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October 9, 2015

Forget 'Frasier:' Five New Ideas for Kelsey Grammer

by Allison Waldman, posted Sep 3rd 2010 3:00PM
kelsey_grammer_fox_back_to_youBased on the news story earlier this week that Kelsey Grammer is seeking advice about doing a 'Frasier' redux, a sequel to the hit NBC sitcom which earned the actor four Emmy awards as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy, it seems like there are some other -- perhaps better -- suggestions for what Kelsey should do next if he comes back to television.

Here, then, are five prime time ideas that could bring luster back to Grammer's career after the disappointing 'Back to You' and the truly dismal, 'Hank.'

1. Take a Tip from the 'Modern Family' Model

Instead of looking for a star sitcom, Kelsey needs to become part of an ensemble cast. We know he's a star, but he doesn't have to be the star of whatever he does next. If he can, he should learn from his co-horts on 'Modern Family,' the producers and writers who did 'Frasier' with him, that right now big casts are in.

TV is going in that direction with successful series like 'Glee' and 'Modern Family,' even shows like 'Mad Men' boast expansive casts. If Kelsey could park his ego at the door and accept being one of a dozen rather than the guy in the spotlight, he could do great.

sideshow_bob_the_simpsons_fox2. Forget 'Frasier,' Do 'The Sideshow Bob Show'

That's right, instead of more Dr. Frasier Crane, a character Kesley played for 20 years on 'Cheers' and 'Frasier,' Kelsey should get 'The Simpsons'' Matt Groening to give him a platform for more Robert Underdunk Terwilliger and his sordid, crazy life.

Kelsey's portrayal of Sideshow Bob on 'The Simpsons' has been brilliant. In a 'Simpsons'' spin-off, Sideshow Bob could star in his own animated series. The character might still be in prison, or a fugitive, or perhaps rehabilitated in some manner ... perhaps not. (Insert evil laugh here.) Whatever the concept, Kelsey has always been hilarious as Bob.

3. Have a Sitdown with Les Moonves

Kelsey needs to work with CBS. NBC and Fox and ABC have been home for Grammer, but now it's time to give CBS a shot. And the right guy is there for Kelsey, Les Moonves, President and CEO. Yes, the two had a falling out in 2009 over 'Medium' (which Grammer's company produced), but Moonves is great at finding new successes or second acts for established TV stars. Last season, 'ER's' Julianna Margulies made a huge comeback with 'The Good Wife.'

This season Tom Selleck has returned to the Tiffany network to play a New York cop in 'Blue Bloods,' and William Shatner is trying his luck in a sitcom, '$#*! My Dad Says.' Grammer could morph into a series that's different from what he's done before, something serious or character-driven. The Les Moonves brain trust could reinvent Kelsey.

4. Think Like Ray Romano

A star like Ray Romano, star of 'Everybody Loves Raymond,' walked away from number one sitcom success because he didn't want to overstay his welcome. It was surprising to some that when Romano decided to come back to TV, he didn't accept the offers of the networks to do another 'Raymond.' He could have; the show was a monster hit and thrives in syndication.

But Raymond chose to think outside the network box, if you will. He moved over to cable to do a different kind of TV shows, a dramedy about three middle-aged guys, 'Men of a Certain Age.' He chose something that isn't rapid-fire sitcom or drama-oriented. It's not chasing Nielsen numbers like a big four network show. There aren't 22 episodes, just 12 and Romano has had a chance to develop a new character and prove his worth as an actor. That could be a great thing for Kelsey Grammer!

scrooge_a_christmas_carol_nbc5. Maybe an HBO Mini-Series?

Historical minis are big hits on HBO and Kelsey Grammer has a penchant for playing those types of roles. He did Ebenezer Scrooge in 'A Christmas Carol' and was in the mini-series 'Kennedy' early in his career. Suppose Kelsey pitched a bio on Charles Dickens for HBO, or opted to resurrect a more traditional Sherlock Holmes in Victorian England than the Robert Downey Jr. version?

There are dozens of mini-series and movies propose every season that would be ripe for an actor like Grammer to latch onto. Maybe Kelsey needs to get his agent looking into that angle for future work?

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I would DEFINITELY watch a spin-off of Frasier! I love watching the reruns on Lifetime. I also loved Kelsey in "Back to You" and liked "Hank".
I think "Modern Family" is hugely overrated and not even very funny. The absolute BEST sitcom that ABC has is the unfairly underrated "The Middle"!

February 02 2011 at 1:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I would love to see Frasier in New York and maybe he could come to london for a bit. Get all the gang back and a few new ones too.
He is such a wonderful character - i am sure Kelsey could it off provided he had the right scripts. Frasier was such a clever funny and intelligent man and so was his lovely brother Niles.
I still love to find clever quotes in the series, even today.

October 08 2010 at 5:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

He's milked his "talent" for all it's worth. Please stop saddling the viewing public with his flops and failures.

September 05 2010 at 12:52 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Kelsey seems to be a one trick pony. A very successful pony, but does anyone ever really want to see him as anything other than Frasier?

September 05 2010 at 12:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


September 04 2010 at 8:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Sounds like a terrific idea. Include the cameos of old caste members.

September 04 2010 at 5:45 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


September 04 2010 at 4:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sheila Hurteau

I would definitely watch - "Frasier" was the best sitcom ever - i still watch the reruns. The writing clever, the chemistry with the cast great and I loved Niles, Martin, and the rest - better than anything on today. Bring it back!!!!!!

September 04 2010 at 4:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I would love to see Frasier come back even as a spin off. I think the show was one of the funniest comedy on TV. It would be good to have some real down to earth humor on television.

September 04 2010 at 3:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mary Beth

I assume you're referring to his TV characters. And I agree that Frasier is best single. Also agree that he could be fabulous as a retired man, searching, always searching for meaning in his life. I also would like to see Niles in the show as his brother, married to the English physical therapist. A great combination. And I prefer a small cast.

September 04 2010 at 3:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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