03x17 - High Crane Drifter

Act One

Scene One - KACL
Frasier's show is on the air, but Frasier is nowhere to be seen.
A nervous Roz is filling in.

Roz: Well, it's uh... 2:07, here on the Dr. Frasier Crane Show.
As I said, I'm Roz Doyle, Frasier's producer, [looks to see
if Frasier is coming] filling in for the temporarily detained
Dr. Crane. [picks up a copy] It's cloudy and 62 degrees outside
coming up on 2:08... [looks at clock] right... there. Well,
let's take a call. Hello, Lydia. What seems to be the
problem?
Lydia: [v.o.] I already told you.
Roz: Yeah, that was when I was the call screener, now I'm the host.
So, tell me your problem, and take your time.
Lydia: Well, it started about two weeks ago. I got this terrible
obscene phone call. It's happened several times since then
and now it's to the point where I'm afraid to answer my own
phone.

Roz notices Frasier running by the window.

Roz: Well, obscene phone calls can be very disturbing. [Frasier
bursts in] But luckily, Dr. Frasier Crane has just arrived and
I'm sure he knows exactly what soothing things to say.

Roz hands the headphones to Frasier. He is out of breath from
running and can only pant into the microphone, causing Lydia to
scream in fear and hang up.

Roz: [into microphone] Maybe now would be a good time to take a
break. We'll be right back after this. [pushes in a cart]
Frasier: What the hell was that all about?!
Roz: Oh, never mind that, where were you?
Frasier: Oh, god. Somebody'd parked in my space again. I had to park
six blocks from here and sprint the whole way. By the end,
my tweed pants were throwing off so many sparks I almost
caught myself on fire! I tell you what - the minute we go
to a news break I'm going to rush down there and put this
withering note on his windshield. [writing] “Dear discourteous
driver...”
Roz: Whoa! I think you've said enough right there! [snatches his
note] Come on, Frasier. This isn't gonna do any good! You
want to make an impression on him? Get tough. You go right
down there and let the air out of his tires.
Frasier: Oh, I wouldn't do something like that.
Roz: Why? It's just inconveniencing him like he inconvenienced
you.
Frasier: Roz, listen, the world has become uncivilized enough without
me stooping to that level. Of course I was sorely tempted
last night. I went to the movies to see "How Green Was My
Valley." Lady Luck seated me in front of two elderly women
who said with the arrival of each new actor, "My God, doesn't
he look young; he's dead, you know." Finally I had to just
walk out.
Roz: Oh, you're on in five seconds. And Brenda is on line one.
[enters her booth]
Frasier: [on air] Hello, Seattle. We're back, and I would like to
start by apologizing for being tardy. Nothing quite so
inconsiderate as making someone wait. Now without further
ado let's get to Brenda. Hello, Brenda.
Brenda: [v.o.] Hi, Dr. Crane. I'm having a problem with my sister.
She's always... [her phone clicks] Oh, wait a second. That's
my other line. [clicks over]
Frasier: [annoyed] Something tells me I'm going to be siding with
Brenda's sister.

FADE OUT

A LITTLE SOMETHING FOR ALL
YOU DONALD CRISP FANS

Scene Two - A video rental shop
Frasier enters the shop and holds the door open for an outgoing
customer. She doesn't say a word.

Frasier: You're welcome! [walks up to the counter] Excuse me, I was
wondering if you could direct me to...

The phone rings; the clerk ignores Frasier and answers the phone.

Clerk: Friendly Video. Yeah, I think we got that one. Hang on a
second, I'll check.
Frasier: [to a customer behind him] Don't you hate that? You come all
the way down here yourself to the store, wait patiently, and
somebody who calls in from home gets preferential treatment.

A second clerk opens up another line.

Clerk: I can help the next person in line.

The other customers rush to the next lane ahead of Frasier.

