MPTV Premieres & Highlights: November 2009

Unconquered Seminoles

November 1st / 8:30 / MPTV 36.1

This Telly-award winning program traces the history and identity of Florida's resilient Seminole tribe, one deeply rooted in a pattern of obstacle and challenge, survival and success. Three wars in the 1800s sought to remove the Seminoles from Florida, but they adapted to life in the Everglades and eventually thrived while still preserving their cultural traditions. Significant moments in the history of the Seminoles are charted through archival stills and interviews with historians. Repeats 11/25 / 9:30 PM / 10.1 HD

Holiday Auction Preview

November 1st / 5:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

This special preview features highlights of items available for bid during the 2010 MPTV Great Holiday Online Auction from November 1-22. Items include vacation packages, furniture, artwork, jewelry, gift certificates and more. (30 min)

Masterpiece Contemporary

"Place of Execution - Part 1"

November 1st / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

In 1963, a 13-year-old girl vanished without a trace from an English village. More than 40 years later, questions surrounding her disappearance and the hunt for the killer resurface when high-profile TV journalist begins to unravel the mystery. Starring Juliet Stevenson and Greg Wise. Based on the novel by best-selling author Val McDermid (Wired in the Blood). David Tennant, star of PBS's Doctor Who and Casanova, hosts.

Civilian Conservation Corps: American Experience

November 2nd / 8:00 / MPTV 10.1 HD

one out of every four American workers who were unemployed. He proposed the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) to provide jobs in natural resource conservation. Over the next decade, the CCC put more than three million young men to work in the nation's forests and parks, planting trees, building flood barriers, fighting fires, and maintaining roads and trails. This film tells the story of one of the boldest and most popular New Deal experiments, positioning it as a pivotal moment in the emergence of modern environmentalism and federal unemployment relief.

People V. Leo Frank

November 2nd / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

This program brings to vivid life one of the most fascinating criminal cases in American history: the 1913 murder of 13-year-old Mary Phagan, a child laborer in an Atlanta pencil factory, and the trial and lynching of Leo Frank, the Jewish factory supervisor accused of her murder. The film illuminates the scandalous trial and its shocking aftermath with dramatic sequences created verbatim from transcripts, documents, and letters.

Islands of Britain

"The North"

November 3rd / 10:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Surprisingly, the U.K. is made up of about 6,000 different islands, and some of the most unfamiliar ones are often the most fascinating. Actor Martin Clunes explores the remote Scottish islands, beginning on Muckle Flugga, the most northerly outpost of the British Isles. He also visits Forvik in the Shetlands, occupied by just one man; Unst, the most northerly inhabited island in the country; the island of Lewis and Harris, followed by the remote island of Eigg, with its 80 inhabitants. His adventure ends in Barra, the westernmost inhabited island in Britain. (1 of 3) Continues on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Repeats 11/12 / 8:00 PM / 36.1


"Becoming Human - Part 1"

November 3rd / 7:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

This three-part special investigates explosive new discoveries that are transforming the picture of how we became human. Fresh clues about our earliest ancestors in Africa are presented; including the stunningly complete fossil nicknamed "Lucy's Child." These three-million-year-old bones from Ethiopia reveal humanity's oldest and most telltale trait, upright walking, rather than a big brain. Continues on Tuesdays.


"The Medicated Child"

November 3rd / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

With over four million children now on behavior modifying medications--some starting as young as two years old--FRONTLINE continues its investigation into the controversial practice of medicating kids. Are the drugs safe? How young can mental illness in a child be detected? Is medication really the answer? As the debate grows fiercer, FRONTLINE confronts psychiatrists, researchers, and pharmaceuticals about risks and benefits of prescription drugs for troubled children.

Independent Lens

"Power Paths"

November 3rd / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

American Indian tribes are profiled, as they incorporate renewable energy projects into their communities. Young Native leaders from the Just Transition Coalition are followed, as they work to bring training and new jobs in renewable energy, installing solar energy and large wind turbines on their lands.

Bill Cosby: The Mark Twain Prize

November 4th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

A star-studded cast of comedians and colleagues, including Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, and Carl Reiner salute Bill Cosby as the 12th recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. The life and achievements of the beloved comedian are celebrated, including an assortment of classic film clips from his career spanning more than four decades. Repeats same night at 8:30 PM / 10.1 HD


"A World Without War" (March 1945-December 1945)

November 4th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

In spring 1945, U.S. citizens understand there will be more bad news before the war ends. President Franklin Roosevelt warns the final battle with Japan could stretch on for years. In mid-April, Americans are shocked by President Roosevelt's death; unfamiliar with their new president, Harry Truman. On August 6, 1945, under orders from President Truman, an American plane drops a single atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, obliterating 40,000 men, women and children in an instant.

