Lilith Sternin

Lilith Sternin

Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Character Analysis

(Avoiding Spoilers)

Living… in Boston, in possible contact with demonic forces. All of Lilith’s acquaintances suspect that she lives a double life, spending at least part of her time in another, darker realm. Her onetime brother-in-law Niles once commented that he knew when Lilith was in town because dogs would form into packs and blood would weep from the walls.                                     

Profession… psychiatrist. Lilith takes her profession very seriously, using technical psychiatric jargon to explain even the most mundane human behaviors. Her profession even dominates her relationship with her husband (later her ex) Frasier, another psychiatrist. They build psychological profiles together, with their opposing views occasionally causing tension. While he takes a psychoanalytic, Freudian approach, Lilith is a firm believer in the behaviorist school.

Interests... her son Frederick. Frederick was delivered in a taxicab while Lilith was on her way home from the hospital. Lilith takes the same cold and calculating approach to parenting as she does to scientific research. She couldn’t sing to her son without first taking singing lessons. The other Cheers patrons gave her a hard time at first, but the lessons worked – she moved the entire bar to tears after surprising them with a touching rendition of “Sonny Boy.”

Relationship Status... on and off with Dr. Frasier Crane. There was a history of flirtation between them but they were both so uptight that it took much longer than it should have for them to get together. The key was when Diane, a Cheers waitress and onetime Frasier paramour, made Lilith take her hair down. The sight of her finally letting loose was irresistible to Frasier and they decided to “be animals” together (their phrasing). Then came love, then marriage, then the baby with the baby carriage, and finally, divorce. Maybe their love was too fiery to not get burned.

Challenge… a love triangle. She resisted romance with Frasier for as long as possible, and eventually had an affair with another man – Dr. Louis Pascal. Frasier threatened suicide, prompting her to try and work things out. When she finds out he wasn’t serious, she went back with Pascal to live in his experimental underground eco-pod. That didn’t keep her away for long, though. She can’t accept her lasting feelings for Frasier – something she can’t explain away with science or a diagnosis. She exerts so much control over her life that any intruding force, including her own laughter, can throw her for a loop.

Personality... ice queen. She is militantly repressed and rarely cracks a smile. Her cold demeanor may be a cover for being shy or socially inept. Most who know her suspect there’s a steamy goddess hiding beneath the drab, conservative clothing. She tends to express herself in exacting, technical, jargon-filled sentences that show her analytical nature. She can be painfully honest with others, and naïve to the point of sweetness.


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