"Cheers" Bad Neighbor Sam (TV Episode 1990) - Plot Summary Poster

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  • John Allen Hill, a famous Manhattan restaurateur, has bought Melville's, which Rebecca thinks is going to boost business for Cheers. Hill and Sam's relationship starts off slowly and gets worse and worse. The first spoken threat from Hill is the fact that he actually owns the property of the bar's pool room and washrooms, implying that he wants Sam to meet all his demands or else. Hill wants a floor mat at the bottom of the interior stairs and wants to use the bar as the restaurant's lounge which includes treating Cheers' staff as Melville's staff. And a consequence of Hill's ownership of Melville's is that the bar is filled with a different yuppie clientele, who most importantly don't know that Norm's bar stool is only for Norm. But the last straw for Sam is that Hill wants his parking spot back, which Sam has always used to park his beloved Corvette. Sam and Hill refuse to do business with each other, which leads to Hill bricking off the bar's hallway - the one leading to his washrooms and pool room. Hill will only take down the wall when Sam starts to pay rent. Sam is slowly descending into madness from this situation which culminates into the ultimate in insults for Sam. Meanwhile, Woody receives some somewhat suggestive pictures from Kelly in Paris. However, Carla notices a hairy large thumb in one of the photos, meaning the pictures were taken by a man. Finding out who this Lothario is becomes an all-consuming thought for Woody.



The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • While Kelly Gaines is vacationing in France, she sends Woody some pictures of herself. The guys and Carla then note what appears to be a man's thumb in the corner of one picture. The thought of another man taking photos of his girlfriend soon makes Woody so upset, that he calls the convent where she's staying.

    Meanwhile, the restaurant above Cheers named Melville's, has now come under the ownership of famous Manhattan restauranteur, John Allen Hill. Rebecca sees this as a positive thing, in that she hopes it will attract a more wealthy clientele to come downstairs to the bar.

    However, upon meeting John, Sam and he do not part on good terms. After Sam refuses to place a floormat at the foot of the stairs leading up to Melville's, John nonchalantly indicates that in going over ownership plans of the building, the basement's restrooms and pool room fall under his property. Sam concedes defeat and places the floor mat at the foot of the stairs, but grows upset when John asks him to move his Corvette from the private parking space he's using (apparently, it's Melville's property too).

    Eventually, Rebecca's hopes pay off, and numerous patrons to Melville's soon fill the bar. However, things get a little on edge when people begin sitting on Norm's bar stool, and John has Woody act as a go-between to let patrons know when their table is ready.

    Sam sits down with John and voices his displeasure at what's happened, and requests that John take his customers with him, claiming the stairs are now off-limits to Melville's. John gives in, and offers those in the bar a complimentary cocktail upstairs (clearing out the bar of almost everyone!).

    A week later, Sam and the others come into the bar, and are shocked to find that John has bricked up the hallway to the restrooms and the pool room.

    Sam grows more and more exasperated as the wall stays up, until he pays John Hill rent on the back rooms. Finally, Rebecca brings John in to sit down with Sam. Sam claims he can't take it anymore, and offers to pay Hill the rent. John then makes Sam even more livid, when he claims he wants Sam to make the same sorrowful speech every month when the rent comes due.

    Sam just signs over the rent, and it appears John is on his way out, until he mentions how he reported Sam's Corvette parked in a fire lane (leading to it being towed).

    The final straw that sends Sam over the edge is when he overhears the rest of the people predicting when he'd 'blow his top,' and the person who predicted the time...was John.

    Sam then goes into a babbling tirade, attempting to destroy John's floor mat.

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