Give Me A Ring Sometime
Season 1, Episode 1
Air date 30 September 1982
Written by Glen Charles & Les Charles
Directed by James Burrows
Episode guide
Sam's Women
"Give Me a Ring Sometime" is the title of the pilot and premiere episode of the hit NBC sitcom Cheers. The episode first aired on September 30, 1982. The show finished dead last in the ratings in its first season. Despite this, writers and co-creators, Glen and Les Charles, won the Emmy Award in 1983 for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series for this episode.[1]

Plot outlineEdit

As owner Sam Malone opens up the bar, a couple enters. Professor Sumner Sloane and his Boston University student and fiancée Diane Chambers are to go to Barbados to be married, but Sumner's ex-wife still has the ring he wishes to give Diane as a wedding ring. Sumner asks Sam to keep an eye on Diane for him while he goes to retrieve it.

Sam tries chatting up Diane but she is not interested. The other employees at Cheers arrive for work: waitress and single mom Carla Tortelli, and bartender Ernie Pantusso, who is known by the nickname "Coach" and was Sam's baseball coach back in the days when Sam was a relief pitcher for the Red Sox. Diane meets the Cheers employees, and waits patiently while Norm Peterson, Cliff Clavin, and other barflys talk bar trivia. As the bar gets busier and more people wonder who she is, Diane feels increasingly uncomfortable and out-of-place in the bar's blue collar environment, and she hopes for Sumner's speedy return.

Sumner comes back a few hours later, saying that he has been unable to convince his ex-wife to give him the ring. But then, his ex-wife calls, apparently saying she has had a change of heart. Diane says that she would prefer to forget about the ring and just proceed to the airport, but Sumner is insistent, so he once again leaves the uneasy Diane in Cheers while he goes to see his ex-wife. Before leaving, he asks Diane to call the airport and book them on a later flight.

Once again, Sumner is gone a long time, and Diane starts to worry that he may have left her. She tells her problems to Sam, who thinks Sumner is "goofy". When Diane defends her fiancé by belittling Sam in comparison to him, Sam momentarily loses his temper and pointedly tells her that Sumner is probably on a plane with his ex-wife. This comment strikes directly at the fear Diane has already been harboring in her own mind, even as she professes that she is certain of Sumner's return. Sam immediately realizes his words have hurt the vulnerable Diane and tries to apologize, but she is too upset to accept the apology and prefers to discontinue their conversation altogether. Given the time that has passed, Diane calls the airport again to book Sumner and herself on a still later flight, but is told that "Mr. and Mrs. Sloane" have already left.

Heartbroken, Diane prepares to go home, but realizes she now does not have a job (she was Sumner's teaching assistant). Feeling sorry for her, Sam offers her a job at Cheers as a waitress. Given her pampered upbringing and educational background, Diane initially scoffs at the idea of becoming a waitress. But upon further consideration, she realizes that with no completed college degree and no non-academic work experience, she is not qualified for anything else. She reluctantly takes the job and is welcomed into the Cheers family.

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