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Animal Planet Heroes

“If you're an animal lover, neither of these full-throttle documentaries should be missed. Both are what television does best. And have a box of Kleenex within reach.”
--The Seattle Times

"This compelling program presents another side to the tragedy in the Gulf region. Delving into the personal animal and human stories lets viewers see for themselves the depth of commitment and compassion displayed by so many. Their efforts show there's light in the darkness and there are stories of hope.”
--Maureen Smith, executive vice president and general manager, Animal Planet U.S


Dogs Abandoned In Storms Get In Their Licks
“.Animal Planet Heroes: Hurricane Reunions comes to the rescue with an hour-long variation on an ancient theme: When all else fails, dogs will show us the way.”
--Bloomberg News Service

Wine, Food & Friends

"Americans are seeking a more casual relationship with wine drinking, something she (MacNeil) hopes to encourage in her 13-part TV show, Wine, Food & Friends. Instead of delivering lectures and lapsing into winespeak, she relies on the spontaneous reactions of her guests to get her message across. When she does talk about wine, she uses unconventional, even coquettish language: a Cabernet is "like Sean Connery, masculine and meaty"; a Sauvignon Blanc is "the bad girl of white wine, with mismatched earrings and stiletto heels."
–Time Magazine

"Karen MacNeil seems on a track to be the Julia Child of wine. Her new TV series, ‘Wine, Food & Friends with Karen MacNeil,' started running in early October, and it is already receiving raves from viewers and station management alike. It's lively and non-threatening, a long way from most people's image of learning about wine."
–Napa Valley Register

Yogi Berra: Déjà vu All Over Again

"He's a philosopher with an eighth-grade education who has more entries in Bartlett's Quotations than Norman Mailer, Truman Capote and John Cheever. And he's a baseball Hall of Famer who played in more World Series games than anyone else. Yet the story of Lawrence Peter Berra was still waiting to be told. So executive producer Andrew Walworth stepped up to the plate and made "Yogi Berra: Déjà Vu All Over Again," airing Tuesday at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. on WETA. The future may not be what it used to be, but the story of Berra has never been better told than in this 67-minute biography hosted by sportscaster Bob Costas."
-The Washington Post

"PBS PITCHING FOR DOLLARS WITH BEGUILING 'YOGI BERRA…'
It's altogether fitting that ‘Yogi Berra: Déjà Vu All Over Again,' a new pledge-month PBS special on the Baseball Hall of Famer, ends with a very current climax Berra's triumphant return to Yankee Stadium after a 14-year feud with owner George Steinbrenner. In that way, this authorized TV biography saves the best for last. To quote one of dozens of Berra malaprops and twisted remarks included in the special, ‘It ain't over 'til it's over.'"
-New York Daily News

Think Tank

"A Weighty New Entree on the Public Affairs Menu"
The New York Times

"One of the better shows on PBS these days is Ben Wattenberg's ‘Think Tank.' Always four outstanding guests and always provocative subjects."
Larry King, USA Today

"If you've never seen ‘Think Tank,' commentator Ben Wattenberg's innovative new current affairs chatfest, you're missing one of the more intellectually stimulating shows on TV."
The Washington Times

"Tired of no-comment tabloid sleazy TV newsmags? This is the antidote. Author/commentator Ben Wattenberg returns to PBS to host this weekly investigation of the deeper trends and issues behind a single news topic."
The Orange County Register

The Big Band Sound of WWII

"The Big Band Sound of WWII, was a tremendous success, seen by over 13 million people on PBS stations nationwide. The overwhelming response from television audiences across the country demonstrated the enduring power and appeal of classic jazz standards."
-Jazz Improv Magazine

"Here's some good news for Felten fans: His PBS concert – which first aired two years ago and is titled ‘The Big Band Sound of WWII' – is available on video. This is delightful, spiffy, polished music-making by a delightful, spiffy, polished man."
- National Review

A Third Choice

"While the Republicans duke it out in presidential caucuses and primaries and the Democratic president gears up his campaign, perhaps the most objective and entertaining TV show about national campaigns is ‘A Third Choice' on PBS."
–United Press International

"The one-hour program, part of public television's ongoing Democracy Project, is a vibrant, telling look at history's odd men out."
–The Chicago Tribune

"A Third Choice offers a succinct look at the history of American political parties."
–Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Follow The Money

"‘Follow the Money,' produced by a youngblood independent company, New River Media, debuted July 11. The debut episode did move along briskly, with several elements purposely designed to give it a different feel. The opening animation, created by New Republic cartoonist Tom Toles, is funny and smart eye candy. Guitar-driven rock'n roll is the theme music....Walworth is clearly comfortable trying new things."
–Current

