Let's get this straight. America is buzzing about a TV show set on an island, where last week, two major characters were apparently "eliminated" in the program's concluding seconds. No, we're not talking about "Survivor."
Last week's "Lost" (8 p.m., ABC) picked up the pace after several weeks of repeats and clip shows. The last-second shooting of Ana Lucia and Libby provided a staggering capper to a solid episode that appeared to be about the flashback to Ana Lucia's odd involvement with Jack's father. Or was it about Ana Lucia's odd dalliance with Sawyer? Much like a 1940s movie, a troubled woman finds herself killed off soon after having an affair.
Tonight, Eko believes he may have found an explanation for the island's mysteries. But first, some of us would like to know what's up with Michael? Has be become the Manchurian candidate? And does Henry have some cosmic hold over Locke?
You have to be an avid fan of the show for any of the above to make much sense. If you're not, you're just "Lost." And you're missing one of the greatest shows on television.
¢ "American Masters" (8 p.m., PBS, check local listings) explores one of film's richest collaborations on "John Ford/John Wayne: The Filmmaker and the Legend." The relationship between the director and the cowboy icon was both difficult and close, marked by years of silence. Ford could be coarse, cruel and frequently drunk, but in the end, one expert opines, they were not unlike Michelangelo and David.
The documentary calls on a battery of critics and fellow directors, including Peter Bogdanovich and Martin Scorsese, to put Ford's films in perspective. All agree that more than a generation after each man's death, Ford and the Duke are remembered for bringing a psychological depth to the Western that has never been equaled. The film also cites their most important "co-star," the Monument Valley, where Ford set so many of his pictures.
Tonight's other highlights
¢ Monkey business abounds on "Amazing Race 9" (7 p.m., CBS).
¢ Howie Mandel hosts "Deal or No Deal" (7 p.m., NBC).
¢ An implanted chip off the old block on "Alias" (7 p.m., ABC).
¢ A murder in Arlington National Cemetery takes on ominous overtones on "Bones" (7 p.m., Fox).
¢ Work follows the team, even on vacation, on "Criminal Minds" (8 p.m., CBS).
¢ Ryan reads the results on "American Idol" (8 p.m., Fox).
¢ Fleet week proves fatal for a decorated Marine on "CSI: NY" (9 p.m., CBS).
¢ Falco's one-night stand winds up dead on "Law & Order" (9 p.m., NBC).
¢ Hurricane preparations take on otherworldly dimensions on "Invasion" (9 p.m., ABC).