The first leading character of his aptly named show, Fraiser has moved to Seattle (from Boston as he was a character in Cheers) and takes a job as the local radio station KACL, where he gets his own call-in show as a therapist. Tropes from Cheers still apply to him.
Frasier:THAT'S IT! NO ONE CORRECTS MY FRENCH PRONOUNCIATION, YOU SON-OF-A-BITCH!
Book Dumb: Anybody without an Ivy League education, according to him and Niles.
Break the Haughty: A big part of the humor of the show is seeing if it's Frasier's or Niles's turn to get broken, or if they'll share it, and how it's going to happen. Subverted in that while he does get over much of his stuffiness and haughtiness over the course of the series, the actual "breaking" rarely sticks for long.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: He is a very effective and successful psychiatrist, but more than a handful of times are the instances where he helps people in need by screaming at them and playing on their insecurities or vulnerabilities to make them see his point.
Mistaken for Gay: In "The Doctor is Out!", this trait and a bizarre series of misunderstandings lead him to being supposedly "outed" and even accidentally get picked up by a famous opera director (played by heterosexual gay ally Patrick Stewart), who comes to believes Frasier is his "boyfriend". Hilarity Ensues.
Also happens in the episode "The Matchmaker." When Frasier tries to set up Daphne with the new station manager, the latter mistakes Frasier's intentions.
The Casanova: Subverted, though he often has several love interests at once, his attempts to juggle them inevitably end with all of them finding out what he's doing and he's left with no one.
GASP!: Prone to this when enamored of something. Mocked in "Out With Dad" when Martin mentions it as one of the more unrealistic tropes of opera, and Frasier immediately obliges. Martin gasps himself when he realizes the old crone of a mother is waving at him.
Insufferable Genius: He is very intelligent, and he'll let you know it if he finds a chance to show it off.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: As egocentric, arrogant and self-serving as he can be, Frasier shows on more than a few occasions that he is a good man at heart and truly cares about the people in his life.
Lame Pun Reaction: He's fond of the joke "Freudian slip" in reference to a psychiatrist tripping or falling somehow. No one ever laughs when he makes it, not even those who probably understand it.
Not so Above It All: Though it's uncommon, Frasier is definitely capable of cutting loose and hanging out with the boys. Zigzagged when it comes to rivalries with those who try to embarass him or show him up — on occasion he'll sink to their level and get them back at their own game, other times he'll be satisfied with making sure they know he can get them back but lets them off the hook.
Rousseau Was Right: Frasier thinks so — he notes in a few episodes centering on exploring the idea that he believes everyone is a good person deep down, and if you just give them a chance and believe in them, they will do the right thing.
Proved wrong when Bulldog is a complete Karma Houdini for doing a reprehensible act, even getting rewarded. However, his selfishness is shown up by the end of the episode where he uses his own mother as a human shield.
Sibling Rivalry: With Niles. The two constantly try to outdo the other when one of them gets some sort of recognition or position the other lacks, or outdoes the other in a competition. Reconstructed quite well when the two openly discuss their constant need to one-up the other and realize that their mutual fear of being outdone probably helped motivate them to become as successful and intelligent as they are, making their rivalry an ultimately positive influence on their lives.
Sibling Team: With Niles, especially common in the earlier seasons.
Lampshaded by Julia:
Julia: Bye, Frasier. Bye, Emergency Frasier.
Stop Helping Me!: In-universe. He's obviously popular and helpful on the radio, since they keep him on the air and he usually has a good influx of callers. However his attempts to give advice to his friends and family often backfire horribly, and they call him out on it.
Frasier: Well Niles, if you want my advice-
Niles:(mildly threatening) Ooo, you know, you really need to stop saying that.
Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Not always- he's often quite sympathetic. But this definitely comes into play during some of his more Jerkass moments, or when he's managing to totally screw up yet another promising relationship.
Frasier's brother, even more uptight and snooty than he is. Initially married to a Manipulative Bitch named Maris and an extreme doormat, he falls in love with Daphne at first sight. His Character Development over the series has him grow a backbone as he tries to escape his increasingly unhealthy marriage and some day confess his feelings to Daphne.
Aborted Declaration of Love: The few times he finally works up the courage to tell Daphne how he feels, something happens that makes it inappropriate or otherwise scares him off.
Adorkable : Especially when he's delivered a silly pun and can barely keep from giggling.
