List of recurring characters in Cheers

This is a list of recurring characters in the sitcom Cheers, which originally ran from 1982 to 1993.

Recurring barflies

A number of recurring characters were "barflies", i.e. they hung out at the bar nearly as much as Norm and Cliff. Generally speaking, the barflies only received a line or two in any given appearance, and did not figure in the plots—although there are exceptions to this rule, notably with the characters of Paul Krapence and Tom Babson. The character of Cliff was originally a recurring "barfly" character, but was quickly developed into a featured character.

In the order in which they joined the cast, barflies who were seen in more than three episodes were:



Father Barry

Father Barry (Eric Christmas) was a priest who appeared in several episodes. He presided over Eddie LeBec's funeral and gave spiritual advice to the main characters, most notably when Sam swears to God he will forgo sex forever if the child of an ex-lover isn't his.[5]


Boggs (Duncan Ross) is the chauffeur to Diane's mother, Helen Chambers (Glynis Johns). In "Someone Single, Someone Blue" (1983), Boggs repeatedly asks Diane to be his wife to help Helen keep her inheritance under Diane's father Spencer Chambers's will. When the time expires and Diane is still single, Helen loses all the wealth. Fortunately, as he admits, Boggs embezzled a substantial amount of the Chambers fortune in the past and has money still remaining. Then he proposes to be Helen's husband, and Helen accepts. In season two, after Diane's huge breakup from Sam, Boggs takes Diane back from psychiatric hospital to her apartment. He notifies her that Helen felt uncomfortable contacting Diane while Diane was in the ward.

Kelly Boyd

Kelly Susan Gaines Boyd (Jackie Swanson)[6] is Woody Boyd’s love interest (and later wife) from the seventh season. She appeared in twenty-four episodes.

Kelly and Woody first meet in the thirteenth episode of the seventh season. Woody and Sam are bartending at a private party to celebrate Kelly’s return from Europe. Kelly is a rich and sheltered girl, but Woody is able to open her eyes to new experiences, the first being a monster truck pull. Again in Kelly’s third appearance in the nineteenth episode of the seventh season, Woody teaches her a lesson from his world. Instead of buying her an expensive gift for her birthday, he writes her a memorable song.

Kelly and Woody marry in the tenth season’s finale episode. The marriage, at the Gaines' mansion, was a fiasco: The minister died; Kelly's flirtatious cousin Monika (Colleen Morris) teased Sam until her fanatically-jealous husband brandished a sword; Rebecca's petulance caused the French chef to quit, leaving her in charge of the food; Carla kept getting pushed down the shaft in the dumbwaiter; Woody could not keep his hands (and other things) off Kelly before the ceremony; and two attack dogs (cf. "The Lads" on Magnum, P.I.) menaced everyone who dared exit the kitchen to the patio, until the super-infuriated Carla chased them inside, at which time they whimpered like puppies and scampered away. To top it off, the dead body of the minister tipped over and toppled the wedding cake to the floor.

Kelly and Woody were expecting their first child when Cheers ended.

In the sixteenth episode of the second season of Frasier, Sam visits and it is revealed that Kelly and Woody's first child was a baby boy. In the thirteenth episode of the sixth season, Woody visits Seattle and reveals that he and Kelly have had another child, a girl.

Robin Colcord

Robin Colcord, played by Roger Rees, was an English multi-millionaire industrialist, who spent most of his time on Cheers as a love interest for the gold-digging Rebecca Howe. This led to his developing something of a rivalry with Sam Malone because of Sam's own romantic interest in Rebecca.

In season 8, Rebecca and Sam discovered that Robin was plotting a hostile takeover of the company for which they worked,[7] and to aid him, had been secretly and illegally using Rebecca's access to the company's confidential information. Rebecca chose to conceal Robin's activities for the sake of their relationship. However, Sam discovered that the company suspected Rebecca of being a willing corporate spy. To protect her, Sam revealed Robin's crimes.

Amidst the ensuing scandal, Robin was arrested and briefly sent to prison as well as losing his business positions and money. He and Rebecca planned to marry on his release, despite his new humble status. She chose not to go through with this, after which he revealed he still had some of his fortune in a secret stash but that he would not marry her if she had only wanted his money. He appeared a final time in the last season claiming to be a broke but humble vagabond, and a petty fugitive, and asking to reunite with Rebecca. The episode ended with him and Rebecca attempting to hitchhike out of town, Rebecca convinced this was a second test.


