Season 1 Episode 15

Father Knows Last

Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jan 20, 1983 on NBC



  • Trivia

    • Sam was called up in 1973, as he asks Coach later if he remembers the game against Baltimore - all Coach remembers is "it was hot." The Red Sox have several minor league teams in various leagues in the New England/upper New York area, and SAm was with one of these & thus attended Woodstock near the time of the game. Also if he was aa starter he wouldn't have been needed when he didn't pitch.

    • Sam may have been pitching in the minor leagues - he was drafted from high school, and very, very few major leaguers made the jump from high school to the majors with no minor league experience. (Mike Morgan is one of them.)

    • Diane answers the phone and tells Sam his date has just cancelled. This in turn makes Sam look through his little black book for a new date for the evening. Sam quickly finds a name and calls her, he says that he met this girl at Woodstock. Woodstock was on the weekend of Aug. 15-18, 1969. Wouldn't Sammy have been pitching for the Red Sox on that weekend? [The Red Sox were in Kansas City 8/15-17 and in Minnesota 8/18-20. The 8/15 game was rained out.]

  • Quotes

    • Diane: To the baby; with Marshall as the father it's sure to have brains; with Carla as the mother it's sure to have meed for them.

    • Cliff: Carla made love to a PhD from MIT.
      Coach: Hey look you guys, if you can't say it in front of me don't say it at all.

    • Diane: Great. Carla gets a raise for getting pregnant. I wonder what I have to do to get a raise out of the boss.

    • Norm: Congratulations! Unless you didn't want another kid.
      Coach: Of course, she wanted the kid, Norm.
      Carla: Sure I do. What penniless unmarried mother of four wouldn't.

    • Norm: Don't look at me. Vera and I don't have any kids. I don't know anything about the subject.
      Coach: Hey Norm, how come you and Vera never had any kids?
      Norm: I can't, Coach.
      Coach: Gee, I'm sorry Norm.
      Norm: I look at Vera and I just can't.

    • Diane: Carla's never actually called me a friend. Unless doofus is a term of endearment.

    • (In response to Carla's bigger belly)
      Diane: Coach, what else could it be?
      Coach: Gas?

    • Norm: Let me dial this one. It's been a long time since I ran my fingers over a girl's digits.

  • Notes

    • TV Guide citation: In the March 26, 1983 issue of TV Guide, there is a feature article about Shelley Long. This article contains quotes from the show's creators about how the episodes are put together along with their opinions about Shelley's contribution to this episode's ending.

      "On some shows the whole crew might be fired for doing what the Cheers ensemble just did. Here it is, late Tuesday night, the filming of an episode is grinding to an end, and they change the climatic scene.
      It has been a long day, with rehearsals and run-throughs in the afternoon and filming in front of an audience in the evening. Finally, there's just the cast and crew reshooting bits and pieces, called pickups, that will be edited into the finished cut.
      The last pickup calls for the cast and a couple-of dozen extras to spontaneously break into a song, neatly resolving a plot that weaves around the pregnancy of Carla Tortelli, the wise-mouth waitress played by Rhea Perlman. The tune is a sentimental clunker about love and babies that subtly parodies such teary finales. It's the sort of wry touch that's won NBC's Cheers, a comedy that revolves around the characters that hang out in a Boston bar, considerable critical acclaim.
      But for various reasons, it's decided the song isn't working. Producer Glen Charles asks Shelley Long, who plays waitress Diane Chambers, if she knows the words to "You'll Never Walk Alone," Long begins humming, and then singing: "When you walk through a storm, hold your head up high ...." Other voices chime in, and it begins to dawn on them that this tune, the venerable mainstay of a thousand sermonettes, is more appropriate than the other one. Director James Burrows perks up, and has a quick chat with Glen Charles and his brother Les, the other producer. The decision is made to change the ending.
      Long rounds up people who don't know the words and conducts an impromptu rehearsal; Burrows changes some pieces of stage business, and, with barely a missed beat, the scene is shot and the episode wrapped up. You can't do this on other shows where the script is as unyielding as a Commandment or where the director brooks no deviation from his vision. On Cheers, it's different. Burrows explains, "You can't say where the writing stops, where the directing begins, where the acting fits in, It's decision by committee. Everybody pitches in for the common good of the show. It's improvisation without any egos involved."

    • NBC rebroadcast this episode on June 16, 1983.

  • Allusions