Clerk: Hey, do we have "The Invisible Man?"
Frasier: Right here!
Clerk: Thanks. [in phone] Yeah, we got it. [hangs up]
Frasier: Excuse me. I was looking for... [the phone rings again; the
clerk reaches for the phone, but Frasier places his hand on
top of it] Don't even think about it! I'm looking for "How
Green Was My Valley."
Clerk: Huh?
Frasier: It is a beautifully acted depiction of life in a small town
in Wales. It won five Academy Awards! It's a classic!
Clerk: Oh. Well, uh, this is a shot in the dark, but you might try
looking in the Classics section.

Frasier rolls his eyes and heads toward the Classics section, only
to find a woman who had been behind him in line picking up the same
video.

Frasier: Uh... you're taking "How Green Was My Valley?"
Woman: I heard it was great.
Frasier: Yes, but you heard it from me! You were standing next to me
in the line! [she says nothing and takes her place in line;
Frasier, frustrated, goes back to the clerk] Excuse me, is
there another copy?
Clerk: Oh yeah, that would be across the street in our "How Green
Was My Valley" annex.

Frasier stalks out of the store in annoyance.

FADE TO:

Scene Three - Frasier's apartment
Martin is in his chair watching television. Daphne enters with a
basket of laundry.

Martin: [chuckling] Hey Daphne. Come on, you're just in time. It's
starting.
Daphne: I don't get this show. People send in videos of themselves
having the most embarrassing and painful accidents. They add
cartoon noises and music and everyone laughs themselves silly.
Martin: [laughing at the TV show] Boy, I bet that hurt!

Daphne shakes her head and exits to her bedroom as Frasier storms in.

Martin: Well, what's wrong with you?
Frasier: Frankly, I have had it with the whole boorish, ill-mannered
world. Look, Dad, would you mind terribly if I used the TV
tonight? I went to three video stores to get this tape. I'm
just dying to see it.
Martin: Sure, go ahead. How many times can you watch a dog get hit
with a swinging door?
Frasier: [staring at Eddie] Depends upon the dog.

Eddie jumps down from the couch and follows Martin into the kitchen.
Frasier walks over to put the tape in just as loud, piercing rock
music begins playing from upstairs.

Frasier: What the hell is that?! The windows are rattling, the walls
are shaking, and I am talking to no one!!
Daphne: [entering] Well, I see our neighbor's at it again.
Frasier: [grabs the phone] Not for long!
Martin: [entering] I'm gonna take a nap.
Frasier: Dad, you can't possibly expect to sleep in this racket.
Martin: Are you kidding? I've slept through worse than this. In
Korea I dropped off in a foxhole right outside P'Anmunjom.
By the time I woke up the cease-fire was over and I was the
only one who didn't know about it. Talk about having egg on
your face. [exits]
Frasier: [in phone] Yes. Yes, would you please connect me with the
young man who's just moved into the penthouse upstairs. No,
I don't know his name! He's in the penthouse! He has shaggy
hair, tattoos all over him, his body is pierced. Oh, and I
don't know if I mentioned this but he's in the penthouse!

The music stops suddenly. Frasier and Daphne look up at the ceiling.

Frasier: [into phone] Never mind. [hangs up; to Daphne] Has the world
completely lost the concept of common courtesy? Am I the only
one who is resisting this tide?! [walks out onto the balcony
and bellows:] People of Seattle, listen to me! We are not
barbarians! We are not Neanderthals and we are not French!
Do you hear that, you up there?! [walks back in and gets a
glass of sherry]
Daphne: That's his own music he's listening to, you know. His name
is Freddie Chainsaw.
Frasier: Chainsaw? Of the Newport Chainsaws? How does an arrested
adolescent who barely knows two chords get a penthouse?
Daphne: His last album sold five million copies.
Frasier: Oh. Well, then, I'll just add that to my list of reasons to
die.
Daphne: You know, personally, I like it. But then, we Brits have
always been on the cutting edge. You should have heard the
punk rockers who rented the flat below me a few years back.
They'd play the same song over and over again: [singing]
Flesh is burning... nana nana nana. Flesh is burning... nana
nana nana. [sighs] Oh no. I'm gonna have that tune in me
head all day now.
Frasier: Yes, well, thank you for that, Daphne. But I've been waiting
all day to watch my movie.

