[3.14]The Show Where Diane Comes Back


The Show Where Diane Comes Back              Written by 
                                             Directed by 
=====================================================================
Production Code: 3.14.
Original Airdate on NBC: 
Transcript written on 10th December 1999


And In The Red Corner....


Writer's Note: This episode is a favorite with Kelsey Grammer and the 
Frasier writing staff, because it put to rest some real demons as 
well as the fictional ones.  When Kelsey Grammer first started to 
appear on Cheers, Shelley Long campaigned strongly to get him and his 
character removed from the show.  The producers disagreed, and 
Frasier Crane soon became a regular, but there was bad blood between 
Grammer and Long for a very long time.  This episode 
not only allowed Frasier and Diane to have closure with each other, 
but also allowed Grammer and Long to demonstrate that there were no 
more hard feelings.


Quotes & Scene Summary {michael lee}


Scene One — KACL
Frasier is wrapping up his show.  Roz is talking on the phone and 
looks worried.

Frasier: This is Dr. Frasier Crane, KACL, 780.

He goes off the air.

    Roz: Frasier, that was security.  Some woman insisted on seeing 
         you, she just blew right past them.
Frasier: Oh, don't panic, Roz — probably just one of my more ardent 
         fans.

Diane Chambers appears in the window and knocks on the glass.  
Frasier turns around.  She smiles and waves at him.

Focus on Frasier's wide-open mouth: "AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH!!!!!"

Cut to: Niles's Office
Frasier bursts into Niles's office.  Niles is sitting at his desk 
with a pad.  His patient, a man, is seated in an armchair by the 
door.

Frasier: Niles, we've got to talk!  It's urgent.
  Niles: Frasier, I'm with a patient!
Frasier: [notices man] Oh, I'm sorry.
    Man: Is, uh, this about a woman?
Frasier: Yes.
    Man: Take all the time you need.

The man leaves.

  Niles: Well?
Frasier: She's back — the scourge of my existence.
  Niles: Strange, I usually get some sign when Lilith is in town — dogs 
         forming into packs, blood weeping down the wall.
Frasier: I'm talking about . . . Diane Chambers.

Niles hits the intercom.

  Niles: Lucille, send Mr. Carr home.
Frasier: She just showed up at the station today.  Apparently some 
         play she wrote is being produced here in town.  I admit, I 
         just sort of panicked when I saw her, but I think I covered 
         it masterfully.

Frasier stops pacing and sits in a chair.  Niles picks up his pad.

  Niles: All right, all right, all right.  Well, uh, why do you think 
         you reacted that way?
Frasier: Oh, spare me the psychiatrist bit, Niles.  That includes 
         putting down the pad! [Niles lays the pad on the desk] In 
         the drawer, Niles!
  Niles: [puts it in the drawer] Fine.  My first question to you is 
         this: Are you still in love with her?
Frasier: [jumps up from his chair] No!  Not in the least!  It's a 
         ridiculous suggestion. 
  Niles: Seeing as how I have nowhere to write the phrase, "classic 
         denial," I'll move on.  So, about this woman for whom you 
         have so little feeling that you raced across town and burst 
         into one of my sessions—is there any lingering resentment?
Frasier: [dropping back into the chair] Over what?!
  Niles: Well, she did leave at the altar.  When you told her how 
         that made you feel, was there anything you left unsaid? 
         [Frasier looks away] Any phrase or feeling you wished you 
         had expressed to her? [Frasier looks away more] I'm making 
         the assumption here that you did tell her how you felt.
Frasier: I sort of did.
  Niles: "Sort of" is another one of those phrases that just wants to 
         go in my pad.
Frasier: I expressed my distaste for the way I'd been treated, yes.
  Niles: Frasier, she rejected you in the most debilitating way a man 
         can be rejected.  You've got to more than "sort of" tell her 
         how that felt.
Frasier: Well, I can't just tell Diane how awful she made me feel 
         now!  It's a distant memory for her.  I'd feel weak!
  Niles: You have no reason to feel weak.  You've moved on in your 
         life too.  You have a new career, new wealth, new success.  
         You simply need closure in this one area.
Frasier: You know, what you just said made a lot of sense.
  Niles: You're going to get closure.
Frasier: No, that business about my success!  I tuned you out after 
         that.  I'm going to invite Diane over for dinner tonight, 
         and I'm really gonna flaunt my success, really rub her nose 
         in it!  That'll prove I'm not just some cast-aside that 
         never got over her.  Niles, I know it's not psychologically 
         sound.  But we're still human.  We have to do what feels 
         good sometimes, don't we?
  Niles: I'd just like to be on the record as saying I'm against it.
Frasier: Fine.
  Niles: You know the path that leads to peace with Diane and you're 
         rejecting it.
Frasier: Yes.
  Niles: I'm washing my hands of the entire matter.
Frasier: Wouldn't miss it for the world though, would you?
  Niles: I'll be there at seven with a cheeky Bordeaux.

