characters and remaining somewhat fresh, whereas "Seinfeld" drove its four main characters into the ground. Couldn't they have thrown in a steady girlfriend for George or something? EDGE: Even.

Sexual tension: As good as Elaine and Jerry were, they can't come close to Sam and Diane. Their relationship fueled that show for three consecutive years and banged home the "Women are utterly and completely insane" concept for me as a fledgling teenager. Thank you, Diane Chambers. BIG EDGE: "Cheers."

Consistency, originality and durability: The "Seinfeld" re-runs hold up much better these days; better-written, more original, more modern, outright funnier shows. But "Cheers" was hindered by the limits of sitcoms in the '80s -- one set, one plot, one resolution -- so it's tough to really blame them for that. And it showed a little soul and a little emotion from time to time, which "Seinfeld" simply wouldn't and couldn't do. "Cheers" remains the last great old-fashioned sitcom, the finest of its kind. They don't make 'em like that anymore. EDGE: Even.

Cultural Significance: Has there ever been a water cooler comedy quite like "Seinfeld"? And what about all the phrases from "Seinfeld" that became part of pop culture (like "Not that there's anything wrong with that"), or the quirky one-shot characters (the close-talker, the virgin, etc.). BIG EDGE: "Seinfeld."

Watershed Episode: Tough call for "Cheers"... I'd probably go with the Thanksgiving episode when everyone threw food at one another at Carla's house. Some inspired comedy there. For "Seinfeld," it's obviously "The Contest," in my opinion, the second-funniest sitcom in history (behind Larry Sanders' "Roast" episode). There's comedy, there's high comedy, there's transcendent comedy, and then there's George Costanza visiting his mother in the hospital just so he can peek in on the lady getting the sponge bath. EDGE: "Seinfeld."

Final Episode: "Cheers" ended things pretty well. Not great ... but OK. The final "Seinfeld" episode ranks right up there with "Rocky V," "Another 48 Hours" and "Fletch Lives" for me ... in other words, let's just pretend it never happened. EDGE: "Cheers."

Final Verdict: "Cheers" was a more complete all-around show (funny, heartwarming, well-acted, not afraid to introduce new characters), but "Seinfeld's" ceiling was just a little higher (groundbreaking, unique, unpredictable, and consistently great for five or six years). Much like they're might be another Michael Jordan, but there will never be another Larry Bird... there might be another "Cheers," but there will never be another "Seinfeld." EDGE: Seinfeld.

Reds4Life
09-15-2005, 10:37 PM
I don't know why everyone liked Seinfeld so much, I watched it a few times and was less than impressed. Cheers on the other hand, was a good show.

Nugget
09-15-2005, 10:43 PM
You also have to give a big tick to the spin-off from Cheers - Frasier.

pedro
09-15-2005, 11:15 PM
Seinfeld kicks Cheers butt and I like Cheers.

In 20 years Seinfeld wil still be brilliant and Cheers will be even more dated than it is now.

It's like the difference between The Andy Griffith Show and Leave it to Beaver

KronoRed
09-15-2005, 11:25 PM
Cheers got old..fast..even the reruns seem to run together.

Neo
09-15-2005, 11:32 PM
Seinfeld kicks Cheers butt and I like Cheers.

In 20 years Seinfeld wil still be brilliant and Cheers will be even more dated than it is now.

It's like the difference between The Andy Griffith Show and Leave it to Beaver

What he said.. but it is also like comparing Family Guy to the Simpsons.. both are good.. but just can't compare them.

Reds/Flyers Fan
09-15-2005, 11:49 PM
Seinfeld. No contest.

bucksfan
09-16-2005, 12:17 AM
It's all what you like - IMO Cheers, no contest... I think mostly because people like most of the main characters in Seinfeld I believe I would have absolutely loathed if I had met them as real people, except maybe Kramer. Nonetheless, Seinfeld was a good show to me also, but the fact that I liked the Cheers characters better swings it for me.

pedro
09-16-2005, 12:33 AM
What he said.. but it is also like comparing Family Guy to the Simpsons.. both are good.. but just can't compare them.

The Simpsons is my favorite TV show ever, without any competition at all.

and I love your avatar.

dsmith421
09-16-2005, 12:41 AM
I think mostly because people like most of the main characters in Seinfeld I believe I would have absolutely loathed if I had met them as real people, except maybe Kramer.

But that's the point of the show...these people do and say the terrible, misanthropic things that everyone thinks about on a daily basis but doesn't do because of society's mores. They aren't supposed to be real people. Half the humor comes from watching the responses of real people to their antics, and the way they finally get their comeuppance.

Cheers had some legendary characters and some great moments. But at the end of the day it was relatively pedestrian, by-the-book, TV comedy in, say, the tradition of MASH. Seinfeld broke all the rules.

For me, obviously, it's Seinfeld in a Secretariat-at-the-Belmont walk, and frankly I suspect if Simmons wasn't from Boston he'd agree.