Berserk Button: Stay away from Daphne when he's around. Hitting on her makes him angry and hurting her feelings just makes it worse. Though Frasier and Martin hold him back and talk him down when he gets tempted to use violence in these situations, he won't hesitate to throw out an articulate "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
Break the Haughty: As with Frasier, a major theme is that one or both of them get broken over the course of an episode. Niles's breaking however takes place over several seasons as his divorce costs him his home, his lifestyle, and his reputation.
Drop-In Character: Usually to return something of Frasier's, to pick him up for something, or just to get away from Maris. Lampshaded once he and Daphne finally get together.
Niles (to Daphne): A patient canceled, so I thought I'd... drop by and see you. Oh my god, you have no idea how good it feels to say that. I'm here to see you! No more flimsy pretenses. No more making tedious small talk with Dad!
Heroic BSOD: He has many of these throughout the series, probably more than any other character, but most notably when Daphne gets engaged to Donny. Being forced to sit through their engagement breakfast in the next episode certainly didn't help.
Hidden Badass: When he thinks Maris is having an affair with their fencing instructor he challenges him to a duel, and does quite well against him, even taking a moment to give a cocky shake and a smirk atop the piano.
In fact, Niles' physical ineptitude is either psychological, or a cover. Over the course of the series, he did many things that proved he wasn't as weak or clumsy as he pretended or was portrayed.
Replacement Flat Character: The former Trope namer — Niles is essentially what Frasier was on Cheers with Frasier developing into a more rounded character. Niles then goes on to develop into his own distinct character separate from both the current Frasier and his original Cheers persona.
Vitriolic Best Buds: With Frasier, and eventually Roz after the two get over their initial dislike of each other.
Played by: John Mahoney
Frasier and Niles's father who moves in with Frasier, he's an ex-cop who was forced to retire when he took a bullet to the hip. Has little patience for his sons' antics and tries (usually with them not listening) to give them valuable advice to make them realize how things are much simpler than they perceive.
Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Though he is sometimes exasperated with how snootish they can be, Martin truly does love his sons. In "A Room Full of Heroes", Niles dresses like Martin for Halloween and in character begins to say Frasier and Niles were disappointments to him, only for Martin to sharply cut him off and tell him he has always been proud of them.
Bacon Addiction: Martin Crane is addicted to bacon - all kinds of processed meat, really.
Niles: Anyway, I brought a little peace offering...
Niles: Dad, it's from Smokey Mountain Farms! Five different meats in one big box!
Book Dumb: He's not as book smart as Frasier or Niles, but has far more common sense and can outsmart them by catching things they overlook in their arrogance. And, as he never hesitates to remind them, he was a detective for several years, and he occasionally demonstrates he's picked up a bit of psychiatry from listening to them and their mother.
Frasier's producer and close friend. Her very active sex life is the butt of many jokes.
Arch-Enemy: Initially she's a mild example of this toward Niles. While the two didn't exactly go out of their way to cause trouble for each other, they did not get on well at all, and insults would often fly whenever they met. About halfway through the show's run the two start getting along much better however, in no small part due to her introducing Niles to Donny, who helps him get a healthy divorce settlement.
Double Entendre: If she meets an attractive man, at least one will be dropped before the scene ends.
One of the best examples: when she meets Sam Malone of Cheers—and gives him her card.
Frasier: Yes. It glows in the dark.
Roz:(Grinning to Sam) So do I!
Ethical Slut: With the father of her child, a young college student. Rather than press him for child support or accept his obligatory marriage proposal, she tells him to take full advantage of the opportunities ahead of him and live a good life.
Women Are Wiser: Averted for the most part; while she may be more reasonable and socially clued-up than Frasier or Niles, so are Martin and several other of the male characters. Played straight when it comes to her job however, as all the male producers and radio personalities seen at the station (with the possible exception of Gil) are completely inept at their jobs and/or have major personality issues.
Played by: Jane Leeves
Martin's physical therapist who lives with him and Frasier, she's from England and serves as a working-class presence in a sitcom of mostly high-class characters. Is the subject of affection for Niles, thought she has no idea for the first six seasons.
Actor-Shared Background One episode Daphne mentioned that as a child she dreamed of being a ballerina. Jane Leeves pursed acting after an ankle injury ended her career as a ballerina.
Hide Your Pregnancy: For Jane Levees' first pregnancy they wrote Daphne becoming fat due to compulsive eating, and going to a spa to lose the weight (when Jane Leeves left to have the baby). Lampshaded when Niles came back from first visiting her at the spa, saying she had "just lost 9 pounds, 12 ounces." Also lead to one of the best puns on the show:
Martin: "I just thought of something funny: it took three Cranes to lift you."
