Whats on TV

Listings are not necessarily recommended by the Monitor. All times Eastern, check local listings.

SATURDAY 1/2

The Kitchen Sessions With Charlie Trotter (PBS, check local listings): In this series debut, Chicago's celebrity chef Trotter serves up unconventional fare and shows how to master the secrets of his creative cuisine.

SUNDAY 1/3

Biography: The Rat Pack (A&E, 8-10 p.m.): This two-part documentary chronicles the exploits of the gang - Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Joey Bishop, and Peter Lawford. Part 2 airs Monday. (TV-G)

MONDAY 1/4

Zoom (PBS, 5-5:30 p.m.): Join the fun as this 1970s playful and educational children's series zooms back into the '90s with new episodes and a new cast. Viewers mail in - and of course e-mail in - their suggestions about activities in which they'd like to see the seven Zoomers participate. (TV-Y)

Fiesta Bowl (ABC, 8-11:30 p.m.): Tennessee plays Florida State to determine the "national champion."

WEDNESDAY 1/6

Lateline (NBC, 9-9:30 p.m.): This smart, sharply written comedy about a TV news program in Washington returns with 13 new episodes, starring Al Franken, the show's creator and producer. (TV-14)

The Line King: The Al Hirschfeld Story (PBS, 9-10 p.m.): "All kids draw. I just never stopped," says Hirschfeld in this delightful Oscar-nominated 1996 documentary, edited down for TV. This profile highlights seven decades of the caricaturist's art: 20th century theater and celebrity drawings - from Charlie Chaplin to Jerry Seinfeld. The whole mystery behind the name Nina is revealed too. (TV-PG)

The Mississippi: River of Song (PBS, 10-11 p.m.): Along the edges of the Great River music flows. This ambitious series from the Smithsonian captures the music and the music community down the muddy river - from an Ojibwe powwow in northern Minnesota to the bandstands of New Orleans. Narrated by singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco. First of four parts, airing Wednesdays. (Check local listings.)

FRIDAY 1/08

A Civil Action - In Pursuit of Justice (CourtTV, 8-9 p.m.): John Travolta looks at the true events behind the trial that inspired the movie "A Civil Action" (opening nationwide today).

Louis Rukeyser's 1999 Money Guide (PBS, 8-10 p.m.): The host of the nation's most widely watched money program takes a look at the year ahead.

Providence (NBC, 8-9 p.m.): This new family drama stars NYPD Blue alum Melina Kanakaredes, playing a prominent L.A. doctor who must come to terms with Providence when she visits her eccentric family in Rhode Island. (TV-PG)

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