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More Hitchhiker's! The end of the pre-show! Impossible? No, just highly improbable.

PBS Primetime Programming for the Week of April 19

As it stands, the second of our pre-show room for the Hitchhiker's ride has been finished, we've been ushered out of it by Ford Prefect and into a big open space, it's dark.  It's black.  It's the blackness of space.  There are stars, there is no noise (space being a vacuum).  I want you to imagine the Haunted Mansion when the lights go out, but without the sound.

 

Sunday, April 19:

8:00 – 9:00PM

Nature – "The Loneliest Animals."  If Sandra Boynton has taught m anything – and I very much believe that she has – this episode will be about three different animals.  First, there will be a dinosaur (it's not his fault, he hasn't a choice).  Then there will be a hippopotamus.  And, finally, an armadillo.  I mean, after all, the hippo joins the rest of the animal pack… but not the armadillo.

9:00 – 10:30PM

Masterpiece Classic – "Little Dorrit (Part Four)."  This is a massive five-part miniseries starring Matthew Macfayden as Arthur Clennam and Claire Foy as Amy "Little" Dorrit.  The story, which focuses on the rags to riches to rags story of a family was apparently one of Dickens' favorites, what with his own dad spending some time in a debtor's prison, much like Amy's dad.

10:30 – 11:30PM

Green Builders.  Come and learn all about various builders who have decided to "build green."  I'm really excited to see this.  I figure that once the economy turns around and people can afford to spent the goodness knows much extra to build green I think that people might actually want to do that.  You know, if it was affordable.

 

Monday, April 20:

8:00 – 9:00PM

Antiques Roadshow “Grand Rapids (Hour One).”  I have to imagine that grand Rapids has a ton of flotsam and jetsam floating through it.  I honestly believe that tons of older items will be surfing on through the stop.  Without a doubt there will be water damage from the rapids, but the stuff will be there.  Who cares if the oil painting has run a little.

9:00 – 10:30PM

We Shall Remain:  American Experience – “Tecumseh's Vision."  The massive multi-part American Experience that PBS has been previewing for months on end is here!  It examines in great detail over the course of five 90-minute documentaries the history of this country from the Native-American perspective.  Tonight it continues with Tenkswatawa's vision of meeting the Master of Life and what it led him to do.

10:30PM – 12:00AM

We Shall Remain:  American Experience – “Tecumseh's Vision."  The massive multi-part American Experience that PBS has been previewing for months on end is here!  It examines in great detail over the course of five 90-minute documentaries the history of this country from the Native-American perspective.  Tonight it continues with Tenkswatawa's vision of meeting the Master of Life and what it led him to do.

 

Tuesday, April 21:

8:00 – 9:00PM

Nova – “Car of the Future.” If The Simpsons has taught me anything — and I firmly believe it has — the car of the future will be designed by Homer for his long-lost half-brother who will end up going broke because of it. The car will be awesome and will cost way, way more than the average person can afford. It will, in short, be truly swell.

9:00 – 11:00PM

Frontline – "Poisoned Waters."  The Clean Water act was passed, I'm told, about quite a while back (more than 10 years but less than 50).  That being said, Puget Sound and the Chesapeake Bay are rather filthy… still.  That's not cool.  It's dirty.  It's disgusting.  It's a sign that something's wrong.  What exactly?  Maybe we'll learn tonight.

 

Wednesday, April 22:

8:00 – 9:00PM

Secret's of the Dead – "Blackbeard's Lost Ship."  I don't know how to tell you this, but the ship isn't so much lost.  In fact, some nice folks (marine archaeologists) have found what remains of the Queen Anne's Revenge off the coast of North Carolina.  I guess one could say that Blackbeard lost the ship, but the ship itself isn't lost.

9:00 – 11:10PM

Jean-Michel Cousteau:  Ocean Adventures – "Call of the Killer Whales."  Candy-gram.  Oh, is that not their call?  I don't think we'd rightly know at this point, what with fewer than 100,000 of them in existence worldwide right now.  Maybe they do knock at doors.  I'm sure Cousteau, the son of the other Cousteau, will tell us.  And, Chris Noth will narrate.

 

Thursday, April 23:

8:00 – 9:00PM

The This Old House Hour – Episode TBA. It’s This Old House and Ask This Old House. It’s like maintenance… for your home. Wait, no, that’s exactly what it is. That doesn’t mean it’s not awesome though. Seriously, The This Old House Hour is one of the finest home improvement hours on PBS. No joke.

9:00 – 10:00PM

Antiques Roadshow “Grand Rapids (Hour One).”  I have to imagine that grand Rapids has a ton of flotsam and jetsam floating through it.  I honestly believe that tons of older items will be surfing on through the stop.  Without a doubt there will be water damage from the rapids, but the stuff will be there.  Who cares if the oil painting has run a little.

10:00 – 11:00PM

Appalachia:  A History of Mountains and People – "Mountain Revolutions."  Following the Civil War a land grab took place in Appalachia.  People wanted to own the lumber, people wanted to own the minerals in the land.  People took both those things, sometimes illegally, sometimes immorally, and sometimes with dire results for the people and the land.

 

Friday, April 24:

8:00 – 8:30PM

Washington Week with Gwen Ifill and National Journal #4842. Another whole week has gone by and good old Gwen Ifill and National Journal are here to fill us in. For the record, I like to pretend the National Journal is a sidekick, like Robin to Batman, Starsky to Hutch, or chocolate sauce to chocolate ice cream.

8:30 – 9:00PM

NOW on PBS #517.  It’s the Emmy award-winning weekly newsmagazine. It looks at issues facing our democracy. The show is hosted by David Brancaccio. And, even better, they still send me e-mails (I think that makes me cool and them nice). Thanks, Now, you guys are awesome!

9:00 – 10:00PM

Bill Moyers Journal #1302.  It’s Bill Moyers. It’s his 1,302nd journal (not really, but I’m not going to explain to you the way in which TV shows are numbered at this point in time, maybe later if you’re nice). He’s a good journalist so I assume this will be good journalism (at least the odds are it will).

10:00 – 11:00PM

Peter Matthiessen: No Boundaries.  Did you know that Peter Matthiessen is a Zen monk.  Seriously, a Zen monk.  Yes, he's also a novelist and a travel writer, and several other things, but the bit that intrigues me is the Zen monk one.  I would love to be a Zen monk.  I just worry that some sort of specific type of faith might be required for that.

 

Saturday, April 25:

9:00 – 10:00PM

Austin City Limits – “The Raconteurs/Cat Power.”  Everyone but me probably already knows this, but apparently Jack White is in The Raconteurs. That makes them cool and a not overly-cool, too-trendy, over-sold way, but just the right amount of cool. Cat Power on the other hand is apparently not so much a band as a person. I did not know that either. 

 

From the blackness of space we are taken, miraculously, just as we think death is upon us, just as the air gets incredibly close and thin, into a spaceship.  And that is where our depressed android greets us and begs us to sit and strap in (hands and arms inside the vehicles at all times).  Oh, I know what you're thinking.  That sounds impossible, an android pulling us out of the blackness of a cold death in space.  You're wrong, it's not impossible, it's just highly improbable.

About Josh Lasser

Josh has deftly segued from a life of being pre-med to film school to television production to writing about the media in general. And by 'deftly' he means with agonizing second thoughts and the formation of an ulcer.

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