"I suppose all brothers are like that. Mine certainly were. Everything was a contest! Who could the run the fastest, jump the highest. They even had this strange one where they'd take little brother Michael, put him in a potato sack and see who could roll him the farthest over the frozen lake out back. They loved that game! Until that year the spring thaw set in early and poor Michael went right through the ice. Ooh, they caught hell for that one, the did. Caught it worse a week later when Michael's toe finally fell off. Michael cried and cried, until they told him to put it under his pillow for the toe fairy! And then when he got five quid for it, why it was all they could do to stop him from sawing off the rest of them!"
It's at least once implied to have been abusive in a more traditional sense as well, where Daphne describes her father beating her brothers, but she knew she'd never be beaten as long as she behavedperfectly. Though it's not dwelled on, the other characters are clearly disturbed.
Played by: Moose (Seasons 1-9); Enzo (Seasons 10-12)
Martin's faithful dog, Frasier and Niles can't stand him and he seems to know it, as one of his favorite pastimes is staring at them to annoy them. Is more a character than a pet, because he's incredibly expressive and intelligent.
Amplified Animal Aptitude: Eddie's actor, Moose, and his son Enzo who took over the part in later seasons, were incredibly well-trained. John Mahoney has stated that he considered them animal actors rather than token pets.
Even the Dog Is Ashamed: Eddie burying his head under the sofa cushions was a popular pose, though sometimes it's because he's essentially saying, "Please shut up now."
Frasier: There are subtler ways to tell the patient their time is up!
Played by: N/A
Niles's initial wife, she's an incredibly bizarre and eccentric Rich Bitch who is impossible to please, and yet Niles bends over backwards for her anyway. Their marriage dissolves over the course of the show, and Maris makes it as painful for him as she can.
Big Eater: Revealed that when she's stressed out, Maris eats... and eats... and eats. Such as when she found out Niles was dating Mel.
Roz: Well, she moved next door to the Italian deli. The guy just took the two-foot salami out the window.
In the same episode:
Martin: My God, have you seen Maris?
Frasier: Yes, dad, I know. Did Niles calm her down?
Martin: Yeah, he took her to your room but he had to butter her up a little.
Frasier: I was afraid that narrow doorway might pose a problem.
Dark Secret: Played for laughs in the episode when Niles finally divorces her, as Donny's dirt-digging reveals that her family fortune comes from urinal cakes, not timber as she supposedly claimed. To most people this wouldn't be a big deal, but knowing that she moves in ultra-snobby social circles, Niles and Donny leverage this info to make her agree not to leave Niles financially destitute.
The Faceless: The writing team did toy with the idea of revealing her, but by that time they had created so many bizarre descriptions of her that they eventually decided no human actress would be able to portray her adequately.
Roz: I don't see her, maybe she went back out. Oh, wait. I see her coat on a hat rack.
Ice Queen: Niles even compares her with said substance a few times.
Niles: It was pitch dark, I thought he was Maris. Frasier: It's a natural mistake. What tipped you off? Niles: The heat from her side of the bed! (*bursts out laughing*)
When Niles was still married to Maris, he and Frasier would argue which woman was the bigger ice queen, such as this hilarious exchange when there was a trip to a volcano.
Martin: Why isn't Lilith going too?
Niles: Because if she fell in, the shock from the coldest thing on earth hitting the hottest would actually split the Earth in two.(gives Frasier a coy grin)
Frasier:(steely) As if a smile from Maris wouldn't freeze mercury.
Martin:(practically rolling his eyes) Give it up guys, nobody's gonna win this one.
If I Can't Have You: Maris gets insanely jealous of women Niles dates — especially Mel. Late in the series, Maris is not opposed to Niles' relationship with Daphne, but still clings to Niles for support.
Lilith: "If he wants something badly enough, he will figure out a way to get it. Remember when he was a baby, the bottle at the end of the maze?" Frasier: "You know, I kinda regret doing that."
Manipulative Bastard: Is this in a Thanksgiving episode where he manipulates Frasier and Lilith into thinking he wants them to get back together, planning to act emotionally crushed so they buy him a minibike. The two surmise this means he's a typical growing kid.
The host of the Gonzo Sports Show at Frasier's radio station, his show usually comes on after Frasier's. Has an on and off relationship with Roz due to the fact she's physically attracted to him but otherwise finds him a disgusting pig (and he is).
Cannot Spit It Out: By the time he's actually in love with Roz he can't tell her and so settles for scaring off her dates and playing babysitter to Alice to spend time with her. He does spit it out once she catches on though.
