Two cable channels offer slave-ship documentaries

Today's TV

December 11, 1997

Tonight, TV helps pave the way for tomorrow's opening of Steven Spielberg's latest film, "Amistad."

On the Discovery Channel, "Slave Ship" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., repeats 1 a.m.-2 a.m.) is a new documentary about the horrors of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. At its center is the 1839 Amistad incident, a shipboard rebellion that is the subject of Spielberg's film. Also examined are the legal battles that followed and the effect of the rebellion on the abolitionist movement.

The History Channel follows with another documentary, which Spielberg introduces, called "Ships of Slaves: The Middle Passage" (10 p.m.-11 p.m., repeats 2 a.m.-3 a.m.). "Middle Passage" was a term used to describe the middle leg of a triangular trade route that brought kidnapped Africans to the United States to be sold as slaves. Conditions were so brutal that one of every five died on the ships.

At a glance

"Nothing Sacred" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Father Ray (Kevin Anderson) struggles to help a couple facing marital difficulties. ABC.

"Living Single" (8 p.m.-8: 30 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- On and off the Fox schedule thanks to a series of changes that brought some objections from viewers, this series and the two that follow, "Between Brothers" (8: 30 p.m.-9 p.m.) and "413 Hope Street" (9 p.m.-10 p.m.), have returned. And all three have new episodes tonight. Fox.

"Cracker" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Judith reconsiders reconciliation after Fitz suffers an apparent heart attack. Meanwhile, a porn star's estranged father becomes a suspect in her death. ABC.

"Seinfeld" (9 p.m.-9: 30 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Jerry learns "naked truths" about the latest woman (Kathleen McClellan) in his life; George anticipates an apology from an alcoholic friend working on a 10-step program; a co-worker questions Elaine's hygiene. NBC.

"ER" (10 p.m.-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Jeanie (Gloria Reuben) refuses to go quietly into the night after being laid off. NBC.


"The Seven Year Itch" (7 p.m.-9 p.m., repeats 12: 30 a.m.-2: 30 a.m., AMC) -- Marilyn Monroe and Tom Ewell star in this film about a married man whose mind wanders while his wife is away. It's famous to film-clip lovers as the movie in which Monroe allows wind from an underground subway tunnel to blow her skirt up over her waist -- a stunt that didn't please her husband, Joe DiMaggio.

"A Place In the Sun" (8 p.m.-10: 10 p.m., TCM) -- Montgomery Clift is a working stiff who falls for wealthy Elizabeth Taylor in this 1951 adaptation of Theodore Dreiser's "An American Tragedy." Directed by George Stevens, the film also stars Shelley Winters and Raymond Burr.

Pub Date: 12/11/97

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