American Experience

"FDR: The Center of the World/Fear Itself"

November 6th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

President Franklin D. Roosevelt's family background, education, bout with polio and troubled marriage are explored. It follows him from his very first run for political office as New York state senator through his years in Washington as assistant secretary of the navy, as he pursues the highest office in the land. This segment also tells the story of FDR's courtship of his distant cousin, Eleanor Roosevelt, and includes FDR's affair with Eleanor's social secretary, Lucy Mercer. Catapulted into the White House, a man who could not walk begins to lead a country crippled by the Great Depression. FDR: The Grandest Job in the World/The Juggler airs 11/13; Truman Pt. 1 airs 11/20; and Truman Pt. 1 airs 11/27.

Movie: Mrs. Miniver (1942)

Mrs. Miniver (1942)

November 7th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

By coping courageously with every horror that war can bring, Mrs. Miniver (Greer Garson) symbolizes the indomitable spirit of her countrymen in the darkest days of World War II. Walter Pidgeon also stars in this film, which won six Academy Awards.

John Fogerty: Live By Request

November 7th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

or more than four decades, John Fogerty has been an American treasure: one of the most revered and influential artists to emerge in the `60s, and still a vital part of the musical landscape. In this special, Fogerty performs music requested by viewers via live interactive video requests, call-in requests and text, email and social network requests.

America's Veterans: A Musical Tribute 2009

November 8th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

This star-studded musical tribute honors America's bravest. Led by The United States Air Force Band, the program features Michael Feinstein, one of the premiere interpreters of American popular song; renowned Irish tenor Ronan Tynan; blues dynamo Shemekia Copeland, and Academy Award-winning actor Lou Gossett, Jr. (Recorded June 2009, Music Center at Strathmore, in Bethesda, Maryland) Repeats 11/11 9:30 PM / 10.1 HD

Lost and Found: Legacy of USS Lagarto

November 8th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

The USS Lagarto was one of 28 submarines built by the Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company during World War II. Weeks before the end of the war in May 1945, it sank in the Gulf of Thailand. The sub was lost in the Pacific Ocean for over
60 years, until May 2005, when it was discovered. Exclusive underwater footage reveals fascinating images of the Lagarto sitting upright in 225 feet of water.

Berlin Airlift: American Experience

November 8th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

On June 24, 1948, the Cold War began in the war-torn, divided city of Berlin. The Soviets, who controlled all of East Germany and the eastern half of Berlin, blocked all access to the American and British-controlled West Berlin, choking commerce and starving the people. Through the personal stories of those who were there, this program provides a striking look at the first battle of the Cold War and the largest humanitarian campaign the world had ever seen.

On The Issues with Mike Gousha

"Judy Woodruff"

November 9th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Mike Gousha, distinguished fellow in law and public policy at the Marquette University Law School visits with broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff at Esienberg Memorial Hall. Woodruff is senior correspondent for "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer." She has covered politics and other news for more than three decades at CNN, NBC, and now PBS. Repeats 11/15 / 3:00 PM / 36.1

How the Beatles Rocked the Kremlin

November 9th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Award-winning director Leslie Woodhead examines how the Beatles punctured the Iron Curtain with their music and style. Even though the Beatles never performed in the Soviet Union, archival Soviet-era footage and interviews with Soviet Beatles fans, reveal how they managed to listen to the outlawed music of the Fab Four, changing their lives and giving them hope.

How the Beatles Rocked the Kremlin

"Sick Around the World"

November 10th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Four in five Americans say the U.S. health-care system needs "fundamental" change. Can the U.S. learn anything from the rest of the world about how to run a health-care system or are these nations so culturally different from us that their solutions would simply not be acceptable to Americans? T.R. Reid examines the health-care systems of other advanced capitalist democracies--the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Japan and Taiwan; to see what tried and tested ideas might help us reform our broken health-care system.

Secrets of the Dead

"Airmen and the Headhunters"

November 11th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

This documentary investigates the extraordinary survival story of a crew of airmen shot down over the jungles of Japanese-occupied Borneo during World War II.


