Incoming: seconds of tossed salad and scrambled eggs. We might not have a date yet but there is now confirmation of a twelfth series of one of the best sitcoms of all time.

It’s been teased for a long time. Back in 2020, Frasier’s titular star, Kelsey Grammer, told the world that a twelfth series was in the works, but gave little detail other than that. But then, well, the big terrible thing happened and, as with so many other fun plans, we can only imagine that it kicked the reboot can a decent distance down the road for a while, along with all the other cans.

At the time, Grammer said, ‘We’ve hatched the plan, what we think is the right way to go. We’re sort of on standby a little bit. Working out a couple of possible network deals that we’re circling. Frasier is sort of in a second position to that at this point. So there’s still stuff going on. But a revisit to Frasier, Frasier’s world, is I think definitely going to come.’

Now, though we are not overburdened with details, we do know that the series will air
on Paramount+ at an unspecified date – and that fans should not expect it to be simply more of the same. This will be a new TV show for a new time. The original series aired from 1993 to 2004 over eleven seasons, itself a spin off from Cheers (the Frasier character actually made his screen debut in 1984). And when it comes to this classic, brilliantly funny show about two pompous brothers and their exasperated and often crotchety dad, we will always have time. Dr Frasier Crane, we’re listening.

What We Know So Far

Bye Bye Seattle

Frasier has not only left the building; he has left his beloved Seattle. That means, then, no more vast apartment with views out across the twinkling lights of the city’s skyscrapers. Grammer says, ‘We’ll see how people respond to it because it’s not going to be the same place, it’s not going to be Seattle. It’s not going to be the same Frasier—it’s going to be the man in his next iteration. Hopefully that’ll be something people like watching.’

Old Regulars Become Guests

If you’re hoping to watch the reignited on-screen antics of Frasier and his old muckers, be warned: you may not see quite as much of them as you’d hoped for. The excellent John Mahoney who played Frasier’s frequently bewildered father – and whose near-surgical attachment to the chair so loathed by his son made it almost another character on the show – sadly died in 2018. Eddie, his spirited little Jack Russell, met his demise a couple of years after the last series ended. But as for the rest of the cast, such as the inimitable David Hyde Pierce as Frasier’s brother and fellow psychiatrist, their appearances may be rather more fleeting. Grammer has said that he would ‘be surrounded by new characters, with original Frasier cast members not expected to be series regulars but could make guest appearances.’

It’s Set To Be Emotional

Whatever happens, the return of one of the wittiest shows ever to air is going to stir up some emotions. Grammer told CBS chat show The Talk that the casts were in ‘the final stages of the final script for the first episode,’ adding that, ‘It looks pretty good. I’ve had a couple of runs through it, and I cried, so you know, I’m happy.’

Other Sitcoms That Got A Reboot

Sex & The City

And Just Like That, the 2021 revival of the hugely popular Sex & The City, had its critics. It was also famously boycotted by former cast mate, Kim Cattrall. Neither of these hurdles were, however, enough to topple this behemoth of a show. Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte – along with their various offspring – were back and striding out in outfits that their younger iterations would doubtless have been proud of. Sure, there were some clumsily handled plotlines. But mostly, this was the fun Manolo thigh-high end of the reboot spectrum. Watch out for season two in March. Watch it.

Will & Grace

Will, Grace, Jack and Karen were reunited for Will & Grace’s eleventh and final series in 2018 – mostly, alas, to negative critical reviews. Vanity Fair’s Tara Ariano wrote, ‘another unnecessary TV revival fizzles out with its second series finale.’ It was also, apparently, mired in on-set feuding. Let’s hope Frasier doesn’t meet the same whimpering end. Watch it.

The Wonder Years

This 1980s classic doesn’t pick up where Kevin (Fred Savage) – whose memories of his 1960s childhood were what propelled the series – left off. Instead, it reimagines the world, but this time with the protagonist, Dean (Don Cheadle) looking back upon his boyhood in Alabama in 1968 (the younger Dean is played by Elisha Williams). The nostalgia is still there; so are the rose-tinted spectacles. But they are balanced by the realities of being a black family in the south at this time. Rebecca Nicholson writing in The Guardian say, ‘The test for any reboot is whether there is a point to it. Has it done something new with the name, rather than coasting on brand recognition? The answer, in this case, is an emphatic yes. It would have been simpler to have made another nostalgia-loving period piece, which doesn’t examine the idea in any meaningful way; instead, it balances its plates with care. Fans of the original may also wish to keep an eye out for the director’s name in the credits.’ Watch it.

By Nancy Alsop
November 2022

Nancy Alsop


Nancy is a magpie for the best in design and culture.