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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Contributing Writer | December 3, 1993
For the most thought-provoking, surprising and engrossing drama series episode of the year, check out tonight's "Picket Fences." It's about the possibility of a virgin birth, right there in the fictional town of Rome, Wis. Also on tap tonight: a judicial episode of "Nightline" and a feminist episode of "Brisco County, Jr."* "The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr." (8-9 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- Denise Crosby guest-stars as a sheriff in this witty, action-packed episode, which has Brisco visiting a town -- called No Man's Land -- not because it's uninhabitable, but because it's an Amazonian environment populated solely by women.
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By Nzong Xiong and Nzong Xiong,McClatchy-Tribune | April 6, 2008
The image of a home surrounded by a white picket fence has always stayed with Lynne Gibbs of Clovis, Calif. "To me, it represented the all-American dream," says Gibbs, 63, a retired paralegal. "It was why I wanted one. When I was growing up, the white picket fence meant harmony with your house, your family, your spouse. Everybody wanted the house with a picket fence." The dream became a reality for Gibbs when she bought the last lot at the end of the street in a new subdivision. Before she and her husband moved in 2005, she went to Lowe's and bought some vinyl white picket fencing.
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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Special to The Sun | February 11, 1994
It's another Friday night with "Picket Fences" -- the last one for a while, considering that CBS' Olympics coverage is just around the corner. So sit back and enjoy.* "The 1994 Miss USA Pageant" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- The Man With No Name -- the guy who used to be Prince -- is scheduled to provide a preview of his new single, "The Most Beautiful Girl in the World," as part of tonight's show. Fitting, isn't it? A former Prince, and a contest in which the winner gets crowned.
SPORTS
By Julie Bykowicz, Jamie Smith Hopkins and Jamie Stiehm and Julie Bykowicz, Jamie Smith Hopkins and Jamie Stiehm,SUN STAFF | May 18, 2003
Tom "T-Mac" Acquarola staggered around with a can of Coors Light yesterday before lunch, good and drunk, and noted that his mohawk was freshly cut in preparation for this moment in the mud. A few hundred yards away, Belinda Cook was a vision in blue and white, her attire protected by artificial turf and her sunny demeanor made possible by the wall of crisp white tents shielding her from the insanity nearby. This is the split personality of the Preakness infield - part frat party and part lawn party, flashers on one side and women dressed like Jackie O on the other, a confusing mix of low class and high style separated by nothing but a flimsy white picket fence.
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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Contributing Writer | January 21, 1994
The night's big deals include fresh episodes of "Picket Fences" and "The X-Files," and Peter Arnett on CNBC instead of CNN.* "Burke's Law" (9-10 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Executive producer Aaron Spelling seems to think that if he loads up his "Burke's Law" series with actors who played private eyes on other TV series, he'll get the show a lot of free publicity -- especially if he has, for example, Anne Francis, formerly of "Honey West," playing Honey Best, and Tanya Roberts, formerly Julie on "Charlie's Angels," playing a different Julie tonight.
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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Contributing Writer | May 6, 1994
Tonight's best bet: the new "Hart to Hart" movie. Nah -- only kidding. Just wanted to see if you were reading this paragraph before jumping down to the individual program notes.* "Family Matters." (8 p.m.-8:30 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Donna Summer guest stars as Urkel's Aunt Oona from Altoona, a dowdy woman who no soona visits a karaoke bar than she turns into a real croona. ABC.* "Hart to Hart: Old Friends Never Die." (9 p.m.-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- They just star in TV remakes. NBC.* "The X-Files" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45)
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,Television Critic | September 18, 1992
"Picket Fences" wants to be "Northern Exposure" -- only not quite so northern or so exposed.The new CBS "drama with comedy," as the network calls it, imitates "Northern Exposure" in trying to be quirky as heck, but it takes no real chances. It wants to be a lighter and brighter "Twin Peaks" but is unwilling to make the climb and risk the fall.The series centers on a nuclear family, the Brocks -- Tom Skerritt plays the dad, a small-town sheriff, and Kathy Baker plays the mom, a medical doctor.
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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Special to The Sun | September 23, 1994
The picks tonight are easy, and they don't conflict: a new "X-Files," followed by the third-season premiere of "Picket Fences."* "Justice in a Small Town." (9-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Kate Jackson, John Shea and Dean Stockwell star in this new fact-based telemovie -- but if you're going to watch, watch for Beth Broderick as Melissa Brewer. Broderick will be showing a much flashier and more comical side tomorrow night, as one of the stars of "The Five Mrs. Buchanans." NBC.* "Under Suspicion."