Catch Phrase: Whenever he thinks he's lost something (and really hasn't)—(POUND!) "THIS STINKS!!! THIS IS TOTAL B.S.!!! THIS IS—oh, here it is...."
Ironic Echo: He once delivered the line with tears in his voice when honestly crushed.
Kavorka Man, really. He's short, bald, rude and annoyingly loud-mouthed. The first two could probably be excused if not for the last two. He's not physically repulsive, but his personality is repellant.
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Kinda downplayed as his last appearance is in the final season ("Frasier-Lite"). Still, he is conspicuously absent in the series finale, even though his buddy Gil and Noel show up.
Dirty Coward: In "Bad Dog," upon seeing a man with a gun at the cafe, he tried to use a pregnant Roz as a human-shield. Thing is, it actually appeared as if he was trying to pull her to safety, so he is dubbed a hero by all - except Frasier, who knows the truth and spends the rest of the episode obsessing over it.
Fridge Logic: Two in-universe examples occur when Frasier's son visits the station and asks Bulldog why he's nicknamed "Bulldog", and why he uses so many sound effects on his show. Bulldog realizes he doesn't know the reason for either.
The reason he's nicknamed "Bulldog" is answered quickly when he literally barks at a sexy woman walking by.
A girlfriend of Martin's in earlier seasons, a cocktail waitress who plays the banjo. Of course, Frasier and Niles can't stand her.
Big Fun: Not "obese" at all, but certainly full-bodied. And boisterous as heck.
Innocently Insensitive: Is completely oblivious to how uncomfortable her lack of inhibitions makes Frasier and Niles.
Stop Helping Me!: In-Universe, to Frasier. Her seeming inability to censor what she (thinks she) knows about things leads to a LOT of trouble for poor Frasier in a two-parter where he's struggling with dating a series of women. Each date attempt basically goes awry at least indirectly because of Sherry popping up and blurting something out.
Played by: Harriet Sansom Harris
Frasier's agent who will resort to anything to get her clients fame and fortune, largely because she likes basking in it herself.
Catch Phrase: "I could make you a STAAAAAAAAAAH!!!" Or some such variant. Usually said with bulging eyes....
Breakout Character: Sort of. After an endless series of managers who are introduced with an episode devoted to how the station (and Frasier in particular) deals with this new personality running things, show up in a few episodes more, and then leave...Kenny shows up—and charmed viewers enough so that he stayed for the rest of the show.
Reasonable Authority Figure: After a cycle of predecessors with the creative purpose of giving Frasier a hard time, Kenny shows up to break the pattern.
Played by: Millicent Martin
Daphne's mother who makes no secret she is deeply disappointed in how her daughter turned out. Ridiculously dependent—and ends up living with Niles and Daphne for a while...much to their chagrin.
Ascended Extra: After appearing in the Season 7 finale, she came back midway through Season 9 and then appeared in virtually every episode of Season 10.
Demoted to Extra: However, a change in writing staff in Season 11 saw her only make on appearance and only get the occasional mention during that season.
Deadpan Snarker: Has her moments of wit. When Niles's and Daphne's "argument" in "Tales From The Crypt" doesn't get any further than tired smirks—and ends in flirting and kisses—Gertrude snarks, "If this is your idea of a fight, you two aren't fit for marriage."
If I Can't Have You: The episode where Martin finds out she's been scaring off his girlfriends.
It's All About Me: Self-centered to the extreme, and has no shame about her dependence issues. When Niles and Daphne get her to take a job, she tries her best to guilt-trip them for it.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: It's buried somewhere deep under all the bitterness and passive aggression/outright aggression, but it's there. Most apparent when she briefly softens up in Niles's and Daphne's wedding episode.
The Unseen: Averted, though it's easy to miss. He does show up in a handful of episodes, but not enough to be recognizable on sight, and plays a much larger role in the series through Martin's conversations with him on the phone than he does in any on-screen appearance.
Played by: Edward Hibbert
Another radio personality at KACL, who acts as a food critic.
Ambiguously Gay: Fulfills all of the stereotypes and occasionally makes suggestive statements about male coworkers. It's never confirmed, though everyone in the station appears to think so. More confusingly, he's married. ...To what sounds like a Butch Lesbian who has never come onscreen.
I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Eventually drops the lawsuit against Niles and Daphne after realising it was just a knee-jerk reaction, before wishing them the best.
Nice Guy: A little less so after Daphne leaves him, but he tries.
