What's on TV
Listings are not necessarily recommended by the Monitor. All times Eastern, check local listings.
The 7th Annual Screen Actor's Guild Awards (TNT, 8-10 p.m.): The award show in which movie actors vote for the best among themselves. Look for your favorite stars.
Things You Can Tell Just By Looking At Her (Showtime, 8-10 p.m.): This difficult, adult film interweaves five stories about lonely, displaced women (like a tag team, they touch each others lives only superficially) who struggle to find love, give care to others, and face who they are and what their lives have become. A doctor, a banker, a cop, a blind woman, a writer, and a psychic suffer for different reasons that they themselves seem to have cultivated. The cast is phenomenal: Glenn Close, Calista Flockhart, Holly Hunter, Roma Maffia, Kathy Baker, Amy Brenneman, and Cameron Diaz star, and each brings rare substance to a film that may amount to an indictment of contemporary society and the spiritual malaise afflicting it.
Land of the Mammoth (Discovery Channel, 8-10 p.m.): The second installment of the fascinating scientific expedition to recover the Jarkov woolly mammoth. Only 1 percent of the 23-ton block of frozen mammoth has so far been defrosted. But scientists are already showing us what the mammoth's world looked like 20,000 years ago when the woollies roamed the Taimyr Peninsula in Siberia. Cool, high-tech computer graphics give us a feel for the giant beasts' style.
Columbo: Murder with Too Many Notes (ABC, 8-10 p.m.): Peter Falk is always a pleasant sight. But this script is too thin to stretch the two hours it takes to play this piece. A Hollywood music composer plans the murder of his assistant when the young man threatens to reveal who really wrote all that award-winning music.
The Familiar Stranger (Lifetime, 9-11p.m.): A tad maudlin, but true to life. A woman struggles to raise her sons after her husband commits suicide - only to learn 10 years later that news of his death has been greatly exaggerated. Margaret Colin nails the role with the finesse of a maestro and the supporting cast is terrific.
The Job (ABC, 9:30-10 p.m.): Dennis Leary does extreme sarcasm better than anyone else on earth. His brand of manic humor sounds angry, but he's a sharp-shooting social satirist who gets what's wrong with everybody else - and laughs at it. This bizarre dark comedy is the tale of a hyper cop whose excesses have their consequences - next week. It's not that we like the character (he's a jerk), it's that he turns all our expectations about police dramas upside down.
Farscape (SCI FI Channel, 9-10 p.m.): The third season of this fascinating space fantasy begins with Earthling John Crichton needing to be saved from evil Scorpio by his shipmates. But how do you get Scorpio out of John's mind? The battle of wills and wits is quite cool and even somewhat religious in nature. The monsters are far out, and they can be quite nasty. But the good creatures aiding Crichton embody great virtues.
The Outer Limits (SCI FI Channel, 10-11p.m.): Twenty-two new episodes of the classic series beginning with a story about a workaholic family man (Tom Arnold) who purchases a robot - who begins to replace him.
(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor