Parents' Guide to

Cheers

By Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Laughs are on tap in this classic sitcom.

Cheers Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 4 parent reviews

age 12+

Cheers mate!

May be dated for some. A must watch for teens and their parents that loves old school TV comedies. Good for a watch around the Holidays and New Years Eve. In consuming a lot of alcohol brands of course.
age 16+

Good customer service is on tap.

Parents need to know that this classic bar comedy is morally a mixed bag. For example, there are the sex jokes, as you point out. Then there are the wisecracks, particularly from Carla. Parents may also want to talk to their teens about the drinking. On the flip side, all the drinking obviously must've been in moderation since no one ever gets drunk. (I hope that there was always a designated driver.) Also, for all the sex jokes, there was never any sex on the show. Moreover, everyone who works at the Cheers bar- even mouthy Carla- provide good customer service, the kind that would keep customers coming back. Lastly, it's not strictly a "white collar" bar or a "blue collar" bar. The people who go to that bar are from a wide variety of job occupations. That's more than what I can say about many bars- or churches or neighborhoods or schools or family gatherings- in real life. To sum it up, while the writing is clever, this show is squarely for adults, which is why I'd give this show a red light for 12 and under and a yellow light for 13-15. Older teens can watch it, as it is tame enough for 16 and 17, but even for kids at that age, parents may want to supervise the viewing, at least initially. All this said, the show is clever. And let's not forget that CHEERS is nonviolent, which was often pointed out during debates about violence on television in the early 90s. Indeed, during that era this show was often mentioned by name whenever it was said that some of the most popular programs were nonviolent. Some of this praise came from an unlikely source- religious conservatives (evangelicals).

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (4 ):
Kids say (12 ):

Cheers' humor, while expertly executed, is aimed squarely at adults. Not only does almost all of the action take place in a bar, with characters who drink constantly (though they never seem drunk), but sexual innuendo and sarcastic put-downs make up the bulk of the jokes. For example, Sam, talking about his hard-earned date for the evening, says she's "a tough nut to crack," and says she'll be going on "all the rides in Sammy's Magic Kingdom" later that night.

Jokes at the expense of women are common, from Norm's constant complaints about his unseen wife, Vera, to comments about Cliff's mother ("a hyena on bennies"). And Woody and Coach (Nicholas Colasanto) get their share of ribbing for being less than bright. Some viewers may find some of the humor offensive, like when Sam talks about a waiter at an Indian restaurant as a "300 pound Hindu with a goiter," but most of the jokes fly by so quickly that it's hard to stay focused on a single incident.

TV Details

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