ER (NBC 10/9c) Thursday May 4 and May 11. I was wrong [gasp]—there is a four episode arc dealing with Darfur instead of three. “Darfur” aired March 2 and “No Place to Hide” on April 27. This Thursday (May 4) is “There Are No Angels Here,” and next Thursday (May 11) is “The Gallant Hero and the Tragic Victor.” The first two were great episodes, dealing well with the crisis in Darfur, so I recommend you TiVo the next two.
Seventh Heaven (WB 8/7c) Monday May 8. This is it folks, the last episode. I know I mentioned it before, but (like I said before) I’ve been impressed more than once on the issues the show tackled—and how well they did it. Also see this interesting Q&A with Stephen Collins (Rev. Camden) about his own faith. He reflects something similar in his guest column in next week's TV Guide magazine. Anyway, sorry to see this one go.
Medium (NBC 10/9c) Monday May 8. This who-done-it (or will-do-it) crime show with a paranormal twist won’t make this list very often because it’s too close to the real occult world out there. Plus, I find some of the episodes are too graphic in their depiction of the horror and evil one human being is capable of perpetrating against another. However, sometimes this show comes through with a thoughtful and even faith-oriented episode. This Monday’s episode, Kelsey Grammer guests as the Angel of Death, which strongly implies one of these faith-themed episodes is surfacing again. We’ll see.
Fatal Contact: Bird Flue in America (ABC 8/7c) Tuesday May 9. Okay, I’m a sucker for disaster movies. I love the old ones: Towering Inferno, Earthquake and even the Sean Connery/Natalie Wood Meteor. Then, of course, there are the latest ones, like Armageddon, Deep Impact, Independence Day and (my favorite) the weather disaster flicks Twister and The Day After. And why is a disaster flick on the God-talk list? Well, admittedly these films are very formulaic and predictable (to put it mildly), but I latch onto the theme of the ordinary person becoming extraordinary. Plus I think they are good reminders of how little control we actually have over our own lives, the lives of those we love and the world around us (and having recently spent a great deal of time going through and writing about Job, this is a fresh one in my mind). It would be nice to see more overt religion themes played out, but these make for good God-talk starters. With the made-for-TV versions, however, I find myself flipping channels more often than not. But I’ll give this one a shot.
Lost (ABC 9/8c) Wednesday May 10. Ack, this is a Locke and Eko centric episode—and that means faith-issues galore because both of these characters are emblematic of the faith side of this “faith versus science” themed show. I’m not going spoil anything more on this one cause I get mean looks from people when I do that, ouch. (If you want to know more, though, look at the May 8-14 issue of TV Guide or go to SpoilerFix).
Of course, the Da Vinci Code stuff is always out there. TV Guide highlights May 14’s Inside the Actors Studio (BRAVO 9/8c) is featuring Tom Hanks, which may make my TiVo list. What won’t make it (because I wake up my kids by yelling at the television pundits they interview for these things) is Discovery Channel’s Conspiracy Files (which “explores the theory that Jesus’ crucifixion was fake and the possibility his bloodline may still exist today”) and Da Vinci’s Lost Code (focusing on what’s embedded in Da Vinci’s paintings). Sigh. And one last noteworthy suggestion: Whale Rider is on Oxygen on Saturday (May 13) at 10am/9c. Let me know if you think I missed something (though I’m not sure my TiVo has much room left).
(Image: Patrick Q at flikr.com)