Frasier leaves.  Niles grabs his pad out of the drawer and starts 
writing on it.

Scene Two — Frasier's Apartment
It's evening.  Daphne is arranging things for dinner.  Martin is 
reading the paper.  Frasier comes out, wearing his best suit.

Frasier: No, no, no.  Daphne, I was very specific about this.  The 
         mayor's plaque goes on the piano . . .

He moves the plaque to the piano. 

Frasier: The Otis Klandenning "Man of the Year Award" goes right over 
         here . . .

He places an elaborate silver bowl on the little table next to the 
Armchair.

Frasier: And my jewel—my SeaBee—goes right here where she can't miss 
         it! [puts in on the mantel]
 Daphne: Hmm, that seems a bit subtle.  Why don't I just use this to 
         serve the olives?

She takes the SeaBee trophy—a silver miniature of the Space 
Needle—and spears an olive out of the appetizer tray.

Frasier: Give me that!
 Daphne: I wish someone would just tell me who this woman is, and why 
         we're trying to impress the pants off her.

The doorbell rings.

Frasier: She's a one-time Boston barmaid who had a nervous breakdown 
         and ended up in a sanitarium, where I met her, fell for her, 
         and then was so mercilessly rejected by her that to this day 
         there is a sucking chest wound where once there dwelled a 
         heart! 

He opens the door.  Diane stands there, elegant and smiling.

Frasier: [welcoming] Diane!
  Diane: Hello, Frasier.
Frasier: Please. [she comes in] You remember my brother Niles, my 
         father Martin, and this is his health-care worker, Daphne 
         Moon.

They all ad-lib hellos.

  Diane: What a tasteful abode.
Frasier: Well, it's modest in its way.
  Diane: No, that's what I like about it.  After the rambling beach 
         house I've been living in, I'm ready for something smart and 
         efficient.
Frasier: White wine, Diane?  I'm pouring an '85 Montrachet La Guiche 
         I purchased at auction.
  Diane: Oh, I always keep a bottle of that open myself.

Frasier's smile is so fixed on his face, it's painful to look at.  He 
tosses her coat to Daphne.

Frasier: Hang this up!

Diane sits opposite Martin.

 Diane: Well, Martin, it's been too long.  How have you been?
Martin: Well, my wife died, I got shot in the hip, and I had to move 
        in with Frasier 'cause I kept falling down in the shower.
 Diane: Well, you look wonderful! [pats his leg] Yes, you do!
Martin: That's the bad one.
 Diane: Oh! [gets up] Niles, do you remember the last time I was in 
        town and we dined together?  You had just started dating this 
        woman—she was the queerest little creature. [Frasier hands 
        her a glass of wine] Thank you. [laughs] She ate everyone's 
        sorbet, and then she had to lie down in the ladies' lounge 
        while the coat-check girl massaged her abdomen!

