A century of cuddly teddy bears is celebrated on "The Natural History of the Teddy Bear," Friday, Christmas Eve, at 8 p.m. on Discovery Channel.
The program focuses on the colorful history and endless variety of these huggable stuffed animals, which creators provide and collectors pursue.
The history goes back to 1902, Americans say, when Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt refused to shoot a pitiful black cub while on a hunting trip. A cartoon in The Washington Post entitled "Drawing the Line in Mississippi" led to Roosevelt's lending his name to a line of stuffed toy bears.
The Steiff factory in Germany is where classic teddy bears have been made, and collectors who have paid more than $100,000 for famous bears often pay $20,000 for an aged Steiff classic.
The program also visits Paul and Rosemary Volpp, whose extensive collection of teddy bears numbers in the thousands, one of which was an $85,000 anniversary gift from him to her.
* Sunday on TNT at 8 p.m., "One Love: The Bob Marley All-Star Tribute," a two-hour concert taped in Jamaica in which Rita and Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers are joined by Erykah Badu, Tracy Chapman, Jimmy Cliff, Sheryl Crow, Lauryn Hill, Queen Latifah, Sarah McLachlan, Chrissie Hynde and Busta Rhymes. Repeats at 10 p.m. and Wednesday at 11 p.m.
* Sunday on CNBC at 8 p.m., "Geo Scientists: Diving Deep," the feature segment of "National Geographic Explorer," explains the use of the one-man submersible. The craft can descend 2,000 feet, taking scientists to depths of the lightly explored ocean floor never before available to them. Repeats Saturday at 8 p.m.
* Sunday on the Learning Channel at 10 p.m., "Stephen King: Master of Macabre," a documentary about the writer of chilling novels from his home in Maine. The profile includes an unprecedented look at the past of this notoriously private author with a masterful flair for the frightening. Repeats at 1 a.m.
* Sunday on the Travel Channel at 10 p.m., the first of two one-hour specials on Geraldo Rivera's round-the-world trip in a 70-foot aluminum ketch. The journey, which began on July 30, 1997, is scheduled to reach the International Dateline on New Year's Eve, making Rivera, family and friends among the first to welcome the new century. The second half of the show is scheduled to air shortly after that celebration.
* Monday on the History Channel at 9 p.m., "The Twelve Apostles: History's Great Revolutionaries," a two-hour documentary featuring 17 experts from a variety of affiliations combining for an enlightening presentation hosted by Martin Sheen. Repeats at 1 a.m.
* Tuesday on Country Music Television at 9 p.m., Vince Gill hosts the "Big Ticket to Christmas," a one-hour all-video special featuring Christmas songs or holiday themes. Artists include Trisha Yearwood, Alan Jackson and Sammy Kershaw. Repeats: Thursday at 1 p.m. and Saturday at 9 p.m.
* Wednesday on Discovery Channel at 9 p.m., "The Science of Christmas," a lighthearted special in which scientists present some plausible possibilities to questions such as: How does Santa get it all done? What was the real Star of Bethlehem? and Why is Rudolph's nose so red? Repeats at midnight and Saturday, Christmas Day, at 3 p.m.
* Thursday on Bravo at 8 p.m., Natalie Cole joins opera stars Placido Domingo and Jose Carreras and the Vienna Symphony in "A Celebration of Christmas: Live From Vienna," a musical tribute full of holiday favorites from the Austria Centre. Repeats Saturday at 6:30.
* Friday on the History Channel at 8 p.m., "Ultimate Autos" airs four in a row: "Million Dollar Cars" at 8 p.m., "Rolls Royce" at 9, "Packard" at 10 and "Duesenberg" at 11. Repeats at midnight.
* Saturday on American Movie Classics at 5 p.m., "Around the World in 80 Days" starring David Niven, based on Jules Verne's novel about a globe-trotting Brit. This a feature of AMC's "movies of the month." Repeats at 12:30 a.m.