February 14 – Love Bite

Lover’s Quarrel

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, I thought it would be a good opportunity to look at some of the classic “will they/won’t they” TV romances. Nearly every show has one, hoping to bring in the hopeless romantic as a regular viewer. My favourite story is from NewsRadio, where the network wanted this element for the show, much to the chagrin of producers. So, they had Dave and Lisa sleep together immediately, before then teasing their relationship from that point. Well, on with the list:

#5: Ben & Leslie – Parks and Recreation

The Parks and Rec crew are quite incestuous with numerous couplings coming out of the small department. Despite stiff competition (Andy and April, Chris and Ann, etc.), Ben and Leslie get the nod for best “will they/won’t they” storyline on the show, as it took the nerdy Ben to finally reel in the ambitious Leslie, who was more likely to be married to her job than a living person. Ben and Leslie’s wedding was especially touching, as the Parks and Rec crew had to stage the event on short notice.

Ben and Leslie

#4: Niles & Daphne – Frasier

Niles loved Daphne from the first moment he saw her… the problem was, he was in a loveless marriage with the never-seen Maris. By the time Niles got his side of things all sorted out, Daphne was due to be wed to Donny – ironically, Niles divorce attorney. Well, true love conquers all, and Niles and Daphne ended up together, marrying and having a baby boy. Poor Niles waited many years – and through many boyfriends – for his chance to be with Daphne, but fate works in mysterious ways.

#3: Leonard & Penny – Big Bang Theory

For those who believe that opposites don’t attract, take for example the relationship between blonde bombshell Penny and her kind, but geeky neighbour Leonard. Despite taking a while to date and an extended break-up, the two have been together for a fair portion of the show’s run and at this point are even engaged. Rivaling Leonard and Penny is Sheldon and Amy, who most fans just want to see finally get into bed with one another!

The Gorilla Dissolution

#2: Jim & Pam – The Office (US)

Based off of the similar storyline of Tim and Dawn from the UK version of The Office, Jim and Pam go from co-workers with a mutual crush to lovers, having to evade obstacles such as Pam’s pending marriage to Roy, Jim’s transfer to another Dunder Mifflin branch, and Pam going back to school in New York. Once Jim and Pam were all securely married, Dwight and Angela moved into the spot of “will they/won’t they,” but their relationship was always a little odd and unusual.

#1: Ross & Rachel – Friends

These two went back and forth so many times, that it makes one’s head spin. In the end, they of course wound up with each other, following the typical last-minute ditch effort to save the relationship, with Ross rushing to the airport to stop Rachel from leaving the country for a job opportunity in Paris. Through the series, the two even produced a child, all the while teasing a reunion, but never really getting back together from the first time they became a couple and broke up.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Love Bite

Love Bite Shot

  • 0.5 oz Cherry Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Orange Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Milk
  • Garnish with Chocolate

Honourable mentions go to Kevin and Winnie (The Wonder Years), Zack and Kelly (Saved by the Bell), Eric and Donna (That 70’s Show), and Fry and Leela (Futurama); some of which ended happily and others, not so much. Thankfully, my will they/won’t they with Mrs. Sip worked out pretty well!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
The Cherry and Orange Liqueurs mixed together really well, but the Milk didn’t play nicely with the spirits, nearly curdling the alcohol. Luckily it didn’t get that far and the flavours could still be enjoyed. At least I always had the Chocolate garnish to enjoy afterwards!

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November 22 – Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Reunification

Earlier this year, the online world became abuzz, when a poster was released, teasing a Friends reunion for this Thanksgiving. It turned out to all be a hoax, but that got me thinking of shows where I’d love to see a reunion episode or some other gathering of the cast/characters, injecting new life into the stories many of us grew up on. Here is the cream of the crop of those I’d love to see one more time!

