blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Frasier (1993) s02e15 – You Scratch My Book…

It didn’t occur to me to chart writers when I started this “Frasier” rewatch but then I naturally did it anyway. Writers, directors, guest callers. Joe Keenan writes this one, which has Shannon Tweed guest-starring a pop psychologist who loves Kelsey Grammer’s work—and even more, reads David Hyde Pierce’s, which is an aside but more interesting—while Grammer is hot for every cubic centimeter of Tweed’s bod except her brain.

Keenan goes for some easy laughs regarding voluptuous Tweed while not really giving her much of a character, which isn’t a great combination, but Tweed at least gets essentially redemptive material in the resolution. See, Grammer lies to Tweed about thinking she’s a good pop psychologist—now, there’s also the very wink-wink, silly women nineties thing with Tweed’s fanbase, which includes Jane Leeves, and it’s incredibly problematic; exceptionally.

But there’s not very much of it because most of the episode has Grammer trying to write a forward for Tweed’s next book but he hates the book and just wants to go to bed with her. It leads to Hyde Pierce having to help Grammer and Keenan’s really good writing for the two of them.

Hyde Pierce has a subplot about getting Leeves investing with his broker but also wanting to make sure Leeves never loses any money… it eventually works into this comparison to Grammer and Tweed but it’s a passively mean one, dehumanizing Leeves and Tweed a bit.

There’s a lot of funny stuff in the episode and you never quite cringe at the shallow characterizations but it’s not bad the sitcom tropes on display here have been sunsetted. Andy Ackerman directed the episode; I feel like he’d have kept some of it in check.

Sadly nothing for Peri Gilpin outside introducing Grammer to Tweed and getting to roll her eyes at his Tex Avery wolf impression.

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