Paul Giamatti's ("John Adams") voice is popping up all over. I heard it recently in some insurance commercial, and now he narrates "An Original DUCKumen tary" on "Nature" (8 p.m., PBS).
As the title implies, "DUCK umentary" celebrates the duck, the wild-feathered waterfowl that waddles awkwardly on land and glides with poetic grace in the water. Despite a physique that seems anything but aerodynamic, many ducks fly hundreds of miles every year, migrating like AARP members to warmer climes for the winter.
The film "stars" two wood ducks and follows them from birth to courtship, migration, and a return to breed and have hatchlings of their own. "DUCKumentary" also showcases a wide variety of curious duck species from all over the globe.
As someone lucky enough to live on a pond, I have "owned" or at least fed many Muscovy ducks over the years. Based on that experience, I found "DUCKumentary" informative and beautiful, if a bit sanitized. The life of a duckling can be nasty, brutish and short. One is likely to be enchanted by the sight of 15 little chicks on the pond on Monday, eight or nine by Wednesday and two, one or none at all by Friday.
The male ducks that survive this grisly triage can be majestic, but also violent with each other and gruesome toward the females they almost inevitably outnumber.
"DUCKumentary" mentions but does not emphasize these traits, preferring a Disney version of nature. The reality is a tad closer to a Quentin Tarantino movie.
Next week's "Nature" will repeat the 2011 documentary "My Life as a Turkey," a beautiful and often poetic re-enactment of a naturalist/writer's year among wild
turkeys. Don't miss it.
---Chris Rock, Samuel L. Jackson, Tracy Morgan and others salute their friend on "Eddie Murphy: One Night Only" (10 p.m., Spike). The TV special features clips from Murphy's record-breaking concert movie "Raw," as well as his work on "Saturday Night Live" and subsequent films.
Murphy all but pioneered a trend: When filmgoers could no longer stomach Eddie Murphy as Eddie Murphy, he entombed himself in latex in "The Nutty Professor" franchise and hid behind CGI effects in the "Shrek" movies. Other popular comics have followed his
---If watching auctions of lost luggage is your idea of
entertainment, "Baggage Battles" (8 p.m., Travel, TV-PG) is now in its second season.
---An awkward wedding moment on the second season premiere of "Whitney" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
---A kidnapping case threatens to unravel on "Law & Order: Spe cial Victims Unit" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
---"NOVA" (9 p.m., PBS) documents Curiosity's mission to Mars.
---A grave injustice on "CSI" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Working the still on "Moon shiners" (10 p.m., Discovery, TV-14).
---Jude hires an expert to expose Arden on "American Horror Story: Asylum" (10 p.m., FX, TV-MA).
Actor George Lazenby acquits himself well in the thankless role of being the first post-Sean Connery 007 in the 1969 James Bond thriller "On Her Majesty's Secret Serv ice" (8 p.m., BBC America), co-starring Diana Rigg, who was fresh from "The Avengers."
---Holiday with veterans on "The Middle" (8 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).
---Bank robbers on "Arrow" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14).
---An eccentric birthday on "Guys With Kids" (8:30 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---An awkward RSVP on "The Neighbors" (8:30, ABC, TV-PG).
---Murder in Santa Monica on "Criminal Minds" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Matthew Broderick guest-stars on "Modern Family" (9 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).
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---An urban retreat on "Subur gatory" (9:30 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).
---A saved victim returns the favor on "Chicago Fire" (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
---Rayna tries on a new style on "Nashville" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
---Jon Meacham is scheduled on "The Daily Show With Jon Stew art" (11 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Kristen Stewart, Glenn Howerton and Lianne La Havas appear on "Conan" (11 p.m., TBS).
---Nate Berkus, Kurt Braunohler, John Caparulo and Annie Lederman are booked on "Chelsea Lately" (11 p.m., E!).
---Tony Kushner sits down on "The Colbert Report" (11:30 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Alec Baldwin and Dirty Projectors appear on "Late Show With David Letterman" (11:35 p.m., CBS).
---Jay Leno welcomes Helen Hunt, Paul "DJ Pauly D" DelVecchio and Kylie Minogue on "The To night Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).
---Chris Tucker, Kellan Lutz, Jonathan Becker and Electric Guest visit "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (12:35 a.m., NBC).
---Craig Ferguson hosts Billy Crystal and Berenice Marlohe on "The Late Late Show" (12:35 a.m., CBS).
Kevin McDonough can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.