DAVID BIANCULLI

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FRASIER: THE COMPLETE SERIES
June 18, 2015  | By David Bianculli
 
Cheers already has been awarded the TVWW Seal of Approval, and Frasier becomes one of the few TV spinoff series deserving to make the list as well. Frasier, just collected in a compact edition presenting every episode from the show’s 11 seasons – that’s 257 episodes, folks – seems surprisingly fresh, given that it premiered in 1993, the season after Cheers ended, and called it quits in 2004. Kelsey Grammer’s character of Frasier was gold-plated comic brilliance by then, as was his relationship with icy ex-wife Lilith (beautifully played by Bebe Neuwirth). But on Frasier, Grammer got two more spectacularly gifted comic foils: David Hyde Pierce as fussy brother Niles, and John Mahoney as no-nonsense father Martin. These shows are great fun to revisit, and almost every episode provides, as a bonus treat, an unexpected familiar face as a guest star. Or, at least, a familiar voice, courtesy of Frasier’s phone-in radio show. And right now, it’s offered by Amazon at a ridiculously low price: under $60 for the entire set. – David Bianculli
 
 
 
 
 
 
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