Let’s Remember All of Kelsey Grammer’s Non-‘Frasier’ Bombs

America doesn’t want to see Grammer play anyone not named ‘Frasier Crane’
Let’s Remember All of Kelsey Grammer’s Non-‘Frasier’ Bombs

The first season of the Boston-set Frasier reboot obviously didn’t feature the late John Mahoney as Martin Crane, and David Hyde Pierce famously declined the opportunity to return as Niles, ultimately leaving little connective tissue between the two shows. And we haven’t even mentioned the fact that Frasier’s son Freddie now has an entirely new face.

At least Season Two will bring back Peri Gilpin’s Roz in a “recurring capacity,” and apparently Bulldog and Gill will make an appearance for some reason. After all, who amongst us wouldn’t travel across the country just to visit an ex-co-worker?

In a lot of ways, Frasier 2.0 feels like just another Kelsey Grammer sitcom, of which there have been many. So let’s take a look back at some of the Grammer-led comedies that probably would have done better had he simply changed the main character’s name to “Frasier Crane,” such as…

Kelsey Grammer Presents: The Sketch Show (2005)

As we’ve mentioned before, just the year after Frasier went off the air, Grammer returned to network TV with Kelsey Grammer Presents: The Sketch Show, a remake of a British series of the same name (minus the “Kelsey Grammer Presents” part). The short-lived show assembled an impressive cast of comic talents including Kaitlin Olson and Paul F. Tompkins. 

Unfortunately, the cast was also forced to appear in a certain number of awkward sketches starring their boss: Kelsey Grammer.

At least Grammer didn’t insist on singing the theme song for this one.

Back to You (2007-2008)

The Frasier reboot recently cast Patricia Heaton as a recurring guest star, presumably so Grammer will have someone on the set to talk to about politics (who won’t recoil in horror). But this is a reunion of sorts, too, because they both starred in the show Back to You.

The sitcom once again teamed Grammer with Frasier producers Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd (not that one) as well as director James Burrows. The plot concerned a Los Angeles news anchor (improbably named Chuck Darling) who’s forced to return to his old gig at a Pittsburgh station after he’s fired over an “on-air tirade” that went viral. 

Even with a supporting cast that included Fred Willard and Ty Burrell, the show was canceled after just one season, allowing Lloyd and Levitan to pitch some show called Modern Family to ABC

Hank (2009)

Just a year after Back to You folded up shop, Grammar was already back on TV with Hank, a comedy about a wealthy Wall Street executive who loses his job and is forced to move to his home state of Virginia. Wait, are all of these shows about Grammer losing a high-paying job and sacrificing his dignity to start from scratch?

This one’s kind of like Schitt’s Creek if Schitt’s Creek were terrible. Even though 10 episodes were filmed, just five made it onto TV. Hopefully the remaining five were sealed away in a secure warehouse like the Ark of the Covenant. 

Partners (2014)

You’d be forgiven for not remembering Partners, the FX sitcom that starred Grammer and Martin Lawrence as Chicago lawyers. If Grammer and Lawrence seem like a highly unlikely combo, well that’s exactly how they sold the show.

Grammer played a lawyer who is fired from a white shoe legal firm for ethical transgressions and forced to get a job with a local community’s leader’s practice — no! No he did not just do the same premise again! I guess the key difference here is that Grammer’s character isn’t just a humbled elitist; he's also casually racist. 

It, too, didn’t make it past the first season. 

At least Grammer has his Jesus-approved brewery to fall back on.

You (yes, you) should follow JM on Twitter (if it still exists by the time you’re reading this).


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