www.whyville.net Sep 5, 2003 Weekly Issue

Staff Writer

Media Menu

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These listings cover television programs up to Friday, August 22nd.

Greetings, TV viewers!

The Media Hour discussion topic for Wednesday, September 10th will be the TV programs listed below about the 9-11 World Trade Center bombing. Several of these shows will be aired prior to the Media Hour, so watch them. Also watch the ones after that time. All are worth your time.

Two years have passed since the attacks on September 11th. What are your memories, what do you feel are the effects -- if any -- on your life caused by what happened then?

For the Media Hour, watch the show(s)-of-the-week, jot down some ideas, then talk about them with me and other citizens (including other City Workers, if they're available) at the Greek Theater, over in City Hall. You'll find that the Theater makes discussions pretty easy, since City Workers are able to direct people's movement and behavior, when we need to, and it keeps everyone's chat bubbles from overlapping too much. We meet for MediaHour on Wednesdays from 6:30pm and 7:30pm Whyville Time (that's the same as Eastern Daylight Time).

Everyone is welcome to write to me about what you and your parents think: Y-mail me, the MediaWiz of Whyville!

And now... the Media Menu!

Friday, September 5

"Dangerous Cargo" (History Channel, 7-8pm E/P) This is a technology documentary about an industry that becomes more and more important every day, even though its existence is a worry -- but a necessity. An average of 800,000 shipments of hazardous materials hit our highways and railways daily. From wooden crates filled with explosives to hazmat containers of nuclear waste, the program describes hazardous material shipments -- tracked by satellites and carried on a hush-hush "ghost fleet" -- trucks carrying classified government materials; and shows a Con-Air flight moving another kind of nasty stuff -- dangerous felons. Rated TV G.

"NOW With Bill Moyers" (PBS, 8-9pm E/P) The main report in this newsmagazine describes how women have experienced the globalization of business, particularly in the developing world. Filmed mostly in Thailand and Senegal, it shows how some of them have been beneficiaries of this globalization; but many more are losing out due to international trade agreements to the unfettered power of multinational corporations.

Saturday, September 6

"If We Had No Moon" (Discovery Channel, 7-8pm E/P) This science documentary asks, and answers, an interesting question. Without the moon, days would last four hours, winds would blow with hurricane force, and Earth would be shrouded in a dense, toxic atmosphere. What luck that 50 million years ago, Earth sustained a major collision that created its moon. There's an incredibly cool book called What If the Moon Didn't Exist?: Voyages to Earths That Might Have Been by Neil F. Comins that answers this and a bunch of other wild astronomy questions that will get you wondering how it all works.

"Snake Wranglers: Serpents of the Sea" (National Geographic Channel, 8:30-9pm E/P) To film this documentary, venom researcher Dr. Bryan Fry plunges into the waters off the coast of Australia with his wife and research assistant, Alexia, to capture and milk highly venomous sea snakes for the creation of new antivenom.

Sunday, September 7

"60 Minutes" (CBS, 7-8-pm E/P) In one of the reports in this newsmagazine, entitled, "North Of the Border, a former high-ranking Canadian intelligence official tells Steve Kroft that there are at least 50 terrorist groups, Al Qaeda among them, operating in Canada who could easily slip into the U.S. The other reports are about a tragically wrong heart-lung transplant and about internet wagering on professional football.

"DC 9/11: Time Of Crisis" (Showtime Network 8-10pm E/P) This is an original movie made for television -- which commemorates the second anniversary of the September 11 attacks. It focuses on the decisions and tasks faced by President Bush and his staff on September 11, 2001 and the days following the attacks. Based on in-depth interviews and extensive research, the docudrama will interweave actual footage of these events. Timothy Bottoms plays President George W. Bush, with John Cunningham as Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, David Fonteno as Secretary of State Colin Powell, Penny Johnson Jerald as National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, Mary Gordon Murray as First Lady Laura Bush and George Takei as U.S. Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta.