Corinne (Doris Grau) is a waitress that worked at The Hungry Heifer, a restaurant often frequented by Norm Peterson - who would promptly turn up at Cheers and bemoan about the indigestion he received from the meals there. Woody Boyd hired Corinne as a cover waitress in season four when Diane called in sick one day, although Sam was originally adverse to her as she looked more like a waitress from a truck stop than a cocktail waitress. She was later hired as a cover waitress in season five and appeared on a film in the same season. Corinne told Norm that all the waitresses at The Hungry Heifer had a nickname for him: "The Guy Who Comes Back". While covering for Diane, Corinne manages to catch the eye of barfly Al (Al Rosen). As well as appearing in the show, Doris Grau was script supervisor for five episodes[8]

Esther Clavin

Esther Clavin (Frances Sternhagen) is Cliff's overprotective mother. It is first mentioned in the third season that Cliff lives with his mother, for which the other barflies often mocked him. In the episode "Coach in Love Part 2" (season 3), Cliff's mother is first heard in a voice-over at Cliff's house. When she asked if she could stop by and meet the gang, Cliff whispered under his breath "When hell freezes over". Regardless, Esther showed up at the bar in season five, when Cliff tries to set her up with wealthy Cheers patron Duncan Fitzgerald (Richard Erdman). She appeared numerous times afterward through to the final season.

In season six, it was revealed that Cliff, contrary to his usual know-it-all personality at the bar, is actually quiet at home and his mother is actually "the real yapper in the family".[9] Cliff, after listening to his mother drone on and on, shares his mother's knowledge with the gang at the bar. This gives the gang the source of all Cliff's "knowledge" and the font from which it came. This gives them valuable insight into Cliff's infamous know-it-all personality.

After meeting Cliff's mother, Frasier Crane remarks that he's beginning to see that Cliff is actually almost heroically well-adjusted.

Frederick Crane

Frederick Gaylord Crane (Christopher and Kevin Graves in Cheers, Luke Tarsitano in 1995, Trevor Einhorn from 1996 until 2003)is the son of Frasier and Lilith Sternin. "Freddy" made his first appearance as a baby on Cheers, while his parents were still married; he appears in several episodes throughout the show's run. Frederick was born during eighth season episode The Stork Brings a Crane. He was delivered in a taxicab while Lilith was on her way home from the hospital after an episode of false labour. Lilith tolerated the pain by biting down on one of the cab driver's fuzzy dice.

Beth Curtis

Beth Curtis (Amanda Wyss) is Woody's old-time girlfriend from Indiana. In season 4, Beth is reunited with her old-time friend Woody. During high school, both Woody and Beth were overweight. Over the years, they have lost weight. After their reunion, they end up overeating, and people unsuccessfully attempt to help them overcome it. Fortunately, Frasier tells Woody that she and Woody substitute overeating for premarital sex due to religious backgrounds. Although Sam and Diane take the couple to dinner to help them control their eating habits, Woody and Beth end up taking Frasier's psychological advice seriously and make plans to have sex.[10]

In her second and last episode Beth ends up engaged with her fiancé Leonard Twilley (John Brace), much to Woody's disappointment.[11] Beth confesses that she and Woody are two different people who are not meant for each other; Woody is adventurous, while she settles down into commitment.

Captain Dobbins

Captain Dobbins (Robert Machray) is a fire marshal who was often the victim of pranks at Cheers. He appeared in several "Bar Wars" episodes, in which the Cheers gang thought he was from Gary's Olde Town Tavern, only to be proved wrong. He also appeared in the final season, when the Cheers gang suspected Robin Colcord of hiding money belts at Cheers. They suspected Captain Dobbins of stealing the money belts, only to be proved wrong yet again. He appeared in four episodes.[12]

Evan Drake

Evan Gregory Drake, portrayed by Tom Skerritt, appearing as Rebecca Howe's boss when she was first introduced in 1987, it was revealed she had an unrequited crush on him for two years, so extreme that she had stopped dating. She wanted desperately to impress him enough so he would notice her on a romantic level.

