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Joseph J. Darowski teaches English at Brigham Young University and is the editor of The Ages of Superheroes essay series which has volumes on Superman, Wonder Woman, the X-Men, the Avengers, Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, and the Justice League. He is the author of X-Men and the Mutant Metaphor: Race and Gender in the Comic Books (2014) and coauthor of Frasier: A Cultural History (2017), both published by Rowman & Littlefield. Kate Darowski has a Master's degree from Parsons School of Design, where she studied the History of Decorative Arts & Design, with an emphasis in 20th century modern design and pop culture in design. She attended Brigham Young University-Hawaii, where she majored in Cultural Studies. She has written about design for Modern Magazine. With her brother, Joe, she is the coauthor of Frasier: A Cultural History (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017).


The authors follow up their recent Frasier: A Cultural History (2017) with an equally interesting look at that show's predecessor, the classic sitcom that introduced the character of Frasier Crane, not to mention Sam Malone, Diane Chambers, Ernie Pantusso, Carla Tortelli, Norm Peterson, Cliff Clavin, Woody Boyd, and Rebecca Howe (among others). Cheers, the show about a bar and its patrons that would have been canceled after its disastrously low-rated first season if NBC had had anything better to put on the air, ended up running for 11 seasons, a major accomplishment for a half-hour comedy, then and now. The Darowskis look at the reasons why the show became a smash hit: the writing, the casting, the stories, the setting (most episodes took place entirely in the bar). Cheers, the authors assert, was a revolutionary show, with many of its key elements, such as multi-episode story arcs, having now become standard; however, the show also had its flaws, including an attitude toward women that would not be permitted in the current climate. Combining perceptive analysis with infectious enthusiasm, this is a must-read for Cheers devotees. * Booklist *

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