#5: Recess

Perhaps in a similar vein to All Grown Up, the Rugrats re-launch, it would be great to find out whatever happened to the Recess kids – T.J. Detweiler, Vince LaSalle, Ashley Spinelli, Gretchen Grundler, Mikey Blumberg, and Gus Griswald – and where they lives led after their fourth grade adventures at Third Street Elementary School. Did any of the kids ever hook-up (my bet’s on Mikey and Gus!)? The new story could be set in any time period, whether it be high school, college, adulthood, old age, etc. If a more adult network took the reins of the show, instead of Disney, we might get some very interesting and scandalous (thank you The Ashley’s) stories!

Recess Grown Up

#4: That 70’s Show

When we last left Point Place, Wisconsin, the 1970’s rolled over into a new decade. Therefore, the most pressing question to be answered, is how did the gang find life in the 80’s? Hell, for that matter, how did their 90’s and 2000’s go? I guess you can’t go too far ahead or you might lose the participation of the parents, Red, Kitty, and Bob, which would be too bad. I’d love to find out if Eric and Donna finally managed to stay together. What about Hyde, Kelso, Fez, and Jackie? What became of Kelso’s child? Was he as dumb as dear ol’ dad!? These are the kinds of questions that keep the Sip Advisor up at night… it’s tough being me!

#3: Full House

The Tanner clan was sent off into the television abyss with the show’s typical nice, neat wrap up. Since then, a lot has changed for the cast and would make for some crazy storylines, should there ever be a reunion episode. Would they incorporate Jodie Sweeten’s real-life meth addiction into the storyline ala the classic “On a very special episode…” trope. How would they handle Bob Saget’s departure from the squeaky clean image that made him neat freak single father Danny Tanner, as well as host of America’s Funniest Home Videos. And you just know there’s some juicy yarns out there, should the Olsen twins elect to participate.

Full House Reunion

#2: Cheers

There was the odd mini-reunion on the Cheers spinoff, Frasier (which would also be a decent series for a reunion), but I’d love to see everyone all together again at the classic bar set, enjoying a mug of fine brew and reconnecting. With Cheers being such an ensemble cast, many of which have gone on to thriving careers, it may be hard to get them all back onto the same page, but at least you know Norm Peterson and Cliff Clavin would be present, as their butts have been stapled to those bar stools since the series finale in 1993. You’d have to imagine that at least one of the bar regulars would now be suffering from cirrhosis, but it should make for good viewing!

#1: Saved by the Bell

As a child of the 80’s and early 90’s, you could never say that you didn’t have at least some fondness for this show. While we got a decent finale with the wedding in Vegas movie, a whole generation thirsts for more. Did Zack and Kelly survive to rigors of getting married young? How about the kids that surely came along (I mean, who wouldn’t want to tap the former Miss Kapowski!?). If they did relaunch this series, they could do something similar to what Boy Meets World did, where they brought back Cory and Topanga as parents to a teenage girl. Jimmy Fallon (among others) tried to get the whole crew back together, but all efforts have failed thus far.

Super Saturday Shot Day: Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Shot

  • 0.5 oz Vanilla Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Pineapple Juice
  • Splash of Grenadine
  • Garnish with a Maraschino Cherry

Sadly, the TV reunion just isn’t done as much anymore, compared to the past where shows like Gilligan’s Island, The Andy Griffith Show, and even Growing Pains all got together again to update viewers on the status of their favourite characters. And that’s all too bad, as there are so many series I’d love to see a follow-up from. Honourable mentions go to basically any TGIF show and let’s throw Beavis and Butt-head in there, as well, just to irritate Mrs. Sip!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (2.5 Sips out of 5):
I chose this shot to go with this article because it (the cake) seemed like the kind of thing that might be served at an actual family reunion. As you can see by the measurements, there’s very little booze in this shooter, so you’re basically just getting Pineapple Juice and Grenadine. My suggestion is to up the alcohol and have some real fun!

May 17 – Carry Me Home

Won’t You Be My Neighbour?

