The 10 Funniest Celebrity Guest Callers on the Show, Ranked

Played by Kelsey Grammer, Frasier‘s eponymous protagonist is one of the most famous characters in sitcom history. First debuting in Season 3 of Cheers, Frasier Crane is the well-meaning psychiatrist who tries to help everyone. After Cheers concluded, Frasier went back to his hometown of Seattle, where he tried to rekindle his relationship with his father and brother. While there, Frasier became a radio psychiatrist host who took calls from locals — many of whom were voiced by celebrities.



The guest callers made up the bulk of Frasier‘s celebrity cameos, and they would often call in with funny anecdotes and life problems. These ranged from relationship problems to strange occurrences at work. Frasier would sometimes be helpful but was just as likely to make the call about himself or even roast the caller. The funniest celebrity callers made for some of the most memorable moments in Frasier‘s eleven-season runtime.

Updated by Ajay Aravind on December 6, 2023: Frasier has returned with a reboot, much to the fandom’s delight. This new series highlights the titular character’s attempt at navigating his twilight years, even if he refuses to acknowledge his aging. Although the new Frasier doesn’t quite pack the same punch, it retains a decent chunk of its predecessor’s charm. As such, we’ve updated this older list about Frasier’s funniest celebrity guest callers with some more relevant information.


10 Christopher Reeve Voices Leonard, a Man With Severe Agoraphobia

Season 1, Episode 2 “Space Quest”

Christopher Reeve posing in his Superman costume

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In the episode “Space Quest,” Frasier grew increasingly frustrated with his new living arrangement with his father. He later took to the radio to try to spark a discussion on the topic of intrusion. One of his callers, Leonard (Christopher Reeve), called in to discuss his agoraphobia.

Leonard’s issue wasn’t pertinent to Frasier’s topic, and the host tried hurrying him along. Leonard explained he hadn’t seen another person in eight months. Frasier tried to comfort him by telling him he wasn’t alone, to which Leonard replied bluntly, “But I am alone.

9 Mary Steenburgen’s Caller Struggled With a Fear of Heights

Season 2, Episode 13: “Retirement Is Murder”

Mary Steenburgen as Clara Clayton in Back to the Future 3

In the episode “Retirement is Murder,” Frasier takes a call from someone who, from context, was a regular caller. The woman, Marjorie, voiced by Mary Steenburgen, struggled with a fear of heights but was dining at the Space Needle as part of her therapy.

This episode presented one of Frasier’s better moments at KACL and proved that he did stay in contact with his callers. Whenever she’d look down, Marjorie would scream at the height, requiring Frasier to remind her not to look down — until she emits a final scream at the sight of her bill.

8 John Cusack Plays a Freshman Psychology Student

Season 4, Episode 8: “Our Father Whose Art Ain’t Heaven”

John Cusack holding a gun in Grosse Pointe Blank

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In the episode “Our Father Whose Art Ain’t Heaven,” Frasier takes a call from a man identified as Greg, played by John Cusack. Greg was erratic and convinced that he was living with several disorders and illnesses. However, as the list of issues grew, Frasier became less worried.

When Greg finished reading off his ailments, Frasier offered him two possibilities. He stated the man was either helplessly ill and should go to hospital or that he was a freshman psychology student. When Greg admitted to the latter, Frasier told him it was common for students to associate with the illnesses they read about.

7 Bill Paxton Voices Ernie, a Man Seemingly Frustrated With His Pet

Season 10, Episode 23: “Analyzed Kiss”

Bill Paxton staring offscreen while wearing armor in Aliens

In the episode “Analyzed Kiss,” the story opens with Frasier taking a call from Ernie, played by Bill Paxton. Ernie vented frustration about his dog to Frasier. Frasier explains that it’s common for people to get angry with their pets, often representing issues with their own place in the world.

Ernie rendered Frasier almost speechless when he explained the problem was that his dog kept telling him to take off his tin foil hat. The call prompted one of the show’s funniest escalations, as the conversation went from a seemingly benign problem to one Frasier had no answer for.

