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It's beginning to look a lot like Halloween


Television is not often a place to find poetry, but a new PBS series from public television's uncommonly literate Bill Moyers takes a look at the thriving art form.

* "Family Matters" (8 p.m.-8:30 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Ah, summer -- the heat, the humidity, the howl of vampires. Excuse me? That's what happens when seasonal shows get repeated in June. Tonight's Halloween episode features Sir Steve Urkel (Jaleel White) quivering in a haunted castle. ABC.

* "Tales From the Crypt" (8 p.m.-8:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.-9 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- This is one of the few series with fresh summer episodes, with an original show followed by a repeat. In the first, D. B. Sweeney stars as a hoodlum who picks the wrong house in which to hide from police. In the repeat, Catherine O'Hara is an attorney stranded in a small town. Fox.

* "Diagnosis Murder" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Co-star Scott Baio gets a chance to show off his buff bod in a repeat involving the murder of a boxer. Dr. Stewart (Mr. Baio) spars in the ring with a legendary fighter who is one of the suspects (Richard Brooks), while Dr. Sloan (Dick Van Dyke) spars with police and others to find the real murderer. CBS.

* "The Language of Life With Bill Moyers" (10 p.m.-midnight, MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- What's in a word? Sometimes everything an artist wants to say. In a new eight-part series, with two hour-long episodes tonight, the host examines a surge of interest in poetry, with performance readings by sculptors of language. PBS.

* "20/20" (10 p.m.-11 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Society worries about children witnessing violence in the streets, but host Hugh Downs reports that observing violence in their own homes, between people they love and depend upon, leaves more lasting effects. ABC.

* "Late Night With Conan O'Brien" (1:35 a.m.-2:35 a.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- Many a Big Apple tourist has done what the show is doing for tonight's installment: take a cruise on the Circle Line around Manhattan. The host, sidekick Andy Richter, bandleader Max Weinberg and guest Janeane Garofalo ("Saturday Night Live") will be joined on the voyage by a studio audience. NBC.


* "Frankenstein" (8 p.m.-10:30 p.m., TNT) -- This sumptuous 1993 production by the Turner organization hews relatively closely to Mary Shelley's psychologically insightful tale. Randy Quaid plays the "monster" as a bewildered child, who turns to violence only when seemingly abandoned by his creator (Patrick Bergin).

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