New York City Marathon (CBS, 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., E.T.): To appreciate a marathon on TV you don't have to have run one yourself, but it might help as anonymous hordes trudge across your screen. This is the only marathon that network TV covers live from start to finish, for reasons known mainly to ABC programmers, who have now scheduled the race 13 years in a row.

Admittedly it is a colorful event, starting at Verrazano Narrows Bridge, winding through all five boroughs, and finishing in Central Park. A total of 125 staffers are involved in the production - in addition to 20 cameras, five vehicles, and six helicopters. And they're probably all needed, since an anticipated 2 million spectators will be watching some 26,000 runners from 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 100 different countries. In 1970 the first New York City Marathon drew about 126 spectators, who probably outnumbered the runners.

Return to Lonesome Dove (CBS, 9-11 p.m.; Tuesday, 9-11 p.m.; and Thursday, 8-11 p.m.): It's the sequel, of course, to one of network TV's best-loved and most talked-about dramas in recent years: ``Lonesome Dove,'' the 1989 western miniseries that won a Peabody Award and several Emmys, registering the highest ratings among its season's made-for-TV movies and miniseries.

Billed as having been developed ``in consultation with'' Larry McMurtry, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel on which ``Lonsome Dove'' was based, the new production finds Capt. Woodrow F. Call (Jon Voigt) in Texas. It was there that Captain Call, in the first show, had brought the remains of his best friend Gus, killed in a battle with Indians.

Now Call intends to collect a group of men to drive a herd of wild mustangs to Montana. In the process, the classic clash occurs between those welcoming civilization to the frontier and people who fear that it means losing their freedom.

Booknotes (C-Span, 8-9 p.m.): The guest is Herbert Block, author of ``Herblock: a Cartoonist's Life.''

Please check local listings for these programs.

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