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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | January 26, 1996
Those lucky enough to have New Jersey's WOR on their cable system can pull out the love beads and watch "The Mod Squad" every day. The rest of us, unfortunately, may have to make due with this afternoon's showing of the 1979 reunion movie.* "Step by Step" (11:30 a.m.-noon, WBFF, Channel 45) -- Here's your chance to see Elizabeth Berkley, whose naked body was the star of "Showgirls," without having to sit through two hours of bad cinema. Rated G.* "World Professional Figure Skating Championships" (8 p.m.-10 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11)
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | August 2, 1999
LOS ANGELES -- It was one of the hottest Fox Television parties in years. Calista Flockhart and Gillian Anderson in the same room. How could it get any better? Then in walked David E. Kelley with his wife, actress Michelle Pfeiffer. There was a feeding frenzy of television critics instantly surrounding the couple. But all the questions were going to Pfeiffer. After a few minutes, Kelley slipped away, almost unnoticed. "Happens all the time," he said matter-of-factly as he surveyed the scene of two dozen reporters sticking microphones and tape recorders in his wife's face and hanging on her every word.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | October 7, 2000
"Ed" is the one new television series that you don't want to miss. The hour-long romantic comedy about a 30-year-old New York lawyer who returns to his hometown of Stuckeyville, Ohio, to try and recapture his past blends the optimism of a Frank Capra film with the keen but loving eye for small-town foibles of "Picket Fences" or "Northern Exposure." It's a teaspoon of honey sweetening a pop-culture tea that's been brewed far too bitter in recent years. It's a delight. For all it's light, the series opens in darkness as Ed Stevens (Tom Cavanaugh)
BUSINESS
By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | July 23, 2000
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Since she lived in Newport, R.I., about 20 years ago, Elizabeth Chilton had dreamed of having a front yard set off by a picket fence. "So many yards up there had pretty fences around them," she said. "They give such a homey look." Chilton hesitated to fence the front yard of her Lexington home, where she has lived 18 years. Fences are an accepted part of New England landscaping, but they're not as prevalent in Lexington. "I didn't want people to think it was an unneighborly gesture," Chilton said.
BUSINESS
By Mary Medland and Mary Medland,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | April 2, 2000
The first hint that Jenny Campbell and Ron Ecker's home is not your ordinary Carroll County Cape Cod lies in the screen door that leads to the kitchen. Painted by Campbell, it's a knockoff of Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Lisa. But that's not all. The other window screens reflect the work of Peter Max, Salvador Dali, James McNeil Whistler, and Andrew Wyeth. And then, there are the couple of dozen pink flamingos in the back yard. "But, we didn't want our neighbors to think we were too weird, so Ron and I put in a white picket fence to reassure them," said Campbell, who along with her husband shares the house with five cats and a dog. Clearly this is a home of artistic souls, a residence with the kind of creative karma that one would expect to find in Hampden, Fells Point, or perhaps Waverly.
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By David Zurawik and David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC | August 2, 1999
LOS ANGELES -- It was one of the hottest Fox Television parties in years. Calista Flockhart and Gillian Anderson in the same room. How could it get any better? Then in walked David E. Kelley with his wife, actress Michelle Pfeiffer. There was a feeding frenzy of television critics instantly surrounding the couple. But all the questions were going to Pfeiffer. After a few minutes, Kelley slipped away, almost unnoticed. "Happens all the time," he said matter-of-factly as he surveyed the scene of two dozen reporters sticking microphones and tape recorders in his wife's face and hanging on her every word.
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | June 26, 1996
No more "Picket Fences" after tonight. Enjoy it while you can."Nightly Business Report" (7 p.m.-7: 30 p.m., MPT, Channels 22 and 67) -- Correspondent Darren Gersh reports on efforts to improve the quality and efficiency of the managed health-care industry -- a hot topic, with traditional health care becoming a dinosaur in modern corporate America. PBS."Where Are They Now? Part 2" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Ever wonder what happened to the Von Trapps (You know, "The hills are alive with the sound of music," and all that)
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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | June 12, 1996
Dan makes the big time. Who woulda thunk it?"Rodricks for Breakfast" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Baltimore's favorite newspaper columnist/TV host (well, at least he's mine) gets a shot at prime time, with scheduled guests including AIDS researcher Robert Gallo and Charm City's own Cajun/zydeco rockers the Crawdaddys."Dateline NBC" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- The folks at NBC news look at survivors, people who made it through a crisis thanks to extraordinary courage. Profiles include a marine who fell overboard while at sea but managed to stay afloat for several days before he was rescued.
NEWS
September 12, 1994
"NYPD Blue," ABC's controversial police drama, failed last night to set a record for most Emmys won in a season. It needed to succeed in all the categories for which it was nominated to top "Hill Street Blues," which holds the record with eight.Leigh Taylor-Young of "Picket Fences" beat out the competition in the supporting actress category, which included Sharon Lawrence and Amy Brenneman of "NYPD Blue." And in the supporting actor category, Fyvush Finkel of "Picket Fences" beat Gordon Clapp and Nick Turturro of "NYPD Blue."
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By David Bianculli and David Bianculli,Special to The Sun | December 9, 1994
The first new "X-Files" episode in three weeks and the second new episode of "Homicide: Life on the Street" in a row are the shows to watch tonight. And there's no conflict of interest, because CBS pre-empts "Picket Fences."* "In the Heat of the Night: Who Was Geli Bendl?" (9-11 p.m., Channel 11) -- Wasn't he a tennis player who couldn't win the U.S. Open? Actually, this is the title of a new two-hour "In the Heat of the Night" telemovie, with Carroll O'Connor still going strong as the Spartan sheriff.
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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | June 5, 1996
CBS has itself one intriguing lineup tonight, with the return of two shows for a final go-round before they fade into TV oblivion (and syndicated reruns). One is a much-admired and much-honored series quietly ending its three-season run. The other was the biggest bomb of 1995."Party for the Planet" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Shari Belafonte is the host for this fourth annual show recognizing young people who have contributed to Earth's ecological well-being. Guests include Reba McEntire, Celine Dion and actor James Cromwell (Oscar-nominated for "Babe")
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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF | April 24, 1996
For those inclined to watch a little TV today"Academy of Country Music Awards" (8 p.m.-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- For those who haven't yet had their fill of awards shows Brooks & Dunn and Faith Hill are the hosts as country music honors its own by doing what it does best, singing a passel of songs. Scheduled performers include Alabama, Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson, Reba McEntire, John Michael Montgomery, Shania Twain and Terri Clark. NBC."Catch a Rising Star's 50th Anniversary" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13)
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