He pushes play on the remote control. The movie begins, but is
suddenly undercut by Mr. Chainsaw's loud music again. Frasier angrily
jumps to his feet.

Frasier: Doesn't he ever stop for s*x and drugs?! [he grabs for the
phone again and dials the operator] Hello. Yes. Please, I
insist on being connected with the young man in the
penthouse. [the music stops as Mr. Chainsaw answers his
phone] Yes, hello, Mr. Chainsaw? Yes, how do you do? I'm Dr.
Frasier Crane. I am your neighbor; I live right below you.
Yes, do you have any idea how loud your music is? Oh. You
do? Well... thank you. [he hangs up the phone, pleasantly
surprised] Well, that wasn't so bad. The young man seemed
quite amiable in his way.

The peace is short-lived however, as the music starts up again.
Frasier has had enough.

Frasier: I'm going out!
Daphne: What?
Frasier: I'm going out!
Daphne: What?
Frasier: [just as the music stops] I AM GOING OUT!
Martin: [o.s.] Hey, Frasier, will you keep it down out there. I'm
trying to take a nap!

FADE TO:

THE ETIQUETTE LESSON

Scene Four – Café Nervosa
The café is crowded and no tables are available. Frasier and Niles
are standing at the counter.

Frasier: Smell me, Niles.
Niles: [sniffs] Grandpa!
Frasier: Exactly! On my way down in the elevator today a woman thinks
nothing of lighting up a cigarette. Has the world gone mad?
Niles: I know exactly how you feel. This morning I discovered a
ding in the door of my car.
Frasier: Let me guess - no note on the windshield?
Niles: No. And even worse, after I'd left the car off at the body
shop, the rental agency didn't have a single luxury car
left. They stuck me with some vehicle I believe they call a
Hunchback.
Frasier: No. I think that would be a Hatchback, Niles.
Niles: It's painted panic-button red, with a large rear window that
pops open.
Frasier: Oh, that would be the Hatchback.
Niles: Well, there's a novel idea: name the car after its most
hideous feature. I presume it was a toss-up between
"Hatchback" and "What's that odor coming from the floor?"
Frasier: [points] Oh, look, Niles - free table! Go, go, go, go!
Niles: Oh, the biscotti!
Frasier: Leave it!
Niles: Oh, no - go on without me!

Frasier reaches the table just as a couple sits down at it. He spots
another empty one in the back.

Frasier: Oh, there!
Niles: Oh!

They maneuver their way through a crowd of customers just in time to
see that that table has already been taken as well.

Niles: Oh, check on table one!
Frasier: All right, fine.

They reach the table, but the couple hasn't left yet. Frasier and
Niles stand awkwardly above them, waiting for them to leave.

Frasier: Oh, we're not hovering, believe me. It's just that there...
well, there's really no place else to stand. Oh, just take
your time, please. There's no rush.
Waiter: Is the owner of a red Hatchback here? It's about to be towed.
Frasier: Niles, isn't that your car?
Niles: [whispering] Shh! Someone will hear you!
Frasier: Niles, it's about to be towed!
Niles: I'm not owning up to that car. I don't care if it's careening
toward a baby carriage!

The couple leaves the table.

Frasier: Oh. Oh, thank you so much. Take care, have a lovely day.

As Frasier says this, a man sneaks in behind him and sits down at
the table.

Frasier: Excuse me, but we were waiting for this table.
Man: So get another one.
Frasier: [irritated] Well, there aren't any. Look, you knew that we
were waiting for it. We politely stood back and let those
people leave and then you just jumped right in here!
Man: Well, you won't make that mistake again.

