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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 10 -> Episode 10.02

Enemy At The Gate
Episode Details

Written by: Lori Kirkland

Directed by: Kelsey Grammer

Original US airdate: 1st October 2002

Original UK airdate: 6th January 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
Heather Murphy .... Michelle Stafford
Assistant .... Vic Chao
   
   
Guest Cast
George .... Luis Guzman
Motorist No. 1 .... Karen Kim
Motorist No. 2 .... Tony Pasqualini
Motorist No. 3 .... Damian D. Lewis
Motorist No. 4 .... Kila Kitu
Motorist No. 5 .... Anna C. Miller
Tow Truck Guy .... Morocco Amari
Guest Callers

Episode Synopsis

Frasier is driving Niles into town to replace a cage for his two new birds - Niles and Daphne - and pulls into a parking garage. He then notices that the clock in his car is wrong, and he only has 15 minutes before his show is due to begin. So he immediately drives to the exit, but the garage attendant tells him that he has to pay $2 as that is the fee for any part of 20 minutes. Frasier protests that he has not parked for any length of time, but the attendant insists he has to pay $2. Frasier retaliates by beginning a protest by sitting in his car at the exit gate for the 20 minutes, dismissing Niles' attempts to pay the $2. He then phones Roz to let her know his situation, which leaves Roz to start Frasier's show by herself. The other drivers behind Frasier are starting to get irate, but Frasier is unrepentant and cannot believe they cannot see he is on their side - even when he tries to explain to them why he is doing it.

Finally, Niles manages to convince him that he would still be keeping to his principles if he left with time to spare but his speech to the garage attendant as he hands over his ticket pushes him into another 20 mins - meaning he now owes $4! This forces Frasier to take action and drives through the exit barrier without paying. Back at KACL, Roz has started taking calls and one about a caller having sex with his boss and the resulting uncomfortable atmosphere leads to Roz to say she has also been there but now it is much better. Another caller then pushes Roz on the 'now' part of her story and guesses that she has slept with Frasier! The man himself then bursts into the studio and when a caller asks about Frasier's situation, he thinks the caller was talking about his parking garage stand-off - and proceeds to tell his audience that it wasn't his finest hour and at least he got away without paying the $4 !!

Episode Title Cards
  • The Terrier Puzzles

Episode Highlights

- Niles is worried his bird Daphne will find some more birdly than the bird Niles:
Frasier: Trust me, no one is more birdly than Niles!

- Frasier's car clock is wrong and blames his dad:
Frasier: He starts pushing buttons like a lab rat on amphetamines!

- Frasier has plans for Daphne's room after she leaves:
Martin: He made it very clear it's going to be a reading sanctuary - a library implies sharing!

- Frasier phones Roz about his situation, who asks him what she should do in the meantime:
Frasier: Read some fan mail. There must be - check my inbox!

- Roz tries to fill in while Frasier is holed up at the parking garage:
Roz: That takes care of the St Victoria Elementary meal schedule for this month.

- A caller guesses the truth about Roz and Frasier:
Sheila: I think you did Frasier!

- Frasier decides to pay but insists on giving a speech first - driving up his fee from $2 to $4:
George: If you'd have spared me the speech, you'd have made it out on time.

- Frasier tells people about his situation at the garage, but his listeners think he's talking about his night of passion with Roz:
Frasier: At least I got out of there in time without paying the $4!

Frasier Online Episode Review

A rather dull episode, sadly, one that the writer presumably expects us to side with Frasier as he stands up for his principles but is fatally undermined by just not being very funny or interesting as the episode wears on. Daphne finally leaving Frasier's apartment was a quite sweet subplot, but even better was Roz's as she first had trouble filling in airtime and then manages to inadvertently reveal on air that she and Frasier slept together. This leads to the best scene in the whole episode as the callers are trying to find out what happened between Frasier and Roz, when Frasier burst in and proceeds to make the situation much, much worse by telling them about his situation at the garage with lines like 'It wasn't my finest hour' which makes for great foot-in-mouth material. It's only a pity that the rest of the episode isn't as good.

Rating

69 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 79.3%
Total Number of Reviews: 14


You lost me after Gandhi, May 24, 2013

Reviewer: Sammy J from Melbourne, Australia


"Enemy at the Gate" takes a fun concept and with it creates set-up for an hilarious punch line. Sure, much like last season's "Deathtrap" it feels a lot like an excuse for Kelsey Grammer and David Hyde Pierce to play the confined double act but... well, they do it so wonderfully!

Frasier's ethical dilemma (or petty stance, if you prefer) is very typical of the character; in fact, the basic tenet of this episode could have come from season 1. At the same time, it isn't just a "Frasier is pretentious and a stickler" story. At some point, we've all felt aggrieved at blind policy or small money-grubbing. Is Frasier right? Or does the parking garage have the right to doubt its customers' word and charge a measly two bucks? Either way, Frasier's stance taps into something we feel... and then takes it far beyond the logical extreme. Kelsey Grammer does a great line in looking aggrieved, and David Hyde Pierce losing his mind (the terrified way Niles asks, "What are we doing, Frasier?") are phenomenal. It may be a slight episode, I'll grant you, but I very much enjoy it.

The subplot of Daphne and Martin using Eddie as a surrogate for their affections is a bit nonexistent, if we're honest. It's not there to create a lot of comedy, true, but it's one of those C-Plots in an episode in need of a B-Plot, if you know what I mean. The same lightly comic beat is played all episode until the sentimental closing moments. I don't begrudge the concept, because - like Daphne calling the men by their first names last week - it makes sense as a necessary adjustment the show needs to make (and, realistically, has held off making for some time). And of all the pairings on this show, Jane Leeves and John Mahoney have created possibly the most delightful bond over the course of 10 years. Still, it's not exactly a driving force.

Things come to a climax at KACL. Sadly, Kenny has lost some of his spark to become a reasonably generic character of late (with all due respect to Tom McGowan, who has a stellar episode coming up in "Kissing Cousin"). His office humour early in the episode is incredibly tepid, and his "that always stops you women" is the start of a weird run of jokes from his character over the course of the season. Still, it's all in service of the brilliant moment where Roz - casual in the anchor's chair for the first time - inadvertently reveals that she slept with Frasier. It's a great reveal to begin with, leading to the classic sequence in which Frasier puts his foot in it. Again, things are a bit contrived: Frasier's choice of phrasing is very unusual (unlike the stellar but naturalistic "The Candidate") however, let's be honest, by the time he reaches the line: "My brother was with me for moral support and, let's face it, somebody to talk to", you'd have to be pretty churlish not to be amused. A very funny consequence of the controversial Roz/Frasier hookup. Good times.


Rating: 83%

 

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