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Recap / Cheers S 2 E 5

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Episode: Season 2, Episode 5
Title: Sumner's Return
Directed by: James Burrows
Written by: Michael J. Weithorn
Air Date: November 3, 1983
Previous: Homicidal Ham
Next: Affairs of the Heart
Guest Starring: Michael Mc Guire

"Sumner's Return" is the fifth episode of the second season of Cheers.

Into the bar strolls Sumner Sloane (Michael McGuire), Diane's former literature professor and fiance, who abandoned her at the bar in the first episode of Cheers, "Give Me a Ring Sometime". Diane isn't all that thrilled to see Sumner but they soon agree to let bygones be bygones. Sam, on the other hand, is quite suspicious of Sumner's motives, but agrees to go out to dinner with them.

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Sam is threatened by the obvious affinity that Diane and Sumner, two highbrow intellectuals, feel for each other. Cliff recommends that Sam read some sort of highbrow book so he can talk about it at the dinner and not feel left out. The gang decides that Sam should read that most famous Doorstopper, War and Peace.

Sumner would return to the bar one last time, in Shelley Long's last episode, "I Do and Adieu".


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Tropes:

  • The Bus Came Back: Diane's snooty old boyfriend, Sumner Sloane, makes a surprising return.
  • Cymbal-Banging Monkey: Seen on Sam's desk. Not used the way it usually is, for creepy horror, but to demonstrate Sam's simple tastes as opposed to Diane's sophistication.
  • Doorstopper: A gag, as Sam takes a book that's "three pounds", per Cliff, and somehow plows all the way through it in the span of a week. He misses a lot of sleep and is unshaven and dead on his feet by the night of the dinner.
  • The Film of the Book: Discussed Trope. Diane wants to go back home for sex. When Sam reminds her that she wanted him to read War and Peace to her, she says "Let's watch the movie."
    Sam: (suddenly furious) There's a movie? CLIFF! I'LL KILL HIM!! (jumps out of the office)
  • Men Are Uncultured: Sam is very insecure about his lack of culture so he reads War and Peace so he can come off as intelligent.
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  • Not So Above It All: Sumner is shocked when Diane tells him to "cut the crap!", saying in return, "what have they done to you here?"
  • Pride: Sumner is very full of himself.
    Sumner: I may not be perfect. Then again, I may.
  • Shown Their Work: Sam, Diane, and Sumner go out to eat at Maison Robert, a real Boston restaurant that was in operation from 1977 to 2004.
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