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Wednesday, July 23, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 61.0° F  Fair
The Daily

TELEVISION

Into the unknown

People always ask me what's worth watching on TV. This summer I've answered, with arms waving wildly, " Simon Schama's Power of Art!" "Oh, a documentary series on art," they say, sidling away from me as quickly as they can. >More
 Touched by an angel

Saving Grace (Monday, 9 p.m., TNT) starts great, with Holly Hunter leaping off the screen as an unapologetically randy detective. She's introduced buck naked, having gleeful sex with an otherwise worthless stud. She smokes, drinks, drives too fast, punches out sexual harassers and wears bad-girl sunglasses, all with panache. The first 15 minutes of Saving Grace are as enjoyable as any TV I've see this year. >More
 Sci-fi city

I overlooked Eureka last year, so please excuse me while I jump on the bandwagon for season two (Tuesday, 8 p.m., Sci Fi). It's a perfect mix of sci-fi gimmickry, character-based comedy and good old-fashioned drama. >More
 How I did it

In Spielberg on Spielberg (Monday, 8 p.m., TCM), Steven Spielberg discusses his career movie by movie. He begins with a great yarn about sneaking into the Universal lot as a teenager, determined to find a way into the film business. He crept away from his tour group and hid in a bathroom when no one was looking. The tour moved on without him, leaving him free to explore on his own. He wandered through soundstages, made a few connections and convinced the powers-that-be to let him stay. The rest is history. >More
 The spy left out in the cold

Burn Notice (Thursday, 9 p.m.) is another funny/exciting crime show from the USA Network, creator of Monk and Psych . Our hero is Michael Weston (Jeffrey Donovan), a spy who's gotten a "burn notice." He's been cut off by the government in mid-assignment, denied resources, protection and even communication with his handlers. He doesn't know why he's been let go, but he aims to find out. >More
 Unwanted war hero

Homosexuals aren't allowed to serve openly in the military. So they serve covertly, and Semper Fi (Monday, 7:30 p.m., Showtime) shows us how painful that can feel. >More
 Painted pain

I've done my time with Vincent Van Gogh: read the biographies, seen the documentaries, made the pilgrimage to Arles. But he's never come alive for me as he does in Simon Schama's Power of Art (Monday, 8 p.m., PBS). >More
 Going nowhere fast

Jewel, William Shatner and Krista Allen (yes, the obscure actress has been bumped up to "celebrity superstar" status for the purpose of this show) learn the ropes from professional drivers, then go head-to-head on the track. Sadly, these folks prove to be no more exciting at 130 miles per hour than they are standing still. >More
 Animals say the darnedest things

Creature Comforts (Monday, 7 p.m., CBS) is the brainchild of Aardman Animations, creators of the droll Wallace & Gromit series. It takes interviews with ordinary Americans and puts them in the mouths of animals, animated with Aardman's classic stop-motion technique. >More
 'It's gonna mean killing Indians'

Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee (Sunday, 8 p.m., HBO) dramatizes Dee Brown's nonfiction book about the tragic collision of white and Native American culture as the U.S. expanded westward in the late 19th century. >More
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