Rebecca became increasingly neurotic around Mr. Drake, and she found herself having to explain herself out of ridiculous situations. For example, Drake made her hire a young woman as a waitress, and Rebecca assumed she was his mistress. After confronting her and hitting her across the face, it was revealed that the woman was Drake's daughter, not his lover. She explained away the punch with a phony "nerve disorder" diagnosis. Another time, when Norm was hired to paint Drake's bedroom, Rebecca came along to see "where he sleeps," in a vain effort to be closer to him. When Drake came back unexpectedly from a business trip, Rebecca was forced to stay in the closet while he slept. When trying to escape, she only got as far as his bed, where she had to roll under and stay captive again. She was finally freed after she climbed out a window when Norm persuaded a delirious Drake to "let [him] carry a rich man across the lawn in his pajamas."

Rebecca never got to tell Drake how she felt, as he left for a job in Japan with his new lover. She did, however, drive his limousine to the airport and crash into a 7-Eleven when she was blinded with jealousy (she had seen him make out with his companion).[13]

Walter Gaines

Walter Gaines (Richard Doyle) is Kelly Gaines's divorced father. Mr. Gaines usually acted very high-class and snobbish, and would tend to look down upon lower-class people, like Woody and Sam. He appears in eight episodes.[14]

Mr. Gaines's ex-wife and Kelly's mother, Roxanne Gaines (Melendy Britt), appears only in the episode "Woody or Won't He" (185). Unlike her ex-husband, she does not even come to Kelly and Woody's wedding. She is a very attractive high-society lady and a sexy, flirtatious upper-class cougar. Although she is also a bit snobbish, she tries to seduce Woody. Later Kelly tells Woody that her mother flirted with all her boyfriends, "just for fun, and because it keeps her young." In this episode, we also learn that Kelly has a sister, but her name and the name of actress who plays her are not mentioned.


Gary was the owner of Gary's Old Towne Tavern, a rival for Cheers. After the rivalry was established in season four, beginning in season six one episode per year — generally called "Bar Wars" – featured a contest between the two drinking holes for customers. The Cheers gang almost invariably lost to Gary, with the exception of season four's bowling competition, season seven's Bloody Mary contest, season nine's basketball competition, and season eleven's Bar Wars finale, in which Harry tricked Gary into demolishing Gary's Olde Towne Tavern.[15]

Gary was played alternately by both Joel Polis and Robert Desiderio.


Henri (Anthony Cistaro) was Kelly Gaines's French friend, who would often mock Woody with the phrase, "I'm going to steal your girlfriend!". Kelly repetitively tried to convince Woody that Henri was merely joking, but it was later revealed that he wasn't joking, and that he did indeed intend to steal Kelly away.

Henri first appeared in the ninth series when Kelly got back from France and brought Henri along with her. Henri later mocks Lilith's French pronunciation — he affects not understanding her poor pronunciation and corrects her « très bien » with a better accent.[16] Henri and Sam were good friends until the final season, when Henri challenged Sam to a contest; whoever got the most phone numbers of women by midnight would be "acknowledged as the world's greatest ladies' man". Henri ended up winning by just one point, only to have Sam walk out with three more women.[17]

John Allen Hill

John Allen Hill (Keene Curtis) is the owner of Melville's, the seafood restaurant located directly above Cheers. Though Melville's was mentioned a lot throughout the series, Hill did not first appear until season nine, during which he bought the restaurant and first became its owner.

Hill is a pompous old man who has a disdain for the Cheers gang, and considers them to be low-class. In the season nine, Sam dated Hill's daughter Valerie[18] as a way to get back at Hill for his evil attitude towards the Cheers bar. He and Carla have a complicated love-hate relationship; they frequently insult and curse at each other even during their frequent bouts of sex.


Joanne (Catherine MacNeal), is a newscaster. In her first episode "'I' on Sports" (1987), her short-time co-newsanchor Sam flirts with her, but she resists and turns him down. In "Christmas Cheers" (1987), she reports a raging lunatic (presumably Cliff Clavin) throwing canned foods at the airplane. In her last episode "Where Nobody Knows Your Name" (1990), she (inadvertently) informs the bar that an imprisoned Robin Colcord cheated on Rebecca Howe with another woman.

