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Cheers - The Complete Seventh Season



DVD Release Date: November 15, 2005 (Paramount Home Video)
MSRP: $38.99
Number of Discs: 4
Number of Episodes: 22
Running Time: Aprrox. 8 hours, 52 minutes
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English; No Subtitles; Closed captioned
Special Features: None


It's the cozy little Boston bar where everybody knows your name... welcome to Cheers - the Emmy Award-winning, smash-hit television series that kept the laughs uncorked for 11 years. It's an era of transitions as the gang at Cheers adjusts to new corporate ownership - a development that takes a hilarious turn when Rebecca (Kirstie Alley) discovers that Sam (Ted Danson) has been named the new manager of the bar. Meanwhile, Frasier (Kelsey Grammer) and Lilith (Bebe Neuwirth) have a dynamic new interior decorator - Norm (George Wendt)! Carla (Rhea Perlman) faces an uncertain future with Eddie (Jay Thomas); Cliff (John Ratzenberger) decides to turn over a new leaf after a lonely hospital stay; and Woody's (Woody Harrelson) bartending duties at a posh party lead to a fight with a guest at the soiree. You've got time for another round - it's all 22 episodes of Cheers: The Complete Seventh Season on tap!

Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

Cheers dropped one slot in the ratings to 4th place, with a 22.3 rating for the 1988-1989 season. It finished behind The Cosby Show, Roseanne, and A Different World. The show won the Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series. Woody Harrelson won for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series. Rhea Perlman took the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.

The seventh season didn't premiere until October 27, 1988, due to a writer's strike. Memorable episodes included "How to Recede in Business," in which Rebecca's life suffers a further disruption when Evan Drake's replacement makes Sam the new manager of Cheers. 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 in "Executive Sweet." 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 in "One Happy Chappy in a Sappy Serape." Cliff drastically alters his personality after no one from the bar comes to visit him during his hospital stay with appendicitis in "How to Win Friends and Electrocute People." Cheers' gets another chance of losing a contest to their cross-town rivals at Gary's Old Towne Tap; this time the contest is for "Boston's Best Bloody Mary" in "Bar Wars II: The Woodman Strikes Back." 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 in "Adventures in Housesitting." 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 in "Don't Paint Your Chickens."

There were not that many notable guest stars this season. Chelsea Noble appeared as Laurie in "Send in the Crane." Ann Morgan Guilbert guest starred as Marge in "Call Me Irresponsible." Desperate Housewives' Marcia Cross played Rebecca's sister, Susan Howe, in "Sisterly Love." Recurring characters included Jay Thomas as Eddie LeBec, Bebe Neuwirth as Dr. Lilith Sternin, and Jackie Swanson as Woody's girlfriend, Kelly Gaines.


The packaging retains the new look they started with season six. Starting with season six and the beginning of the Rebecca years, they switched the packaging style from seasons 1-5 which had a bar wood panel type background. The DVD cover art features a photo of Woody, Sam, Rebecca, and Frasier. The cover has a white background with the Cheers logo in red at the top. The overall color theme of this set is red and white. There is a montage of five photos on the back of the box and a listing of the episodes broken down by disc. There is the usual digipak packaging that they've used for the previous six Cheers releases. There is a photo of Carla and Rebecca on the back of the digipak. When you open the digipak, there is a photo of Rebecca on one side and Sam on the other. This is a single photo that is just broken in two parts. There is just a white background inside the case where the discs are held. There are various photos of the bar when you lift up the discs from the holders. All of the discs are red and white, with the Cheers logo in red and a photo of one or two cast members. Disc 1 has a photo of Sam and includes episodes 147-151. Disc 2 pictures Rebecca and has episodes 152-137. Disc 3 shows Woody and Carla and offers episodes 158-163. Disc 4 has a shot of Cliff and Norm and contains episodes 164-168.

Menu Design and Navigation:

The main menus retain the red and white color theme. Each menu features a different photo along with the Cheers logo in red on the upper left-hand side of the screen. The right-hand side screen has a white satin type background, and that's where the episode titles are listed vertically. There is a tiny, maroon coconut icon that turns red upon your episode selection. Disc 1 has the same shot that is used as the cover art. Disc 2 pictures Rebecca whispering something to Sam. Disc 3 has a photo of Frasier and Norm. Disc 4 rounds out the set with a picture of Sam and Carla. There are chapter stops within the episodes but no scene selection menus. When you first insert disc 1, there is an option to view Previews or go to the directly the main menu. This is a new option starting with this set, and I like it that Paramount gives the viewer the option. On previous sets, the previews just played automatically and you had to use the skip button to bypass them. The previews are for some other Paramount DVD releases including The Oprah Winfrey Show 20th Anniversary Collection, The Brady Bunch, Charmed, MacGyver, and the Ferris Bueller's Day Off - Bueller.. Bueller... Edition DVD. This new Ferris Bueller's Day Off release (available January 10th) looks good with a making of special and deleted scenes.

Video and Audio Quality:

I can't tell a lot of difference in video and audio quality with many of the Cheers seasons. They all look about the same to me from release to release. The release is in its original television aspect ratio of 1.33:1 full frame color. There is a bit of grain and dust as Cheers was shot on film, but the episodes all look to be very watchable. The episodes are well spread out with no more than 6 episodes per disc, so there are no compression issues. All of the episodes run around 24 minutes to 24 1/2 minutes in length. The audio is your standard English 2.0 Dolby Digital Stereo Sound track. It's generally clear and crisp with no major problems. Closed captioning is available for all of the episodes.

On the back of the packaging, it says "some music has been changed for this entertainment version." This statement was also on the season 4 and 6 releases. I'm not sure what episode(s) had music changed. I wonder if the music was also replaced in the syndicated episodes on Nick at Nite/TV Land or what is shown on local stations.

Here is the episode breakdown by disc, including running times:

Disc 1
147. How To Recede In Business (24:20)
148. Swear To God (24:23)
149. Executive Sweet (24:20)
150. One Happy Chappy In A Snappy Serape (24:00)
151. Those Lips, Those Ice (24:22)

Disc 2
152. Norm, Is That You? (24:17)
153. How To Win Friends And Electrocute People (24:10)
154. Jumping Jerks (24:17)
155. Send In The Crane (24:19)
156. Bar Wars II: The Woodman Strikes Back (23:58)
157. Adventures In Housesitting (24:21)

Disc 3
158. Please Mr. Postman (24:02)
159. Golden Boyds (24:11)
160. I Kid You Not (24:17)
161. Don't Paint Your Chickens (24:12)
162. The Cranemakers (24:15)
163. Hot Rocks (24:02)

Disc 4
164. What's Up Doc? (24:08)
165. The Gift Of The Woodi (24:19)
166. Call Me Irresponsible (24:18)
167. Sisterly Love (23:58)
168. The Visiting Lecher (23:44)

Special Features:

There have been no special features included on any Cheers releases since Season 3. Unfortunately, that trend is continued here. I've just been happy to build my Cheers library of episodes. Maybe they will include some as we get to the last four seasons.

Final Comments:

Wow, what a quick turnaround! Season 6 was just released on September 13th. It's been a little over two months, and Season 7 is already available. There were four seasons released in 2005, so I think the odds are good that seasons 8-11 will be released in 2006, and then the complete series will be avilable. This was another strong season of Cheers. It was capped by the show winning the Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series for the third time.

Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)

Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 4/5
Special Features: 0/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller on 11/09/05

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