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Arts and Entertainment

TV Junkie: Thursday + DVDs [UPDATE: BBC to Exclusively Cover Benazir Bhutto's Assassination]

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Post Xmas doldrums have hit the tube big time, here's what's worth watching tonight:

7:00pm BBC World News BBCA - BBC will exclusively cover Benazir Bhutto's assassination and turmoil in Pakistan, aka "shit hits fan"

9:45pm A Guy Named Joe TCM - (1943) Featuring Spencer Tracy as the ghost pilot who shadows Van Johnson who is courting his old girlfriend played by Irene Dunne. This original is a million times better than Spielberg's piece of garbage, 1989's Always, starring Richard Dreyfuss and Holly Hunter. TV Junkie Pick O' The Night.

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10:00pm Biography: Bono BIOGRAPHY - U2's frontman finally gets his bio featured and this is seemingly the only bit of new programming available on all of television tonight.

To feed my addiction I've turned to DVDs. Here's what I've been enjoying lately:

Rome: The Complete Second Season - Although Max Pirkis as Octavian makes me feel as if Doogie Howser is about to become emperor (oh, and Cicero looks like Mr. Bean), it's been great to watch the conclusion of this excellent series. If you've watched or own season one, it's a no-brainer to get your hands on this.

Pitch People - You've seen them at the county fair, the shopping networks, and infomercials galore. Now there's a movie about this specific breed of salesperson who can stand behind a demo table and make you fork over your hard-earned cash for faddish pieces of junk that will save you time and money or make you look/feel younger/sexier/stronger/cleaner/more hirsute than you ever thought possible. Ron Popeil is featured there as well as Wally Nash, Lester Morris, and more than a dozen others. You get to see and hear what these people are like and what makes them tick and what makes them masters of "the second oldest profession".

Stranger: Bernie Worrell On Earth - You may not know who Bernie Worrell is but you've definitely heard his music. Worrell is the god of the synclavier and the keyboard in general. His riffs powered Parliament/Funkadelic (and countless rap acts who've sampled him), the Talking Heads, and just about every spin-off and solo act from those two iconic bands and many others: Bootsy Collins, George Clinton, David Byrne, Tom Tom Club, Jerry Harrison, etc. I was fortunate enough to see Worrell perform with Jerry Harrison's Casual Gods at the Roxy in 1990 and the man is possessed on stage. It's fascinating to see how the man's influence has spread across the entire music universe, from funk and R&B, to rap, pop, rock, and electronica. Other than chronicling his extensive discography and credit list there's countless interviews with former bandmates and collaborators. If you're a true music fan, you will like this movie.