Picks and Pans Review: Viewer's Choice

updated 11/04/1991 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/04/1991 AT 01:00 AM EST

>HARSH REALITIES

PBS AIRS TWO PENETRATING DOCUMENTARIES this week. The American Experience presents The Johnstown Flood (Mon., Nov. 4, 9 P.M. ET), Charles Guggenheim's Oscar-winning account of one of the worst disasters in our nation's history. The film has been supplemented with photographs of the wealthy Pittsburgh industrialists who summered on a lake above the thriving Pennsylvania mill town. In 1889 their lax maintenance of their resort's dam resulted, after torrential rains, in a wall of water 60 feet high thundering down the valley, sweeping 2,200 people to their death.

In Don King, Unauthorized (Tues., Nov. 5, 9 P.M. ET), Frontline takes a critical look at the tireless, turbo-tongued boxing promoter and self-promoter. It traces King's rise from Cleveland numbers runner to his current Svengali-like relationship with Mike Tyson. Investigative reporter Jack Newfield, who is writing a book on King, details a history of shady deals and treachery, calling King a man who "turns champions into victims."

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