SUNDAY, FEB. 24
THE BARBARA WALTERS SPECIAL
7 P.M. | ABC
Strike's off, Oscar's on, and Barbara's annual special includes Harrison Ford and teen potentate Miley Cyrus
WEDNESDAY, FEB. 27
10 P.M. | BRAVO
Week 1 of the two-part finale. Who'll survive—Rami, with his gift for sensual drapery, or talented, dependably over-the-top Chris?
MEN IN TREES
10 P.M. | ABC
The offbeat Alaskan comedy-drama returns. There's a medical crisis, a community screening of Liz Taylor's Giant
and, at the end, bad news.
BACK TO YOU
9:30 P.M. | FOX
New episode for the tart newsroom sitcom. A rival anchor woos Kelly (Patricia Heaton)—maybe for love, or maybe it's about a job.
THURSDAY, FEB. 28
9 P.M. | ABC
Sayid and Desmond (Naveen Andrews and Henry Ian Cusick) head for the freighter. Careful, Desmond! Ooh, too late.
10:01 P.M. | NBC
Wendy (Brooke Shields
) needs financing for a risky film set in India. Sign the kid who played McLovin. Money will flow.
FRIDAY, FEB. 29
YOUR MAMA CAN'T DANCE
LIFETIME | 9 P.M.
Dancing with the Stars'
Ian Ziering hosts what's essentially Dancing with the Folks
. Young pro dancers team up with a parent. They'll be on their toes, all right.
ABC, Feb. 25, 8 p.m. ET |
With Barack Obama's presidential campaign marking a racial milestone in American history, this adaptation of Lorraine Hansberry's landmark 1959 play about a black Chicago family is well-timed. And the performers—most were in the recent Broadway revival—are near-perfect. Phylicia Rashad is Lena Younger, a cleaning lady whose family is caught up in dreams about how to use the $10,000 insurance check she's expecting after her husband's death. The money represents—delusively or not—the chance to escape the prejudice that grinds down their lives. Rashad and Audra McDonald (as her weary daughter-in-law, who takes in laundry) give rich, theatrical performances of operatic heft. The one problem: Sean Combs as Lena's son Walter Lee, a chauffeur. He stands there, blinking, baby-faced, unable to leap into the actresses' ring of fire. That doesn't diminish this Raisin
. (For more on McDonald, see page 36.)
NBC, Feb. 26, 10 p.m. ET |
From MySpace to prime time: quarterlife
is the first online series to make the leap to a network broadcast. The show, created by thirtysomething
duo Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz, is about a twentysomething named Dylan (Bitsie Tulloch) who blogs about her life and the lives of her housemates. Dylan observes the world with self-aware ironic mopeyness, but just about everyone else seems vaguely bummed, too, as if distant drums had announced that a Band of Horses gig was canceled. It's believable enough—just not much fun. Tulloch takes getting used to, but her prettiness gradually wins out over her petulance.
Bravo, March 4, 11 p.m. ET |
"There's a chicness about us," says one of the women on this urban, East Coast spin-off of The Real Housewives of Orange County
, Bravo's docu-reality series about pampered suburbanites. If you say so, hon. These ladies don't seem much more sophisticated than the Californians, even if one is married to a count. Wealth is trotted out like a small, over-groomed dog: gowns costing thousands, homes in the Hamptons. And yet these wives are somehow more enjoyable. What sets New York City apart is toughness, not elegance. The ladies have a quick, edgy liveliness. Any one could swat the Cloverfield monster.
The actress and singer, 37, who won her fourth Tony for Raisin in the Sun's
Broadway run, dishes on Diddy
and getting back to Private Practice
HOW WAS WORKING WITH SEAN COMBS? Sean never accepts no for an answer. If he wants something, he'll work his tail off to get it. It kept me on my game.
HOW DID YOU KEEP BUSY DURING THE WRITERS' STRIKE? I worked on an adaptation of Carmen, the opera. Hopefully, we will bring that to Broadway. And I spent as much time with my little girl [Zoe, 7] as I could.
DOES YOUR DAUGHTER SING TOO? She has a great voice. We sing our conversations. I'll sing, "Go get ready for bed," and she'll sing, "You can't make me." It goes on and on.
DOES EVERYONE GET ALONG ON PRACTICE? They have the hardest time getting us to shut up and shoot a scene. We're chitchatting [about] Barack Obama, chest hair and everything in between.
WHO'S THE CAST CLOWN? Taye Diggs! His biggest goal is to crack you up. I just know he was the one who got away with everything as a kid.