The City of Absurdity   TWIN PEAKS

  "Twin Peaks" Returns to ABC On Thursdays

San Francisco Chronicle, March 8 1991

(AP) "Twin Peaks," the moody, obscure nighttime soap opera about the eccentric inhabitants of a Pacific Northwest lumber town, is returning to ABC's prime time lineup, network officials said yesterday.

"Twin Peaks" returns Thursday, March 28, at 9 PM, with six original episodes to air in that time slot, said Robert Iger, president of ABC Entertainment.

"We've returned it to the time period where it performed very well against strong competition last spring, and we're hopeful that this move will revitalize interest in the program," Iger said.

"Twin Peaks" is replacing "Gabriel's Fire," a drama starring James Earl Jones, which will be in hiatus following last night's broadcast.

"Twin Peaks" had been languishing in a Saturday night time slot until it was placed on hiatus last month. At the beginning of its March 28 broadcast, Iger said, what has happened so far in the season will be recapitulated.

The series was conceived by director David Lynch, the high priest of cinematic anxiety ("Eraserhead," "The Elephant Man," "Blue Velvet," and "Wild at Heart") and Mark Frost, a TV producer from "Hill Street Blues."

"Twin Peaks," a midseason replacement, was the year's most written-about show even before its April 8, 1990, debut won a 33 percent share of the TV audience. It quickly became the most talked-about show on television.

ABC's decision to return "Twin Peaks" to the Thursday night slot against "Cheers" was bad news to one ratings analyst.

"They're determined to kill the show," said David Marans, a senior researcher for the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency. "While pulling it out of that nowhere slow on Saturday, the lead-in of 'The Father Dowling Mysteries' is almost as incompatibile a program as they have."

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