CIPC #369: Cheers S5 E15, Spellbound

Yet another sitcom on the blog. I’ll drink to that! Like so many sitcoms, it ran for well over a decade and had about a billion different episodes. It deals with the happenings in and around an eponymous Bostonian bar. At least, that’s what I gather from the Wikipedia page; I haven’t actually watched the show. Well, except for a couple of minutes from the beginning of this one particular episode, which starts with some people in the bar at a chessboard.

The guy on the left is pestering his opponent for a move. I’m guessing he has seen the camera and wants to finish the game before anyone notices he has set up the board wrongly and thinks of using the video as blackmail material. In order to entice his opponent to a rather rash decision, he says:

Guy on the left: You should just give up. You’re finished.

Now, that’s the sort of rodomontade that would make Kanye West blush, for he is playing black in this position:1

And this is hopelessly lost for him, of course: he’s two pieces down and his queen is hanging in a variety of ways. His one chance is that his opponent is apparently utterly oblivious of the state of things. One of the onlookers, however, comes to his aid,

Dude with the horizontal bar on his shirt:2 Not necessarily. He could move this pieces over to here.

Which meticulously precise words are accompanied by gestures no less punctilious gestures.

Guy on the left: You’re suggesting that after two futile interpositions he attempt to force unobstructed access to the eighth rank.

Eli, Eli, lama sabachtani? What fresh hell is this? This is just meaningless drivel. What on Earth is a futile interposition? How would they yield unobstructed access to the eighth rank?

Dude with the horizontal bar on his shirt: Well no. I’m saying he should take your horsey with his little pointy headed guy.

The guy on the right obliges and takes the knight on b5 with his bishop; a decision so monumentally stupid it would also make Kanye blush. Bar dude says that white shouldn’t have taken that one — although which other knight white could possibly take is a mystery — and then we get the kicker: black takes the white queen, puts it on e1, and declares checkmate.

Maybe I should’ve quit after all.

Realism: 0/5 Black playing with white cost him the one point he may possibly have gotten. A well-deserved pox be upon him!

Probable winner: Who knows? Neither opponent seems to know the game they’re playing.

1. [Cheers to the best diagram editor!]
1. […that’s presumably called ‘cheers’.]