WORTH NOTING ON TV

FRIDAY Tom & Jerry's 50th Birthday Bash (TBS, 8:05-9:05 p.m.): Is it really half a century now that they've been chasing across animated screens, this ageless cat and mouse? To salute the still-popular cartoon characters, the catchy special builds a little story around a security guard (played by John Goodman) who stumbles upon a vault of Tom & Jerry films. SUNDAY Decoration Day (NBC, 9-11p.m.): Even in 1975 and even as a matter of principle, Georgia was not the place for a black man to turn down the Congressional medal of Honor. The act of defiance makes waves in this drama of values, but his cause is championed by a boyhood friend, now a retired judge, played by James Garner. Based on the John William Corrington nouvella, the tale launches the Hallmark Hall of Fame's new season.

MONDAY The Divine Garbo (TNT, 8-9 p.m.): Glenn Close hosts and narrates a tribute to the women whose face is our culture's most enduring image of classic beauty: the late film star Greta Garbo. As these stills and rare early footage suggest, her appeal had a lot to do with a mystery and a tragic dimension unduplicated since then.

Fifteen Years of MacNeil/Lehrer (PBS, 8-9:30 p.m.): MacNeil and Lehrer have to answer questions for a change, as two regulars on the ``NewsHour'' - David Gergen and Mark Shields - turn the tables on them to get answers about the thoughtful and highly durable show. The talk is aided by clips of events culled from over the years.

Please check local listings for all programs, especially on PBS.

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