She stops laughing when she notices Frasier's uncomfortable look.

  Diane: Oh, I hope I haven't put my foot in it.  You and she didn't 
         get married and live happily ever after, did you?
  Niles: No, can't say as we did.
 Daphne: Care for an olive?
  Diane: Oh, thank you.
Frasier: These are a Pyreenean taste treat!  They're handpicked and 
         bottled by Andalusian monks!
 Daphne: [lifting the "Man of the Year" cup] You can spit the pits in 
         here.

Frasier snatches the cup down as Diane spits, narrowly missing 
Martin.

Scene Three — Frasier's Apartment
Everyone is sitting at the dinner table.  Diane is telling a story.

  Diane: So, there I was, on the balcony of my Malibu beachhouse, 
         when a pod of whales passed by.  I knew I had to commune 
         with these gentle giants, so like a flash, I was on the 
         beach, scrambling to my kayak.  But cruel fortune 
         interceded, when, not twenty yards offshore, I suddenly 
         discovered myself entangled in an enormous bed of-of, um—
  Niles: Sea kelp?
  Diane: Exactly right, sea kelp!
 Martin: Oh, that's funny—I thought he said "seek help."
 Daphne: So, you haven't told us how you've come to be in Seattle.
  Diane: Oh, a small theater group has decided to produce a play I've 
         written.
Frasier: Which one?
  Diane: Oh, my most recent work.  It's a sort of feminist odyssey, 
         experimental in places, in tone akin to Saroyan, with a 
         soupcon of Gide, and a hearty nod to Clifford Odesse!
Frasier: I meant which theater?
  Diane: Oh!  The Roundabout.
 Martin: That seems appropriate.
Frasier: You know, why don't you people just keep talking amongst 
         yourselves?  I will go and fetch the profitteros.  They were 
         prepared by the hottest new pasty chef in—oh, what's the 
         use?

Frasier goes to the kitchen.  Niles gets up.

 Niles: I'll help.  He always overpowders.
Martin: Yeah, I'm sure Old Man Kennedy felt this kind of pride when 
        his boys would go out and play touch football.

In the kitchen, Frasier takes a plate of little cakes out of the 
refrigerator.

  Niles: Now, Frasier, you know her better than I.  Is that what she 
         looks like when she's writhing in envy?
Frasier: Oh, shut up.  All right, I admit you were right.  Before she 
         leaves here tonight, I am going to tell her how much pain 
         she made me feel. [energetically sprinkling sugar on the 
         cakes] The savage truth this time—there will be no 
         sugarcoating it!  And yes, I am aware of the irony! [blows a 
         puff in Niles's face]

They bring the cakes out.

Daphne: Oh, it must be wonderful to see your words come to life like 
        that.
 Diane: Oh yes.  It's a dream come true.

The right side of her face twitches suddenly.

 Martin: Diane, are you o.k.?
  Diane: Yes, I'm fine.  Why?
 Martin: Well, your cheek was kind of twitching.
  Diane: It was?  Oh well, it was probably fatigue.  Where were we?
 Daphne: Oh, I was asking about your play.
  Diane: Oh, right! [she twitches again, harder]
 Martin: There it goes again, the twitch!
 Daphne: That was either a very large twitch or a very small seizure.
  Diane: You know, I'm not sure how much I really want to talk about 
         my play right now. [twitches even harder, and covers her 
         face with a napkin] Bad luck and all that!
Frasier: Yes, and we all know what a struggle it is to get Diane to 
         talk about herself.
  Diane: [laughing] Oh Frasier, you always could kid! How I miss 
         that! 

Her laughs slide gradually into tears, and then into noisy, full-
blown sobbing.