GAC
09-16-2005, 08:10 AM
http://www.moviewavs.com/cgi-bin/tvwavs.cgi?Seinfeld=kyes.wav

http://members.aol.com/seinfeld/kramer.gif

Falls City Beer
09-16-2005, 08:16 AM
Cheers was never good, but Seinfeld is NOT aging well.

GAC
09-16-2005, 08:19 AM
Cheers NEVER any good? I guess it all boils down to personal taste.

I've got the first 4 seasons of Seinfeld on DVD. I don't have any of Cheers. So you know where my vote goes.

"AND YOU PEOPLE ARE KILLING INDEPENDENT GEORGE!" :lol:

Roy Tucker
09-16-2005, 08:30 AM
Let me stretch a metaphor here...

Cheers was like the 70's-era Rolling Stones, a big loud rowdy band with lots of guitar players, horns, black chicks singing background, everyone being a show-off, all just a big rollicking sloppy good time in front of a big loud crowd.

Seinfeld was more like the late-60's Beatles, finely crafted, chamber music background strings, studio quality mixed, all done far away from the live stage, unbelievably great music, but just a tad sterile.

GAC
09-16-2005, 08:34 AM
You need to get out more Roy. ;)

GIDDYUP!

Chip R
09-16-2005, 09:06 AM
Back before television they had sitcoms on radio. Jack Benny, Burns & Allen, Amos & Andy, etc. Those shows had to rely on the listener's imagination to get laughs. Cheers was a show that with a few tweaks to the script could have been a radio show. There weren't a lot of sight gags on that show. The comedy was in the dialogue. Sam & Diane's repartee, Carla's insults, Norm's entrance, Cliff's blathering, Coach's "confusion" all didn't need props or the viewer being able to see what was going on to get a laugh. However I think Seinfeld was a slightly better show. We've all experienced the nuances of every day life that they built episodes around like who's a "close talker", wondering if a well endowed girl is "real", seeing the movie instead of reading the book, being less than honest with women in order for them to go out with you, crazy friends like Kramer, forgetting a date's name. Most of the plots on Cheers were standard sitcom plots but the writing made the show stand out. Seinfeld wouldn't hold up as good if it were a radio show since it would lose most of Kramer's appeal among other things. But I think Seinfeld was a better show because we could relate to it better.

GAC
09-16-2005, 09:23 AM
But I think Seinfeld was a better show because we could relate to it better.

Exactly. They took everyday nuances that we all have experienced at one time or another (and we either blew them off or it wasn't something we'd want to admit to or talk about in public), and made some hilarious shows out of them.

As I watch them, it's almost as if I'm laughing at myself and some of the very same situations I've experienced over time.

Larry Charles, teamed up with Jerry Seinfeld, made one heck of a wriitng team.

Cheers was a good show. But I have a hard time trying to recall any of my favorite episodes from that series. But with Seinfeld, that is another story. Cheers and it's characters were very predictable, and you almost knew what to expect out them. Not so with the Seinfeld characters.

Just mention a topic or use one of the many expressions/phrases from Seinfeld, and that particular episode comes to mind and you start laughing all over again...

Kenny Rogers chicken
master of Your domain
relationship and independent George
I WAS IN THE POOL!
She has man hands
NO SOUP FOR YOU!
Vandelay Industries
The Bro
Festivus

:lol:

Johnny Footstool
09-16-2005, 09:32 AM
IMO, Seinfeld was a bunch of one-liners thrown together and delivered by shallow characters I couldn't stand. It was like watching cardboard cutouts with a laugh track.

Cheers, while not my favorite, at least had a coherent plot and some character depth.

LincolnparkRed
09-16-2005, 09:42 AM
Kenny Rogers chicken
master of Your domain
relationship and independent George
I WAS IN THE POOL!
She has man hands
NO SOUP FOR YOU!
Vandelay Industries
The Bro
Festivus

:lol:

Should also include:

***man (Kramer gets proctologists license plates)
"No sex louise" George becomes a genius because he is not preoccuppied with sex
"Sponge Worthy"

I can't think of a single Cheers episode like that but I do have the final show on VHS, go figure.

Chip R
09-16-2005, 09:49 AM
Larry Charles, teamed up with Jerry Seinfeld, made one heck of a wriitng team.

Actually it was Larry David. Glen and Les Charles were the producers of Cheers.

MrCinatit
09-16-2005, 10:21 AM
i was a fan of Cheers from the start...loved the show and never thought anything could surpass it.
then Seinfeld came along. i guess one way to appreciate both shows is to have followed them from beginning to end. i did so with both, and my appreciation for both grew as those shows grew.
got to the point where i scheduled my life around those shows - i made sure i was not at work, not with friends...nowhere but at home just to watch those two shows. the only other show i can say this about is The Simpsons.
But even though Cheers had its great moments...i honestly don't remember many of them.
however, i do remember almost every line in the episode in which George pretended to be an ocean biologist.
I remember every line from the "Serenety Now" episode.
How can i EVER forget Festivus?
I can remember almost every one of Kramer's business ventures - or at least ideas - including Kramerica Enterprises and his intern. "Hellllloooooooooooooooooo."
i still chuckle when thinking of lines here and there from the Schindler's List episode.
and who the heck could ever forget Wilford Brimley as the Post Master General.

what a show. what a show.

