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Ups and Downs In PBS Coverage

photo of Ben Terris
November 2, 2010

At 8 p.m. tonight, PBS coverage on WETA in the Washington region shifted from the midterm elections to programming about the history of elevators.

While millions of people around the country are asking who will be representing them in the Senate and the House next Congress, PBS dared to ask these questions instead:

"New Yorker Nicholas White was trapped in an elevator for 41 hours. How did it happen? How do elevators work? Are they safe? Why are so many people afraid of them?"

 

The show, narrated by John Lithgow, educates viewers on the history of elevators, shows how they work, and even tells the stories of people who have a fear of elevators (one woman was told to try having sex on an elevator because it would erase all bad memories of riding in them. She said she hasn't found the right partner yet).

As for what happened to Nicholas White, his entire ordeal was caught by surveillance video. It seems like a long time, even in fast forward.

After NOVA, PBS still won't return to election coverage, instead opting to show The Human Spark, which features Alan Alda talking to dozens of scientists about the origin of mankind. The show originally aired in January.

PBS' political coverage will return at 10 p.m., but only on the Web at first to allow the program Frontline to air.

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