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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 10 -> Episode 10.17

Kenny On The Couch
Episode Details

Written by: Bob Daily

Directed by: David Lee

Original US airdate: 4th March 2003

Original UK airdate: 21st 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
Kenny Daly .... Tom McGowan
   
   
Guest Cast
Ahmrit .... Alan Cumming
Trudy .... Mary Kowalski
Guest Callers
Mindy .... Laura Linney

Episode Synopsis

Kenny comes into Frasier's booth after his show with some news - his divorce has been finalised and he is a single man again. His happy mood doesn't last for long as he soon breaks down in tears prompting Frasier to suggest he see a psychiatrist to help him through this difficult time. Roz suggests that Frasier counsel him, something that Kenny would be willing to go along with, and although reluctant at first, Frasier is privately excited about seeing private patients again. In their first session, Kenny spends most of it in tears as Frasier drags him through his childhood, picking up on the problems with his parents. This leaves Kenny emotionally drained and is not best pleased when Frasier asks him to write a letter to his father before their next session, while Frasier is elated at being able to delve into the psychological problems of someone for the first time in a long time. While Kenny is waiting for the lift, Martin (who had overheard their whole session) bumps into him and tells him he is going to McGinty's. Kenny asks if he tag along - a request Martin relucatantly agrees to.

After a few sessions, Kenny decides to stop seeing Frasier as he has found Martin's brand of therapy (beer and fun) much better for him. Frasier is, of course, shocked and can't believe his father has interfered in his counselling, but his protesting is all to no avail as Kenny doesn't want to change his mind. He also has to listen to more of Martin's home-spun wisdom when he tells Kenny that the answer to all his problems is a suede jacket as the ladies can't resist having a feel of it. This leads to a showdown down at McGinty's where Kenny has hooked up with a woman after buying a sude jacket, and sees Frasier wanting to know why his father dismisses his life's work and is even more incensed when Martin tells his son that psychiatry is just for Hitler and Sybil! Kenny then returns minus his jacket as he has just been mugged leading Martin to recommend he sees Frasier to get over his divorce..... Meanwhile, Daphne and Niles are being coached by a private yoga teacher and Niles is disturbed to find that his wife is more flexible than he is.

Episode Title Cards
  • McGinty's: Good Food, Good Fun, Bad Security

Episode Highlights

- Roz is asking a clothing saleswoman caller if the medium size is 'supermodel' or 'real' medium:
Mindy: It sounds like you want to order the large.
Roz: Oh really (!!)

- Frasier is concerned about Kenny's reaction to his divorce being made final:
Frasier: Have you considered seeing a professional once or twice a week?
Kenny: I've thought about it but prostitutes are expensive!

- Frasier asks Kenny to write a letter to his father for their next session:
Kenny: Homework? You never said there was gonna be homework!

- Daphne wonders why she and Niles need a private yoga teacher:
Daphne: There are classes we can take together down at the Y.
Niles: Yes, and afterwards there are anti-fungal lotions we can use together too!

- Frasier describes Kenny's psychological problems to Niles:
Niles: Sounds to me like you've hit the crackpot!

- Martin can't believe Frasier is blaming him for Kenny quitting therapy as he finally seems happy:
Frasier: I'm not trying to make him happy - I am trying to cure his depression!

- Martin tells Kenny the answer to all his problems is a suede jacket as all the ladies love to feel it:
Frasier: Did you hear that? A suede jacket - I must have missed that lecture at Harvard Medical School (!)

- Martin thinks that psychiatry is only for 2 people - Hitler and Sybil:
Frasier: Great! An entire science devoted to Hitler and Sybil !!

Frasier Online Episode Review

I rather enjoyed this episode despite the fact that a little of Kenny goes a long way, but Frasier's disbelief that Kenny would choose Martin's blend of beer and fun therapy to his own was great, as was Frasier and Martin's discussion about who psychiatry was for which features a terrific reaction from Frasier as Martin tells him that it is only for Hitler and Sybil! Niles and Daphne's sub-plot was also fun as we saw David Hyde Pierce really strain himself all in the name of comedy, while Alan Cummings cameo as the yoga teacher was funny too especially when he changed from his yoga voice to his normal voice when talking to his mother. All in all, a enjoyable little episode that is a big improvement on the last Kenny-centred episode 'Kissing Cousin'.

Rating

80 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 74.0%
Total Number of Reviews: 3


Therapy in the form of beer and fun, May 26, 2013

Reviewer: Sammy J from Melbourne, Australia


Kenny has always been one of the least personable characters to recur on "Frasier'. Sure, that's partly deliberate but, in spite of Tom McGowan's excellent performance, it has sometimes seemed a surprise that Kenny is one of the longest-served characters on the show. "Kenny on the Couch" is not my favourite episode, although it's the second of the season to seriously analyse this character, after "Kissing Cousin". While I still think it would have been interesting if Kenny had followed his dreams in that episode, "Kenny on the Couch" suggests just how much a lack of change drives him. He's easily interested in giving up on self-analysis and on his problems, perfectly characterising that generation of men who almost don't know what to do after divorce, after leaving the stability of a predictable life. Interestingly, the episode's moral divides itself between two characters, with Kenny ultimately just needing to let himself have fun (the script acknowledges that Kenny needed to talk about his problems, but likely didn't have many lingering issues) and Frasier realising how much he has missed private practice (a development that sets up a fair amount of season 11). I'm very glad the series had this realisation, which again took 10 years give or take the occasional episode along the way. For a show that - at this point - intended to run for a while longer, it makes perfect sense to expand his life in this way, even if it would render KACL even more of an afterthought than it has been lately. McGowan has some great moments, particularly early in the episode as he struggles to get his wedding ring off and then falls apart on the doctor's couch. But the episode belongs to Martin and Frasier, whose argument about psychology is surprisingly serious - up until the beautifully-written final scene where Martin exposes Frasier's career as "an entire science devoted to Hitler and Sybil!"

The subplot with Alan Cumming as a yoga instructor feels quite tepid, but Cumming has fun with the different sides of his character, and David Hyde Pierce's "I broke my body" is an amusing little tie-up. All in all, this is a pleasant episode that explores some different sides of our characters. However, it doesn't leave a great impression on me, since the subplot is mild and the main plot splits its time between the characters without necessarily achieving much. Frasier's ultimate decision is credible and a good one, however the fact that Kenny's change is very minimal seems a shame after two episodes this season spending a lot of time on him. I appreciate the character more in this rewatch, but it seems like the writers are spinning their wheels, happy to keep him on the show but unsure of which direction to take him in.


Rating: 72%

 

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