clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

FOX'S `THE SIMPSONS' HOST A `CHEERS' REUNION OF SORTS

Syndicated reruns notwithstanding, have you missed that place where everybody knows your name since "Cheers" went off the air in 1993?

Well, five of the stars of that classic TV sitcom will be reunited on Sunday night - in animated form, that is. Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman, Woody Harrelson, John Ratzenberger and George Wendt all lend their voices to an episode of "The Simpsons" (7 p.m., Ch. 13).It seems that Homer gets banned from his regular hangout, Moe's, after pulling a practical joke and starts looking for a new place to spend some time. Among the bars he checks out is one that looks strangely familiar, and it includes some strangely familiar voices along with some strangely familiar - if rather distorted - faces.

Neither of the "Cheers" lead females - Diane (Shelley Long) and Rebecca Kirstie Alley - is on hand.

And while there's a character who looks a lot like "Cheers" gadfly Frasier Crane, Kelsey Gram-mer apparently didn't lend his voice. Grammer, however, is already a "Simpsons" veteran, having provided the voice for Side-show Bob in a couple of episodes.

A FAILED EFFORT: "Take Me Home Again" (Sunday, 8 p.m., Ch. 2) is the sort of TV movie you want to like.

After all, it's an attempt at a story with "family values," it features both Kirk Douglas and Craig T. Nelson, and it was written by Ernest Thompson, who also wrote "On Golden Pond."

For all that, "Home Again" is disjointed, choppy, preachy and maudlin.

Douglas stars as Ed Reece, a cantankerous, rather obnoxious old man who hasn't got long to live. When his ne'er-do-well son (Nelson) comes home, Ed shocks his family by setting out for Alaska with the prodigal son so he can die in the house he was born in.

Along the way there's lots of stuff about how important families are, which would be nice except that none of it rings particularly true. The comedy falls flat, and the drama is milked just a bit too much.

"Take Me Home Again" gets an A for effort, but about a C- for execution.

DROWNING IN SUDS: Attention, all you "All My Children" fans - does ABC have the perfect post-Christmas gift for you!

On Jan. 11, ABC Video will release "All About Erica," a look back at 25 years of vixen behavior by Erica Kane (Susan Lucci), who TV Guide once called "unequivocally the most famous soap opera character in the history of daytime TV."

Hey, it's only $14.95.