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Archive for Saturday, December 15, 2012

Tune In Tonight: Family values in a funhouse mirror

December 15, 2012

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Parents of multiples certainly have their hands full. That’s understandable. But the arrivals of quadruplets, quintuplets, sextuplets, septuplets and octuplets (and counting) have also resulted in questionable behavior by the media. Some years back, Diane Sawyer seemed to take personal ownership of the McCaughey septuplets. And then there was that TLC train wreck about the Gosselins.

Now Oprah’s network is launching “Six Little McGhees” (9 p.m., OWN). Mia and Ro McGhee are high school sweethearts from Columbus, Ohio, who founded their own home business before starting their family. Business was put on the back burner in 2010 when the sextuplets arrived.

The obsession with multiples predates reality TV and television itself. The brilliant Preston Sturges directed the 1944 satire “The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek,” about an unmarried USO girl (Betty Hutton), whose delivery of sextuplets was touted as a wartime propaganda coup.

According to several published accounts, the Dionne children did not look back fondly on their peculiar childhood. I wonder what kind of sad memoirs we can expect from the brood that used to be on “Jon and Kate Plus 8.”

• Unless you consider the toys-coming-to-life angle, the 2007 summer action distraction “Transformers” (7 p.m., ABC) has little to do with Christmas. TV Guide’s Maitland McDonagh summed up its appeal when she wrote, “8-year-olds of all ages, prepare to storm the multiplex.”

Tonight’s highlights

• A man (Will Ferrell) who was orphaned and raised as one of Santa’s helpers decamps for New York to find his real father in the 2003 holiday comedy “Elf” (7 p.m., CBS,).

• The season premiere of “Cops” (7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Fox).

• Tuneful army buddies put on a benefit to save a resort owned by their former commanding officer in the 1954 musical “White Christmas” (6 p.m. and 8:45 p.m., AMC), starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney.

• Tommy’s father announces his sixth walk down the aisle on “Wedding Band” (9 p.m., TBS).

• Daniel Radcliffe, Jessica Ennis, Ricky Gervais and Bruno Mars appear on “The Graham Norton Show” (9 p.m., BBC America).

• Martin Short hosts “Saturday Night Live” (10:30 p.m., NBC), featuring musical guest Paul McCartney.

— Copyright 2012 United Feature Syndicate, distributed by Universal Uclick

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