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Arts and Entertainment

TV Junkie: 'Great Migrations' Could Inspire

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National Geographic's "Great Migrations" premieres on Sunday at 8pm followed by another new program at 9pm (see the promo vid above). Perhaps the most recent example of such stunning nature photography would be the BBC's "Life" which aired on Discovery earlier this year. I haven't seen the entire series but I was completely bowled over by the footage of everything from wildabeests to penguins. What I do hope to see is some discussion about how humans have affected these ancient migratory paths and to the detriment of these animals.

This summer I drove across the country for the first time, taking the Interstate 80 route from San Francisco to Chicago then 90 to Massachusetts. Upon entering southern Wyoming we entered the gasfields and were shocked not only by the stench of fumes that made it into the car but literally the hundred of gas condenser tanks and drilling rigs as far as the eye could see. This was federal land handed over to Halliburton by the Bush-Cheney regime, land that was an established part of the pronghorn antelope migration route. Sure enough, we saw pronghorn antelope, in twos and threes, literally standing among these condenser tanks, trying to avoid the endless streams of trucks on the access roads that criss-crossed what must have been a gorgeous landscape. According to the documentary "Gasland", the birthrate of the pronghorn has declined by over 60% since these lands were opened up for gas production.

If "Great Migrations" is truly a great series, it will provide not only stunning footage of these animals, but it will inform us about how we are adversely affecting their existence, inspiring us to do something about it. Since I saw what was happening to the pronghorn I've upgraded all of my thermostats, I turn off my boiler for 6 months out of the year, and have found a contractor to implement solar hot water for my house within the next 2 years.

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Tonight you have the opportunity to see the legendary Sandra Bernhard perform some new material on Starz' "Martin Lawrence Presents 1st Amendment Standup" (you can see her again on Monday's "The Wendy Williams Show"); Saturday is turning into a wasteland for new programing but we're looking forward to seeing Chuck Close on Sundance's "Iconoclasts"; Sunday brings us "The Walking Dead" (we'll be posting another interview!) as well as "Boardwalk Empire" and "Bored To Death" - a perfect capper to the weekend.
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The TV Junkie Plan: Tonight - Bill Maher (Dana Gould, Rep. Darrell Issa, journalist Fareed Zakaria, D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty, TV host Bill O'Reilly), "The Good Guys", "The Soup", "Fashion Police", Letterman (Steve Martin, Emily Deschanel), Fallon (Lewis Black, Elvis Costello). Saturday - "King Corn", "Iconoclasts" (Chuck Close, David Blaine). Sunday - "Great Migrations", "Boardwalk Empire", "The Walking Dead", "Bored To Death", "Eastbound & Down"

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Tonight

8:00pm Real Time With Bill Maher HBO - Comic Dana Gould; Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.); journalist Fareed Zakaria; D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty; TV host Bill O'Reilly.

8:00pm School Pride NBC -The team helps students, parents and teachers with a massive renovation that could save a school renowned for achievement from being shut down

8:30pm Martin Lawrence Presents 1st Amendment Standup Starz - Damn Fool, Sandra Bernhard, Chinnitta Morris, Vincent Cook and Mark Simmons.

9:00pm What Not to Wear TLC - Wanda, a therapist, needs a change to her boring and out of style wardrobe.

9:00pm The Good Guys Fox - Dan is restricted to desk duty after fainting during an investigation; despite the limitations, Jack and Dan must find and apprehend a mysterious art thief.

10:00pm The Soup E! - Joel McHale and his team of great writers tear pop culture a new one

10:00pm Sanctuary Syfy - The team gets a cryptic distress call that could only come from one person...Nikola Tesla.

10:30pm Fashion Police E! - Joan Rivers, national treasure, effs up Hollywood fashion

11:35pm Late Show With David Letterman CBS - Actor Steve Martin; actress Emily Deschanel; Steve Martin and the Punch Brothers perform.

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11:35pm The Tonight Show With Jay Leno NBC - Football commentator Terry Bradshaw; actress Jennifer Grey; Jason Aldean performs.

12:35am The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson CBS - Actress Juliette Lewis; author Cornel West.

12:35am Late Night With Jimmy Fallon NBC - Comic Lewis Black; Elvis Costello performs.

Saturday

8:30pm King Corn Green - Documentary

10:00pm Iconoclasts Sundance - Chuck Close with David Blaine.

Sunday

6:00pm Metropolis TCM - (1927) An industrialist (Alfred Abel) rules a 21st-century city where the rich play above and slaves toil below. Silent.

8:00pm Great Migrations National Geographic - Born to Move Creatures whose lives depend on their ability to get up and go.

8:30pm Metropolis Refound TCM - Documentary (2010) A new version of Fritz Lang's 1927 movie "Metropolis" is 30 minutes longer.

9:00pm Great Migrations National Geographic - Need to Breed Creatures who must travel to procreate and take care of young.

9:00pm Boardwalk Empire HBO - While visiting Chicago for the Republican National Convention, Nucky gets some alarming news from Atlantic City.

9:00pm Nature PBS/KCET - Braving Iraq A man's efforts to restore both animals and people to the Mesopotamian Marshes in the Middle East.

9:00pm Dexter Showtime - Circle

10:00pm Bored to Death HBO - A dermatologist enlists Jonathan to deliver a letter to his intended at an Asian health spa; Jonathan takes Ray to the spa for his birthday.

10:00pm The Walking Dead AMC - Rick unknowingly causes a group of survivors to be trapped by walkers; Rick must confront an enemy more dangerous than the undead.

10:30pm Eastbound & Down HBO - Kenny confronts his future.

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National Geographic's "Great Migrations" premieres on Sunday at 8pm