6 Joe Mantegna Plays Derek Mann, Frasier’s Would-Be Nemesis

Season 1, Episode 4: “I Hate Frasier Crane”

Fat Tony gives a foreboding smile in The Simpsons

In the first season of Frasier, the titular character was almost given an arch-nemesis in the columnist Derek Mann (voiced by Joe Mantegna). The feud started when Frasier discovered Derek Mann had dedicated one of his columns to the radio host, titled “I Hate Frasier Crane.”

After Frasier and Mann had a back-and-forth, Mann finally called into the show, where he challenged Frasier to a street fight. The challenge left Frasier exasperated, leading to a funny and awkward acceptance of the fight by the pompously lovable protagonist.

5 John Lithgow Calls Himself Madman Martinez on Frasier’s Radio Show

Season 2, Episode 19: “Someone To Watch Over Me”

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In the episode “Someone To Watch Over Me,” Frasier takes a call from a man who identifies himself as “Madman Martinez” (John Lithgow). Martinez explained that he was feeling down because business was so slow. However, he didn’t understand why since he had already slashed prices.

Martinez slowly worked his way up to advertising the cars he was selling, escalating his voice until finally launching into a full commercial. Frustrated by the hijacking of his show, Frasier cut off Martinez and went to the show’s sponsors, hammering home that at least those were paid ads.

4 Carl Reiner Asks Frasier an Incredibly Inane Question

Season 1, Episode 9: “Selling Out”

Carl Reiner with a shocked expression on his face

In the episode “Selling Out,” Frasier begins by listening to one of his callers discuss a problem he was having naming his boat. The caller, voiced by Carl Reiner, explained that he and his wife were arguing over the name. His wife insisted on Lou Lou Bell, while he preferred The Intrepid.

When the man finally asked Frasier what he thought, Frasier launched into a now-iconic roast of the caller. He went into great detail to describe the most powerful microscope in the world, only to explain that even with that microscope, he still couldn’t find an interest in the man’s problem.

3 Matthew Broderick Talks About His Bizarre Late-Night Shift Experiences

Season 3, Episode 1: “She’s the Boss”

The ending scene of Ferris Bueller's Day Off showing Matthew Broderick

In the episode “She’s the Boss,” Frasier was given the much-hated night shift at the radio station, taking calls between midnight and 3 am. This led to a considerably stranger audience than Frasier was used to. The funniest yet weirdest of these calls came from Mark, played by Matthew Broderick.

Mark kicked off Frasier’s long stream of bizarre calls by explaining he had the night shift at his own job. Mark explained that he had been reviewing the surveillance footage of himself and that the camera version of him was doing things he didn’t approve of.

2 Gary Sinise Voices Sid, a Man Unable To Talk on the Phone

Season 2, Episode 18: “The Club”

Gary Sinise talks on phone in Ransom

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In the episode “The Club,” Frasier takes a call from a man who announces an inability to talk on the phone. The man, identified as Sid, revealed that he relied on a pre-written script to navigate phone calls. Frasier tried to coax Sid into going off script but to no avail.

When Frasier asked what happens when someone asks a question not anticipated, the man flipped through the script, only to end the call. The delivery by Sinise was hilarious and made Sid sound as exasperated and anxious as possible, especially with such a unique predicament.

1 Eric Idle’s Mysterious Caller Makes an Equally Mysterious Announcement

Season 3, Episode 17: “High Crane Drifter”

Eric Idle making a face in Life of Brian

In the episode “High Crane Drifter,” Frasier gained a reputation as a local tough guy when he roughed up someone who stole his table at Cafe Nervosa. Shortly after, he received several calls from Seattle locals detailing how they themselves had taken matters into their own hands.

As the calls poured in and Frasier became increasingly concerned at the effect he’d caused, one such caller — voiced by Eric Idle — shocked the audience and Frasier alike. A man with no name announced, with no added context, that he’d “put one hundred scorpions in a FedEx box.” Fans are still curious as to the lead-up to this situation.

Frasier TV Show Poster

Frasier

Dr. Frasier Crane moves back to his hometown of Seattle, where he lives with his father and works as a radio psychiatrist.

Release Date
September 16, 1993

Cast
Kelsey Grammer, Jane Leeves, David Hyde Pierce, Peri Gilpin, John Mahoney

Main Genre
Comedy

Genres
Comedy

Rating
TV-PG

Seasons
11

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