- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 8, 2007

Love shows for cynics

Since Valentine’s Day falls in the middle of the week (this coming Wednesday, to be precise) those of you who still mark the occasion will likely spend this final weekend before the big day wooing, wining and dining your significant other.

Somehow, though, it’s hard to get in the groove when — in the name of unrequited love — an astronaut drives cross-country with a mallet and 4-inch knife in tow to “talk” with the woman who’s now the apple of her beloved’s eye.

Then, there’s the case of Ryan O’Neal, star of 1970’s “Love Story,” one of the most romantic movies of that era. On Monday, he was arrested for reportedly firing a shot at his adult son, Griffin.

What is the world coming to?

That’s why cable’s G4 TV just might have the ticket on Valentine’s Day for the cynics among us when it comes to love. The network is chucking the whole hearts and flowers concept for a “Cheaters” marathon, which will feature 16 back-to-back installments of the seedy reality series — beginning at 9 p.m. and continuing overnight until 4:30 a.m. on Thursday — that catches straying lovers confronted by a film crew armed with videotaped evidence that’s gleaned from the surveillance initiated by the betrayed party.

With two episodes per show, the cheesy factor will be in overdrive.

Now in its seventh season, “Cheaters” (primarily filmed in Texas) is hosted by Joey Greco, a former real estate manager and fitness trainer who was once stabbed by an angered adulterer as the cameras rolled.

After the Valentine’s Day marathon, the show returns to its regular berth as part of G4’s late-night Midnight Spank programming block.

Strange valentine

Here’s another curious take on pre-Valentine’s Day programming: ABC’s new family drama “Brothers & Sisters” tips its hat to the holiday for lovers with an episode titled “Valentine’s Day Massacre” (Sunday at 10 p.m.).

The plot?

Family matriarch Nora Holden Walker (two-time Oscar winner Sally Field) has a Valentine’s Day dinner with a friend (played by guest star Margot Kidder) and takes a risky ride that could land her in trouble.

Meanwhile, sparks continue to fly between Nora’s daughter — conservative talk show host Kitty Walker (Calista Flockhart) — and Sen. McCallister (guest star Rob Lowe). And Kevin (Matthew Rhys), Kitty’s homosexual attorney brother, gets more company than he bargained for.

Animated fare

In matters of the heart, thank goodness that hope springs eternal among our cartoon friends.

On “A Charlie Brown Valentine” (8 p.m. tomorrow on ABC), the lovable Peanuts character finally summons the courage to call up that little red-haired girl and ask her to the Valentine’s Day dance. But things go awry when he dials the wrong number and reaches Peppermint Patty instead.

“Winnie the Pooh: A Valentine for You” following on the network at 8:30 p.m., finds everyone’s favorite bear a wee bit jealous when Christopher Robin spends all his time making a Valentine’s Day card for the object of his affection — but love conquers all by the end of the 1999 animated feature.

Starry, starry night

Shifting gears from romance to records, we’d be remiss if we neglected to mention Sunday’s live telecast of the 49th annual Grammy Awards (8 p.m. on CBS), the recording industry’s highest honor.

Hip-hop diva Mary J. Blige is the night’s top nominee with eight bids. Justin Timberlake, Wyclef Jean, Shakira, Beyonce, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Corinne Bailey Rae, Gnarls Barkley and the Police are among the top performers.

Lopez on ‘Naked’

George Lopez will make a guest appearance on Nickelodeon’s hit freshman comedy “The Naked Brothers Band.”

The funnyman will star in tomorrow’s episode, “Nat Is a Stand-Up Guy,” airing at 9 p.m.

According to Zap2it.com, he’ll appear as himself to mentor the boys.

“The Naked Brothers Band” is a lighthearted mockumentary about a fictional world-famous rock group made up of the Wolff siblings and their young friends. Whether it’s performing onstage, dealing with a crush or trying to find inspiration, the show gives a glimpse into the private and public lives of the young celebrities.

The show recently gave Nickelodeon its highest-rated premiere in the past seven years, drawing 4.7 million total viewers for its back-to-back episodes on Feb. 3, notes Zap2it.com. Both telecasts took the top spot in their respective time periods against all of television among young children and ‘tweens.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff and Web reports.

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