Frasier's eyes bug out.

Niles: Frasier, Frasier... forget it. We'll just... we'll wait for
another table.
Frasier: No, we won't! This isn't about the table anymore! This is
about the erosion of common decency. [places his coffee on
the table] Sir, when you treat me this way you encourage me
to be discourteous to another. And so on and so on. [the man
doesn't acknowledge him] You don't have any manners, do you?
[the man continues sipping his coffee] Then perhaps what you
need is an etiquette lesson!!

Frasier lifts the man up from his chair and roughly shoves him out
the door. He returns to find all eyes upon him in shock.

Frasier: SIT DOWN, NILES! [they sit]
Niles: [to a waiter] My brother will have a decaf.

Niles moves Frasier's coffee away from reach.

End of Act One

Act Two

Scene One - Frasier's apartment
The next morning. Daphne enters with a basket of laundry, singing to
herself.

Daphne: Flesh is burning, nana nana nana...
Martin: [entering from the kitchen and singing to himself] Nana nana
nana... flesh is burning... nana nana nana... [sees Frasier
enter] Oh, hi, Fras. How you feeling?
Frasier: [sits at table] Fine.
Martin: I didn't ask you yesterday how your day went.
Frasier: What did Niles tell you?
Martin: Nothing! Geez, can't I ask you how your day went? How was
work? [grins] How's your bad-ass self? [laughs]
Frasier: Dammit! Niles blabbed!
Martin: No, he didn't. You made the people of Seattle column.
[presents a paper] Right here, under "The Crane Mutiny."
[laughs]
Frasier: [reads] "Three cheers for Dr. Frasier Crane, who struck a
blow against rudeness yesterday in a coffeehouse melee."
[throws paper down] Perfect! Now all of Seattle knows about
my loutish behavior!
Martin: What are you talking about? This guy had it coming. [doorbell
rings] I can just picture it. He probably looked at you and
he thought, "This guy's a creampuff, you know. A wuss...
a wimp... a cupcake..."
Frasier: [as he reaches the door] Dad!
Martin: I'm sorry, I'm just so proud of you!

Frasier opens the door to Niles.

Niles: Ah, there he is, the man who floats like a lepidoptera and
stings like a hymenoptera.
Martin: Niles, I think you're just jealous.
Niles: Jealous? Don't be ridiculous!
Martin: This is my favorite part. [reading] "With one swift move the
good doctor hoisted the miscreant out on his ear, declaring,
'What you need is an etiquette lesson.'" [laughs] I love that!
You got your own tough-guy catchphrase!
Niles: It's perfect for you, Frasier. Dirty Harry meets Emily Post.
Martin: Come on. Show me how you grabbed him. Use Niles.
Frasier: No, no Dad. I will not toss Niles about the room.
Niles: Oh no, go ahead. Rough me up, Mr. Big Hero Bully Bouncer!
[pause] Did that sound jealous?
Frasier: A tad.
Niles: Well, all right, I'm jealous. Why shouldn't I be? All my
life I've backed out of fights and watching you leap into the
fray like that, I... it made me think just once I'd like to
experience what you felt - go nose to nose. [sits at table]
Martin: Oh, your day will come, son.
Niles: I don't know. I tried it this morning with my dry cleaner,
Mr. Kim. I decided to give him a good tongue-lashing because
he'd shattered the mother-of-pearl buttons on my best
waistcoat. Unfortunately, due to his tenuous grasp of
English and the fact that his mother's name is Pearl I was
forced to flee his establishment amid a shower of coat
hangers.
Daphne: [entering from her room; to Niles] Good morning, Dr. Crane.
[to Frasier] And to you, Dr. Crane, our very own knight in
shining armor...
Niles: Oh, great.
Daphne: I want you to know that your assertiveness inspired me. For
weeks now, some louse has been removing my wet clothes from
the washer and leaving them on the table in a soggy mess.
This morning, I decided to get my revenge. So I took off my
new red panties and I popped them in with his whites.
Niles: Bravo, Daphne. Good for you. God, I wish I'd been there.
[sighs]
Frasier: Daphne, don't you think you were overreacting just a bit?
Daphne: Absolutely not. Those were my panties and I wasn't afraid to
use them. [Niles bites down on his fist]
Martin: Fras, why do you keep backing away from this? I mean, you
should be proud of yourself. We all think you did the right
thing. The newspaper does too.
Daphne: That's right. And I'm going to fix you a proper hero's
breakfast. [starts for kitchen]
Frasier: No. No, no... Daphne. Please, really. It's not necessary.
Thank you all. It's just that this isn't sitting well with
me. I find it hard to believe any good can come of violence.

