TV Picks May 4-10, 2008


Morning Prayers

FAMILYLAND TV The Morning Offering is “of fundamental importance in the life of the faithful,” wrote Pope John Paul II. Tune in for this powerful prayer and others, too.

SUNDAY, 9 p.m.


DISCOVERY CHANNEL This new hour-long special visits Greensburg, Kan., where 11 people died a year ago today when a 1.7-mile-wide, Category EF5 tornado destroyed 95% of the town. After a look at the inner workings of such a tornado, we see the citizens using environment-friendly methods to rebuild the town.

SUNDAY, 8 p.m.

Nature: Superfish

PBS Marine biologist and filmmaker Rick Rosenthal introduces us to billfish — the marlins, sailfish, spearfish and swordfish that are sport fishermen’s most prized catches. After a two-year search across three oceans, Rosenthal warns against over-fishing, backs conservation efforts, shows us sailfish off Baja California and Costa Rica and takes a 20-minute swim with a huge billfish off Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

MONDAY, 6 a.m.

Classroom: Cinco de Mayo

HISTORY CHANNEL May 5 events in the United States salute the defeat of French invaders in Puebla in 1862 by the Mexican Army and civilians, including Zacapoaxtla Indians. TV-G.


Secrets of the Dead: Doping for Gold

PBS Communists’ disregard for the individual was in full sway in Soviet-occupied East Germany from the 1960s through the 1980s, when the regime’s sports program, monitored by the Stasi secret police, secretly used performance-boosting steroids and testosterone on its Olympic-caliber athletes. In the 1976 Summer Games in Montreal, East Germany startled the sports world by winning 40 gold medals, with its women’s swim team taking 11 of 13 events. The communists had recruited girls as young as 12 and given them drugs without their knowledge. We hear from those athletes today, and from their non-drugged U.S. competitors. Advisory: Some harrowing sequences.

THURSDAY, 8 p.m.

Live from Lincoln Center: Camelot

PBS The New York Philharmonic performs a semi-staged version of the Lerner and Loewe musical, which was based upon T.H. White’s novel, The Once and Future King. Gabriel Byrne is King Arthur, Marin Mazzie is Queen Guinevere and Metropolitan Opera baritone Nathan Gunn is Sir Lancelot. TV-G.

SATURDAY, 8 p.m.

Angel and the Bad Man

FAMILYLAND TV James Edward Grant wrote and directed this 1947 Western romance about a young outlaw who, thanks to the good influence of a Quaker girl and her family, gradually turns away from his bad companions and, when the chips are down, turns away from violence. John Wayne, Gail Russell, Harry Carey and John Halloran star.

Dan Engler writes from
Santa Barbara, California.