"The Way We Get By"

November 11th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

On call 24 hours a day for the past five years, a group of senior citizens has made history by greeting nearly 800,000 American troops at a tiny airport in Bangor, Maine. This film is an intimate look at three of these greeters as they confront the universal losses that come with aging and rediscover their reason for living. Bill Knight, Jerry Mundy and Joan Gaudet find the strength to overcome their personal battles and transform their lives through service. This inspirational and surprising story shatters the stereotypes of today's senior citizens as the greeters redefine the meaning of community.

True Whispers: The Story of the Navajo Code Talkers

November 11th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

Exploring the personal and heartfelt story of the Navajo Code Talkers, this special tells the stories of the young Navajo men recruited from harsh government boarding schools into the Marines during World War II. From 1942-1945, the Code Talkers devised an unbreakable code in their native language and transmitted vital messages in the midst of combat against the Japanese.

Jim Thorpe: World's Greatest Athlete

November 11th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

From his boyhood in Oklahoma and his gold-medal wins at the 1912 Summer Olympics, sports superstar Jim Thorpe's remarkable life is chronicled, including his subsequent fall from grace and later, his advocacy of American Indian rights and self-sufficiency. Interviews with Thorpe's surviving children, dramatic re-creations, and archival stills and film are featured.


"The Innocent"

November 14th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

An Algerian army deserter and terrorism suspect is freed after two years in a British prison without charge. Although he is found to be innocent, he is being forced to conduct an assassination on British soil.

Masterpiece Contemporary

"Collision - Part 1"

November 15th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

The investigation of a multi-vehicle road accident unravels the shocking secrets of the complete strangers involved, soon revealing government cover-ups, smuggling, embezzlement, and murder. Starring Phil Davis and Paul McGann.

Principals Vol. 1

November 16th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Three Milwaukee-area public school principals are profiled; offering a glimpse of what life is like within Milwaukee Public Schools, and how their individual styles are making positive differences in the lives of their students. The Principals are Dr. Cynthia Ellwood, Hartford University School; Pascual Rodriguez, Bruce Guadalupe Middle School; and, Dr. Floyd E. Williams, Jr., George Washington Carver Academy of Mathematics and Science. Repeats tonight at 9:30 PM / 10.1 HD


"The Principal Story"

November 16th / 8:30 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Filmmakers Tod Lending and David Mrazek follow two female principals working in challenging environments over the course of a school year, discovering each one's unique styles yet similar passions.


"A Death in Tehran"

November 17th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

At the height of the protests following Iran's controversial presidential election this summer, a young woman named Neda Soltani was shot and killed on the streets of Tehran. Her death--filmed on a camera phone, then uploaded to the web--quickly became an international outrage, and Soltani became the face of a powerful movement that threatened the hard line government's hold on power. With the help of a unique network of correspondents in and out of the country, FRONTLINE investigates the life and death of Neda, whose image remains a potent symbol for those who want to keep the reform movement in Iran alive.

A King in Milwaukee

November 18th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

A companion piece to CHERRY PICKING, APPLE BLOSSOM TIME, this documentary is the unlikely story of how artist David Greenberger transformed interviews with the elderly into 38 songs and a funky live music concert. Repeats 11/22 / 7:00 PM / 36.1

Cherry Picking, Apple Blossom Time

November 18th / 8:30 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

In 1979, artist David Greenberger began publishing THE DUPLEX PLANET, works devoted to his conversations with nursing home residents. Now, marking its 30th anniversary, Greenberger's conversations with elderly residents of Milwaukee are backed by music composed by Paul Cebar. This collaboration stems from Greenberger's 2008 artist residency for UWM's Center on Age & Community (with funding from the Helen Bader Foundation and the Brookdale Foundation). Repeats 11/22 / 7:30 PM / 36.1

Home for Christy Rost: Thanksgiving

November 22nd / 3:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

Award-winning chef, author and home design expert Christy Rost plans a festive Thanksgiving dinner by presenting cooking tips, seasonal recipes, table-setting ideas and more. The program culminates with the unveiling of her remodeled home, a process two years in the making. Repeats 11/24 / 10 pm / 10.1 HD

Seabiscuit: American Experience

November 23rd / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Despite his boxy build, stumpy legs, scraggly tail, and ungainly gait, Seabiscuit was one of the most remarkable thoroughbred racehorses in history. His fabulously wealthy owner, Charles Howard; his famously silent and stubborn trainer, Tom Smith; and the two hard-bitten, gifted jockeys who rode him to glory turned Seabiscuit into a national hero. Based on the best-selling book of the same name by Laura Hillenbrand.

