PBS – already known for its coverage of racial issues – has set a fresh emphasis for this month.
On Wednesday (June 3), it announced a flurry of new shows and reruns, including a play (“Twilight Los Angeles: 1992, shown here) and many documentaries. That requires cooperation, because some will be on days (Thursdays through Saturdays) when stations have their own line-ups. The plan includes:
– Thursday (June 4): “The Talk – Race in America,” 9 p.m. It’s a 2017 documentary about black families telling their children how to react if stopped by police.
– Friday: “Race Matters: America in Crisis,” a new special from the “PBS Newshour” team, at 9 p.m.; then a rerun of “Frontline: Policing the Police” at 10.
– Monday (June 8): A 10 p.m. rerun of “Twilight: Los Angeles 1982,” Anna Deavere Smith’s acclaimed, one-woman play about the 1992 Los Angeles riots that followed the verdict in the Rodney King case.
– June 15 : “America in Black and Blue 2020,” at 9 p.m. It follows up on a 2016 special, with new reports from Minneapolis, Georgia, New York abnd elsewhere.
– Also, stations are being given an assortment of past films they could rerun.
Ones from Henry Louis Gates are “The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross,” “Reconstruction: America After the Civil War” and “Black America Since MLK: And Still I Rise.” From Stanley Nelson is “The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution.”
Others, from “Independent Lens” and elsewhere, include profiles of James Baldwin and John Lewis, plus looks at community efforts in Baltimore, Chicago and beyond. And at 3:30 p.m. ET June 9, PBS Kids will host a YouTube virtual event, with parents, teachers and child-development experts.