Tonight, it's clear, Hunt for the best

TODAY'S TV

March 19, 1994|By David Bianculli | David Bianculli,Special to The Sun

On TV today, the special stuff comes early and late. Early, TC there's an "ABC News Special" in which Bill Clinton once again addresses young people's questions in a live format, moderated by Peter Jennings -- and, starting at noon on CBS, there are nine hours of college basketball. Late, there's "Saturday Night Live," with Helen Hunt as host. It can safely be predicted that she will turn in an exponentially better performance than last week's host, Nancy Kerrigan.

* "President Clinton: Answering Children's Questions" (11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Don't be misled by the Saturday morning slot. This is a special that adults, as well as children, should watch. Previous outings in this series have been refreshingly, remarkably intimate and informative. ABC.

* "NCAA basketball tournament" (noon-9 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- After these 540 minutes of basketball coverage, and tomorrow's 420 minutes, the NCAA championship field will have been winnowed from 64 to 16 teams. Sometimes CBS televises split-screen coverage of two games at once, but with audio emanating only from one site -- thereby avoiding the potential for being penalized for double drivel. CBS.

* "Blossom" (8 p.m.-8:30 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- This NBC series is an inferior version of "Clarissa Explains It All," and tonight "Blossom," by moving to this Saturday time slot, goes head-to-head against that Nick at Nite favorite. David explains it all: Even though NBC will win easily in the ratings against its cable competitor, kids hooked on the "SNICK" (Saturday Nick) lineup won't be likely to switch. NBC.

* "Saturday Night Live" (11:30 p.m.-1 a.m., WMAR,Channel 2) -- It's been a long time since "Saturday Night Live" had a real actress as the guest host -- one who can do drama and comedy equally well. It'll be worth watching to see if Ms. Hunt, the star of "Mad About You," is given the opportunity to cut loose and present new facets of her talent, but "SNL" seems to be going through a really fallow period these days, so expectations should be tempered. Snoop Doggy Dogg is the musical guest. NBC.

Cable

* "The Birds II: Land's End" (9 p.m.-10:30 p.m., SHO) -- Not only is "Birds II" nothing to crow about, it is with deep egret that I report how fowl this birdbrained sequel truly is. Turkeys don't fly, and neither does this made-for-TV movie -- and that's not just a matter of a pinion.

* "Duckman" (10:30 p.m.-11 p.m., USA) -- As birds of a TV feather go, this strange cartoon concoction is a lot better than "The Birds II."

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