Eddie LeBec

Guy "Eddie" LeBec (Jay Thomas) is a Boston Bruins ice hockey player who has an endless winning streak and a French Canadian background. He meets Carla when he walks into Cheers one day and the two begin dating. However, because of their relationship, Eddie's streak unfortunately comes to an end. Since both are superstitious, they end their relationship in order to avoid ruining Eddie's ability to play. Nevertheless, they reconcile shortly thereafter and promise to break up repeatedly before every game to avoid the "curse". In "Home Is the Sailor", Carla is revealed to be several months pregnant with Eddie's twins (incorporated by another of Perlman's pregnancies[19]). In two-part episode "Little Carla, Happy at Last", Carla and Eddie wed. She almost quits her waitressing job because Eddie said that he would take care of her financially. However, the Bruins released him from his contract due to his age and declining athletic performance, and he could not find another team. In "Airport V" (1988), Eddie ends up as a penguin mascot for a traveling ice show in another state. Later in the 1987–88, Carla gives birth to their twin boys, named Elvis and Jesse.

In "Death Takes a Holiday on Ice" (1989), Eddie was killed by an ice resurfacer when he saved the life of another member of the ice show. At the funeral, it was revealed that he had concurrently married another wife Gloria with twins, as well. Carla changes her surname back to Tortelli to avoid being confused with the other "Mrs. LeBec".

In Little Carla, Happy at Last, the vicar conducting Carla and Eddie's wedding refer to Eddie as Edward Raymond LeBec.

The demise of Jay Thomas's character Eddie LeBec has been claimed to stem from Thomas's comments "about" Perlman in a radio show. However, Thomas denied this and declared that he was referring only to the Carla character.[20] Despite Ken Levine's praise on Thomas's acting and pairing of Eddie and Carla,[21] Eddie was written out of the show because Perlman thought that the pairing would make her "not part of the people in the bar."[20]


Lewis (Sam Scarber), an African-American "large, athletic male"[22] postal worker. In his very first episode "Cliff's Rocky Moment" (1984), Cliff attempts to have Lewis brawl with Victor (Peter Iacangelo) without avail. In fact, both Lewis and Victor cannot stand Cliff because of his know-it-all behavior, and Lewis finally exits the bar. In his second and final episode "I Call Your Name" (1984), Lewis is fired from his job for stealing fragrant samples from people's mail. (Unbeknownst to him, Cliff has reported Lewis.) Lewis wants to find out an identity of the claimant to physically spite him, but then he decides not to do so. Therefore, he chooses to seek other jobs. In the book The Sitcom Reader, Robert S. Brown called him a stereotype to African Americans.[22]

Maggie O'Keefe

Margaret Catherine "Maggie" O'Keefe (Annie Golden) was Cliff's love interest from the seventh season onward. Maggie first appeared in season seven as a rookie postal carrier who was to be trained by Cliff.[23] Maggie asked Cliff out, and he accepted. However, Maggie was later caught taking a postal vehicle to a motel, and was fired from the post office. She then left Cliff to go to Canada, to join the Canadian post office. She made regular appearances from then on, which led to her and Cliff's on-again off-again relationship.

Maggie reappeared in season eleven and informed Cliff that she was pregnant with Cliff's child.[24] This forced Cliff to admit that he and Maggie never had sex, causing the other barflies to mock him. Cliff agrees to marry Maggie but before they depart she decides to call her child's real father so he won't worry anymore. She then tells Norm that the father is upset someone else will be raising his child and that he wants to marry her and Cliff is off the hook. However, as she leaves she tells Cliff they did have sex, twice, though he was apparently inebriated and didn't remember.

Vera Peterson

Vera Peterson (née Kreitzer[25]), the wife of Norm Peterson, is never fully seen onscreen, despite a few fleeting appearances and vocal cameos. Her body is seen in the fifth season episode "Thanksgiving Orphans," but her face is covered by pie filling. In the ninth season episode "It's A Wonderful Wife" her legs can be seen through the Cheers front window as she sits crying on the steps after being fired from her job as Melville's hat check girl. Although she is often the butt of Norm's jokes when he visits Cheers, he professes a deep love for her. When setting up his own decorating business, Norm scares his employee Rudi (Eric Allen Kramer) by using an alternate personality, harsh-hearted Anton Kreitzer, to scare them into shape. When asked by Frasier where he came up with the name Kreitzer, Norm reveals that it was Vera's maiden name.

