Here’s Why Kelsey Grammer Keeps His Politics Out of ‘Frasier’

The proud conservative comic actor understands how off-putting political humor would be to his target audience
Here’s Why Kelsey Grammer Keeps His Politics Out of ‘Frasier’

He’s listening, and he’s learning to keep his politics far away from Frasier.

Despite much of the TV world’s inability to see Kelsey Grammer as anything besides his most famous character, the 69-year-old actor and producer is not Dr. Frasier Crane — and, perhaps more importantly, Frasier isn’t his actor, either. Where Frasier is a man of science (albeit a soft science in psychology), Grammer dictates his own life’s path based on his strong Christian convictions. Frasier loves his frequent glasses of sherry, while Grammer has been famously sober since 1996. And, pivotally, throughout his many decades on television on both Cheers and Frasier, Seattle and Boston’s favorite radio psychologist has mostly avoided publicly discussing political topics, while the self-professed Trumpian Republican Grammer, uh, discusses.

Although Grammer has made no secret of his right-wing leanings throughout his public life, once even claiming to be a massive admirer of Russian President Vladimir Putin “because he is so comfortably who he is,” the six-time Emmy-winner makes a point to separate his own politics from the character who most exemplifies the “coastal elite” archetype to so many sitcom fans. In a recent interview with Variety, Grammer explained how letting his politics seep into Frasier would simply make for bad comedy — so even conservatives know that conservative humor sucks ass.

“We avoid political jokes, because honestly, they are so locked in a time warp,” Grammer said of why his personal opinions havent influenced the writing on Frasier, even in its current iteration as a sort of streaming revival vanity project thats seen him take on more responsibilities in the development and plotting of the Paramount+ reboot.

Grammer went so far as to say that all topical comedy is a short-term strategy that isnt fit for a series that has remained so popular for so long, saying, “Contemporary culture does not fuel any comedy that lasts. It’s only funny in that moment. And usually not so funny for half the people that are listening. I think it’s good advice to steer clear of that.”

Grammer further opined of his shows enduring appeal, “Frasier has always been able to last because it’s about the things that are important: Relationships, love, brothers, fathers, wives, sisters. Some things are universally funny, and it’s usually character-situation-relationship. They’re the tent poles of all of our storytelling.”

Still, Frasier isn’t completely absent of Grammer’s personal values, at least in his estimation. Back before the reboot premiered late last year, Grammer told IndieWire that “Frasier has been my ministry,” arguing that the ethics of the series are based in his Christian Scientist beliefs, even if religion is rarely discussed on the show in explicit terms. 

Grammer’s comments in the recent interview echoed that outlook, with the actor saying of the making of the Frasier reboot, “As they load the audience in to watch a taping when we start, I say, ‘I’d like to welcome you to church. This is where the things I believe in get flushed out — where we get to laugh and cry together and enhance our human experience together.’ That’s a pretty great thing to get to do.”

So maybe the way we get Niles to come in and save Season Two of the Frasier reboot is to pray for it.


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