Leandro’s Don’t Miss List: April 2018

Leandro Mejia | April 2, 2018

This April showers you with vernally verdant viewing vis à vis Mother Earth.

WNET’s very own Leandro Mejia, a self-proclaimed public media superfan, writes a monthly column of his must-see recommendations on THIRTEEN. Check out his suggestions for new and encore programs you won’t want to miss. And if you want to expand your vocabulary, click on the hyperlinked words for a definition.


Nature: Sex, Lies and Butterflies


April 4 at 8PM
Nature: Sex, Lies and Butterflies not only rhymes (unlike its namesake variant) but is fecund with facts on lepidopteran liaisons, from copulation to creation of the winged wonders.

Secrets of the Dead: Hannibal in the Alps


April 10 at 8PM
This episode of Secrets of the Dead offers a suspenseful cliffhanger tale of antiquity. See how Hannibal (the general, not the cannibal) conveyed men and materiel up and over the Alps. And did we mention he also transported a pack of Punic pachyderms, in the ancient world’s version of Operation Dumbo Drop? Why was this not a sport in the Winter Olympics?!

GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World War II


April 11 at 10PM
With its alliteratively pleasing palato-alveolar title, GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World War II pays long overdue tribute to Mel Brooks (whom I knew experienced antisemitism in the Army, from his American Masters
documentary
), Carl Reiner, Bea Cohen and the 550,000+ veterans who assiduously fought the two-front war against antisemitism at home and abroad. As “the demand for justice runs through the entirety of the Jewish tradition,” to quote Justice Ginsberg, it is patriotically inspirational to see a call to duty, answered with such longanimous fidelity.

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Civilizations


April 17 at 8PM 
As if the Fates conspired with the Nine Muses, this novenary novel series, illustrates how, “the art of a people, is a true mirror to their minds” (Jawaharlal Nehru). Scholars such as Simon Schama (of The Story of the Jews and A History of Britain fame) circumnavigate the globe, depicting the immanent impact that art media has had on sculpting and shaping the masterpiece that is Man.

Cyberchase: A Renewable Hope

 April 18 at 4:30PM
While  Cyberchase: A Renewable Hope sounds like our version of Star Wars: Episode IV, it actually takes place in the now, and in our own galaxy! Asides from Ekardia being a cautionary allegory of what can befall Cyberspace (or the Earth, itself), the show underscores a subtle hint as to the eponymous subtitle: cooperation between friend and foe can save us all.

NOVA: Decoding the Weather Machine


April 18 at 8PM 
Man proposes, but the weather disposes. NOVA: Decoding the Weather Machine may rain on your parade a bit, but offers an umbrella (…’ella…’ella) understanding on the wondrous workings of the weather. #Nor’eastersNoMore!…at least until next Fall. An apropos companion to this installment is the It’s Okay To Be Smart offering on El Niño, by PBS Digital Studios.

POV – Bill Nye: Science Guy


April 18 at 10PM
Did you know that…Bill Nye not only hosted a popular kids science show on PBS in the 90’s (and recently had his own segment on Neil deGrasse Tyson’s podcast, Star Talk), but is a leading science communicator dedicated to putting out fires of false-hoods fanned by anti-scientific thinking. …well, now you know!