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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 9 -> Episode 9.21

Frasier Has Spokane
Episode Details

Written by: Eric Zicklin

Directed by: Wil Shriner

Original US airdate: 7th May 2002

Original UK airdate: 17th May 2002

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
Kenny Daly .... Tom McGowan
Guest Cast
Sully .... Bill Hayes
Frank .... Leo Marks
Herm Evans .... Joe Flaherty
Cathy .... Catherine Bruhier
Guest Callers
Carl .... Keith Carradine
1st Caller .... Scott Hamilton
2nd Caller .... Daryl Hannah
3rd Caller .... Olympia Dukakis

Episode Synopsis

Frasier's show has been picked up by a station in Spokane and excitedly announces that he and Roz have been invited there by the station to do their first show from Spokane. Once off air, he aslso learns from Roz that she and Roger have broken up - Frasier wants to help, but Roz says she is OK about it. Once in Spokane, Frasier appears at a press conference to introduce himself and Roz to the local media (accompanied by some free liquer!). Here, Frasier learns that he is replacing a local institution Neil Sullivan (known as Sully locally) and gets the impression that the locals aren't that impressed with him, but when Sully makes an impromptu appearance he receives a hero's welcome from the local press.

Things don't go too smoothly during Frasier's show either - every caller wants him to go back to Seattle, with some deciding to boycott the station until Sully comes back on the air. Frasier is determined to show the local audience his brand of therapy can help, and so convinces Roz to call in with a problem which soon develops into helping Roz get over Roger and seems to impress the Spokane audience. Meanwhile, Martin, Niles and Daphne work together to try and build a TV table - or at least until Daphne's bossiness takes over.

Episode Title Cards
  • Getting Sullied

Episode Highlights

- Daphne is taking Niles to a concert:
Niles: Am I dressed appropriately for something called Bananarama?

- Niles and Frasier can't believe their father is going to try and build a TV table:
Niles: The scariest words of my childhood were: 'Your father needs your help in the basement'

- Daphne sees Niles dressed in a suit for the concert:
Daphne: You're not going in those clothes - I got you some hair gel and parachute pants!

- Neil Sullivan speaks to the press at Frasier's press conference:
Neil Sullivan: When my Dad retired, he died a month later - take that anyway you like.

- Daphne makes fun of Martin's way of giving stupid names to everything:
Daphne: Watch out for the extension cord - that's the orange electricity hose (!)

- Kenny wonders if Frasier has seen the newspapers negative reaction to him:
Frasier: I read it. Everything from the adoring send off of Sully, to the cartoon of me and Satan doing a jig on Sully's grave!

- Frasier takes his first call in Spokane:
Frasier: Hello caller, I'm listening.
Caller: Go back to Seattle! [hangs up]

Frasier Online Episode Review

This is a rather dull episode that provides a few bright moments amongst a surfeit of rather weak jokes. I liked the way Frasier reacted to everyone's dislike of him in Spokane, and the scene where both Martin and Niles hide in the bathroom after they tire of Daphne's bossiness is quite amusing. However, Roz's breakup with Roger was handled rather too heavy handedly for my liking leaving the episode to tail off to a rather dour ending.


64 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 76.4%
Total Number of Reviews: 8

Sully!, May 21, 2013

Reviewer: Sammy J from Melbourne, Australia

An average episode lifted up by a couple of wonderful moments. The Seattle storyline doesn't elicit many laughs from me, with the Bananarama moments particularly falling flat. Daphne and Martin comparing construction work and terms is quite amusing, although I felt that the emphasis on comedic plot was pushed back in favour of simply letting the characters contrast each other. This was very much the approach in the weaker middle section of season 9, and I'm not overwhelmed by its return here. I didn't mind the Niles/Daphne tension, since again it speaks very truly to my feelings of being in close relationships with someone who has stronger skills than you, but ultimately it was a very middling plot.

Over in Spokane, meanwhile, things takes a fair while to heat up. Kenny has had a very good run of late, but this is a very weak episode for the character, who just has "early 2000s office humour" written all over him. The abusive reporters exist to set up a plot point but they come across as unlikely. I'm not asking for every moment of a sitcom to be credible but the decent concept of Frasier ousting a popular figure barrels over any notion of creating a realistic comic setup. Things do pick up, however. Any time Frasier intrudes upon a beloved institution has to result in a few funny moments, and the barrage of cruel calls (as well as the sympathetic but mercenary attitude of the Spokane station manager) feels more like the show I'm used to.

But what elevates "Frasier Has Spokane" a little above the average is the fantastic scene between Peri Gilpin and Kelsey Grammer. True, Roger himself only appeared in one episode as a reasonably sedate figure. But the notion of season 9 has very much been to build up characters over the course of the year. This has been proven throughout most episodes and it allows us to feel like Roz's relationship has existed, running alongside the series even if not always seen onscreen. So her ultimate breakdown with Frasier, particularly growing out of an initially comic moment of her hesitant attempt to "phone in", is made particularly poignant. Where "The Wizard and Roz" (my least favourite episode of the first nine seasons) went wrong was that it completely hid the cause of the emotional catharsis until the final scene, rendering the rest of the episode structurally obsolete. "Frasier Has Spokane" shows that you don't have to let your climax be the result of oppressive build-up; as long as it's woven into the episode a couple of times, we'll buy it. The clever way the Roz and Frasier storylines intersect makes this episode work, even if it's a shame that the script as a whole is far from spectacular.

Rating: 75%


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