GAC
09-16-2005, 10:41 AM
Actually it was Larry David. Glen and Les Charles were the producers of Cheers.

You're right. I get my Larry's mixed up. But Larry Charles also wrote for Seinfeld - 18 episodes from 1991-1994

Blimpie
09-16-2005, 01:31 PM
Seinfeld gets my vote in a runaway, but when the dust all settles, Curb Your Enthusiasm may triumph over all other shows....Season premiere on September 25th :beerme:

Patrick Bateman
09-16-2005, 02:43 PM
Seinfeld gets my vote in a runaway, but when the dust all settles, Curb Your Enthusiasm may triumph over all other shows....Season premiere on September 25th :beerme:

I agree. I've seen the first 4 seasons and I think it may be even funnier than Seinfeld (as if I even thought that was possible). If it keeps going strong for another 3-4 seasons it may become the new standard.

Big Donkey
09-16-2005, 03:15 PM
Seinfeld gets my vote in a runaway, but when the dust all settles, Curb Your Enthusiasm may triumph over all other shows....Season premiere on September 25th :beerme:

Blimpie, you're a good man, not only a UK guy but Curb fan as well. It's my single favorite show on the air now. I've been looking VERY forward to season five... it's been well over a year since the last new episode aired! Just a week-and-a-half or so! :beerme:

alex trevino
09-16-2005, 05:47 PM
I like both, but Seinfeld is by far the funnier show. I think the funniest ever. Not sure if Cheers makes the top 10.

Ravenlord
09-16-2005, 06:06 PM
if it wasn't for Jason Alexander and Julia Louis-Dryfess, that could have been a good show.

GAC
09-16-2005, 09:04 PM
I love watching the "behind the scene" interviews on the Seinfeld DVDs. Alot of good insight into what went on.

I think both of these shows characters played off each other very well. With Seinfeld, Jerry didn't have to be the center of the entire show. he had no problem at all, as those other characters developed, in sharing the limelight with them.

Just watched the one with Keith Hernandez and the "magic lugey" Kennedy assasination analogy. Good stuff :lol:

Elaine: They always put the worst players at 1B
Keith: Elaine, you don't know anything about 1B
Elaine: Maybe. But I know something about GETTING to 1B. And you're not
Keith: Around eleven o'clock I'll not only get to 1b, but will be rounding 3rd
Elaine: Well don't look now, but that 3rd base coach is not waving you in

REDREAD
09-17-2005, 11:53 PM
Couldn't they have thrown in a steady girlfriend for George or something? EDGE: Even.


hello? George was engaged to Susan for an entire season. And it was one of the best transitions of a single guy to a couple ever. George trying to get out of the marriage was hillarious, although it was pretty dumb how the writers eventually gave Susan the boot.

WMR
09-18-2005, 12:11 AM
You're right. I get my Larry's mixed up. But Larry Charles also wrote for Seinfeld - 18 episodes from 1991-1994

"Bulk of the series, Dude."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/graphics/2005/01/17/bridgesbig.jpg

Reds/Flyers Fan
09-19-2005, 05:09 PM
Cheers was never good, but Seinfeld is NOT aging well.

I will agree with you on Cheers. But how is Seinfeld not aging well? I also have all the DVDs released to date and they are as funny as ever.

Reds/Flyers Fan
09-19-2005, 05:11 PM
if it wasn't for Jason Alexander and Julia Louis-Dryfess, that could have been a good show.

But with them it is a great show. Most TV critics would agree.

REDREAD
09-19-2005, 11:32 PM
if it wasn't for Jason Alexander and Julia Louis-Dryfess, that could have been a good show.

There wouldn't have been a show left if those two weren't on it.. Who wants to watch a half hour of Jerry monologuing while Kramer spazs out?

IMO, George was the funniest sitcom character ever created.
Jason Alexander could've (and should've) milked that character for 20 years like Fraser Crane did.

missionhockey21
09-23-2005, 02:10 AM
I believe Seinfeld is pretty timeless. The comedy hits just as well today as it did when it first aired. I mean most of the plots really do not have much to do with a current event (for the time) or whatever. Just typical things people have been going though and will continue going through only on Seinfeld it's exaggerated to the 10th degree.

Speaking of Seinfeld...... Curb Your Enthusiasm makes it's comeback this Sunday night. The episode is called "The Larry David Sandwich," you know you want to watch it.

WMR
03-14-2007, 06:05 PM
Hmmm... watched quite a few of both recently... Not sure I can choose, but I definitely feel like Cheers lost something it was never quite able to replace when Coach died.