Neighbours… sometimes you love them and sometimes you hate them. One thing is for sure: you rarely get to choose them. Over the next two weeks, we’ll be looking at some of the best and worst neighbour pairs, so be prepared for the good, the bad, and the ugly. Here are the Top 5 best neighbours to have:

#5: Ricardo Family & Mertz Family – I Love Lucy

Sure, Lucy and Ethel get into a lot of trouble together, which can wreak havoc on the collective group’s relationship, but this quartet has managed to remain friends through the thick and thin of some of the greatest sitcom misunderstandings. Ironically, off-screen, Vivian Vance and William Frawley, who played the Mertz’s did not like each other, with Vance even turning down a proposed spinoff and own series for the two. Instead, Vance chose to share a house with Lucille Ball in another series, The Lucy Show, becoming the first divorced character in American TV history. I guess Vance wanted to be even closer to her longtime neighbour.

Lucy and Ethel

#4: Monica Geller/Rachel Green & Joey Tribbiani/Chandler Bing – Friends

Chandler moved in to the apartment building in Greenwich Village, Manhattan thanks to Monica telling him about the available flat across the hall from her. By the end of the series, the two were married and starting a family together. Rachel and Joey (their eventual respective roommates) almost became a couple, as well, but it wasn’t meant to be. I didn’t watch a ton of Friends, but the best episodes I ever saw were when the two sets of roommates competed for apartments. The boys won, but swapped properties back in exchange for the girls kissing.

#3: Leonard Hofstadter & Penny – Big Bang Theory

The only thing better than a decent neighbour is one you can have sex with. When the gorgeous Penny moves in across the hall from geeky Leonard, his world is turned upside down. She is certainly out of his league, but this tale of nice guys never win has a happy ending, with Leonard and Penny finally becoming a couple. I still wonder why the two haven’t moved in together, to at the very least, save rent money, but perhaps Penny still needs to have a sanctuary where she can get away from Sheldon. Interestingly, I hadn’t noticed that Penny’s last name has never been divulged on the show until putting together this article. Soon enough, it may be Hofstadter.

Friends with Geeks

#2: Matthews Family & Mr. Feeny – Boy Meets World

Mr. Feeny is a wealth of knowledge (likely thanks to his experiences as the voice of a car) and while his tutelage isn’t always openly accepted by young Eric and Cory Matthews, he is there for all the members of the Matthews family when needed. It would be rough going through your entire education with your neighbour as either a teacher, principal, or dean, but that’s exactly the hand Cory, in particular, has been dealt. If it weren’t for Mr. Feeny being so awesome, it may have been tough sledding for the young Matthews men, although it’s not like they didn’t ever stir the pot and put Feeny through some hell.

#1: Tim Taylor & Wilson Wilson – Home Improvement

When you get into as many sticky situations as Tim Taylor, it’s a blessing to have a neighbour like Wilson Wilson around to help you sort through your dilemmas with offbeat allegories and thought-provoking messages. And Wilson wasn’t only help to Tim. He practically had a hand in raising each of the three Taylor children, as well as keeping Tim and Jill’s marriage running as smoothly as possible… given Tim’s penchant for putting his foot in his mouth or a tool through an appendage. You may never see Wilson’s full face or get a sense of his lifestyle, but one thing is for sure: the dude spends a lot of time in his backyard!

Super Saturday Shot Day: Carry Me Home

Carry Me Home Shot

  • 0.5 Butterscotch Schnapps
  • 0.5 oz Crème de Cacao
  • Dash of Kahlua
  • Splash of Milk
  • Garnish with Cocoa Powder

Like a good neighbour, State Farm is there… or at least these other pairings are. Next week, we delve into the worst neighbours of all-time. Oh, the stories I could tell from my own experiences… I’m still going through counseling thanks to some of them!

Sip Advisor Bar Notes (3.5 Sips out of 5):
This shot was pretty good with flavours of Butterscotch Schnapps and Crème de Cacao competing for your attention and the Kahlua coming in with the aftertaste. Make sure to share one of these with your favourite neighbour!