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KSPS offers trio of quality specials

Joel Brown New York Times Syndicate

Not much on the networks tonight except “American Idol,” but there are three good specials on your local PBS station, KSPS.

The National Geographic special “Dawn of the Maya,” at 7, follows archaeologists in the jungles of Guatemala as they uncover amazing evidence of an early Mayan civilization, including a mural, a mask and a huge pyramid. What’s most amazing is that the stuff hasn’t already been looted or destroyed.

“Capturing the Killer Croc,” at 8, is a French documentary that follows the hunt for an African man-eater believed to have killed dozens of people in and around a river in Burundi. Scientists are determined to bring him — or her — back alive.

KSPS, among other PBS stations, will also present “Beyond Brown” tonight at 9. It’s an hourlong look at the promise and the reality of the Brown v. Board of Education decision that desegregated American schools.

Highlights

“My Wife and Kids,” ABC at 8: Michael is recruited as a hand model during Claire’s modeling audition. A repeat follows. Then at 9 there are two hours of “The Bachelor.”

“60 Minutes II,” CBS at 8.

“That ‘70s Show,” Fox at 8: When Donna tells Eric it’s bad luck to see her wedding dress before the big day, he looks, of course. Followed by 10 minutes of bloopers and outtakes from previous episodes.

“The Mentalist,” NBC at 8: Gerry McCambridge stars in this one-hour special demonstrating his nearly impossible-to-believe acts of mental persuasion. Nearly.

“Star Trek: Enterprise,” UPN at 8: Meet the Sphere Builders.

“Smallville,” WB at 8: Clark decides to tell Lana his secret so they can finally be together. But a rogue FBI agent is on his trail.

Movie preview, Fox at 8:44: Advance look at “The Day After Tomorrow.” Or, in other words, a really, really long ad. Fox, you depress me.

“American Idol,” Fox at 8:54: Hourlong results show. One of the final four must go.

“King of Queens,” CBS at 9: Arthur needs a new shuffleboard partner. Uh, Doug?

The West Wing,” NBC at 9: A fact-finding trip to the Gaza Strip includes Donna (Janel Moloney) — who’s too close when a bomb goes off.

“Angel,” WB at 9: The gang doubts Angel’s loyalties when he hooks up with the Circle of the Black Thorn, an evil secret demon society. It’s the show’s next-to-last episode ever.

“Everybody Loves Raymond,” CBS at 9:30: Repeat. Should Robert retire from the police department?

“The Carol Burnett Show: Let’s Bump Up the Lights,” CBS at 10: Carol Burnett, Tim Conway, Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence and Lyle Waggoner show clips and take audience questions in this special.

“Law & Order,” NBC at 10: When a wealthy caviar salesman is found dead the morning after his wedding, the detectives look hard at his bride. Love the episode title: “Caviar Emptor.”

Family Fare

“The Princess Bride” (1987), WE at 5: Cary Elwes, Robin Wright and Mandy Patinkin star in Rob Reiner’s fantasy about a stable boy and a princess.

Cable Cast

NBA playoffs, ESPN at 5: Doubleheader with Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat, followed at 7:30 by Minnesota Timberwolves at Sacramento Kings.

“Old School” (2003), Cinemax at 8:15: Will Ferrell and friends go all “Animal House.”

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