Razor Shines
03-14-2007, 06:07 PM
Obviously I've got to go with Seinfeld.

"I'll have the tuna."

GAC
03-14-2007, 07:31 PM
Seinfeld.... period.

"You? You'll be out before we get the check!"

Hollcat
03-15-2007, 12:22 AM
I'm certainly more of a Seinfeld fan, it's my favorite TV show of all time, but in defense of Cheers they did have to go through major character changes that Seinfeld didn't. Jerry, Kramer, George and Elaine stayed together for the entire run. Cheers suffered when forced to change a couple of their original characters just like MASH did with the loss of Trapper, Frank Burns and Henry Blake.

SunDeck
03-15-2007, 07:32 AM
I liked them both about the same, but I'm more likely to stop surfing for a Seinfeld episode now than I am Cheers. Having said that, the early Seinfelds were pretty weak; check them out some time and you will agree. The acting was stiff, the characters hadn't developed yet- it could be downright painful. Cheers was strong right out of the chute.

The writing on Cheers may have been a little better. There was a predictable pattern of behavior from all the actors; the inability to make the correct choice in any situation. It was kind of like Homer Simpson who always has the wrong thing to say. ("A 7 day waiting period to buy a gun?! But, I won't be MAD any more!).

I think Cheers was smoother. The actors were actors, whereas the people on Seinfeld were really comedians, so that everything they did was like a sketch, rather than a scene in a story. They did it well, but the quality of the interactions between the characters was better on Cheers.

Lastly, the thing I like most about Seinfeld are all the characters they created along the way, Bookman, Soup Nazi, the friends of Jerry's parents, his uncle. Those people and the comedians who played them were hilarious. I thought they were a real throwback to an earlier era, which is why I think the show may be more timeless than cheers.

GAC
03-15-2007, 08:13 AM
I'm certainly more of a Seinfeld fan, it's my favorite TV show of all time, but in defense of Cheers they did have to go through major character changes that Seinfeld didn't. Jerry, Kramer, George and Elaine stayed together for the entire run. Cheers suffered when forced to change a couple of their original characters just like MASH did with the loss of Trapper, Frank Burns and Henry Blake.

They lost a heck of a character when coach (Nicholas Colasanto) passed away. And as much as I loved the show, I couldn't stand Shelley Long. Would have loved to have seen an episode where Carla punches her in the mouth.

http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/C/htmlC/cheers/cheersIMAGE/cheers.jpg

minus5
03-15-2007, 09:05 AM
[QUOTE=GAC;1264718] And as much as I loved the show, I couldn't stand Shelley Long. Would have loved to have seen an episode where Carla punches her in the mouth.
QUOTE]

I'm with you and it wasn't just her character. I pretty much don't like her in anything.

gonelong
03-15-2007, 09:27 AM
Seinfeld in a landslide, and I really liked Cheers.

GL

redsfan1966
03-15-2007, 09:33 AM
I am a fan of both shows and watched them religiously when they first aired....however i have to give the nod to Seinfeld....classic comedy..and no annoying love triangles....

RichRed
03-15-2007, 11:02 AM
Seinfeld is my all-time favorite. I liked Cheers too but I actually find it difficult to watch the reruns now. Not so with Seinfeld.

Jerry has said that their motto while making Seinfeld was "No hugging, no learning." I love that.

Chip R
03-15-2007, 11:18 AM
Cheers suffered when forced to change a couple of their original characters just like MASH did with the loss of Trapper, Frank Burns and Henry Blake.


MASH was a great deal more successful after Trapper, Henry and Frank left. It got better reviews and better ratings. Now whether it was funnier or not is another issue.

Puffy
03-15-2007, 11:35 AM
I thought Woody did a great job taking over for Coach. But the show really lost something when Shelly Long left.

Seinfeld was Seinfeld - great show, more water-cooler.

I would probably watch a rerun of Seinfeld over Cheers if both were on but I would probably list Cheers higher on my all time list then Seinfeld, if that makes sense.

Chip R
03-15-2007, 11:38 AM
I thought Woody did a great job taking over for Coach. But the show really lost something when Shelly Long left.


She was a great heel.

GAC
03-16-2007, 08:02 AM
I liked Taxi better then Cheers. Now that was a cast of characters.

zombielady
03-16-2007, 12:55 PM
I hate Larry David and all that he stands for... which is apparently nothing...

I like crime shows myself... can I pick Hill Street Blues for 1000, Alex?

fadetoblack2880
03-17-2007, 09:16 PM
I found Cheers to be a bore. Seinfeld I could watch for hours and enjoy it.

GAC
03-18-2007, 03:33 AM
MASH was a great deal more successful after Trapper, Henry and Frank left. It got better reviews and better ratings. Now whether it was funnier or not is another issue.

I liked Frank Burns far better then Charles Emerson Winchester the 3rd. BJ Honeycutt was a capable replacement for Trapper. And I'd say the same for Col. Potter versus Henry Blake. But I still preferred the original cast far better.

