Every time a holiday rolls around, I imply that you hate your relatives and would rather spend the holiday avoiding them and watching TV. I realize now that that is wrong. After all, there are plenty of reasons why you would want to spend your holidays staring at the Idiot Box. You could, for example, be a misanthrope with no family or friends.
So, if you would rather--for whatever reasons--spend your Thanksgiving watching a “That '70s Show” marathon than carving a turkey, here is my run-down of Thanksgiving around the dial.
The Thanksgiving viewing day starts bright and early, of course, with parades aplenty. CBS kicks it off with “The Thanksgiving Parade” (KRQE-13 7 p.m.). It's actually the Macy's parade, but I guess they can't call it that because NBC has the rights. FOX follows close at heel with the panderingly patriotic “America's Thanksgiving Parade” (KASA-2 8 p.m.)--“America” being FOX code for “downtown Detroit.” NBC finally gives us the officially sanctioned “Macy's Thanksgiving Parade” (KOB-4 9 p.m.) a little later on in the morning. I don't know about you, but I never get tired of seeing a giant, inflatable Garfield the cat.
Most of the cable channel standbys are having some marathon or other. Keep flipping stations until your thumb gets tired or you find something you like. Or, if you're in the mood for a little pigskin with your turkey skin, FOX has got you covered with “NFL Football” (KASA-2 10:30 a.m.). The Falcons are facing off against the Lions. Given that they just hosted “America's Thanksgiving Parade,” I suppose I have to root for Detroit.
If you like your sports on the less “manly” side, you can always tune over to NBC. “Dancing with the Stars” dude John O'Hurley spends this holiday there, like he does most others, hosting “The National Dog Show” (KOB-4 12 p.m.). Rooting for the toy poodle to beat the Shi-tzu isn't quite the same as rooting for the Lions to beat the Falcons, but it works for some.
Later on at night, a few stations get into the spirit of the season. NBC has a special holiday episode of “Joey” (KOB-4 7 p.m.) in which Joey and Zach try give away some American Indian artifacts. UPN presents Thanksgiving episodes of “Love, Inc.” (KASY-50 7:30 p.m.) and “Cuts” (KASY-50 8:30 p.m.). In the first, Clea persuades Denis to spend the holiday with her to avoid being alone. In the second, Tiffany is annoyed when her mother (Peggy Lipton) shows up for Thanksgiving dinner. (Well, if she'd have brought Linc from “The Mod Squad” with her it might have been a different story.)
ABC is the sentimental favorite, however, giving us the umpteenth air of 1973's “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” (KOAT-7 7 p.m.). Testify, brother Linus, testify!