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'Carmen' not the answer


You've seen the studies showing that thousands of kids don't know where Canada, Mexico or even Washington, D.C., is. "Where in the World Is Carmen San Diego?" is PBS' answer to that geography gap.

Carmen" is a half-hour game show debuting at 5:30 tonight on MPT (Channels 22 and 67) that tries to teach geography #F between songs, skits, jokes and general silliness. It's based on the computer game in which players try to track down master criminal Carmen San Diego and her gang.

In tonight's episode, the Mona Lisa is stolen by Vic The Stick. Three contestants try to catch Vic by answering questions about Vic's flight around the world.

"Carmen" is fun to watch. But it does not look like the answer to teaching geography in a TV culture. It's a junior "Jeopardy" -- more show business than education. It's too much shtick and not enough scholarship.

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