And it was also around that time the Hotlips character, due to Switt's involvement, started to change also. If one will notice, she was starting to be called Margaret far more then Hotlips, until Hotlips pretty much disappeared.

And it took Radar's departure to finally get Klinger out of that dress.

RFS62
03-18-2007, 07:50 AM
I always loved Seinfeld, but I'd have to pick Cheers as my favorite of the two.

The Sam and Diane dynamic was classic. The writing was some of the best stuff ever on TV. The characters were classics. Cliff, Norm, Coach, Carla, Woody, Frasier Crane....

Not knockin' Seinfeld. But I liked Cheers better.

TeamCasey
03-18-2007, 08:23 AM
Kenny Rogers chicken
master of Your domain
relationship and independent George
I WAS IN THE POOL!
She has man hands
NO SOUP FOR YOU!
Vandelay Industries
The Bro
Festivus

:lol:

Sponge worthy!

Both shows had their place and time.

GAC
03-18-2007, 09:44 AM
Sponge worthy!

Both shows had their place and time.

Yes they do. I'm still waiting for WKRC to come out on DVD.

But I loved George (who was Larry David in real life). It was rfs who really brought my attention to Curb Your Enthusiasm. I'm starting to collect the series.

Chip R
03-18-2007, 10:30 AM
Yes they do. I'm still waiting for WKRC to come out on DVD.



Wait a minute. There's a show about another radio station in Cincinnati? :p:

GAC
03-18-2007, 08:34 PM
Wait a minute. There's a show about another radio station in Cincinnati? :p:

Yeah, but it wasn't as popular as WKRP. :mooner:

Caveat Emperor
03-18-2007, 09:18 PM
"Seinfeld" will go down in TV history as a microcosm of American culture in the mid-late 90's: sarcastic, self-absorbed, slightly smug, and lacking a fundamental compassion for anything outside the 6 inches in front of its face.

Was it a funny show? It absolutely was; but I agree with whoever said that it isn't going to age well at all.

vaticanplum
03-18-2007, 10:26 PM
I liked Seinfeld at the beginning, but it became way too meta for me in later years. At the beginning, it was a "show about nothing" and it was exactly that -- waiting in line, trying to find your car -- and it was brilliant. In later seasons it became a show about itself. The bread guy, the soup nazi, the envelope-licking fiancee -- dude, whatever. I thought it was boring. It was a bunch of inside jokes, and the piont of inside jokes is that they're, you know, inside. It was very, very full of itself at that time. That's awful for comedy.

I liked Cheers, I guess, I think it's a better-developed show and more poignant. Honeslty I'd say Frasier is better than either of them. Maybe that's sacreligious but I guess there's no accounting for taste.

bucksfan
03-18-2007, 10:58 PM
I thought Frasier was very well-done and "underrated" IMO. And just since this thread was brought back up, I will vote once again strongly for Cheers.

As vp says, its according to your tastes. But I would turn on a Cheers re-run over Seinfeld 10x out of 10.

Yachtzee
03-18-2007, 11:16 PM
Seinfeld is my all-time favorite. I liked Cheers too but I actually find it difficult to watch the reruns now. Not so with Seinfeld.

Jerry has said that their motto while making Seinfeld was "No hugging, no learning." I love that.

I feel the same way. What I loved about Seinfeld was that you never had any of those "Next, on a Very Special...." episodes. I watch my favorite sitcoms for the humor and entertainment, so I hate it when they lecture. Plus, there are just so many unique Seinfeld episodes that someone can just mention a phrase from the episode and it immediate conjures up the episode in my mind.

While Cheers had memorable characters, most of the plots were pretty standard sitcom fare. The two most memorable lines from Cheers that I can think of are Cliff's Jeopardy answer "Who are people who have not been in my kitchen?" and Norm's "It's a dog-eat-dog world and I'm wearing Milkbone underwear." But other than that, I just remember the characters and overall gist of the show, but can't recall many individual episodes.

Caveat Emperor
03-18-2007, 11:21 PM
But other than that, I just remember the characters and overall gist of the show, but can't recall many individual episodes.

Part of that is also that Seinfeld is a product of the 90s mass-communication culture -- where e-mail, the internet, and endless news cycles made bits of the show into pop-culture phenomenons.

Also, Cheers has been off the air for over almost 14 years -- so there's the recency thing hurting it as well.

Roy Tucker
03-19-2007, 08:07 AM
BJ Honeycutt was a capable replacement for Trapper.

BJ was his real name. His mom's name was Bea and his dad's name was Jay.

Cheers had more heart. I liked the characters. I never really cared about anyone on Seinfeld.

That is all.

zombielady
03-19-2007, 10:50 AM
BJ was his real name. His mom's name was Bea and his dad's name was Jay.

Cheers had more heart. I liked the characters. I never really cared about anyone on Seinfeld.

That is all.