Vera has a sister, Donna Kreitzer, who occasionally stays with Norm and Vera. Norm dreads these visits as, while he considers her younger and more attractive than Vera, Donna relentlessly hits on Norm, much to his dismay, and claims that he once walked in on Donna while she was naked and she tried to cover herself up with an emery board. These worries inadvertently prove that Norm does love Vera, despite all his comments to the contrary.

Vera is played by Bernadette Birkett, the real-life wife of George Wendt, who played Norm. Birkett's only credited Vera appearance is in Season 11's Look Before You Sleep.

Dave Richards

Dave Richards (Fred Dryer) was an old teammate of Sam's and sports reporter on television. He appeared in the first season, in which he offered to interview Sam for his "Where are They Now?" show.[26] Carla later learned that he only chose Sam to interview because no other famous athletes were available. He reappeared in the second season, hoping to chase women with Sam. But after learning that Sam was dating Diane, he tried to break them up, to no avail. He was briefly heard in the third season on the radio, and finally reappeared in the sixth season, offering Sam a temporary job on his sports report show.

Andy Schroeder

Andrew Schroeder (Derek McGrath), better known at the bar as Andy Andy, is a psychopathic ex-con that murdered a cocktail waitress at Via Milano, an Italian restaurant. Sam hired Andy to date Diane without knowing his past.[27] He appeared in two more episodes through the show's first four seasons. He returned again during the final season in an opening tease. Overall, McGrath appeared as Andy in four episodes.[28]

Professor Sumner Sloan

Sumner Sloan (Michael McGuire) is a college English literature professor for who Diane Chambers worked as a teaching assistant. Divorced, Sumner was engaged to Diane, who he left to return to his ex-wife, Barbara.[29] Sumner tried secretly to win Diane back while she was seriously dating Sam, that attempt which ultimately failed, Diane stating not because Sam read War and Peace, but that he read it for her.[30] Sumner eventually reconnects with Diane professionally as he thought one of her unfinished manuscripts was publishable if she would invest six months of her time into the endeavor of finishing the book (the six months which she took away from Sam, but with her both not finishing the book or returning to the bar).[31] Sumner is an intellectual snob.

Anthony and Annie Tortelli

Anthony Tortelli (Timothy Williams) and his wife Annie (Mandy Ingber) are the eldest son of Nick and Carla Tortelli and his wife. The two first appeared in season four when they wanted to be married at 16, but Carla refused and tried to keep the two apart.[32] However, Annie's cousin Gabrielle (Sherilyn Fenn) walks into the bar, and Anthony becomes attracted to her, much to Annie's dismay.

Anthony and Annie reappeared in season six after being kicked out by Nick and then decide to live with Carla. At the bar, they meet pregnant Carla's new husband Eddie LeBec and then openly disdain him for getting Carla pregnant. Later in the series, Annie finds her husband Anthony lazy because he has no job. Therefore, she works as a temporary waitress (working just for tips) and then tries to flirt with the bartender Sam Malone repeatedly without avail.[33] Then, finally, Anthony finds a job and works at a burger joint. At the end, he walks in the bar with his work uniform to prove himself to Annie, who becomes flattered and then praises him for that.

In their final appearance, Anthony and Annie reveal that they were expecting a baby. Outraged and horrified that the Annie was pregnant at such a young age (and at the prospect of becoming a grandmother), Carla kicked them out and neither were heard from ever again, destroying the couples plans to live with Carla and Eddie after their baby arrived.[34] Neither Anthony or Annie appeared in season eleven for Anthony's sister Serafina's wedding.

Anthony and Annie also appear as regular characters in the short-lived spin-off The Tortellis (1987) and live with Nick and his wife Loretta.