"And Starring Pancho Villa As Himself" (HBO, 9:30-11:30pm E/P) This is a historical movie made for television about the early days of "embedding" reporters with cameras with troops in combat. In this movie it's about an American crew filming Pancho Villa in battle, in 1914 in Mexico. Rebel leader Pancho Villa allowed a Hollywood crew to film him and his army as they fought the nationalist Huerta forces. Early movie giants D.W. Griffith (Colm Feore) and Harry Aiken (Jim Broadbent), send a junior executive, Frank Thayer (Eion Bailey) to Mexico to persuade the cash-strapped, publicity-hungry Villa, (Antonio Banderas) to let them film his revolution. Stepping into the literal crossfire, Thayer's crew risked their lives, mingling of fiction and reality -- many battle scenes were 'staged' for the camera. Directed by Bruce Beresford and written by Larry Gelbart (the creator of the M.A.S.H. TV series). Also airs September 12 at 8pm and Thursday, September 18 at 9pm.

Monday, September 8

"The Center Of The World" (PBS, 9pm-midnight E/P) This documentary, the final episode in a series about New York, is a portrait of the World Trade Center -- culminating in the events of September 11, 2001. It traces the origins and development of the twin towers -- called the "moonshot" of structural engineering and skyscraper construction -- the controversies and challenges that surrounded their rise into the sky, and the complex relationship of the project, the city and the nation to the global economic dynamic that gave the World Trade Center its name and its rationale. It also recounts the events of September 11 -- exploring the meaning of the attacks, and the attempt to rebuild and recover from them.

"The Reality of Reality: How Real is Real?" (Bravo Network, 9-10pm E/P) This is the initial documentary in a series about the whole idea of "reality television". It examines these programs from the time they are thought up to the point where they are filmed and assembled for broadcast. These shows have revolutionized television -- for better or worse. The documentary series continues in this time slot, Monday through Thursday this week, with episodes entitled "America's Instant Idols", " Behind the Scenes" and "Everything New is Old".

Tuesday, September 9

"The Original Vampire" (Discovery Channel, 6-7pm E/P) This is a documentary about mosquitos. Each year, 700 million people are infected with mosquito-born diseases and three million die. This "vampire" has four tiny saws for cutting flesh, lives for about a week and can lay 2,000 eggs at once. Research aims to stop this formidable foe.

"Tactical to Practical" (History Channel, 9-10pm E/P) In this documentary, former Navy fighter pilot and series host Hunter Ellis examines military solutions to problems that crossed over into civilian life. Examples: the four-wheel drive vehicle--from WWII Jeeps to the Humvee, night vision technology, now used in law enforcement and wildlife research and GPS (Global Positioning System) which came into its own in Desert Storm and is about to make the compass obsolete. There's a website about all this at http://www.historychannel.com/global/listings/series_showcase.jsp?EGrpType=Series&Id=8826020&NetwCode=THC

Wednesday, September 10

"Sacred Balance: The Matrix Of Life" (PBS, 8-9pm E/P) This documentary, an episode in a series in which Canadian biologist David Suzuki presents a new view of the history of science, describes how water and air move endlessly together, atoms linking and de-linking to form ocean and atmosphere. These are the sacred elements on which life depends. What we do to them, we eventually end up doing to ourselves. Suzuki explains how scientists are discovering just how complex this matrix is, where water defies human boundaries and human ownership. Further episodes, entitled "The Fire of Creation" and "Coming Home", air in this time slot each Wednesday this month. There's a wonderful website about the series at http://outreach.sacredbalance.com/, one feature of which is an art contest for kids 10 14 years old who are interested in environmental science.

"Thomas L. Friedman Reporting: Searching for the Roots of 9/11" (Discovery Channel, 10-11pm E/P) This documentary presents a broad portrait of the roots of Muslim rage and the mistrust towards America. Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Tom Friedman. conducted interviews in Indonesia, Qatar, Egypt and Moslem enclaves in Europe. TV rated PG-V because footage of some violence is presented.

Thursday, September 11

"Remembering September 11th: The President's Story" (The Learning Channel, 8-9pm E/P) This is a documentary -- not a re-enactment with actors -- of the events on the morning of September 11, 2001. It began routinely for George W. Bush in Sarasota, Florida. But within hours he and others government officials would be faced with terrorist attacks on America. Hear their story, based on interviews conducted 2 years after the events plus news footage of what they did on that day.

Friday, September 12

"Gambling Games -- Beating the House" (Discovery Channel, 9-12pm E/P) I don't like to gamble. Life's too uncertain already. But you may have the urge... so you better know the odds (consider this a math lesson). This documentary looks into the techniques the pros use to win at popular casino games, blackjack secrets and video poker. It also examine slot machines from the inside out, including payout rates and the 'science' of locating them on the casino floor. TV rated PG-L because some of the people interviewed used strong language.


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