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Frasier - S10 E14

Comedy
 

Niles and Frasier plan a party to celebrate the unveiling of a painting that Niles has just purchased. However, Daphne notes that every event the brothers host inevitably ends in disaster. She suggests that Niles instead host the party with her. Frasier is hurt to learn that he will be excluded, and says that he will not even attend the party. Daphne believes that she has everything under control, but things quickly begin to unravel. Alice writes her name in crayon on the painting. Daphne remains calm, and gives Roz the name of a man whom Niles uses to restore artwork. However, the game hens catch fire in the meantime. The caterers are too busy to replace them, so Daphne must turn to Frasier for help. He comes over to assist with the food preparation, but must hide in the pantry whenever Niles comes in the kitchen so that his role will remain a secret. Frasier becomes angry when he overhears Niles and others complimenting the food and saying how much better off they are without Frasier's involvement. Mike Shaw, the artist responsible for the painting, shows for the party after earlier declining his invitation. He doesn't care for the stuffy guests, and decides to go upstairs and watch pay-per-view boxing with Mrs. Moon. Niles hears a couple's description of Shaw (white-haired man in a flannel shirt using a cane) and assumes they have him confused with Martin. The couple who met Shaw has to leave. Martin arrives to bring Frasier some dishes, and winds up having to pose as Shaw for the other guests. Roz asks Daphne to stall the unveiling because the art restorer is painfully slow. Niles insists that dinner must be served immediately. He discovers Frasier, and they begin to argue, leading to more chaos. Daphne tries her best to salvage the evening, but an unexpected event prompts her to give up. Frasier consoles her by telling her that the disastrous party means she is officially part of the family.

 
Episode Title: Daphne Does Dinner
Airs: 2003-02-11 at
  • Robert Bianco

    For this one half-hour, Frasier is high-class entertainment. Grammer does scowling exasperation as well as any actor in America (it's hard to imagine an actor who could get more laughs trading looks with a dog), the fraternal relationship is wonderful, and the work-place material works perfectly (thanks to another fine supporting performance from Peri Gilpin). [16 Sept 1993, p.C7]

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Full Review
  • Marvin Kitman

    Unlike "Daddy Dearest," it's a warm, compassionate, story about a human problem the baby boomer generation sooner or later will be dealing with: what to do with geriatric TV set as they get on in years. It's not a big busy ensemble sitcom like "Cheers," more a one-man show for Grammer. But it's cozy, involving, socially relevant and marvelously amusing. [16 Sept 1993, p.93]

    Newsday Full Review
  • Miles Beller

    A series that constructs its characters and situations with care and skill from the start rather than relying on seeking to confirm expectations. [16 Sept 1993]

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Tony Scott

    Situations are on target, characters are strong, the dialogue bright. Nothing's extraneous as director James Burrows keeps a tight rein on the brisk, smart exercise.

    Variety Full Review
  • Hal Boedeker

    In a season of too many three-child sitcoms, Frasier reminds viewers how good an adult sitcom can be. In its own way, Frasier is a family sitcom, one with meaning for middle-aged children. The father character brings a dark, but not oppressive, tone to the show, and Mahoney offers a performance full of pain and bitter humor. He gives Frasier a weight that other sitcoms, even Cheers, rarely have. [16 Sept 1993, p.G1]

    Miami Herald Full Review
  • David Hiltbrand

    In the tradition of Cheers, the show thrives by selling up distinct, contrary personalities and making them collide for a half-hour each week. So far the writing is sharp and punchy.

    People Weekly Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    So far, Martin and Daphne have been good for a few solid laughs per show,but the indispensable costar has proven to be Frasier's brother, Niles, played by David Hyde Pierce.

    Entertainment Weekly Full Review
  • Tom Feran

    Frasier is also that rare supporting character who appears able to support his own series. Tonight's pilot gets Frasier off to a smartly written and deftly acted start that is especially lifted by the effortless pairing of Grammer and Pierce, who was a standout from the short-lived political sitcom "The Powers That Be." [16 Sept 1993, p.1F]

    Cleveland Plain Dealer Full Review
  • Greg Dawson

    This is almost exactly the same premise as Fox's hideously unfunny Daddy Dearest. What a difference a script makes. [16 Sept 1993, p.E1]

    Orlando Sentinel Full Review
  • Howard Rosenberg

    If the premiere of Frasier does not manufacture laughs as consistently as one might expect from a "Cheers" offspring, it's still a cleverly written show with a quality cast that bodes well for the future. Mahoney is superb as the father, who reveals his inner feelings grudgingly, and Grammer is a master of the witty response. [16 Sept 1993, p.F11]

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Robert P. Laurence

    On merit, Frasier seems more likely to succeed, largely thanks to a strong supporting cast, headed by the man who plays the father, John Mahoney. [16 Sept 1993, p.ND42]

    San Diego Union-Tribune Full Review
  • Lon Grahnke

    Warning: This is not "Cheers II." With the morose Crane as the central character, the Frasier spinoff reflects the gloomy, occasionally pompous personality of the guilt-burdened shrink and the star who plays him. The humor is moody and cerebral, like the chilly Grammer. But that's not bad - especially in this season of warm and gooey domestic sitcoms. [16 Sept 1993, p.43]

    Chicago Sun-Times Full Review
  • Tom Shales

    Frasier at this point seems much more amusing when he's at home contending with his father than when he's at the workplace fielding phoned-in woes. But wherever he is, he's clearly in good hands -- the hands of old pros who still have the brash enthusiasm of young Turks. [16 Sept 1993, p.C1]

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Gail Pennington

    Leeves is a hoot as Daphne, and provides leavening to Mahoney's self-centered gruffness. This could all work out, I guess; these characters (except possibly Dad) could grow on us, and in the post-"Seinfeld" time slot, they're likely to get a chance. [16 Sept 1993, p.6G]

    St. Louis Post-Dispatch Full Review
  • John Engstrom

    Served up this time as the main course instead of an ensemble hors d'oeurve, Kelsey Grammer's Frasier Crane has been toned down from his overbearing "Cheers" years. He's slightly less pompously goofy, making him far more acceptable in these larger doses.[16 Sept 1993, p.B6]

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer Full Review
  • Staff [Not Credited]

    This "Cheers" spinoff has a winking cleverness about it. The writing is snappy and Kelsey Grammer, who plays a radio shrink, is unexpectedly charming. If I was in major couch-potato mode after "Seinfeld," I wouldn't turn it off. [17 Sept 1993, p.47]

    Boston Herald Full Review
  • Matt Roush

    Like most other Cheers fans, it's impossible not to miss the gang back East. But given the disappointing season at hand, Frasier will do. [16 Sept 1993, p.1D]

    USA Today Full Review
  • Rick Kogan

    The radio call-in studio is fertile comedic territory. Less so, the home turf. Though Mahoney is a great actor, his character is so sour and bitter as to be off-putting. Some of the dialogue, though delivered with neat timing, is obvious and crude. [14 Sept 1993, p.2]

    Chicago Tribune Full Review