Elbert Hubbard: An American Original

November 23rd / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Liev Schreiber narrates the fascinating life story of Elbert Hubbard (1856-1915), the flamboyant founder of the Roycroft Artisan Community. Set against the backdrop of the Arts and Crafts Movement at the turn of the 20th century, his is a story of love, art, passion and controversy.


"What Are Dreams?"

November 24th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

What are dreams and why do we have them? Are they a window into a hidden realm within us? Science is only just beginning to understand. NOVA joins the leading dream researchers and witnesses the extraordinary experiments they use to investigate the world of sleep. From human narcoleptics to sleepwalking cats, from recurrent nightmares to those who can't dream, each sequence contains a vital clue to the question these scientists are pursuing: Why do we dream?


"The Card Game"

November 24th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

As credit card companies face rising public anger, new regulation from Washington and a potential perfect storm of economic bad news, Lowell Bergman examines the future of the massive consumer loan industry and its impact on a fragile national economy. In a joint project with the New York Times--a follow-up to "Secret History of the Credit Card," Bergman and the Times talk to industry insiders, lobbyists, politicians and consumer advocates as they square off over new regulation and the possible creation of a consumer finance protection agency.

Independent Lens


November 24th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

A look is taken at our complex relationship with manufactured objects, the people who design them and the creative process behind their work. Director Gary Hustwit steps inside the offices of the world's most influential product designers to see how objects influence us--oftentimes without our even knowing it.

American Masters

"Woody Guthrie: Ain't Got No Home"

November 25th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Originally blowing out of the Dust Bowl in the 1930s Depression-era America, Woody Guthrie blended vernacular, rural music and populism, to give voice to millions of downtrodden citizens. His prolific and uniquely patriotic music was central to generations of folk music, and has been recorded by everyone from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir to the Irish rock band U2. The program explores Guthrie's creative energy and complex life.

Story of Lassie

November 26th / 1:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

In 1943, a magnificent collie catapulted to stardom in the classic MGM film Lassie Come Home. Both the story and the performances moved audiences to tears and established Lassie as an American icon, as well as a genuine Hollywood movie star. Actress June Lockhart highlights clips from Lassie's MGM feature films and from her television series on CBS, which were television's top-rated programs for 17 years. Interviews and stories come from those who knew Lassie best: trainer Robert Weatherwax, and actors, directors and producers who worked with the world's favorite collie. Repeats 11/27 / 10:00 am / 36.1

War of the Worlds Live

November 28th / 10:35 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

In 1978, acclaimed musician Jeff Wayne composed and produced one of the most groundbreaking and best-selling concept albums of all time--The Musical Version of the War of the Worlds. In 2006, after much anticipation, Jeff Wayne's seminal work of progressive/literary rock music was brought to the stage for the first time, playing to sold-out arenas across the United Kingdom. Recorded at London's Wembley Stadium using over 23 high definition cameras, this is a spectacular mix of live music, theatre, multi-media and visual arts on a grand scale.

Science of Healing with Dr. Esther Sternberg

November 28th / 12:30 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Author and medical researcher Dr. Esther Sternberg examines the role the brain plays in healing. The program addresses some critical questions: What is healing? Is there a mind/body connection? What happens in the brain when healing occurs? What role does emotion play? Dr. Sternberg uses her own story of illness and recovery as a parallel to her investigation of what scientists are learning about the mind/body connection.

Dr. Wayne Dyer: Excuses Begone!

November 28th / 2:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Dr. Wayne Dyer discusses overcoming lifetime thinking habits that keep people from maximizing their human potential. He addresses the powerfully transformative process of HOW to change habituated ways of thinking that limit beliefs in who we can be in the world and what we can achieve.

Big Band Years

November 28th / 5:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

This music retrospective features the biggest songs that kick-started the baby boom generation with original hit makers and legends from the 1930s and 1940s. Vintage videos and rare unreleased footage bring back the songs that won the war. Peter Marshall (of the legendary Hollywood Squares) hosts.

