It’s another strong episode. “Frasier”’s combination for success is the scripts—in this case, from writers Denise Moss and Sy Dukane—the supporting cast, and then the bigger name guest stars. Because whether you know his name or not, John Glover is a name guest star. He’s in this episode as Kelsey Grammer’s boss.
The episode starts with Grammer introducing David Hyde Pierce to some co-workers—the outtakes from Hyde Pierce giving Black guy Wayne Wilderson a jive greeting must be amazing—and quickly becomes a work episode. Someone is getting fired, which Grammer, Peri Gilpin, and the rest of the gang soon decide has got to be Bulldog (Dan Butler). Despite having high ratings, Butler’s apparently been asking for too much expense account and so on.
The next day, Grammer being socially awkward, makes chitchat with fellow radio personality George DelHoyo (the Catholic priest with the failing ratings) and says it’s Butler who’s getting fired. Butler overhears, confronts Glover, quitting.
Grammer feels terrible, of course, but it’s not like there’s anything he can do about it. Talking to Glover is out of the question.
Though once Butler shows up at the apartment needing a place to stay… Grammer gets more open to the idea.
Butler’s fantastic, Glover’s hilarious—he somehow makes the absurd reasonable but doesn’t lose the absurd impact—and some great stuff for the regular supporting cast. Like with Gilpin and the supporting supporting guest stars… it’s nice to get to see her do something more than the norm. Hyde Pierce also gets to do a “visit with dad” John Mahoney, which gets more and more painful by the millisecond, and Mahoney gets to praise Butler’s radio show in front of Grammer. There’s one of those nice layered delay “Frasier” jokes with Mahoney, Hyde Pierce, and Butler.
The celebrity caller is Jay Leno, as a guy who gets who gets fat-shammed. It’s a funny bit—like technically, the way they pull off the joke, it’s funny. But it’s still… a cheap fat-shamming joke. For all the pretense of pretension, “Frasier” goes for cheap jokes all the time. Usually telling them quite well.
It’s just, you know, extra cheap this time.