Frasier: Look, Diane, please, I-I really didn't mean anything by it.  
         I'm sorry—
  Diane: It's not that!  It's my whole life, it's ruined!
Frasier: Niles, could you please get her some water?
  Niles: Of course, of course. [goes to the kitchen]
  Diane: Oh, everything I told you tonight is a lie.  I'm sorry for 
         this.  Oh, I must look just awful.
 Martin: Your cheek stopped jumping.
Frasier: All right, now.  Tell me what happened.  Was it about your 
         play?

That sets off the twitch.

 Daphne: There it goes again!
Frasier: Look, would you people please just give us some privacy?!

Everyone gets up and goes to the kitchen.  Frasier sits next to 
Diane.

Frasier: All right now.  From the beginning.
  Diane: Well, it all started a few months ago when I lost my job.  
         I'd been writing for "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman."  I was on 
         the set one day, and I was trying to show Jane Seymour the 
         proper way to cauterize a wound with a branding iron, and I 
         accidentally set her hair on fire.  Well, from there it was 
         a steady slide downhill.  A two-year relationship ended, I 
         lost the beachhouse, friends stopped calling—the one bright 
         spot was my play in Seattle.  Well, I flew up here yesterday 
         only to find that the backer was pulling out.  I was so 
         distraught I found myself wandering around the city in 
         complete despair.  It's then that like a ray of hope from 
         heaven, I saw your smiling face on the side of a bus.  And 
         that's why I'm here today.  You helped me the only other 
         time I was this low.  Frasier, I'm asking for your help 
         again.
Frasier: Of course I'll help you, Diane.
  Diane: Oh, Frasier . . .

In the kitchen:

Daphne: Well, that was a bit scary.
Martin: I'll say—watching someone go completely crackers like that.

Niles starts to sniffle.

Martin: What's the matter with you now?
 Niles: Nothing, I'm fine.  Just suddenly missing my Maris.

Daphne puts an arm around his shoulder and comforts him.

