FRONTLINE: THE CHOICE, 2004
8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14
AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2)
n While the modern presidential candidate is more a concoction of stylists, coaches, advisers, tailors and focus groups than anything resembling a real person, no one can escape his or her past (W’s mysterious National Guard records notwithstanding). With that in mind, PBS’ "Frontline" presents "The Choice, 2004." Billed as a "dual biography" of candidates George W. Bush and John Kerry, it is Frontline’s attempt — drawing on interviews with friends, historians, political advisers and family members — to get at the real men behind all those carefully controlled sound bites.
12 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16
USA Network (Comcast Ch. 26)
n Speaking of unholy concoctions: Though most everyone thinks they know Frankenstein’s monster — flat-top head, bolts in the neck, shambling, speaking in broken English — the actual monster in Mary Shelley’s book was not only superhumanly agile, but something of a genius — a creature who teaches himself to read and can quote "Paradise Lost" at will. While our perceptions of Frankenstein’s monster are drawn mostly from the 1931 Universal movie starring Boris Karloff, there have been more than 10 other films based on the book, most trying to make Shelley’s point that a man who would play God is much more monstrous than his creation. This is the latest to work in that vein, an original from USA Network.
THE LINCOLN ASSASSINATION
6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 17
The History Channel (Comcast Ch. 70)
n Though he is seen today as one of the most respected and beloved presidents in American history, in his day, Abraham Lincoln was a man despised by many. Due to his support for causes like emancipation of the slaves and presiding over the war that brought the South back into the Union, Lincoln was under constant threat — a fact not reflected in his security detail, minuscule by today’s standards. It was a wide net that the Confederate sympathizer John Wilkes Booth was able to step through easily, and — with a single bullet — change the course of American history. Take a look behind the event that changed the way our country looks at presidents and presidential security.