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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 8 -> Episode 8.06

The New Friend
Episode Details

Written by: Bob Daily

Directed by: Scott Ellis

Original US airdate: 5th December 2000

Original UK airdate: 9th February 2001


Cast Information
Main Cast
Frasier Crane .... Kelsey Grammer
Niles Crane .... David Hyde Pierce
Martin Crane .... John Mahoney
Daphne Moon .... Jane Leeves
Roz Doyle .... Peri Gilpin
Recurring Cast
   
   
Guest Cast
Luke Parker .... Gary Cole
Luke's Date .... Magdalena Zielinska
Guest Callers

Episode Synopsis

Frasier is in a restaurant waiting for a late-running Niles when Roz and her new boyfriend walk in. Signalling to Roz, he asks her if he could join them while he waits for Niles - to which Roz reluctantly agrees. So Frasier is introduced to Luke Parker - a Harvard drop-out who now sails his boat around the world. Frasier is intrigued by Luke's tales of pirates and high-sea adventures, so much so in fact that when Roz has to rush off after Alice gets a bead stuck up her nose, Frasier and Luke stay talking to each other. So Frasier makes a new friend in Luke, encouraging him to put his stories down on paper. Everything is going swimmingly until one night when Roz arrives at Frasier's in a state - she saw Luke with another woman and promptly dumped him!

This leaves Frasier feeling sad for Roz and tells her that she was his friend first, leaving Luke out in the cold. Frasier then goes over to Luke's to tell him their friendship is over - which is a little hard for Frasier to do as he doesn't make new friends easily. Luke then tries to convince Frasier to change his mind by saying that if Roz hadn't been involved, this wouldn't be an issue. Frasier agrees and so decids to stay friends with Luke but to keep it quiet from Roz. Martin and Daphne both voice their displeasure at Frasier stabbing Roz in the back but Frasier is adamant that he is doing nothing terribly wrong. He does however, feel a little guilty and meets Roz at Cafe Nervosa to give her a bracelet she has had her eye on - unaware that Roz and Luke have just got back together.....

Episode Title Cards
  • A Double Life

  • With Apologies To Mr. Vonnegut

Episode Highlights

- Roz comes over to Frasier after he sees her and Luke at the restaurant:
Roz: Hi Frasier - I'm on a date. Please don't screw it up.

- Frasier learns that Luke went to Harvard:
Frasier: There's nothing like the sense of accomplishment when they hand you the diploma.
Luke: I dropped out.
Frasier: Well, you didn't miss much.

- Roz leaves Frasier and Luke talking as she has to rush off to baby Alice:
Roz: [whispering to Frasier] He thinks I'm 31 and was in a Whitesnake video.

- Martin is annoyed Frasier wouldn't look after Eddie while he went on a fishing trip:
Frasier: It was absolutely essential that I had my floors refinished thanks to Edward Scissorpaws there!

- Martin finds a tag on Eddie from "Barn Avnue" after staying with Niles:
Martin: You dumped him at a kennel!
Niles: No, it's more of a spa than a kennel.

- Roz tells Frasier she saw Luke with someone the previous night - who, unbeknownst to Roz, was Frasier:
Frasier: Did you get a good look at them?
Roz: Only from behind - some fat chick!

Frasier Online Episode Review

Finally, an episode with more than a fleeting glance of Roz - and pretty good it is too. It features a mixture of reasonably witty writing and some good farcical moments, although neither of these two elements were featured at their best. For example, the multiple mobile phone scene where Roz and Frasier alternately phone Luke as their plans change is funny but the pace is too slack to make it more than amusing. This episode also sees the introduction of the show's producers way of covering Daphne's pregnancy - eating in almost every scene. Was this the right move? Only time will tell. The episode as a whole, then, was pretty much average 'Frasier' - amusing and fun while it's on but nothing special enough to really make it stand out.

Rating

73 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 79.5%
Total Number of Reviews: 4


Closet space, May 16, 2013

Reviewer: Sammy J from Melbourne, Australia


At last, a really solid episode for season 8. Gary Cole puts in an enjoyable guest turn as a man who - weirdly - comes between Roz and Frasier. Peri Gilpin has been underused of late and this episode shows what a silly decision that was. I can see how inadvertently the character could slip through the cracks in a writers' room environment. When a bunch of writers each pick their favourite subject, you can end up with numerous episodes that focus on the family relationships and Frasier's dating life, leaving a character like Roz on the outside. Season 8 also hasn't had a lot of time for KACL, sadly.

Still, "The New Friend" - in spite of its bland title - provides us with a very enjoyable Frasier/Roz conflict that plays around with physical comedy, moral dilemmas, and the quiet confusion of Niles. It's not a classic, but it's really solid.

Meanwhile, although this was filmed after some of the episodes that aired first, this is the start of Daphne's overeating arc. Has any other show treated an actress' pregnancy in this way? I don't think so, and I'm particularly impressed with how the series suggests that Daphne is the opposite of Roz (and many of us) - she's not a stress eater, she's a happiness eater. The overwhelming love of Niles has allowed her to set free her self-doubts and concerns. And food is now filling up some of those places. While I'd be very interested to see an alternate season 8 where Leeves' pregnancy came later, and the series could explore the conflicts between Niles and Daphne... this is actually an unusual tack for the series. I bemoan Leeves' reduced appearance for the next few episodes, but the development makes a lot of sense.


Rating: 80%

 

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