CBS saves the worst for last with `Bram'

Weekend TV

October 05, 2002

Just when you thought all the awful new network sitcoms had made their debuts and it was safe to turn on your television set again, along comes Bram and Alice tomorrow night on CBS. They really were saving some of the worst for last at CBS, weren't they?

Alfred Molina is Bram Shepherd, and Traylor Howard is Alice O'Connor. Bram is a one-time Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist who hasn't done anything of note in decades. Most of his time these days is spent drinking, chasing younger women and coasting on past literary laurels.

Alice is an idealistic young woman from Vermont who has come to New York City to try to make it as a writer. On the very day that she's about to give up her dream and go back home, she finds out she is the daughter of Bram Shepherd. They met only once when she was a baby.

The pilot is told in flashback with much of the humor intended to come from Bram not knowing who she is and trying to seduce his daughter. Isn't that a scream?

Bram and Alice premieres at 8:30 p.m. tomorrow on WUSA (Channel 9) in Washington. It airs at 12:35 a.m. Monday on WJZ (Channel 13) in Baltimore -- delayed by Ravens football.

-- David Zurawik

At a glance

Endurance (11: 30 a.m.-noon, WBAL, Channel 11) -- Competitors on the new reality-TV show for teens have to demonstrate skills in athleticism, strategic thinking and teamwork as they solve problems on an island off California. NBC.

Air Force One (8 p.m.-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- In this charged thriller, Harrison Ford as the president, his family and his entourage are held hostage in midair after terrorists hijack Air Force One and demand the release of a Russian tyrant. ABC.

Men in Black (9 p.m.-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- On a night of action-packed movies, at least one should be sly. That would be this send-up of sci-fi invasion sagas. Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones star as members of a super-secret team charged with keeping an eye on the thousands of aliens already living on Earth. NBC.

The District (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Mannion, back to work after being presumed dead, vows to track down the man who wanted him killed. Ving Rhames returns as U.S. Attorney General Troy Hatcher. CBS.

Cable

They Shoot Divas, Don't They? (9 p.m.-11 p.m., VH1) -- The pregnant manicurist wants her to be a godmother. The pool guy leans on her for money for a sick aunt. And the new gal Friday wants her dead. It's so hard for a rock star to find good help these days. Jennifer Beals stars in this new made-for-TV movie.

Compiled from wire reports by Sarah Kickler Kelber

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