The loud rock music starts up again. Frasier angrily throws down his
napkin and grabs the phone.

Frasier: That's it again! [in phone] Mr. Chainsaw. This is Dr.
Frasier Crane...

The music stops abruptly. Frasier and the others look up at the
ceiling with amazement. Frasier hangs up the phone with an air
of bravado.

Frasier: Go ahead, Daphne. Make my eggs.


FADE TO:

Scene Two - KACL
Frasier walks down the hall on the way to work. He encounters several
coworkers who give him a thumbs up or a voice of approval. A few back
away in mock fear. He chuckles and waves them off.

Frasier: [as he enters his booth] You know, I do wish people would
stop making such a fuss.
Roz: They will, if you quit walking up and down the hall. You're
on in five seconds. [enters her booth]
Frasier: Oh yes, all right. [puts on headphones and pushes on air
button] Hello, this is Dr. Frasier Crane. Who's on the line,
Roz?
Roz: We have Mitch on line three. He's having trouble with his
neighbors.
Frasier: Hello, Mitch.
Mitch: [v.o.] Make that had trouble. This idiot next door had his
leaf-blower going at 7:00am, again.
Frasier: Oh, that's very inconsiderate.
Mitch: I'll say. That's why I decided to give him an "etiquette
lesson." I grabbed that leaf-blower and smashed it against a
tree.
Frasier: [gasps] Mitch, I must say I'm stunned. I can't imagine a
more extreme response to such a minor infraction.

DISSOLVE TO: another caller. Frasier's jacket is off and he is
slumped over the desk.

Chris: [v.o.] ...so I snuck into his backyard and shoved a whole
pound of rotten shrimp into his air conditioner! Come on
summer!

DISSOLVE: another caller goes on... Frasier's sleeves are now rolled
up. He listens, horrified.

Chuck: [v.o] ...hey, he asked for it. So I put 100 scorpions in a
FedEx package.
Frasier: Look, I'm sorry, but no matter how provoked you may have
been, there is no earthly justification for... [dissolve]
SETTING SOMEONE'S LAWN ON FIRE!!
Rochelle: [v.o.] But she doesn't curb her dogs!
Frasier: Oh... [buries his face in his hand]
Rochelle: You don't take any guff. Why should I?
Frasier: Rochelle... all of you... look, don't you realize that your
behavior is just a bit extreme?! I displayed a minor bit of
force in order to just make a point. I didn't go around
smashing windows or torching lawns! Where does it end?
Rochelle: Are you saying that what I did was wrong?
Frasier: Of course I am!
Rochelle: But what you did was okay?
Frasier: No, no! I... come to think of it, what I did was just as
wrong. I mean, who am I to draw the line at the acceptable
level of force? Because the next person moves a little
farther, and the next person, a little farther still until
we finally end up with scorpions flying through the mail
like Christmas bundt cakes! What we must all agree to do is
to resolve our differences with discussion and reason. As a
matter of fact, I'm going to call the gentleman that I
manhandled and... and apologize to him for not having worked
out our dispute in the right way in the first place-
through words. The key here is restraint. And I do hope
you'll follow my lead... Becky with the nail gun.

