Ice-skating is no-sweat way to watch athletes at work

Today's TV

July 23, 1996|By Chris Kaltenbach | Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF

Tired of all those hot, sweaty people down in Atlanta? Then check out some decidedly cooler customers on ESPN tonight.

"Nova" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., MPT, Channels 22 and 67) -- Not for the weak of heart, "Plague Fighters" tells the story of the Ebola virus, a microbe that kills by basically making all your internal organs explode. The virus has turned up several times in Africa, and was once almost unleashed -- accidentally -- in this country. PBS.

"Coach" (8: 30 p.m.-9 p.m. and 9: 30 p.m.-10 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- In a two-parter from November, Luther (Jerry Van Dyke) struggles with the death of his beloved mutt, Quincy . . . until he comes up with a worthy substitute. ABC.

"Home Improvement" (9 p.m.-9: 30 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Bonnie Bartlett, an Emmy winner during her stint on "St. Elsewhere," plays Tim's mom on this repeat from May. Seems Tim is having trouble with the idea that mom is dating one of his former teachers. ABC.

"The Godfather, Part III" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Hope you caught the first half of this Wednesday; if not, it may not be worth the trouble sitting through this weakest link in Francis Ford Coppola's Godfather trilogy. Al Pacino as the tortured, aging Michael Corleone is his usual effective self, as he struggles to legitimize the Corleone family and steer it away from the organized crime business. But George Hamilton is a poor substitute for Robert Duvall, Sofia Coppola is so bad you feel sorry for her (nepotism can be a very bad thing) and the movie has an unfortunate tendency toward self-parody. Worth seeing once, though, if only to complete the Corleone saga. CBS.

"P.O.V." (10 p.m.-11 p.m., MPT, Channels 22 and 67) -- Filmmaker Amanda Michell pays homage to some of the world's greatest female rodeo riders, including Jan Youren and Fern Sawyer. Michell gains a tremendous respect for these women and the trials, both physical (broken bones), emotional (life on the road) and financial (earning a small percentage of what their male counterparts earn), so much so that she tries rodeo riding herself -- and lives to tell the tale. PBS.

Cable

"Too Hot to Skate" (9: 30 p.m.-10: 30 p.m., ESPN) -- Hey, it's never too hot to skate, at least not on TV. Among the performers in this exhibition from last year: Nancy Kerrigan, Elvis Stojko and Philippe Candelero.

"The Buddy Holly Story" (11 p.m.-1 a.m., Disney) -- The story's a little hackneyed and not all that firmly based in reality, but Gary Busey as Buddy Holly is more than worth the price of admission; he even sings his own songs (and received an Oscar nomination for all his effort).

"Westworld" (11: 05 p.m.-1: 05 a.m., TNT) -- Yul Brynner, as a renegade robot in an amusement park designed to fulfill people's gun-toting fantasies, sets his gunsight on James Brolin -- not because the latter is such a bad actor (which would be defensible), but simply because he's there. Very atmospheric, and kinda spooky.

Pub Date: 7/23/96

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