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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 10 -> Episode 10.18

Roe To Perdition
Episode Details

Written by: Jon Sherman

Directed by: Jerry Zaks

Original US airdate: 18th March 2003

Original UK airdate: 28th April 2003


Cast Information
Main Cast
Frasier Crane .... Kelsey Grammer
Niles Crane .... David Hyde Pierce
Martin Crane .... John Mahoney
Daphne Crane .... Jane Leeves
Roz Doyle .... Peri Gilpin
Recurring Cast
Robert .... Francois Giroday
   
   
Guest Cast
Petyr .... John Vickery
Vladimir .... Oleg Stefan
Bank President .... Michael Winters
Bank Officer .... Reggie Jordan
Teller No. 1 .... Devlin Elliott
Bank Manager .... Shannon Cochran
Mr Michaels .... J. Kenneth Campbell
Mrs Michaels .... Sarah Brooke
Customs Officer .... Sal Rendino
Teller No. 2 .... Bridget Sienna
Bank Guard .... Nate Bynum
Russian Crewman .... Endre Hules
Guest Callers

Episode Synopsis

Frasier and Niles are shopping at "Robert's Gourmet Goodies" for their upcoming dinner party and spy some caviar which they both believe will make the party a runaway success - until they spot the price that Robert is charging: $100 an ounce! Just then, a stranger sidles up to them and tells them his name is Petyr and that the price of caviar is being controlled by the Russian mafia but that he has some for sale and signals to meet him outside if they want to learn more. The Crane brothers do indeed follow him and learn that Petyr has newly arrived on his cousins boat with a cargo of superb quality caviar which Frasier and Niles agree is of excellent quality after they have sampled it and are even more happy when Petyr sells them some for $40 an ounce! Roz is dispatched to pick up the caviar as Frasier didn't want Petyr to know where he lives, but when she arrives she wants to know what all the fuss about caviar is about. Roz then samples it and becomes hooked on it, but Frasier won't let her stay for his party. The guests of his party are in agreement with Roz about the caviar and start offering Frasier and Niles gifts in return for some of their superb caviar. The Crane brothers are over the moon at this sudden upturn in their social standing, but instead of dishing out what remains of the caviar they decide to take orders from their guests and place another order with Petyr.

However, Frasier and Niles are to be disappointed when Petyr arrives with only a fraction of what they had asked for as he tells them that Customs are closing in on the ship and it is getting too risky to sell the caviar on the open market. The Crane brothers decide to take matters into their own hands by visiting the boat that Petyr gets the caviar from but it seems he wasn't wrong about US Customs not being too far behind........ Meanwhile, Martin gets $40 more than he asked for at an ATM which Daphne persuades him to return as it will be bad karma if he doesn't. However, Martin discovers that returning the $40 is a lot harder than he thought.

Episode Title Cards
  • They Call Him Vlad The Importer

Episode Highlights

- Frasier suggests serving the same dish they ususally do at their parties which Niles dismisses out of hand:
Frasier: For your information, people happen to like it.
Niles: Yes, people like animated musicals (!)

- Frasier tells Roz that it matters where she first sampled caviar:
Frasier: Where did you have it?
Roz: On a mini bagel at the Tucson Doubletree!

- One of Frasier's guests asks him if all of his parties go this well:
Frasier: Oh not really - something's usually on fire by now!

- Niles wonders how they will sleep after going to all the events people have offered them in exchange for caviar:
Frasier: Sleep is for people without social lives!

- Niles tells Petyr that bad things will happen if the people they've promised caviar too don't get it:
Petyr: They will break legs, cut off thumbs?
Niles: Worse - there'll be gossip!

- Frasier tries to think up a way to get their hands on some caviar:
Frasier: What was the name of the boat.....
Niles: HMS Bounty!!
Frasier: ... This isn't Trivial Pursuit - let me finish!

- Martin and Daphne are talking to the bank president after a security guard pulled a gun on Martin trying to return the $40:
Bank President: It isn't our policy to draw firearms in customers trying to make a deposit
Martin [wearily]: It wasn't a deposit.

- Frasier and Niles speedily eating the caviar

Frasier Online Episode Review

A classy episode from start to finish that sees Frasier and Niles involved in a highly amusing plot line that sees them increase their social status, and have a successful dinner party to boot - and all thanks to some cheap but exquisite caviar! Peri Gilpin was finally given a decent part to get her teeth into and it was hilarious to see her cravings for caviar, in particular her counting down the hours till caviar during Frasier's show. Martin and Daphne's storyline was great too and Martin's attempts to give money back to a bank should strike a chord with anyone who has had run-ins with big business, and also features a great pay off line too from Daphne. This is a great episode all round with plenty of laughs from all the cast, plus it was nice to see Francois Giroday make only his second appearance (the first was in 'The Perfect Guy') as the wonderfully snooty Robert.

Rating

82 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 91.0%
Total Number of Reviews: 8


The Russian Bear hunts by night, May 26, 2013

Reviewer: Sammy J from Melbourne, Australia


"Roe to Perdition" is my favourite episode of season 10 and indeed probably my favourite episode in several seasons. It takes on the concerns of an earlier season 10 episode, "Door Jam", in the ways the brothers' ambition and many similarities lead them down a dark path. (It's funny still to think that - like "Seinfeld" - the network was worried during pre-production of the series that two similar main characters would be uninteresting. Instead, the brothers' similarities have consistently been a source of humour.)

This episode does, depressingly, remind us that the boys have learned almost nothing from their experiences over the years. The promise of social climbing is enough to get them into the black market caviar business, and the ways in which they are initially seduced both by the Hardy Boys' style knowledge of the Russian mafia, the desire to outwit uncompetitive pricing, and their own belief in the finer things in life... it all adds up so well. As Frasier says, "Welcome to caviar". It's a simple but effective plot ending in the very funny sequence of the boys becoming unlikely profiteers and then being caught with caviar all over themselves. The addition of Roz's addiction is an inspired piece of humour. It's deliberately farcical, and those who disliked the unabashedly silly spelling-equals-boxing idea of "War of the Words" will probably dislike it. I can't, however. Peri Gilpin has such fun reducing Roz to a caviar tweaker. Just perfect.

Meanwhile, the Martin/Daphne/ATM storyline isn't quite in the same comic stratosphere but the simple way that bureaucracy turns against Martin is effective, largely because of how John Mahoney plays Martin's increasing annoyance at the prospect. Daphne's "could I open an account" is the perfect button for this sequence. Jane Leeves' real highlight, though, is her ridiculous story about Nigel, and how he lost his teeth "in a rock eating contest". As with "Daphne Does Dinner", the script deliberately goes to the well of self-parody, as the boys compete to see who can ask the fewest questions during a Moon family chronicle. (Frasier, of course, is the clear winner.) Solid proof of the series' vitality after ten years.


Rating: 97%

 

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