Agreed. I'd have hung out with Sam, and the Cheers gang. I found the characters on Seinfeld boring and pretentious. I would not have liked them. Well, I may have liked Neumann... but that is it.

And as for M.A.S.H... that show will never get old! Never, I say! I can watch the same episodes that I have seen 100 times, and still laugh out loud.

Puffy
03-19-2007, 11:03 AM
I feel the same way. What I loved about Seinfeld was that you never had any of those "Next, on a Very Special...." episodes. I watch my favorite sitcoms for the humor and entertainment, so I hate it when they lecture.


What????????????? You mean you didn't enjoy the Different Strokes episode where Gordon Jump molests Dudley? Or the Family Ties episode where Alex P. Keaton gets addicted to speed?

Blasphemy!

Puffy
03-19-2007, 11:04 AM
BJ was his real name. His mom's name was Bea and his dad's name was Jay.



I liked the spinoff with the bear.

Johnny Footstool
03-19-2007, 11:57 AM
Or the Family Ties episode where Alex P. Keaton gets addicted to speed?

Blasphemy!

Or better yet, the "Saved by the Bell" episode in which Jesse (Elizabeth Berkley) gets addicted to speed and sings a tearful, manic version of the Pointer Sisters' hit "I'm So Excited."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bflYjF90t7c&mode=related&search=

vaticanplum
03-19-2007, 12:12 PM
Or the Family Ties episode where Alex P. Keaton gets addicted to speed?

Blasphemy!

I beg your pardon, but in my world it is blasphemous to refer to this landmark episode sans its proper name: A, My Name is Alex.

Your cooperation is appreciated.

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 12:30 PM
IMO, Seinfeld was a bunch of one-liners thrown together and delivered by shallow characters I couldn't stand. It was like watching cardboard cutouts with a laugh track.

Cheers, while not my favorite, at least had a coherent plot and some character depth.


Excellently described, Johnny.

I tried to like Seinfeld. Really tried. I never cared for it after many, many attempts.

RichRed
03-19-2007, 01:46 PM
What????????????? You mean you didn't enjoy the Different Strokes episode where Gordon Jump molests Dudley? Or the Family Ties episode where Alex P. Keaton gets addicted to speed?


Or every single episode of Blossom?

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 01:47 PM
Or every single episode of Blossom?

Blossom? :luvu:

Just kidding. That was before my time. Saved by the Bell as well.

The Gordon Jump jumping Dudley and Penny being abused on Good Times was right in my prime (childhood prime, that is), though.

pedro
03-19-2007, 02:19 PM
I liked Seinfeld more than Cheers.

Cheers is almost painful to watch now it seems so dated.

KronoRed
03-19-2007, 02:24 PM
I'm not a big fan of either

CougarQuest
03-19-2007, 04:38 PM
Cheers over Seinfeld.

Hoosier Red
03-19-2007, 05:46 PM
Blossom? :luvu:

Just kidding. That was before my time. Saved by the Bell as well.

The Gordon Jump jumping Dudley and Penny being abused on Good Times was right in my prime (childhood prime, that is), though.

Ouch.

Older members of RZ this is what it feels like isn't it.

When something you saw as a kid, or a pre-teen/high school/collegian is mentioned and some young whipper snapper says it was before his time.

I have to go home and yell at some damn kids.

registerthis
03-19-2007, 07:22 PM
Seinfeld, without a doubt. I still laugh at episodes I've seen dozens of times.

Cheers was a fine show, but like others have noted has not aged well at all.

Yachtzee
03-19-2007, 08:18 PM
What????????????? You mean you didn't enjoy the Different Strokes episode where Gordon Jump molests Dudley? Or the Family Ties episode where Alex P. Keaton gets addicted to speed?

Blasphemy!

I'm sorry, but Mr. Carlson never did any such thing. It NEVER HAPPENED. The Alex P. Keaton on speed episode was excellent, but more because it was off the charts for unintentional comedy. The Saved By The Bell where Jesse was on drugs certainly foreshadowed Elizabeth Berkley's "excellent" performance in "Showgirls." Blossom was just plain terrible and M*A*S*H lost its fastball when Dr. Sidney Whathisname started showing up and shrinking everyone's heads. By the time I stopped watching the Cosby Show, I had been lectured so much I had a Ph. D. in how to suck the joy out of a TV comedy.

TRF
03-20-2007, 05:54 PM
When I worked in TV, we ran Cheers every night after the 10:00 news for about 5 years. The we replaced it with Seinfeld.

So, I have seen every episode of both shows multiple times.

Seinfeld in a landslide, but the two shows actually have some similarities.

The two best TV entrances, Norm and Kramer. the two most self absorbed lead characters, Jerry and Sam.

But the quirkiness of the characters like Newman and Puddy make Seinfeld unique. I named my softball team the Newman's. Puddy telling Elaine she was going to Hell, the face painting, Elaine's bosses, The pick.

All memorable and funny as hell.

