Saturday, June 21, 2003
Why does "Sex and the City" (8 p.m. Sunday, HBO) make me feel like Charlie Brown? As countless "Peanuts" fans know, every fall the bald-headed Everyboy tries to place kick a football and counts on Lucy to hold it safely for him. And she disappoints him time after time. Well, every season I resolve to give "Sex and the City" another chance. I want to see just what so many critics and viewers find funny, witty and urbane about the saucy series. And every year, I am appalled.
I'm no prude. I'm not shocked by the language or the promiscuity. It's the writing I can't stand. I find the dialogue obvious and adolescent, and Carrie's voice-over observations painfully trite. Tonight, she actually utters the words "Jewish" and "poo-ish" in the same sentence. If that's clever wordplay, then my junior high buddies and I should have been inducted into the Algonquin Roundtable.
The sixth and final season opens on a Wall Street theme, with Carrie fretting over a first date; Miranda falling for the father of her child; Charlotte mulling over marriage with a man of another faith; and Samantha welcoming a yuppie broker to her funky neighborhood. Help yourself. I'll be outside trying to untangle my kite from a tree.
- Whose life is this anyway? That's the theme of "Second Nature" (7 p.m. Sunday, TNT), a stylish if slightly plodding thriller. Paul Kane (Alec Baldwin) awakes in a hospital bed with his face covered in bandages. He's haunted by memories of trying to save his family from a plane crash. A fetching psychiatrist (Louise Lombard) informs him that none of his loved ones survived. Then Kane slowly pieces together his past life as a hit man, working for shadowy big shot Kelton Reed (Powers Boothe), who saved his life during combat.
Baldwin acquits himself rather well in the film's few action scenes, and does a good job as a damaged soul with far too many secrets. But while Kane's head injury might explain his addled personality, the rest of the characters have no such excuse. They're simply dull.
- Cast members of "The Munsters," "Webster" and other comedies recall their days on the set on "Child Stars: Then and Now" (7 p.m., NBC). Postponed from an earlier date.
- Anthony Hopkins stars in director Steven Spielberg's 1997 historical drama "Amistad" (7 p.m., ABC).
- The cast of "The Brothers Garcia" travels to Mexico in the made-for-cable comedy "Mysteries of the Maya" (7 p.m., Nickelodeon).
- Matt Damon stars in the 2002 thriller "The Bourne Identity" (7 p.m., Starz).
- Scheduled on "60 Minutes" (6 p.m., CBS): wrongful death suits; repeat reports on India's elite university and pollution from industrial hog factories.
- Glenn Close stars in the 1996 live-action remake of "101 Dalmatians" (6 p.m., ABC).
- "Prince William at 21" (6 p.m., Discovery) looks at the pressures and publicity surrounding Charles and Diana's firstborn. In addition to the usual Windsor family malarkey, this British-made documentary provides much historical perspective about the youth and education of past royals. What it fails to explain is why Americans should care.
- Scheduled on "Dateline" (7 p.m., NBC): die-hard surfers risk all to ride a mythical, dangerous wave.
- Treat Williams, Marcia Gay Harden and Olympia Dukakis star in the two-part 2002 drama "Guilty Hearts" (8 p.m., CBS, concludes Wednesday).
- A murder uncovers the shady operators of halfway house on "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" (8 p.m., NBC).
- An accused homicidal drunk driver makes an unusual claim on "Crime & Punishment" (9 p.m., NBC).
- Snoop Dogg has his own show, called "Doggy Fizzle Televizzle" (9 p.m., MTV).