FADE TO:

NO ACTORS WERE HURT DURING
THE FILMING OF THIS SCENE

Scene Three – Café Nervosa.
Frasier and Niles enter the café. The customers applaud as they see
Frasier.

Frasier: Oh... people. People, please. There's no need for that. I'm
no hero.

A woman walks by and gives him a thumbs up. He chuckles and returns
the gesture.

Niles: No one's ever given me the thumbs up.
Frasier: Well, Niles, I've driven on the freeway with you. The rest
of the hand has been well-represented. [They sit just as the
man Frasier shoved walks in the door.] Oh, look, there he
is. Mr. Harvey, I'm so glad you could come. [stands] You
remember my brother, Niles, and uh... we're at "our" table.
Harvey: Look, I'm here, so say what's on your mind.
Frasier: Well, there's no need for any hostility. I just came to
talk.
Harvey: Talk? You're not gonna take another shot at me?
Frasier: No! [shouts of contention from the crowd of customers] No,
they'll be nothing like that here today! Now, listen, I
could try to explain my behavior by saying that these are
stressful times we live in, that I had reached the end of my
tether. But I won't do that, because you see, I was 100%
wrong. I had absolutely no right to touch you and I accept
full responsibility.
Harvey: Well, I'm glad to hear you say that. [to crowd] And I hope
you all heard that too.
Frasier: So, then you accept my apology?
Harvey: No, I'm suing you. And I've got a lot of witnesses that just
heard you admit you were wrong. [hands him papers]
Frasier: But, but... these are stressful times we live in and I'd
reached the end of my tether!
Harvey: Tough! I'm nailing you for assault!
Frasier: But I hardly touched you!
Niles: Oh, Frasier, I'm not surprised he's hiding behind lawyers.
What other behavior would you expect... from a chicken?
Harvey: What did you say?
Niles: I was speaking to my brother. [stands] But, to put it in
language you can understand... [clucking] bawk bawk bawk
bawk!
Frasier: Niles! This is no time for you to assert yourself!
Harvey: [to Frasier] Hey, your brother's making trouble here...
Niles: Oh, oh, oh... what are you gonna do? Flap me with one of your
big fluffy wings?
Frasier: Niles, stop it! Please excuse him!
Niles: Oh, for god's sake, Frasier don't waste your breath on this
hairy, knuckle-dragging, mouth-breathing troglodyte who's
probably the only male in existence who suffers from pen1s
envy! [excitedly hops up and down on his heels]
Harvey: You look here, buddy...

Words cannot do this justice - you have to see it. Mr. Harvey lightly
pokes Niles on the shoulder. Niles acts as if he were punched. He
begins reeling backward - laying waste to chairs and the coat hanger -
finally landing atop a table and sending it and he crashing to the
floor. The entire café gapes at the scene as Frasier rushes to his
aid.

Frasier: Niles!! Niles... are you all right?!
Niles: [pulling Frasier close to him and whispering] Counter suit!
Frasier: [jumping up] Oh, my god!! Nobody move him!
Harvey: I barely touched him!
Frasier: Then you admit you touched him! [to crowd] He admits it!
[Niles groans] Oh, Niles. Niles, I'm here for you. I promise
we're going to get you the best care that THIS MAN'S MONEY
CAN BUY! [out of earshot] My god, Niles, that was brilliant.
You even got a tear in your eye!
Niles: I landed on a fork.

End of Act Two

Credits:

Daphne is in the elevator with a basket of laundry. The doors open
and two men get on and stand behind Daphne. They both have tennis
rackets and outfits, but while one man's outfit is white, the other
man's is a light pink. Daphne tries to suppress a laugh as she looks
back at the man in pink. The men soon get off on their floor. When
the doors close, Daphne whips out her red panties from her basket and
flings them high in the air. She then "blows" them out--as if they
were a smoking gun. She finally puts them back in her basket with a
satisfied grin.