RichRed
03-20-2007, 06:57 PM
I named my softball team the Newman's.

Back in college, I named my intramural softball team Gary's Olde Towne Tavern. But that was before Seinfeld came along. Now I would probably name it Marble Rye or Dolores.

Yachtzee
03-20-2007, 07:40 PM
Back in college, I named my intramural softball team Gary's Olde Towne Tavern. But that was before Seinfeld came along. Now I would probably name it Marble Rye or Dolores.

Our college softball team was "Smell The Glove." I preferred that one to the name of the work team when I worked at the movie theater, "The Master Batters." If I went with a Seinfeld theme, I'd probably call my team "Serenity Now!"

Handofdeath
03-20-2007, 07:46 PM
When I worked in TV, we ran Cheers every night after the 10:00 news for about 5 years. The we replaced it with Seinfeld.

So, I have seen every episode of both shows multiple times.

Seinfeld in a landslide, but the two shows actually have some similarities.

The two best TV entrances, Norm and Kramer. the two most self absorbed lead characters, Jerry and Sam.

But the quirkiness of the characters like Newman and Puddy make Seinfeld unique. I named my softball team the Newman's. Puddy telling Elaine she was going to Hell, the face painting, Elaine's bosses, The pick.

All memorable and funny as hell.

I hated that name. BTW Cheers over Seinfeld if Kirstie Alley is on Cheers. 3 funniest shows ever IMO

1. M*A*S*H*
2. Night Court
3. WKRP

GAC
03-20-2007, 07:57 PM
My all-time favorite comedy sitcoms....

Seinfeld
Mash
Sanford and Son
Taxi
Andy Griffith (Don Knotts was the all-time best side kick)
All In The Family

SanDiegoRed
03-20-2007, 08:48 PM
My 2 favorite shows ever but have to give the edge to Cheers!

sonny
03-21-2007, 02:29 AM
They're both just so great, but I'd have to give the edge to Seinfeld.

Does anybody remember the BBC's version of Coupling? Oh man that was a great show!

Yachtzee
03-21-2007, 08:08 AM
They're both just so great, but I'd have to give the edge to Seinfeld.

Does anybody remember the BBC's version of Coupling? Oh man that was a great show!

"Coupling" UK was a good show. Of course they really botched the American version. I'm just glad they were able to a good job translating "The Office" for the US.

Chip R
03-21-2007, 08:28 AM
But that was before Seinfeld came along. Now I would probably name it Marble Rye or Dolores.


Not Mulva? ;)

GAC
03-21-2007, 08:32 AM
They're both just so great, but I'd have to give the edge to Seinfeld.

Does anybody remember the BBC's version of Coupling? Oh man that was a great show!

I loved Faulty Towers and Are You Being Served?

RichRed
03-21-2007, 09:52 AM
My all-time favorite comedy sitcoms....

Seinfeld
Mash
Sanford and Son
Taxi
Andy Griffith (Don Knotts was the all-time best side kick)
All In The Family

For me:

Seinfeld
MASH
Cheers
Taxi
Frasier
All in the Family
...and the hilarious and underappreciated NewsRadio (pre-Jon Lovitz).

RichRed
03-21-2007, 09:53 AM
Not Mulva? ;)

Would definitely be in the running. :)

TRF
03-21-2007, 10:09 AM
I hated that name. BTW Cheers over Seinfeld if Kirstie Alley is on Cheers. 3 funniest shows ever IMO

1. M*A*S*H*
2. Night Court
3. WKRP

You hated the name because you hit like a girl.

Night Court? Lamest sitcom ever.

Handofdeath
03-21-2007, 02:14 PM
You hated the name because you hit like a girl.

Night Court? Lamest sitcom ever.

I couldn't see the ball properly. My eyes were still teared up after watching you misplay another ground ball.

pedro
03-21-2007, 02:27 PM
For me:

Seinfeld
MASH
Cheers
Taxi
Frasier
All in the Family
...and the hilarious and underappreciated NewsRadio (pre-Jon Lovitz).

I really miss Phil Hartman.

RichRed
03-21-2007, 02:45 PM
I really miss Phil Hartman.

Totally. He's one of those rare celebrities for me that, even years after it happened, it's like a jolt to my system when I remember he's not alive. If that makes any sense.

Chip R
03-21-2007, 02:47 PM
The genius about Seinfeld was the plots they had about the ordinary things we take for granted. Knowing a "high" or "close" talker. Having a "low flow" showerhead. Watching the movie instead of reading the book. Not being able to remember someone's name. How long to go without taking someone's clothes out of the washer/dryer. Not being able to find your car in a parking garage. I think that was a big reason the show was a success. We watched it and said, "That happened to me."

GAC
03-21-2007, 07:58 PM
The genius about Seinfeld was the plots they had about the ordinary things we take for granted. Knowing a "high" or "close" talker. Having a "low flow" showerhead. Watching the movie instead of reading the book. Not being able to remember someone's name. How long to go without taking someone's clothes out of the washer/dryer. Not being able to find your car in a parking garage. I think that was a big reason the show was a success. We watched it and said, "That happened to me."

