'Threat Matrix' high on gadgetry

Thursday, September 18, 2003

The Department of Homeland Security gets a TV series to call its own. The new espionage series "Threat Matrix" (7 p.m., ABC) follows an elite task force that investigates terror threats at the behest of the president.

Like the best and worst Tom Clancy novels, "Threat" concentrates on technical stuff, like satellites that can track tankers at sea and use heat detection devices to find terrorist stowaways hidden in steel containers hidden well below deck.

Cult choice

James Spader ("The Practice") and newcomer Maggie Gyllenhaal star in the disturbing 2002 drama "Secretary" (9 p.m., Cinemax).

Series notes

A trip to Barbados on "Friends" (7 p.m., NBC) ... Vidiocy on "Stupid Behavior Caught on Tape" (7 p.m.) ... Peculiar talents on "Steve Harvey's Big Time" (7 p.m., WB).

The gang take a postfuneral cruise on "Will & Grace" (8:10 p.m., NBC) ... Not much stimulating conversation on "Temptation Island 3" (8 p.m., Fox).