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Dr. Nora is the 20th episode of Season 6 of Frasier.

Synopsis

EMMY WINNERS CHRISTINE BARANSKI AND PIPER LAURIE GUEST-STAR -- A flattered Frasier (Kelsey Grammer) hires a glamorous psychiatrist (guest star and Emmy winner Christine Baranski, 'Cybil') to host a radio call-in show following his own, but the good doctor is shocked when a fire-breathing 'Dr. Nora' berates her cowering questioners with a hostile, take-no-prisoners attitude. Even single-mother Roz (Peri Gilpin) is not spared from Dr. Nora's malicious invective, prompting her to scheme with Frasier to try to drive a stake through the harridan's stony heart. Emmy winner Piper Laurie ('Promise') guest-stars as a woman with a key to Dr. Nora's past.

Recap

The Dr. Frasier Show is doing very well, and the studio decides to start another show of the same genre. They ask Frasier to interview contenders, and he does so at Cafe Nervosa. He thinks he is about to make his choice, going with Dr. Goldon Edelstein, and Niles approves his decision. However, in the end, he decides to recommend Dr. Nora Fairchild, who flatters him at the interview. Frasier enjoys having an apprentice, until she begins her show. She turns out to be a religious zealot, condemning pre-marital sex, divorce, etc. Her advise turns out to be more like abuse than advice, blatantly calling listeners things such as whores. Frasier is upset, and threatens to withdraw his recommendation. However, Kenny says that her ratings are very high, and he decides to keep her. Nora shuns Frasier's advice on air, and he and Roz decide to take her off the air.

Martin and Daphne like Nora, Martin saying she stands up for traditional values. Niles says, from what he's heard, that Nora has difficult problems with her mother. Though Roz has gathered plenty of secrets from Dr. Nora's past, such as her failures at her previous workplaces, a number of divorces, an affair with a married man and the fact that her PhD. is in Physical Education (Frasier quips "She's a gym teacher!"), Frasier calls her mother, and asks her to make amends with her estranged daughter. She shows up at the studio the next day, and begins to verbally abuse her daughter. Nora runs away from the studio, screaming at the top of her lungs. Frasier fills in to cover up the dead air.

Starring

Kelsey Grammer as Frasier Crane
Jane Leeves as Daphne Moon
David Hyde Pierce as Niles Crane
Peri Gilpin as Roz Doyle
and John Mahoney as Martin Crane

Special Guest Stars

Christine Baranski as Nora Fairchild
Piper Laurie as Mrs. Mulhern

Guest starring

Tom McGowan as Kenny Daly

Co-Starring

Douglas Owen McDonald as George

Guest callers

Gillian Anderson as Jenny
Yo-Yo Ma as Tom
Bonnie Raitt as Denise
Pia Zadora as Jill

Trivia

  • This episode was pulled from syndication by Paramount after Dr. Laura Schlessinger, on whom the title character is based (Dr. Laura did not object to herself being spoofed, but considered her mother to be out of bounds), complained. However, it runs in other countries such as the UK.
    • Piper Laurie, who played Dr. Nora's mother, previously voiced a caller to Frasier's show.
  • Both Piper Laurie and Christine Baranski were nominated for the 1999 primetime Emmy award for an Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series for their roles in this episode.
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