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Archive for Thursday, August 24, 2006

Primetime’ looks at an overlooked AIDS crisis

August 24, 2006

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"Primetime" (9 p.m., ABC) presents a special report on "Out of Control AIDS in Black America." Although black Americans comprise 13 percent of the population, they account for more than 50 percent of all new HIV cases. Nearly 70 percent of all newly diagnosed HIV-positive women in the United States are black. Black women are 23 times more likely to be diagnosed with AIDS than white women. Heterosexual contact is the overwhelming means of infection in these cases of black female HIV.

"Out of Control" contains interviews conducted by the late Peter Jennings, who had a strong hand in producing this piece. This raises a rather obvious question. If this subject is so important, why did it take so long for this documentary to air? Jennings has been dead for more than a year.

¢ With the Emmys just days away, many people are thinking about television's most prestigious projects and outstanding actors. This week includes another annual event celebrating the origins of some of the best actors in movies and television. "They Started on Soaps 6" (11 p.m., SoapNet) recalls the daytime dramas that launched the careers of Oscar winners, box-office draws and TV stars.

Few would associate the prestigious "West Wing" with daytime soaps, but "They Started" shares clips of "West Wing" performers, including Alan Alda, Allison Janney, Jimmy Smits, Martin Sheen and Mary-Louise Parker during their soap opera days.

Gossip-page regular Lindsay Lohan is shown as a child actor on "Another World," giving her mother a hard time and refusing to go to bed. Who knew?

"Grey's Anatomy" cast member James Pickens Jr. explains how playing Zack Edwards on "Another World" proved to be a career breakthrough and invaluable professional training.

The list of soap opera alumni is long and surprising. Halle Berry, George Clooney, Heath Ledger, Michelle Williams, Mark Harmon, Morgan Freeman, Parker Posey, Susan Sarandon and Brad Pitt are just a few. Who didn't start on soaps?

¢ A year after Katrina, people have to wonder whether anything positive came out of one of the worst natural disasters in American history. "Hurricane Katrina Babies" (7 p.m., Discovery Health) follows the stories of infants born during the disaster and of the heroic efforts of nurses, doctors and staff at Woman's Hospital and other area facilities.

Tonight's other highlights

¢ The Carolina Panthers host the Miami Dolphins in preseason NFL action (7 p.m., Fox).

¢ Chris defends his arcade-game reputation on "Everybody Hates Chris" (7 p.m., UPN).

¢ On two episodes of "Grey's Anatomy" (ABC), a train accident fills the hospital (7 p.m.), Christina's secret revealed (8 p.m.).

¢ On three episodes of "The Office" (NBC), Michael's birthday treat (7:30 p.m.) secrets and lies (8 p.m.), Dwight's power trip (8:30 p.m.).

¢ A report of a young mother's suicide proves hard to believe on "CSI" (8 p.m., CBS).

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