In a funny programming decision, the Nine Network has decided to plug its Tuesday night hole by running back to back episodes of the new and last series of Frasier. Next Tuesday night we will have the two episodes of Frasier from 7:30pm to 8:30pm, right after a repeat of an episode from the previous series at 7pm. Ninety minutes of Frasier.

And what makes it an odd programming idea is that next Tuesday night is the final night for Survivor Palau. At 8:30 Nine screens the last ep and we get to find out who has won the 10th Survivor. And right after the final ep Nine is screening the re-union of contenders from this series. A mega night for fanatics, and a win for Nine in the making.

Faced with a hole at 7:30pm why didn’t Nine just blast away with Survivor and hold the back to back episodes of Frasier for a week? They would be easy to promote, or was it a case of going for broke and trying for a big win? The following week Nine has the first State of Origin Rugby League game which will ensure a win. Seven is marking time in the 7:30pm Tuesday night slot. Last night it was a Riverdance special that did okay with 1.2 million people, next week it’s an Ed Sullivan special (as if we haven’t seen all them on Pay TV already!). Sometime mid year Seven will produce a new series of Dancing with the Stars.

Nine is also conserving its new episodes of CSI, running a repeat last night that attracted1.7 million people, thanks especially to Brisbane where CSI is the most favoured program Nine has had for some weeks. But a repeat? Don’t people have a life? Well it is Brisbane. Nine doesn’t want to start the new series of Frasier at 7pm because it has Temptation (aka Sale of the Century) returning soon and it wants to clear the way for it.

So Frasier fans, a change in tactics. Ignore the 7pm repeats and tune in on Tuesday night for the last fresh eps of this fine series and hope that Nine doesn’t treat it like The West Wing, The Sopranos and Six feet Under and suddenly bury it.

Peter Fray

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