This episode from the third season is Frasier at its best. The oneliners come at an incredible speed, the simple basic plot offers opportunities for all major characters, and the humour comes in different forms: irony, wordplay, slapstick, ... The wonderful writing is supported by a great cast. David Hyde Pierce plays the sexual frustration of Niles without going overboard, funny but touching. Peri Gilpin is a very underrated actress, who can handle underplayed sarcasm as well as physical comedy. Perhaps the talent of John Mahoney has been more recognised, and this episode shows you why. His imitation of Daphne is spot on, not surprisingly as he spent his youth in Britain. (His Lancashire background is closer to Daphne Moon's Birmingham than that of Essex girl Jane Leeves.) I have always found it amazing that the star of the show, Kelsey Grammer, allowed these other actors to shine, rather than just use them as stooges. But then again, as is obvious from the last scene in this episode, he can get the biggest laughs on his own.
Frasier convinces everyone to take a leap and do something different on Leap Day- and all of them are ill-fated, including Frasier's. He convinces Roz to give a shout-out to someone she saw and loved but never got to give her phone number to over his show- and it turns out that he's already married. Likewise, he sends Martin on a trip to Montana- or, he would have, if the plane hadn't crashed and he barely survived. (Though the crash wasn't the trouble- apparently, that can be attributed to the overweight lady who got on the inflatable slide after him.) The highlight of the show, however, is when he decides to sing an aria for a benefit on PBS. He realizes that he is unable to sing it, and changes it at the last minute (and did so on camera, naturally) to a song he was more used to singing- and, he forgets it, to boot. He ad-libs the song hilariously, with lines such as "I want to go to a taco show!". He attempts to convince Niles not to go see Maris, and he claimed not to. But the show ends in a hilarious note where Frasier stops talking to him and goes into the kitchen- and Niles pulls a bit of cream from behind his ear and eats it, showing that he did indeed meet up with Maris.
Frasier suggests that everyone should take a "leap", or go outside their comfort zone, to celebrate Leap Year. For his leap, Frasier decides to sing an Italian aria instead of his usual "Buttons and Bows" for a benefit. And Frasier has to do something to stop Niles from going after Maris for sex, so he won't regret later, but Niles doesn't listen to his brother. One of the best episodes of the show... It was sooo funny when Frasier was on PBS and he doesn't relize the camera is on and he says "Who watches PBS?" Good episode worthy of a good review!
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