www.whyville.net Dec 26, 2002 Weekly Issue

Staff Writer

What's On!

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These listings cover television programs up to Thursday, January 2nd.

Greetings again, TV viewers!

No doubt you know this, but this past week's Show-of-the-Week was a Stephen Spielberg bio-documentary. Did you watch it? If so, meet us at the Illusions Talk to chat about the show and other TV and media events, this Thursday the 26th (about when this article gets published) at around 6:30pm Whyville Time.

This coming week's Show-of-the-Week is a quick history of Weight Watchers -- given the growing interest in health and eating right, what do you think about these folks? Is it the real deal, or a money scam you'd do better to avoid? How do you (wisely!!!) deal with gaining and losing weight?

Want some clams? Watch the show-of-the-week, then talk about it with me and other citizens (including other city workers) sometime this week in the House of Illusions Geek Speak. We usually meet on Wednesdays at about 6:15pm Whyville Time. This week's meeting will be on Thursday at 6:15pm Why-Time. Otherwise, we can't watch the show beforehand!

If you come and really take part in the meeting, you'll get up to 50 clams from City Hall... you like that?

To sum up: tune to the show, show up to the chat, chat up your thoughts, and know you get clams!

Watch the shows and tell me what you and your parents think. Email me, the MediaWiz of Whyville!

And now... the Media Menu!

Thursday, December 26

"Save Our Sounds" (History Channel 8-9 pm E/P) This technology documentary in the "Save Our History" series describes the current effort by the Smithsonian Institution to preserve rare historic audio recordings of our cultural history. Native-American chants, oral histories from slaves, music from legendary artists of the past, speeches of presidents and other historical figures. The earliest recording technology involved fragile materials and all of the oldest recordings- amazing things to hear --all are rapidly decaying. Go online at http://www.loc.gov/folklife/sos/ and sample some of them.

Friday, December 27

"NOW with Bill Moyers" (PBS, 9-10 pm E/P) This broadcast of PBS's leading news-commentary program is an updated presentation of the documentary "Kids and Chemicals" that investigated new research on links between childhood illness and environmental contamination. More and more children are suffering from asthma, childhood cancers like leukemia, as well as learning and behavioral disabilities. In the last 70 years, more than 75,000 synthetic chemicals and metals have been put to use in America. Many have never been tested for their toxic effects and scientists are now asking questions about the health risks of growing up exposed to this ever-increasing number of untested chemicals. Families around the U.S. who are coping with the consequences of potentially toxic exposures are interviewed. After this encore presentation, Bill Moyers will report on what has happened since the original broadcast. Log on to http://www.pbs.org/now to find a state-by-state U.S. map of environmental and children's health resources; use an environmental checklist for your home and your neighborhood and learn how to spot potential dangers; and more.

Saturday, December 28

"Firefighting School" (A&E Network, noon-1pm E/P) In this edition of the dpcumentary series "Behind Closed Doors with Joan Lunden" she visits the largest emergency training center in the U.S. that helps simulate what firefighters, rescue workers, and emergency personnel will face in the field. The training center includes a mock city with railroad cars, industrial refineries, an aircraft, and even a ship. Joan suits up and trains with the recruits as they put out industrial and house fires.

Sunday, December 29

"Gettysburg" (Turner Classic Movies Channel, 1-6 pm ET, 10am-3 pm PT) OK, this is a long movie. And yes, I've recommended it before. But whenever it's on TV, I suggest you catch it if you're interested in getting a big one-time, forever-memorable dose of American history which you'll be able to use in many ways, on many tests for the rest of your school life. One thing which might surprise you is that the officer whose smarts and courage are credited (accurately) in the film for turning this Civil War battle in favor of the U.S. side was a teacher in civilian life. Available on video.

"60 Minutes" (CBS, 7-8 pm E/P) The three reports in this newsmagazine are: "Nursing Shortage" -- Over 120,000 nurse positions go unfilled in the U.S., recruiters must seek nurses in countries like South Africa, which can ill afford to lose them. "Brother Rick Curry" -- If you are a casting director looking for an actor to play a disabled person, there may be no better place to find one than in Jesuit Brother Rick Curry's workshop in New York City and Maine. His actors, like himself, really are disabled. "Gross National Happiness" -- The simple pursuit of happiness through the Buddhist religion is the way of life in the tiny kingdom of Bhutan. But that otherworldly way of living could be in jeopardy as the very worldly invention of television comes its way.

Monday, December 30

"Huey Long" (PBS, 9-10 pm E/P) By using rare archival material and expert commentary, Ken Burns explores the life and times of Huey P. Long, the charismatic, controversial governor and senator of Louisiana in the 1930s. (They don't make 'em like this any more. Maybe that's a good thing. Maybe it's a bad thing. A populist hero and a corrupt demagogue, hailed as a champion of the poor and reviled as a dictator, he built his career on a platform of social reform and justice, all the while employing graft and corruption to get what he wanted. Long's spellbinding personality and political machine might have taken him to the White House had he not been assassinated in 1935. Louisianans who knew Long are interviewed with historian Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.; the late journalist I.F. Stone; and the late author Robert Penn Warren, whose novel "All the King's Men" was inspired by the rise and fall of Huey Long. Info on this colorful character is available at http://www.pbs.org/kenburns/films/huey_long.html.

Tuesday, December 31

"Live From Lincoln Center -- The New York Philharmonic All-Gershwin New Year's Eve Concert" (PBS, 8-10 pm E/P) This broadcast of music by America's most important composer includes "An American In Paris", the "Cuban Overture", and excerpts from his opera "Porgy And Bess", and features soprano Indra Thomas, tenor Lawrence Brownlee, and bass-baritone Willard White. Lorin Maazel conducts, Beverly Sills hosts. If you're just starting to add some orchestral music to your rock/rap/etc diet, watch this show. It'll whet your appetite for more.

Wednesday, January 1

"'Weight Watchers: Before and After" (A&E Network, 8-9 pm E/P) This documentary in the "Biography" series is the story of how overweight housewife Jean Nidetch launched an anti-fat campaign that evolved into Weight Watchers, the world's leading weight-loss program. You'll see how Nidetch developed her strategy of sensible eating combined with group therapy sessions, and how she traveled the world to share her secret of success. Today, over one-million people attend weekly meetings in 30 countries.

Thursday, January 2

"Much Ado About Something" (PBS, 9-10:30pm E/P) This "Frontline" documentary applies its investigative-reporter skills to a famous unsolved mystery: Author of timeless masterpieces, including Romeo and Juliet, Othello and Hamlet, William Shakespeare is widely considered to be the greatest writer who ever lived -- or was he? Were these works, long attributed to him, actually written by his contemporary,Christopher Marlowe? The conflicting historical accounts are almost as interesting as one of these plays. Marlowe was at the height of his literary career in 1593 when he was supposedly killed in an argument over a tavern bill. Marlowe's death, however, has been clouded in mystery, with some "Marlovians" insisting the playwright lived to write another day - but under the name of Shakespeare. This documentary attempts to unravel what some are calling the "biggest cover-up in literary history." After the show, log on http://pbs.org/frontline/shows/muchado to find out more about why "who wrote Shakespeare" is important -- or why it isn't. (One expert says flatly: "To me, the people who think that Shakespeare didn't write Shakespeare are either American snobs... or great British eccentrics.")


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