If it's midsummer, it must be baseball: The All-Star Game on Fox brings the National and American leagues together, while HBO examines the not-always-happy life of slugger Mickey Mantle. CBS seeks a new sensation on "Rock Star: INXS," and "Harvey Birdman" takes flight again on Cartoon Network. Animal Planet offers silly pet gadgets, American Masters salutes filmmaker George Stevens and the timeless twosome of TV and golf tee it up.
amazing animal inventions
Sunday at 8 p.m. on Animal Planet
A hamster-powered car, horse tail lights and doggles (sunglasses for dogs) are just a few of the unusual inventions spotlighted in this special.
Comedian Debra Wilson shows off devices from wacky to practical: the Pet Doorbell, the Collar Cam (perfect for spying on your sheltie) and the Perfect Petter, a device shaped like a human hand that eliminates the need to constantly pet your pet.
THE DARK ART OF INTERROGATION
Sunday at 8 p.m. on History Channel
In the practice of interrogation, what is necessary and acceptable? How far should interrogators go to obtain information that could save lives?
This program looks at the ethics and morality of interrogation and coercive techniques, including those used during World War II and the Vietnam War and at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. It includes commentary from current and former interrogators from the U.S. military, CIA and other federal agencies as well as former victims of interrogation.
harvey birdman, attorney at law
Sunday at 12:15 a.m.
on Cartoon Network
The third-season premiere of the animated series finds Birdman still defending classic cartoon characters from various criminal accusations. (Now really, what evil deed did Fred Flintstone commit other than being dumbly dressed?) Creators Michael Ouweleen and Erik Richter begin the 13-episode run by having their superhero defend Wally Gator.
ROCK STAR: INXS
Monday at 9 p.m. on CBS
Most reality series revolve around a competition for love or money. "Rock Star," from "Survivor" creator Mark Burnett, offers something different: an opportunity to sing in a world-renowned band.
Cameras capture the action as 15 contestants, male and female, go through an intense 13-week audition process while sharing posh digs in Hollywood Hills, Calif. The series will air Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the summer.
murder in the hamptons
Monday at 9 p.m. on Lifetime
This film revisits the October 2001 bludgeoning of investment banker Ted Ammon, played by David Sutcliffe, in East Hampton, on New York's Long Island. Poppy Montgomery ("Without a Trace") stars as Ammon's estranged wife, Generosa, who inherits her husband's wealth and marries Danny Pelosi, her lover with a shady past. Media speculation swirls, and police fail to find Ammon's killer.
Then Generosa, dying of cancer, is offered immunity in exchange for details about Ammon's death, and the trail leads to Pelosi, played by Shawn Christian ("Summerland").
Wide angle Season iv:
beslan: siege of school No. 1
Tuesday at 9 p.m. on MPT; 10 on WETA
In the first program of its new season, this documentary series revisits the horrific attack at a Russian school in September 2004. The film includes video shot by the Chechnyan terrorists, whose three-day siege resulted in the deaths of more than 300 civilians.
Wednesday at 9 p.m. on HBO
Mickey Mantle was the baseball idol for a generation, a Hall of Famer who played for the storied New York Yankees and enjoyed multiple World Series wins. But off the playing field, Mantle battled alcoholism and was far from a role model as a family man.
Ten years after his death from liver cancer at age 63, this new documentary examines Mantle's life outside the spotlight, featuring interviews with family, friends and former teammates.
american masters -- George SteveNs: A Filmmaker's Journey
Wednesday at 9 p.m. on WETA; 10 on MPT
Academy Award-winner George Stevens directed the glamorous stars of his day, including Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Cary Grant, Alan Ladd, Elizabeth Taylor, Fred Astaire and Warren Beatty. This biographical tribute by Stevens's son George Jr. serves as a retrospective of Hollywood's golden years.
Friday at 8 p.m. on Sci-Fi
The ninth season of this series opens off with a new SG-1 team leader, Lt. Col Cameron Mitchell, played by Ben Browder. The show's star, Richard Dean Anderson, has scaled back his involvement but appears in the first two episodes.
Following at 9 and 10 p.m respectively are "Stargate Atlantis" and "Battlestar Galactica," both beginning their second seasons.
Friday at 8 p.m. on TLC
This new six-part reality series about real estate agents who work for the very wealthy begins by focusing on Miami agent Carlos Justo. The busy Justo is launching a new company, breaking in an assistant, and trying to close a $12 million contract with a countess, all the while fending off rival agents known as The Jills (Jill Eber and Jill Hertzberg).
JOHN WAYNE WEEKEND
Saturday at 6:15 a.m. on AMC
Two of John Wayne's dramas get their first television showings in years during a two-day tribute to the Duke that kicks off with "Angel and the Badman" at 6:15 a.m.
"Island in the Sky" airs at 8 p.m., and "The High and the Mighty" is set for July 17 at 8 p.m. Both films will debut on DVD on Aug. 2.
Other films scheduled include "Rio Grande" at 3 p.m. and "Rio Bravo" at 5 p.m. on Saturday. The marathon ends with "Hellfighters" on July 17 at 11 p.m.