Nick and Loretta Tortelli

Nick Tortelli (Dan Hedaya) and his second wife Loretta (Jean Kasem) Carla's first husband and his second bimbo wife, who occasionally stop by Cheers. He has made no attempt to support his children financially and barely has any contact with them. Nick is loud, unkempt, and extremely unsophisticated; despite these tremendous flaws, he has at times exercised an inexplicable romantic power over Carla (which, years before, resulted in their marriage). Nick married Loretta in the season two episode "Battle of the Exes", and Carla becomes friends with Loretta as she begins to notice Nick's horrible characteristics.[35] Before marrying Nick, Loretta had dreamed of becoming a singer; she once described herself as a "taller, blonder, less Mormon Marie Osmond". Although she lacked talent, she performed with two groups: "The Grinning Americans" (described as an Up with People-type group), and The Lemon Sisters (deliberately named to be confused with The Lennon Sisters). Loretta was also featured in Nick's short-lived spin-off series, The Tortellis.[36] Loretta briefly left Nick when she joined "The Grinning Americans", resulting in Nick appearing at Cheers and taking on job as the general dogsbody, referring to the waitresses as "Miss Carla" and "Miss Diane". He does briefly rekindle his flame with Carla and visits his children, but runs back to Loretta when she tells Nick that she loves him.

Carla's kids

Walt Twitchell

Walter Q.[37] "Walt" Twitchell (Raye Birk) was Cliff's rival at the post office. He first appeared in season 3 when their rivalry was established, making occasional appearances from then on. Years later, he appeared on the Frasier episode "Cheerful Goodbyes" (Season 9), at Cliff's retirement party, where he and Cliff made up.


  1. Season 1, Episode 16: The Boys in the Bar
  2. Season 3, Episode 18: Bar Bet
  3. Season 5, Episode 3: Money Deasrest
  5. Season 7, Episode 2: Swear to God
  6. "Jackie Swanson Cheers | For Jackie Swanson of 'Cheers,' the Naive New Bride Is Just an Act - Los Angeles Times". 1992-05-09. Retrieved 2012-06-09.
  7. Season 8, Episode 25: Cry Hard
  9. Season 6, Episode 7; Last Angry Mailman
  10. Season 4, Episode 2; Woody Goes Belly Up
  11. Season 5, Episode 11; The Book of Samuel
  13. Season Six, Episode 25: Backseat Becky, Up Front
  15. Season 11, Episode 19; Bar Wars VII: he Naked Prey
  16. Season 9, Episode 20; It's a Wonderful Wife
  17. Season 11, Episode 4; The Magnificent Six
  18. Season 9, Episode 14; Achilles Hill
  19. "Cheers starts 6th season with new co-star". Fort Scott Tribune. Fort Scott, Kansas. August 17, 1987. p. 5.
  20. 1 2 Raftery, Brian (October 2012). "The Best TV Show That's Ever Been". GQ.
  21. Levine, Ken (July 21, 2006). "The kiss of death for Eddie LeBec". Ken Levine.
  22. 1 2 Brown, Robert S. (essay); Mary M. Dalton (ed); Laura R. Linder (ed) (2005). "Cheers: Searching for the Ideal Public Sphere in the Ideal Public House". The Sitcom Reader: America Viewed and Skewed. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press. p. 259. Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  23. Season 7, Episode 12; Please Mr. Postman
  24. Season 11, Episode 5; Do Not Forsake Me, O' my Postman
  25. Season 8, Episode 5: The Two Faces of Norm
  26. Season 1, Episode 4; Sam at Eleven
  27. Season 1, Episode 17; Diane's Perfect Date
  29. Season 1, Episode 1: Give Me a Ring Sometime
  30. Season 2, Episode 5: Sumner's Return
  31. Season 5, Episode 26: I Do, Adieu
  32. Season 4, Episode 4; The Groom Wore Clearasil
  33. Season 6, Episode 15; Tale of Two Cuties
  34. Season 6, Episode 22; Slumber Party Massacred
  35. Buck, Jerry (February 4, 1987). "Loretta Tortelli Isn't Stereotypical Dumb Blonde". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Retrieved 2012-01-06.
  36. Bjorklund, Dennis A. (1997). Toasting Cheers: An Episode Guide To the 1982-1993 Comedy Series With Cast Biographies and Character Profiles. Praetorian Publishing. p. 17. ISBN 0-89950-962-2.
  37. Season 5, Episode 8; Knights of the Scimitar
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