Leno ventures onto Letterman's turf

TODAY'S TV

May 16, 1994|By David Bianculli | David Bianculli,Special to The Sun

Last Monday, the biggest news was David Letterman, leaving New York for a week to do some shows from Los Angeles. Tonight the biggest news is Jay Leno, who's arrived from the West Coast to do a week's worth of shows from New York.

* "Final Analysis" (8:30-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- In the final analysis, "Final Analysis" was pretty stupid -- but with Richard Gere, Kim Basinger and Uma Thurman in the starring roles, this 1992 movie was easy on the eyes. NBC.

* "One of Her Own" (9-11 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Lori Loughlin of "Full House" carries the dramatic load (at least until Martin Sheen steps in for support in the second hour) in this television movie, "inspired by actual events," about a female cop who is raped by a fellow officer, then ostracized when she finally comes forward and names her attacker. The movie is no better than average, but Ms. Loughlin demonstrates a lot more assurance and complexity as an actress than she's able to display on "Full House." Greg Evigan, as the villain, tries for a similar about-face role but gets neither the screen time nor the dialogue to make an equally strong impression. ABC.

* "Murphy Brown" (9-10 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- The first of two "Murphy Brown" episodes shown tonight is the season finale, in which the "F.Y.I." staffers insist they're irreplaceable -- and find out, in a very visual way, just how wrong they are. CBS.

* "Northern Exposure" (10-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Another old boyfriend of Maggie's shows up in town. Normally, that means another corpse, of course, but perhaps this time Maggie's bad luck will change. Janine Turner stars. CBS.

* "When Doctors Get Cancer" (10-11 p.m., WMPT, channels 22 and 67) -- This is a somber treatment of an unusual angle for a medical documentary. Two doctors who have survived cancer, two doctors being treated for it, and two who have lost relatives to the disease are profiled.

* "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" (11:35 p.m.-12:35 a.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- For the first time in decades, "Tonight" is emanating from the East Coast, with Mr. Leno and company getting lots of attention by playing on what is now Mr. Letterman's home turf. The spotlight's on; so is the pressure. And after the late news, the show begins . . . NBC.

Cable

* "Vodka Dons" (10-11 p.m., DSC) -- This documentary includes Brighton Beach memoirs of a much more recent kind, investigating the connection between Russian organized crime and America.

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