The Germans: Portrait of A New Nation

"Half a decade after the walls through Berlin and along the Elbe River came tumbling down, it appears timely to take a long, searching look at the shape the new Germany is taking. ‘The Germans: Portrait of a New Nation,' the excellent one-hour documentary airing tonight on WETA, does just that...It is indeed the kind of show PBS would do well to produce more often."
–The Washington Times

"Six years after the Berlin Wall came crashing down, a psychological wall persists between east and west. This engaging documentary introduces the viewer to Ossies, who gripe about high unemployment, and Wessies, who beef about the marks spent on the former East Germany."
–U.S. News & World Report

"Our intellectual pick of the night focuses on the impact of reunification on modern Germany."
–New York Post

"…an informative hour-long documentary that uses several individuals to illustrate the problems and successes of Germany today."
–The Seattle Times

Can The States Do It Better? A Think Tank Special

"Since the days of the founding fathers, Americans have pondered how much control should be given to the federal government compared with the states and their subdivisions. Host Ben Wattenberg and his panel of experts, while not reaching a definitive solution, do provide a thought-provoking hour of television."
–King Features Syndicate

Values Matter Most

"Hail to diversity. Subjective analysis and strong, bracing point of view? If clearly labeled, bring them on. Thus bring on Ben Wattenberg's personal essay ‘Values Matter Most.' It may coincide with your thoughts, it may change them or at least make you think about them; it may leave you rip-roaring mad. That's how marketplaces of ideas should operate."
–Los Angeles Times

"The intelligent questions and responses, the factual graphs of how we've changed as a nation and moments of inspired humor shed much needed light on the ever-changing political scene. Watch and learn."
–King Features Syndicate

"In an hour-long show that could have been called, ‘It's the values, stupid,' political commentator Ben Wattenberg delivers a blunt wake-up call to the Clinton administration and the Democratic Party."
–The Washington Times

"Conservatives will love this hour and forgive all previous PBS sins. Liberals will find it unnerving, but thoughtful and well-stated."
–Gannett News Service

Follow The Money

"Lenin once said ‘When the last bourgeoisie is hung, capitalists will sell us the rope.' Grim details unveiled in tonight's ‘Follow The Money' suggest the Western alliance may be giving the rope away, loaning money to the USSR and Eastern Bloc countries to finance hostile activities against Western democracies. While this bit of news is the sensational hook of the show, the build-up to it is intriguing and informative, explaining how and why the Soviet Union is going broke and why Western alliance banks prefer loans to the Soviets over Third World loans. The discussion is chock-full of facts and figures, but simple enough for the public to grasp."
–The Washington Times

"Heavy on statistics and short on human interest, this is not an easy subject for television, but with the help of somewhat primerish graphics, the producer, Andrew Walworth gets the argument across quite sharply. This is a provocative hour, offering a point of view not common on public television."
–The New York Times

The Conservatives

"How did conservatives come to loom so large on the political landscape? By persevering. The knowledgeable documentary, on Channel 13 at 10 o'clock tonight, traces the history of a movement. ‘The Conservatives' is...a solid lesson in political history."
–The New York Times

"This well-crafted documentary traces the lineage of the modern conservative movement. This is a sober, clear-eyed view of the movement that provides an excellent documentation of how the philosophical tenets of a relative few were transformed into a tangible effect on the nation as a whole."
–Variety

"Masterfully produced. Political junkies will be enthralled, students of history enriched and just plain viewers entertained."
–United Press International

"If your eyes resemble radishes from the strain of reading about the misadventures of the Reagan administration, give you eyes a different diet. Watch a public television special about how there came to be a Reagan administration, ‘The Conservatives.'"
–George Will

"The Conservatives' is no media put-down. Neither is the program a propaganda vehicle. There are no broadsides, no cheap shots at liberals and liberalism. The script is balanced and judicious."
–Dallas Morning News

Shielding America: Can Star Wars Make Us Safe?

"Star Wars, or, if you will, the Strategic Defense Initiative, is surely the most controversial and probably the least-understood defense issue of our time. ‘Shielding America' goes a long way toward explaining Star ‘Wars without deciding whether it is a good idea or not. Wisely, it leaves that to us. The intelligent program can be seen on Channel 13 at 11 o'clock tonight. ‘Shielding America' is a first-rate piece of work."
–The New York Times

"The Year's Best Television. The best of the documentaries were found on public television. ‘Shielding America: Can ‘Star Wars' Make Us Safe' was a first-rate examination of the Strategic Defense Initiative."
–The New York Times (Year in Review)