MTV (Fri., Dec. 20, 8 P.M. ET)
What kind of year has it been for rock music? Don't ask. According to the video channel's authoritative annual wrap-up, concert attendance was down 25 percent and record sales were off sharply.
But MTV anchor Kurt Loder finds reason for cheer in the surging popularity of R.E.M. and in the genre-blending of acts like C&C Music Factory, Gerardo, Fishbone, Dream Warrior, EMF and London Beat.
The program is great when it sticks to music but ranges rather far a field for extraneous segments on the Gulf War and black filmmakers. Hey, you don't see CNN doing specials on the new wave of acid house music coming out of Manchester, England. Maybe MTV just ran out of Madonna