WJZ says goodbye to anchor Al Sanders

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Country music has gotten pretty cool on TV, as evidenced by NBC's three-hour commitment to the annual "Country Music Awards," which includes a retrospective of 30 years of No. 1 country hits. And ABC's comedy lineup has some interesting developments.

* "The 30th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards" (8 p.m.-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Clint Black, Tanya Tucker and comedian Jeff Foxworthy are hosts of the live broadcast. Scheduled performers include Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire, Alabama, John Anderson, Brooks & Dunn, Vince Gill, Alan Jackson, Tracy Lawrence, Barbara Mandrell, Willie Nelson and Pam Tillis. NBC.

* "A Tribute: Al Sanders" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- On the day of his funeral, the longtime anchorman's Eyewitness News colleagues offer a special salute. Mr. Sanders, 54, died last week, and had been on Channel 13's newscasts since October 1972.

* "Roseanne" (8 p.m.-8:30 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- One of this season's more interesting and believable relationship developments has been the split of Darlene and David (Sara Gilbert and Johnny Galecki) on the series. Tonight, Roseanne works to engineer a reconciliation. ABC.

* "Ellen" (8:30 p.m.-9 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Part 1 of a season finale two-parter brings pizza man Dan (William Ragsdale) back into Ellen's (Ellen DeGeneres) life. He has a new career and a new product, but Ellen worries it's not legal. ABC.

* "Sliders" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- Elvis lives! Well, actually it's only Rembrandt (Cleavant Derricks), who, in tonight's alternate reality, is taken to be the King of Rock and Roll. And the actor's real-life twin, Clinton Derricks-Carroll, plays the rock star. Fox.

* "Deadly Whispers" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Tony Danza might have been better off whispering, given critical reaction to his Southern accent in this "based on actual events" TV movie. He and Pamela Reed star as a couple who lose a daughter (Heather Tom, of "The Young and the Restless") to murder -- and he becomes the prime suspect. CBS.

* "Coach" (9:30 p.m.-10 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Last week Hayden (Craig T. Nelson) was unexpectedly offered a shot at an NFL coach's job. Will he take it? The season finale addresses the question. ABC.

Cable

* "Sleepless in Seattle" (10:05 p.m.-midnight, Showtime) -- Aw, come on, don't be so cynical. It's schmaltzy and improbable, but the 1993 hit is easy to watch, and Baltimore's Fells Point, where part of the picture was filmed, looks pretty darn good.

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