Politics is in the air, with a look at key presidential decisions on Discovery, a chronicle of campaigning on HBO, MTV urging viewers to "Choose or Lose," and PBS's close-up of both candidates. Kirstie Alley turns up on CBS as a wife with a secret, and the cast of "Growing Pains" reunites on ABC. Another version of "Frankenstein" airs on USA, while Bravo seeks a more gorgeous male. Denis Leary's "Rescue Me," critiqued by local firefighters, wraps its season and P.D. James talks about PBS's "Death in Holy Orders."

WHILE I WAS GONE

Sunday at 9 p.m. on CBS

Kirstie Alley stars in this TV adaptation of Sue Miller's bestseller.

Alley plays Jo Beckett, a minister's wife who is vaguely dissatisfied with her life, despite a thriving veterinary practice, a loving husband and a lovely home outside of Boston.

When a now-married male acquaintance from Jo's past, played by Peter Horton, turns up, he invites her to lunch at an upscale hotel. Jo assumes it signals the start of a secret affair. Instead he reveals a secret from her past that could destroy her life.

Bill Smitrovich plays Jo's husband.

PBS KIDS GO!

Weekdays on PBS

On Monday, PBS launches its block for children in early elementary school with two new shows.

"Postcards From Buster," a half-hour spinoff from "Arthur," will blend animation and live-action video of Buster's travels in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico. "Buster" airs weekdays at 6 a.m. on MPT and at 3:30 p.m. on WETA.

"Maya & Miguel" will feature the animated escapades of 10-year-old twins, their family and friends, and bilingual pet parrot. "Maya & Miguel" will air weekdays at 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. on WETA; and at 4:30 p.m. on MPT.

FRONTLINE: THE CHOICE 2004

Tuesday at 9 p.m. on PBS

With Election Day mere weeks away, this program offers a collection of defining moments in the lives of the presidential candidates.

The show includes more than 50 interviews with the families, friends, colleagues and political adversaries of President Bush and Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.), as well as archival footage of both.

Presidential debate

Wednesday at 9 p.m. on most networks

They'll meet to discuss the issues one last time: President Bush and Sen. John F. Kerry will participate in the the third and final presidential debate of the 2004 campaign, airing live from Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz.

The 90-minute event will air on PBS and the major broadcast networks. Bob Schieffer, of CBS's "Face the Nation" will be the moderator.

The format chosen for this last debate requires the candidates to sit at a table with the moderator, who will introduce and change the topics.

growing pains:

return of the seavers

Saturday at 8 p.m. on ABC

Did you miss them? If it seems like only yesterday that Alan Thicke and Joanna Kerns presided over their active brood in prime time, you'll want to catch up with the Seaver clan in this original TV movie.

Jason, played by Thicke, and wife Maggie (Kerns) are thrilled to have the nest empty at last.

The house is on the market and they're set to travel the world and fully enjoy their retirement.

But the Seaver offspring have other ideas. They have another agenda in mind and they're pulling for their parents stay put in the family home they know so well.

Kirk Cameron, Brandon Douglas, Tracey Gold, Ashley Johnson, Jeremy Miller and Chelsea Nobel complete the cast.