END OF ACT ONE

ACT TWO
INTERPLAY
Scene Four — Café Nervosa Niles is seated at a corner table. Frasier comes in. Throughout the followng scene, Niles never says a word. Frasier: My God, Niles, it's such a glorious day! I walked all the way here. Thirty-two blocks, and Bruno Mallies be damned! [sits down] Oh yes, I see the look, I know exactly what it means too. How could I very well say "no" to Diane? She came to me in crisis. [to a passing waitress] Oh, excuse me, a double cappuccino, please, light cinnamon, thank you very much. [sighs] Oh, you know, the change in Diane has really been quite gratifying. Dropped her off at the theater today, and there was a smile on her face that I haven't seen in . . . well, far too many years. Oh, I know what you're thinking. Where did she get the money to do the play? Well, she found a backer! [pause] It's tax deductible! [the waitress brings his coffee] Thank you. Oh, why don't you go ahead and say what you're thinking, Niles? That I'm falling for her again. "Well, you did bounce in here as though you were on top of the world, and babbling about her smile"—I just don't want to hear it, Niles! I'm simply helping her to get back on her feet and out of my life as quickly as possible. No, I don't know how long it's going to take. Look, I said I don't know! Oh, really, Niles! Curse you, you are the most infuriating busybody! I'm not sitting with you. Frasier gets up and goes to another table. Niles takes a little pad out of his jacket and starts writing.
FOREPLAY
Scene Five — Frasier's Apartment That evening, Diane and Frasier are standing next to each other, looking out at the city. Diane: It really is a lovely city. Frasier: "Night—making all things dimly beautiful . . ." Diane: "One veil over us both." Cyrano? Frasier: Yes. Eleven years later, we're still on the same page. Diane: Frasier, these past few weeks, you've given so much of yourself to me. I want to give the one gift I have to bestow. I want you to be the first person to see my play. Will you come to dress rehearsal tonight? Frasier: Diane, I'd be honored? Diane: Oh, wonderful, wonderful! She ducks into the powder room. Martin walks into the living room. Diane: Give me a second. Frasier: Are you sure you're ready for this? Diane: Oh yes, it's time. Tonight, I bare myself to you. Martin ducks behind the pillar. Frasier: Big step, Diane. Diane: Oh well, I have to say I'm a little nervous about it. But, barring any lighting or prop problems, the whole thing will be over in a couple of hours. Martin: [heading to the kitchen] Hello! People still in the house here! Diane: Meet me at the theater at seven . . . I don't know what I've done to deserve you. They kiss. Diane leaves, and Martin comes back. Frasier: Hey, Dad. Martin: Listen, it's none of my business, but you're not falling for her again, are you? Frasier: What if I were? Martin: That woman dumped you at the altar. Frasier: Oh, that was the old Diane. She no longer sees herself as the center of the universe. And I'm not the old Frasier anymore either. People can change, Dad. Martin: Yeah, I suppose you're right. Take me for instance. The old Martin would have said, "you're out of your mind. I'd rather see you go gay and shack up with the punk who shot me than go off with her. I'd rather see you sewed up inside the body of a dead horse." But the new Martin just says, "Vivia l'amour." Frasier: The new Frasier resists the temptation to correct your French. Scene Six — Theater Frasier sits alone in the rows of a small theater. Diane comes out from behind the curtain and speaks to the whole room. Diane: Well, the stage is set, my players are prepared. So, without further ado, I give you "Rhapsody and Requiem," a play by Diane Chambers. Frasier applauds. Diane goes backstage. The curtain opens. On the stage is a nearly-perfect replica of Cheers back in Boston, complete with look-alikes. Frasier's eyes widen. Stan: [Sam look-alike] Boy, it sure is great having Mary-Ann back. Just wasn't the same when she was gone. Clark: [Cliff look-alike] Yeah, well, you know, uh, recent studies at John Hopkins University revealed that the expression "absence makes the heart grow fonder," is in actuality rooted in scientific bedrock. Darla: [Carla look-alike] Yeah, so's your head. Stan: Ease up there, Darla. Ned [Norm look-alike] enters. Ned: Evenin', everybody. Stan: Hey there, Ned. What would you say to a beer? Ned: What's a nice beer like you doing in a face like this? Backstage, Diane laughs outrageously at her own joke. For Frasier, this is getting increasingly weird. Then his own look alike, Dr. Franklyn Creane, walks in the door. Dr. Creane: Salutations, all. Stan: Hey there, Doc. What can I get you? Dr. Creane: Ooh, a prickly choice, Stan. It reminds me of the one the 18th-century wit John Wilkes faced when asked by the Earl of Sandwich whether he expected to die on the gallows or of the pox. "That depends, sir," he said, "on whether I choose to embrace your principles or your mistress." Mary-Ann [Diane look-alike] enters and takes center stage. Mary-Ann: Evening, people. All: Mary-Ann! Cut to Later: the players are each illuminated by spotlights in turn to give interior lines. Stan: I pour beer down people's