Thursday, August 21, 2003
"Amazing Race 4" (7 p.m., CBS) wraps up its long trek tonight. For those who haven't been following the frantic scramble, there are three teams left. Dave and Jeff are best friends from Manhattan Beach, Calif. While they're clearly the least annoying of the remaining contestants, they have managed to remain complete nonentities; that's pretty hard to do when you're under constant scrutiny. By contrast, Miami residents Jon and Kelly have a distinct, albeit obnoxious, character. They've spent the entire series bickering and swearing at each other; remarkably, they are engaged. Chip and Reichen are a gay married couple from Beverly Hills. They have played the game with a competitive zeal that borders on the psychotic. Chip has a Type A personality that compels him to go ballistic in the back of taxis and shout at foreigners who fail to cater to his every whim.
Tonight's final leg begins in northern Australia. The gang will be challenged to skydive and deep-water dive, but, as usual, most of their time will be spent running around airports trying to book the fastest, most direct flight. Who ever dreamed that the rudiments of travel agentry would be elevated to high drama? These mad dashes to the boarding gates have reduced this occasionally exciting series to a real drag. As someone who has spent too many hours of his adult life chasing after commuter trains and buses, I found little entertaining, or "Amazing," about this contrived race.
Tonight's other highlights
- The Pittsburgh Steelers meet the Dallas Cowboys in NFL pre-season action (7 p.m., Fox).
- Viewers select their favorite episode of "CSI" (9 p.m., CBS).
- A detective (Jack Nicholson) tracks down a killer in the 2001 drama "The Pledge" (8 p.m., TNT).
- A bully's victim vanishes on "Without a Trace" (9 p.m., CBS).
- Scheduled on "PrimeTime" (9 p.m., ABC): an "embedded" reporter shares his experiences with a Marine company during the Iraq war and its aftermath.
An ambitious drama teacher (Christopher Guest) stages an elaborate pageant celebrating a small town's storied history in the 1996 comedy "Waiting for Guffman" (7 p.m., Bravo). The film features an ensemble company including Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Parker Posey and Fred Willard.
Aron Ralston and Tobey Maguire appear on "Late Show with David Letterman" (10:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jay Leno greets Johnny Depp and Ricky Martin on "The Tonight Show" (10:35 p.m., NBC).