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Recap / Cheers S 1 E 6

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Episode: Season 1, Episode 6
Title:"Any Friend of Diane's"
Directed by: James Burrows
Written by: Ken Levine and David Isaacs
Air Date: November 4, 1982
Previous: The Coach's Daughter
Next: Friends, Romans, Accountants
Guest Starring: John Ratzenberger, Julia Duffy

"Any Friend of Diane's" is the sixth episode of the first season of Cheers.

Diane's college friend Rebecca Prout (Julia Duffy) shows up at the bar. Rebecca is basically an exaggerated version of Diane, with the conservative blouse, the blonde hair, and the hyper-intellectual mannerisms. Rebecca is reeling after a breakup with her boyfriend, who dumped her after getting his doctorate. Rebecca, tired of intellectual men, decides to sow some wild oats and tells Diane that she is looking for a simple, monosyllabic guy of "peasant stock" to have sex with. Enter Sam Malone, much to Diane's horror.

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The B-plot has Norm bringing his boss to the bar. Desperate to impress him, Norm tells Coach to only serve him one beer and act like he's never seen him before.

Julia Duffy was a finalist for the role of Diane Chambers. A couple of years after this show she became a regular on Newhart.


Tropes:

  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: The plot for the whole of Season 1 between Sam and Diane, brought to the forefront here when they claim to be a couple to let Rebecca down easy. Sam's sexist manipulation of Diane during this conversation leads her to take a swing at him after Rebecca leaves. She misses, he grabs her, and they are brawling on the couch when Rebecca returns to get her coat, and assumes she caught them in a passionate moment.
  • The Comically Serious: Rebecca, with her serious, intellectual manner and her love of intensely depressing Russian poetry.
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  • Funny Background Event: When Diane spots Rebecca, she frantically throws her apron away before Rebecca spots it and sees that she's a waitress. A patron at the bar catches it before it lands on his table. As the camera follows Diane we can just barely see that the patron caught the apron before it landed on, and probably ruined, the chess game he was playing with another patron.
  • Narm: In-Universe, intentionally invoked with the ridiculous Russian poem Rebecca recites for Diane, "Another Christmas of Agony."
    "Misha the dog lies dead in the bog
    The children cry over the carcass
    The mist chokes my heart, covers the mourners
    At least this year we eat.
    • Diane takes a beat to absorb this and then says "Well if that didn't pick you up, nothing would."
  • Exact Words: After Diane sees that Rebecca is going to make a play for Sam, she begs him to answer any request of hers with "No.". Rebecca then asks "Would you object to joining me in my hotel room for an afternoon of wild animal passion?" Sam grins evilly, looks straight at Diane, and says "No."
  • Motor Mouth: Part of how Rebecca resembles Diane and how she turns Sam off; he observes that she won't stop talking.
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  • Not What It Looks Like: An enraged Diane swings and misses Sam and they are fighting on the couch when Rebecca comes in and assumes that they're about to have sex.
  • Phrase Catcher: Inverted when Norm tells Coach not to give him the usual "NORM!!" greeting. Coach says "NOR—" when Norm comes in with his boss, then catches himself and pretends to be singing an opera, "NOR NOR NOR NOR..."
  • Sex for Solace: What Rebecca is looking for when she propositions Sam after a breakup.
  • Shout-Out: Carla says of sailing that "After seeing Ordinary People, I've been trying to get my kids interested in it." The plot of Ordinary People involves a couple whose son drowned in a boating accident.
  • Smithical Marriage: Alluded to by Sam. After Diane says that she and her boyfriend stayed at an inn where John Adams slept, Sam says "Yeah, lots of guys sign the register that way."
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