Monday, March 8, 2010

Favorite Episodes: Frasier

by Amy K. Bredemeyer

During the early years of Frasier, I thought it was junk. In fact, I didn't watch it solely because those I knew who did also watched Seinfeld, and I thought that was the worst, most boring show ever. Of course, now I know that Seinfeld is funny, and that Frasier is downright hilarious. I haven't fallen in love with a show in the way that I love Frasier since I first found 7th Heaven, or when I stumbled upon the glories of ER before that. Theoretically, this means my sister should like Frasier, since she and I have fairly similar television favorites. But, the level of some of the jokes would be rough on her (and many, many others), since a good deal of them I only "get" because of graduate school and other specialty arts, literature, and music courses I've taken.

Anyway, Frasier ran for a very, very long time. Eleven seasons, all with the same main cast. I should have written about it way back when I was writing about long-running series, but I knew remarkably little about the show then. I only started watching it after I moved to Pennsylvania. But, I got addicted rather quickly, and started catching it for an hour each morning on Lifetime. Then, my husband got the entire set for me about a week before my birthday in January, and it took less than a month to catch up. Seasons 4, 5, and 6 are the funniest (I swear, season 6 is some of the funniest television EVER), although I love every episode with a good Niles storyline, hehe. And now, without further ado, my list of favorites:

Season 1: "Travels with Martin." Daphne still doesn't have her green card, so when the family takes a roadtrip in a Winnebago, they run into problems when they wind up in Canada. Some pretty funny antics on the road, and Niles is adorable in his obsessive ways.
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Season 2: "Daphne's Room." This episode just has me rolling. Frasier ducks into Daphne's room to get a book, but his curiosity gets the best of him, and he has to get in there again and again, trying to remain unseen. Well, that doesn't work, and he has to find a way to make it up to Daphne.

Watch Frasier S02E17 Daphne's room in Comedy | View More Free Videos Online at

Season 3: "Moon Dance." Maris and Niles are on the out-and-out, so Niles needs to attend a fancy ball with another woman. But, she backs out at the last minute, and so he takes Daphne, which works out great since they dance well together. However, Niles hopes to read more into the night than Daphne does.
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Season 4: "Ham Radio." Frasier wants to commemorate old radio dramas by re-staging the first one KACL ever did. Of course, he ends up re-writing, directing, and playing the lead. He alienates one actor after another, and the resulting show is a great few minutes in comedic television history.
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Season 5: "The Gift Horse." Niles and Frasier always seem to be in competition to see who can get Martin the better gift for his birthday. When Niles goes over the pre-agreed limit, things get out of control, with Frasier eventually buying him a giant television with surround sound, and Niles buying him his old police horse. I couldn't find the whole episode of this one, and the longest clip is really poor quality, so no video, sorry. Here's the script.

Season 6: "Decoys." Niles invites everyone to his cabin for the weekend. He's hoping that Donny and Roz will get back together, but he ends up making people think he's into Roz. ("The Seal Who Came to Dinner" is sooooo close to winning this season.)
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

Season 7: I came really close to choosing "Something Borrowed, Something Blue" since it's the episode where Niles and Daphne finally get together, but I think that would be too obvious and overdone. Besides, "The Dark Side of the Moon" is actually much funnier, and in half the time. Daphne tells the story in a flashback, since she's been mandated to do some anger management therapy. She admits that she has feelings for Niles, and we learn that Simon is everyone's least-favorite Moon. But when Daphne hits the fan with the laundry scene, I about die in laughter. I could only find a rather small (and not that interesting) clip.

Season 8: "Motor Skills." Niles and Frasier attend a night school auto maintenance course. They're remarkably bad at it, and want to quit, but Daphne and Martin are too excited about the boys' learning. So, they take Roz's advice and try "coasting," but that turns into being "class clowns" and they end up being thrown out. They make their own certificates, which is hilarious. Oh, and while all of this is going on, Roz gets a puppy for Alice, but Martin takes control. Here's a funny part from the middle, where the boys are in class and not doing so well.

Season 9: "The Return of Martin Crane." Martin is starting work as a security guard, so he is flashing back to when he was shot and forced to retire from the police force. Daphne, Niles, Frasier, and Roz all want to go to various events that night, but someone has to be home exactly at 10pm to walk Eddie. The funny part is when Roz wants to go to Billy Joel, so Niles jumps on the Hungarian Throat-Singing bandwagon, which solves nothing, haha.
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Season 10: "Daphne Does Dinner." Niles has a new painting and wants to unveil it at a party. Since he and Frasier have a bad history of hosting together, he decides to host it with Daphne, who ends up needing Roz and Frasier (who in turn needs Martin) to help. So much more happens, but there's no quick and easy explanation. Watch it. ...unfortunately, the best I could find was the script.

Season 11: "No Sex Please, We're Skittish." I love Niles in this episode. From the early menage a trois jokes with Roz and Daphne to doing everything in his power to increase the likelihood that he'll be able to father a child, he's great. Meanwhile, Roz returns to KACL as if nothing had happened, and Frasier demands to know what caused this change of heart.

Please tell me you adore this show like I do. What are your favorite episodes?
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