throats. Ned: I drink it. Dr. Creane: Our lives are empty. So what draws our feet here night after night? The lights come up, showing the three men at the bar, alone. Stan: Ned: Mary-Ann. Dr. Creane: Cut to Later: the bar is full. Mary-Ann comes out and embraces Stan. Mary-Ann: Well, I'm off. See you anon, mi amore. Stan: [kisses her] You bet, honey. Frasier isn't sure how much more of this he can take. Diane: [coming onstage] Hold it, stop! What kind of a kiss was that? You two are supposed to be in love! Stan: Well, I didn't know how big you wanted it. Diane: Remember that kiss you gave me this morning? Stan: Like this one? The actor grabs Diane and kisses her deeply. Frasier stews with jealousy. Diane: That's the one. O.K., from the kiss! [goes offstage] Stan: You bet, honey. They resume the scene. Mary-Ann and Stan break apart. Mary-Ann: Forgive me, Franklyn. I suppose that was a tad inconsiderate. Dr. Creane: Quite all right. A loving spirit like yours can't be bridled. Mary-Ann: But I did leave you at the altar. Dr. Creane: No, you know I hold no ill-will toward you for that. Frasier's about to explode. Dr. Creane: Could we just stop for a second? This whole getting- left-at-the-altar thing—I just don't know what I'm supposed to be feeling. Frasier: I may be able to illuminate that for you! [gets up and storms onstage] What you are feeling is that this woman has reached into your chest, plucked out your heart, and thrown it to her hell-hounds for a chew toy! And it's not the last time either! Because that's what this woman is! She is the devil! There's no use running away from her, because no matter how far you go, no matter how many years you let pass, you will never be completely out of reach of those bony fingers! So, drink hearty, Franklin, and laugh! Because you have made a pact with Beelzebub! And her name is Mary Ann! Frasier storms out of the theater. The rest of the cast members break into applause. Diane stands there, mortified.
AFTERPLAY
Scene Seven — Theater Diane is sitting at the bar, alone. She is making notes on her play script. Frasier comes back. Frasier: Diane? Diane: Frasier . . . Frasier: I thought we should talk. Diane: Well, yes, I think we should. I tried to reach you at your home. Frasier: I was driving around. Diane: [sighs] I'm sorry if I in any way misled you about my feelings these last few weeks. Frasier: You didn't. I think I mislead myself. Diane: Well, at the very least I obviously owe you an apology for the first time that things went awry between us. Frasier: Oh, it's all right. Diane: No, it was a time in my life when— Frasier: No, Diane, it isn't necessary. The things I said . . . well, they just needed saying. Besides, I don't really feel all that harshly—and in retrospect, I'm reasonably sure that you are not the devil . . . although he does have the power to assume pleasing shapes. Diane: Well, you should know I've decided to go back to Los Angeles. Watching the play tonight through fresh eyes, I—well, I just don't think it's ready. Frasier: I'm sure things'll work out fine. Well, I think I've said what I came to say. Diane: Frasier, um, before you go, there's one last thing you could help me with, not that you haven't helped me a lot already. It's the last scene, where Franklyn and Mary-Ann say goodbye. It's never felt quite right to me. I'd like her to stand . . . oh, right about here [stands in the middle of the stage] and tell him how much he's meant to her and how she'll never forget him. How do you suppose . . . "Franklyn" would respond to that? Frasier: Well, I suppose he'd tell her that he feels the same way. That she's touched him in a way she can never imagine, he's glad she was in his life. Diane: All that would be left would be the "goodbye." How do you see that? Frasier: Well, I suppose he could say, uh, "until we meet again," probably certain that they never would. Diane: But mightn't there be a part of him that hopes they would? Frasier: Oh, I suppose so, yes. All right, then, don't have him sum things up. Just let them say their goodbyes, and if their paths happen to cross again, so be it . . . Goodbye, Mary Ann. Diane: Goodbye, Franklyn. Frasier crosses to the bar door. Diane: Oh yes, that's a perfect moment, uncluttered by any extra words or phrases— Frasier: Diane. Diane: Oh shoot, I've blown it! Frasier: All right, let's try it again. [stands toe-to-toe with her] Goodbye, Diane. Diane: Goodbye, Frasier. They hug. He goes out the bar door. She starts to say something, then he comes back through it. Frasier: Force of habit. Diane: I've been doing it all week. He leaves through the audience rows, waving goodbye. Credits: Eddie sits on the couch, chewing one of Martin's socks. Martin sees him and pulls the sock away, scolding Eddie. Eddie appears in a spotlight, with a thought bubble saying "I can't help it. It's what I do." Eddie pulls another sock out of the couch cushions. Martin yanks that away too.

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 This episode capsule is copyright 1999 by Nick Hartley. This episode
 summary remains property of Frasier, Copyright of Paramount
 Productions and NBC. Printed without permission. 

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