Trans-Siberian Orchestra: Ghosts of Christmas Eve

November 28th / 8:05 pm / MPTV 36.1

Narrated by the late Ossie Davis, this is a fantasy trip through the magic of Christmas. A runaway little girl decides to return to her family after she enters a rundown theater for shelter and encounters an old caretaker (Davis), who guides her on her journey. The caretaker brings the theater to life through various musical performances by singers Jewel, Michael Crawford and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Live

November 28th / 9:10 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Rare, one-of-a-kind performances from the induction ceremonies of the Rock Hall of Fame, shot during the last 24 years.
The biggest names in rock perform in intimate settings and jam in combinations not seen anywhere else. The program features exclusive, anything-goes induction speeches by rock royalty, along with rare behind-the-scenes footage. Paul Shaffer, musical director for the hall's induction ceremonies, hosts.

Radio City Christmas Spectacular Starring the Rockettes

November 29th / 5:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, starring the world-famous Rockettes, has become America's number-one holiday show over its storied 77-year history. This multifaceted show includes dynamic Rockette performances that showcase the dancers' signature precision dance style. Traditional fan favorites such as the "Living Nativity" scene and "Parade of the Wooden Soldiers," which have been in the show since its inception in 1933, remain a vital part of the show's core. Originally performed as a holiday "gift" between movie screenings, the Christmas Spectacular has long since become the main event, drawing millions of people annually to stage productions across the country.

Sullivan's Rock and Roll Classic - The `60s (My Music)

November 29th / 6:30 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Some of the greatest Pop-Rock moments of Ed Sullivan's programs spanning the years 1963-1968 are presented. Performances include: The Beatles with their million-selling number one chart debut "I Want to Hold Your Hand," followed by another John-Paul-George-Ringo smash, "She Loves You." Other featured British Invasion icons are the Rolling Stones, Gerry & the Pacemakers, the Animals, Herman's Hermits, and Petula Clark with her Grammy-winning evergreen "Downtown."

Sinatra at Carnegie Hall

November 29th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

In 1980, Frank Sinatra performed a two-week engagement at Carnegie Hall, which at the time, set a record for the venue by selling out each show in just one day. The performances followed the release of 1980s Trilogy, Sinatra's ambitious triple-album comeback that featured "The Theme from New York, New York." Sinatra mixes "Summer Me, Winter Me" from that album with his hits "I've Got the World on a String" and "I've Got You Under My Skin."

Great Performances

"Andrea Bocelli & David Foster: My Christmas in Concert"

November 29th / 8:02 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

David Foster joins superstar Andrea Bocelli for a Christmas concert of holiday classics. Recorded at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, the program also features special guests Natalie Cole, Mary J. Blige, Welsh mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins, and The Muppets, as well as a visit with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Among the featured song highlights are "White Christmas," "Oh Holy Night," "Santa Claus is Coming to Town," "Jingle Bells," "Silent Night," "The Christmas Song, " "What Child Is This," and more.

Ragtime Cabaret

November 29th / 8:30 pm / MPTV 36.1

Just before the turn of the 20th century, a unique musical form emerged in the United States. As African, European and American cultures blended, the first truly American musical genre was born, predating jazz. For the next 20 years, an improvised music popular in the red light districts and saloons of cities like St. Louis and New Orleans, gradually grew into sophisticated, composed style--"ragtime." Classically trained pianist and ragtime enthusiast Jack Oliva, Dean of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Hixon-Lied College of Fine & Performing Arts, explores the origins of ragtime music through history and song

Celtic Woman: Songs from the Heart

November 30th / 7:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Musical Director and Composer David Downes and the five women who comprise Celtic Woman perform at the historic Powerscout House and Gardens in Enniskerry, County Wicklow.

Frost/Nixon: The Original Watergate Interviews

November 30th / 8:00 pm / MPTV 36.1

The original Watergate Interviews of 1977 are presented on the 35th anniversary of former U.S. President Richard Nixon's resignation, (August 9, 1974). Sir David Frost conducted the most compelling political interview ever-- the Frost/Nixon Watergate interview remains the largest TV audience for a political interview to this day. Frost comments on the historical impact of the Nixon interview and shares his reactions of their famous encounter.

Celtic Woman: The Greatest Journey - Holiday Special

November 30th / 9:00 pm / MPTV 10.1 HD

Celtic Woman remains a major force in the contemporary music landscape, with three hit PBS specials, more than three million CDs and DVDs sold in the U.S., numerous chart-toppers and concerts in front of more than 800,000 fans in the U.S. alone. This essential collection of beloved and memorable songs features vocalists Lisa, Chloe, Orla, Meav and Hayley, and fiddler Mairead.