Country music honors its grandest at Opry

The royalty of the country music world gather in Nashville tonight for "The 29th Annual CMA Awards," while Maryland Public Television takes a look at religious royalty -- specifically Pope John Paul II, who's on his way to Baltimore, and the riches of the Vatican.

* "The 29th Annual CMA Awards" (8 p.m.-11 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Singer Vince Gill, the winningest performer with 14 previous awards, is host of county music's annual honors from the Grand Ole Opry. Among the performers: Reba McEntire, John Michael Montgomery, Alison Krauss, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Dolly Parton, George Strait and Pam Tillis. CBS.


* "Scientific American Frontiers: The Wild West" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- The venerable science magazine's TV show launches a sixth season. Host Alan Alda uses the scientific method to examine some myths of the Old West. For instance: How did those prospectors find gold in the bottom of a metal pan, and why can't rattlesnakes hear?

* "Beverly Hills, 90210" (8 p.m.-9 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- David (Brian Green) struggles to understand his mother's suicide attempt, while Brandon and Susan (Jason Priestley and Emma Caulfield) struggle with problems that come from working together while also dating. Fox.


* "Pope John Paul II"; "On This Rock: A Look Inside the Vatican"; "Sister Wendy: Works From the Vatican" (9 p.m.-10 p.m.; 10 p.m.-10:30 p.m.; 10:30 p.m.-11 p.m., MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- Prepping for the pope's visit to Baltimore, public TV offers three independently produced programs that show the stage upon which the pontiff works.


* "Country Music Awards Pre-Show '95" (6 p.m.-8 p.m., E! Network) -- It's just like the Oscars! The all-about-show-biz network shows up early to interview all the country celebs arriving at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

* "A Fish Called Wanda" (8:05 p.m.-10:20 p.m., TBS) -- The piscatorial specimen of the title meets a sad end, but this 1988 hit is a funny romp that blends the droll English sense of humor with an American sense of fun. John Cleese ("Monty Python's Flying Circus") plays a prim barrister whose life is totally undone -- and liberated -- by an encounter with a pair of American jewel thieves (Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Kline).

* "Alistair MacLean's Night Watch" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., USA) -- Pierce Brosnan ("Remington Steele"), who soon will be leaping to your neighborhood multiplex as the newest James Bond, stars in this original thriller as an anti-terrorist operative in Hong Kong searching for a stolen Rembrandt painting.