Played by: Jane Adams
Maris's former plastic surgeon, who becomes Niles's girlfriend for much of Season 7, eventually culminating in his VERY short-lived second marriage.
Lady Macbeth: In the episode where Frasier runs for Grand Winemaster of the wine club; Mel...encourages Niles into running, himself.
Manipulative Bitch: Greadually develops into this in Season 7—and milks her remaining hold over Niles for all it's worth, for the remainder of her time on the show in Season 8.
Older Than They Look: Despite her appearance, it's strongly hinted in her first episode that she's actually several years older than Niles, and has a son who's in college.
Spoiled Brat: Her major Kick the Dog moment involves her feeling entitled to order Daphne around, seemingly oblivious to the fact that Daphne is obviously sick.
Suspiciously Similar Substitute: To Maris and Daphne; her personality is roughly midway between the two women, occasionally behaving in a warm, personable manner, but also being very pushy and manipulative.
Took a Level in Jerkass: In the Season 7 finale it's hinted that her personality's finally starting to soften somewhat. Which of course goes out the window as soon as Niles ditches her two days after their wedding, and leads to her jerkassery being turned Up to Eleven for the remainder of her time on the show. Justified, in that she's a...
A lawyer and business analyst who begins working at KACL during Season 10. Has a reputation for suing her own employers and being virtually impossible to work with, though that doesn't stop her getting into a brief relationship with Frasier near the end of Season 10.
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Disappears after Frasier dumps her the second episode of Season 11, and is never mentioned again, not even to imply that she quit or was fired from KACL.
Innocently Insensitive: Her two appearances in Season 11 slightly toned down her personality, and had her just not realizing how offensive she tended to be, rather than actively going out of her way to be a bitch. Not that it saved her from being dumped by Frasier.
Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: To the point where if she were actually evil, she'd be a Card-Carrying Villain. Not only does she constantly act like a bitch, she openly ridicules Frasier when he attempts to understand why she behaves the way she does, and pretty much revels in her unpleasant attitude.
Not So Different: She and Frasier do have one or two interests in common, most notably being picky about coffee, but he soon finds that it's nowhere near enough to sustain a relationship.
Pet the Dog: It's almost a running gag throughout the "Julia-arc" in Season 10 that an episode will end with her either doing something nice (like when she gives the somewhat out-of-place folk singer a job so he won't keep alienating Frasier and Niles from Cafe Nervosa) or seemingly beginning to reconcile with Frasier or Roz...only to have it retconned by the next episode so that she's back to bickering with the two, as if the moment never happened.
Shut Up, Kirk!: When Frasier tries to give her a talking-to about her constantly acting like a total Jerkass, she rolls her eyes and interrupts with a big "Blah, blah, blah!"
Played by: Brian Stokes Mitchell
Charming fellow who moves into the apartment above Frasier's late in the show. The two immediately engage in a rivalry that soon escalates into all-out warfare. Ironically, he and Frasier have a lot in common....
Arch-Nemesis: To Frasier—until his mom, teaming up with Martin, force the two to make peace.
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: After he and Frasier reconcile, he never appears again. He's only referred to a couple of times after that—and then, only briefly.
Manipulative Bastard: Plays the condo board like a flute when his rivalry with Frasier reaches a boiling point.
Not So Different: He and Frasier are so similar, their bickering is actually quite cute.
When writing up a peace treaty, they get so into it the apartment becomes littered with proposals, making their burying the hatchet as complicated as the Treaty of Versailles (and almost as important to them.)
The former childhood babysitter of Frasier and Niles, who meets up with them again in Season 11, and ends up getting into a relationship with Martin, ultimately marrying him in the series finale.
Expy: Her personality, mannerisms and interests are very similar to those of Martin's mid-series girlfriend, Sherry. However, they're also toned down enough that Frasier and Niles are able to actually get along with her.
Just Friends: Not that she ever had any real interest in Frasier to begin with, but she says that even if she did, it'd just be too weird to date him seeing how she mostly remembers him as a prepubescent child.
Older Than They Look: It's implied that she likes to lie about her age, even though the Cranes know full well how old she actually is.
Romantic False Lead: At first it looks like she's going to be another one or two-episode love interest for Frasier. Midway through the episode where she's introduced however, we find out that she never had the slightest bit of interest in Frasier, and that it's actually Martin she wants.
Played by: Laura Linney
Professional matchmaker with an office near Frasier's, when he sets up a private practice again in the final season. She tries to take him on as a client...and ends up becoming his last love interest on the show.