Texas (ABC, 9-11 p.m.): The best-selling James Michener novel -- another of his stories swirling around the history of a colorful place -- has been made into a four-hour, two-part miniseries being billed as ''a novel for television.'' Sam Houston, Steven F. Austin, Jim Bowie, Davy Crockett, and other historical figures loom large in this recounting of how, starting in 1821, Mexico allowed ''Anglos'' to migrate into what is now Texas.
Tensions grow between American and Mexican characters: The widow Mattie Quimper, for instance, is drawn to Benito Garza. He's a Mexican of noble family whose property was grabbed by Anglos. Mattie's sympathy for Garza and loyalty to her own country symbolize the area's tensions.
Garza is torn between feelings for Mattie and a desire to reclaim his land. Ultimately, such conflicts lead to the ill-fated defense of the Alamo by 180 Texans.
Patrick Duffy as Stephen F. Austin (''the Father of Texas''), Chelsea Field as Mattie, and Benjamin Bratt as Garza are among a prominent cast that also includes Stacy Keach, David Keith, John Schneider, Grant Show, Randy Travis, Rick Schroder, and others.
Part 2 airs Monday, April 17, 9-11 p.m.
Taxed Out (CNN, 10:30- 11 p.m.): CNN has picked an opportune time to air a report that says, in effect, there must be a better way to tax Americans. As the April 17 deadline for paying taxes approaches, this special considers a number of proposals for changing the current system, viewed by many as unnecessarily burdensome and unfairly administered.
A segment called ''Flat Fever'' deals with the flat-tax envisioned by Rep. Richard Gephardt (D) of Missouri. ''Enterprise Zones -- Getting the Business'' shows how tax laws relate to social policy. ''To Catch a Cheat'' examines ways of tracking tax delinquents. ''The Chairman and the VAT'' deals with House Ways and Means Chairman Bill Archer (R) of Texas and his feeling that it's high time for a consumption tax.
Please check local listings for these programs.