It was a show where we all laughed at the vainness of the characters and how superficial they were in their daily lives. They were each of us in a lot of ways. ;)

"The top button makes or breaks a shirt"
"I saw a drain! It's all plumbing!"
"Do women know about shrinkage?"
" And by the way...they're real, and they're spectacular.
"What do you think would be the worst thing about being blind? I think it would be not being able to tell if there were bugs in my food."


It was a show about NOTHING. :mooner:

bucksfan
03-21-2007, 10:13 PM
The genius about Seinfeld was the plots they had about the ordinary things we take for granted. Knowing a "high" or "close" talker. Having a "low flow" showerhead. Watching the movie instead of reading the book. Not being able to remember someone's name. How long to go without taking someone's clothes out of the washer/dryer. Not being able to find your car in a parking garage. I think that was a big reason the show was a success. We watched it and said, "That happened to me."

I liked that aspect about the show, but the characters really annoyed me. I can handle 1 annoying character, but 3 or more was too much. Not saying it was not a really good show in my eyes anyways, but that's what puts it so far below Cheers for my tastes.

Chip R
03-21-2007, 11:15 PM
It was a show where we all laughed at the vainness of the characters and how superficial they were in their daily lives. They were each of us in a lot of ways. ;)



That's very true. We could relate to them because of that and the situations they were in. Like when they were pitching the sitcom. I think that was a little too meta for a lot of people but it showed how difficult it would be to get a sitcom like Seinfeld made.

What made it different from a show like Cheers - not better or worse, but different - is that it relied more on physical comedy rather than verbal comedy. Cheers had basically two sets: the bar and Sam's office which is really one set. You knew that pretty much every scene was going to be in the bar. Not a lot of variety there so you had to rely on the characters and the dialogue to get laughs. Cheers is just as funny listening to it as it is watching and listening to it.

GAC
03-22-2007, 08:09 AM
That's very true. We could relate to them because of that and the situations they were in. Like when they were pitching the sitcom. I think that was a little too meta for a lot of people but it showed how difficult it would be to get a sitcom like Seinfeld made.

GEORGE: I think I can sum up the show for you with one word: NOTHING.

RUSSELL: Nothing?

GEORGE: (Smiling) Nothing.

RUSSELL: (Unimpressed) What does that mean?

GEORGE: (Showing an example) What'd you do today?

RUSSELL: I got up and came to work.

GEORGE: There's a show. That's a show.

RUSSELL: (Confused) How is that a show?

JERRY: Well, uh, maybe something happens on the way to work.

GEORGE: No, no, no. Nothing happens.

JERRY: Well, something happens.

RUSSELL: Well, why am I watching it?

GEORGE: Because it's on TV.

RUSSELL: (Threatening) Not yet.

:lol:

zombielady
03-22-2007, 10:43 AM
M*A*S*H lost its fastball when Dr. Sidney Whathisname started showing up and shrinking everyone's heads.

I love the episode where they tell Dr. Sydney about their dreams... Very surreal episode... Mash was soo awesome. -off to beg the ol' hubby to buy the DVDs for me...

Chip R
03-22-2007, 11:00 AM
Mash was soo awesome. -off to beg the ol' hubby to buy the DVDs for me...


Yeah. Good luck with that. ;)

WebScorpion
03-22-2007, 11:03 AM
I liked that aspect about the show, but the characters really annoyed me. I can handle 1 annoying character, but 3 or more was too much. Not saying it was not a really good show in my eyes anyways, but that's what puts it so far below Cheers for my tastes.

You're saying Cliff, Norm, and Frazier weren't annoying? Hmmm...

Seinfeld is pretty much my favorite sitcom of all time. Mostly because I never watched a bad episode. I'm really glad they quit when they did.

Cheers is very close, but my second favorite would have to be M*A*S*H. So my list would look something like this:

1 - Seinfeld
2 - M*A*S*H
3 - Happy Days
4 - All in the Family
5 - I Love Lucy
6 - Cheers
7 - The Cosby Show
8 - Gilligan's Island
9 - The Love Boat
10 - Mork & Mindy (on Robin Williams alone)

After that it becomes difficult for me to choose...there are sooooo many great sitcoms. My honorable mentions would be The Bob Newhart Show, WKRP in Cincinnati, The Andy Griffith Show, Good Times, Welcome Back Kotter, Taxi, The Brady Bunch, Green Acres, Soap, Mary Tyler Moore, Bewitched, and Sanford & Son.

I love a good sitcom! :luvu:

zombielady
03-22-2007, 11:07 AM
Welcome back, Kotter! Yeah. I could go for some of that right about now. And Soap. And Benson... And the facts of life... well maybe not the facts of life... Perfect Strangers, though.. Balky Bartokomous...