Moyers lets activist Seeger do his sing

TODAY'S TV

May 20, 1994|By David Bianculli | David Bianculli,Special to The Sun

There's no "Picket Fences" on tonight, and "The X-Files" is in reruns until fall, so things are a bit thin -- but a telemovie and a special or two pick up some of the slack.

* "Family Matters." (8-8:30 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- To finish his latest season on "Family Matters," Jaleel White once again slips out of the bonds of Steve Urkel and portrays his less nerdy alter ego, Stefan Urquelle. Freddie Jackson guest stars. ABC.

* "The Adventures of Brisco County Jr." (8-9 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- Part 2 of 2. At the end of last week's cliffhanger, Brisco (Bruce Campbell) and Bowler (Julius Carry) were shot by a firing squad, and slumped, apparently lifelessly, to the ground. With a whole hour to go before the season is over, there's reason to believe that their adventure was neither a final nor a fatal one -- and since I've seen tonight's show in advance, I can promise that belief would not go unrewarded. Watch to enjoy one last "Brisco," until Fox renews this clever series. Fox.

* "Bill Moyers' Journal: Pure Pete Seeger." (9-10 p.m., WETA, Channel 26; not available on all area cable systems) -- Don't miss this. Seeger spends a good deal of the hour singing (including one memorable song about H. Ross Perot), and Moyers elicits from the activist singer-songwriter an almost palpable love for music, family and country. A clip of Seeger singing "Waist Deep in the Big Muddy" from "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" is powerful now as in 1968. PBS.

* "Carol Burnett: The Special Years." (10-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) These clips are not from Burnett's variety series, but from her music-and-comedy specials, so don't skip this merely because you've already seen the "Carol Burnett Show" retrospectives. You get Burnett with Julie Andrews, Beverly Sills, Lucille Ball, and even with Robin Williams, Whoopi Goldberg and Carl Reiner. Taking special moments from TV specials for another TV special makes this a concentrated hour of entertainment indeed. CBS.

Cable

* "Lush Life." (9-10:50 p.m., SHO) -- This telemovie, starring Forest Whitaker and Jeff Goldblum as studio jazz musicians, has such a good and evocative first half, it can be forgiven the emotional obviousness that comes later. Kathy Baker and Lois Chiles are good, too, and best of all is the way "Lush Life" takes us into the orchestra pits, recording studios, smoky clubs and wedding receptions, all from a telling, witty, musician's-eye view.

* "Blindfold: Acts of Obsession." (9-11 p.m., USA) -- Shannen Doherty gets another dark-edged telemovie role, and, once again, does nothing memorable with it.

* "Dennis Miller." (midnight-12:30 a.m., HBO) -- Tonight's guest: Vincent Bugliosi, the prosecutor in the Charles Manson case. Expect a world-class Miller rant.

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