Frasier had the distinction of breaking several historic records in television during its momentous run of eleven seasons. It was the most popular spin-off to ever be aired, it had the most Emmy nominations of a comedy or drama (until Game of Thrones, and it had an actor (Kelsey Grammar) who to this day is the only person to play the same character across 3 different shows and be nominated for an Emmy for each (Frasier, Cheers, and Wings).
Following psychiatrist Dr. Frasier Crane as he balanced his Seattle radio show, the care of his ex-cop father, and his chaotic love life, it was praised for its witty dialogue, tight storylines, and emotional acting. Though it ended in 2004, it continues to enjoy popularity on streaming services. Now that Frasier can be enjoyed in the era of binging, here's all the hidden details you never noticed that will reignite your passion for the show.
10 THE CHANGING OPENING CREDITS
Every episode of Frasier began with an opening title sequence in which the skyline of Seattle would appear, including the Space Needle landmark, with the words "Frasier" beneath it. What fans may have missed is that for each new season, the color of his name would change. The first season was blue, followed by pink, green, purple, yellow/white, brown, yellow/orange, neon green, orange, silver, and gold.
And if you watch closely in the title sequence, there was always a small animation that interacted with the skyline. It could be as subtle as a blinking red light on top of the Needle, to as noticeable as fireworks. Others included a helicopter taking off, birthday balloons, a Christmas tree, a rising moon, radio waves, an airplane flying the KACL banner, a train, lightning, and a construction "crane".
9 FRASIER NEVER HAD A BROTHER OR A FATHER
At one point or another, every main character from the popular series Cheers makes a guest appearance on the show, with the exception of Rebecca (Kirstie Alley). When Sam Malone is in town, he's genuinely surprised to meet Frasier's brother and father. This is a reference to the period of time when Frasier was a reoccurring character on Cheers and didn't mention anything about his family other than his father was dead.
Frasier explained that he had been mad at his father at the time, and so invented the story of him being a research scientist that died. As for Niles, David Hyde Pierce got the job because he bore a striking resemblance to Kelsey Grammar when he first appeared on Cheers (a point Sam brings up to him in character), and so he was written in.
8 THERE WAS REAL ANIMOSITY BETWEEN DIANE AND FRASIER
In the episode "The Show Where Diane Comes Back", Diane (Shelley Long) of Cheers fame makes a guest appearance on Frasier, toying with his affections to get one of her plays produced. In reality, Shelley Long had a great distaste for Frasier on Cheers and wanted him written out. She felt their characters were too similar and that his character was more successful with punchlines that should have been hers.
At the end of the episode when Frasier realizes he's been used, but recognizes the reasons why (much to do with Diane's harried mental state), he's able to have a heart to heart with her. Much of the emotions on display in this scene were real, as Kelsey Grammar felt it was an opportunity to bury the hatchet with Shelley Long over their prior feud.
7 THE CRANE BOYS HAD HIDDEN TALENTS
While both the Crane Boys excelled in their studies at Yale and Cambridge, Harvard and Oxford, they were also very musical. They would often gather around Frasier's piano and perform for friends and family, highlighting their skills. Actor David Hyde Pierce (Niles) trained as a classical pianist for years, so all of the scenes of him playing the piano are real.
As for Kelsey Grammar, he is a noted singer, and while he has lent his sonorous vocals to songs in various episodes, he's actually the one that sings the theme song to Frasier that plays over the end credits. "Tossed salads and scrambled eggs are calling again" is a reference to the "mixed up" people that call in to his radio show.
6 A PREGNANCY WAS DISGUISED...BUT NOT THAT ONE
In season eight, Jane Leeves (Frasier's housekeeper Daphne) got pregnant, causing the writers to come up with a reason to explain her ever-changing figure. The plot entailed that Daphne had developed an eating disorder, causing her to have to go to a health spa at the end of the season to deal with her substantial weight gain. When she comes back, she's "recovered", and also no longer pregnant.
When it's said she lost "nine pounds and twelve ounces at the health spa", that's an inside joke referencing her real daughter's birth weight of nine pounds and twelve ounces. Ironically, Roz Doyle becomes pregnant on the show, but unlike most series having to fabricate a storyline around it, that was the storyline, and the actress wasn't really pregnant.
5 FRASIER'S CALLERS WERE OFTEN FAMOUS ACTORS
At the end of every season of Frasier, you may remember a series of black and white photographs flash in front of the screen over the ending credits. These are pictures of the celebrities that provided the voices for the callers on the Dr. Frasier Crane Show on KACL. Sometimes they're very recognizable on their own, but sometimes they've been told to disguise their voice.
Rather than record their lines in a sound-booth at a recording studio, the celebrities were allowed to record their lines as a message over the phone. This not only allowed the show to get a lot more celebrity participants due to their conflicting schedules, and also add to the realism of Frasier's segments.
4 IT REFERENCED SEINFELD'S TIME SLOT
In the fall of 1998, there would be no Seinfeld on NBC. The popular series had concluded, and for the first time since 1989, NBC had to think about something else to replace its time slot. Frasier was entering its sixth season and had proven itself immensely successful, making it the perfect show to take over.
When Frasier began its sixth season, Frasier himself makes a special reference to the momentous occasion on his actual radio show. He exclaims, "Before we begin, I'd like to say how honored I am to be taking over this slot. Obviously, I have some rather big shoes to fill - my predecessor here was much beloved." It was a very clever way to be so respectful.
3 EDDIE'S CHANGING MARKINGS
Moose, the real terrier who played Martin Crane's faithful furry companion Eddie on the series was a regular member of the cast until the age of ten, when his fur was practically snow white and he was nearly blind. By that point, Moose had been bred to have a replacement, and so his son, Enzo, took over Eddie's part. You may have noticed that there are seasons where Eddie's markings are close, but not exactly the same as Moose's.
When it came time for the final curtain bow for the show, the cast gathered on stage and Moose's trainer carried out the old pupper to join them one last time. His awareness of the recognition of the audience applause is said to have made the moment extremely emotional. He is said to have gotten the most fan mail of any of his castmates.
2 THE CRANE BOYS MALAISE
Neither Niles nor Frasier have ever been considered the epitome of health. While it's true, Frasier has considerable weight on Niles, and they both regularly participate in squash tournaments, neither of them are particularly robust. They have trouble riding bicycles as two grown men, and Niles finds the idea of physical exertion for its own sake appalling.
But what renders them insufferable ninnies at the drop of a hat? It all comes down to their Code of Ethics. Both strive to have their moral compass always point true, and whenever it falters, they exhibit psychosomatic reactions to their quandary; in Frasier's case, his stomach always churns, whereas Niles gets a nose bleed.
1 MARTIN CRANE'S CHAIR
The chair that launched a thousand arguments, Martin Crane's beloved easy chair was a signature piece amidst Frasier Crane's carefully cultivated decor. It went with absolutely nothing in the psychiatrist's stuffy apartment, but it made his father happy, so when it came time for Marty to move in with Frasier, it was hauled in by a deliveryman in the episode "The Good Son".
Over the years, Frasier devised various ways to get rid of it, but always had a change of heart when he saw how much happiness it gave his dad. In Season 11, during the series finale "Good Night Seattle: Part 2", the same deliveryman returns to take Martin's chair out, right down to the same actor in the same outfit.