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TV questions and answers

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Q. My husband says he has seen Maris on "Frasier." I say they talk about her but she has never been seen. Who's right?

- B.B., Des Moines, Iowa

A. Dr. Niles Crane's filthy rich, ultra thin spouse Maris is often the subject of laughs on the show, but she's never been seen. And that's just fine with producer David Lee and star Kelsey Grammer, who are both on record as saying any attempt to portray Maris on camera would be a disappointment to viewers.

Q. I would like to know in what year the characters Luke and Laura first appeared on the soap opera "General Hospital."

- A.F., Halifax, Va.

A. Genie Francis joined "GH" in 1976; Anthony Geary in 1978. Their romance heated up in 1981, culminating with a November 1981 on-screen wedding that drew the largest audience ever for a daytime drama. Francis decided to leave the show a few months later in a storyline that had Laura disappearing into the fog. Janine Turner was hired as lookalike Laura Templeton and Demi Moore, as Laura's sister Jackie, subbed as Luke's new love interest.

Q. My family and I are really enjoying "The Magic Hour." How is Magic doing in the Nielsen ratings?

- E.F., Dallas, Texas

A. Ratings are lackluster for Magic Johnson's month-old late-night talk show, about the same as they were for the canceled Kennan Ivory Wayans show.

Q. I am so mad that "Dr. Quinn" has been taken off CBS. I only hope Fox or another network picks it up.

- S.R., Tulsa, Okla.

A. The "Dr. Quinn" cancellation has proved to be very unpopular with the show's loyal viewers, but CBS is standing pat. At first there were hopes that another network, perhaps UPN, would snap up the series, but that hasn't happened. Now CBS has offered Jane Seymour a two-hour "Dr. Quinn" movie deal. Latest word is that Seymour is thinking it over. So far, two series have been saved from the "canceled" bin: "The Magnificent Seven" and "The Sentinel."

Q. I'm a big fan of the "MAD TV" band Corky and the Juice Pigs. They said on "MAD TV" the band had an album called "Pants." Is it a real album, or fictional?

- S.B., Denton, Texas

A. The band and the new album, "Pants," are for real. The Canadian band, which has gained popularity on the sketch comedy show, has two CDs. Their first, a self-titled CD, features the MAD TV favorite, "Eskimo." For information on how to order the CDs, write Diamondfield Entertainment, 67A Portland St., Suite 7, Toronto, Ontario, M5V 2M9, Canada. Or you can e-mail the band at juicepig@total.ret.

Q. There's a movie starring James Woods as Bill W., the founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. I can't recall the name, and no video stores know anything about it. Can you help?

- B.P., Abilene, Texas

A. "My Name is Bill W." is scheduled to air on the Family channel July 23 from 9-11 p.m. ET. The 1989 TV movie is also available on video.

Q. Has John Henson from "Talk Soup" been in any movies or TV?

- R.W. & R.W., Grove City, Ohio

A. The stand-up comic has appeared in "Muppet Treasure Island," "Meet Wally Sparks" (as himself) and "Stag."