National Geographic Channel

Killing Lincoln and becoming Booth: Jesse Johnson's time is here


Consumed by politics and rage, a young actor cut his hot career short ... and prolonged the darkest era in American history. That story is skillfully told in "Killing Lincoln," a cable movie Sunday, adapted from Bill O'Reilly's book. It stars Jesse Johnson, who has key things in common with the man he plays, John Wilkes Booth. Here's the story I sent to papers:

 

By MIKE HUGHES

Genius? Far from the Ivy League, you'll find it in redneck country


True genius, you know, doesn't alway have an Ivy League inflection, an Oxford attitude, a prep-school pedigree. You'll also find it among some beer-drinking self-described rednecks in Huntsville, Ala. Here's a story I sent to papers:

 

By MIKE HUGHES

It looks like fun, when the guys in
“Rocket City Rednecks” play their weekend games.

Reality TV discovers fresh turf with "American Gypsies"


Reality-TV has its best moments when it nudges us into worlds we've never known. Now cable does that twice this week.

On Thursday (July 19) will be "Great Lakes Warriors," visiting blunt, blue-collar guy working the tugboats of Lake Michigan. Before that, however, is "American Gypsies" tonight (Tuesday, July 17); it's chaotic, combative and, at times, kind of interesting. Here's the story I sent to papers:

 

By MIKE HUGHES

"Restrepo:" A strong, final project for Hetherington


Regular reporters (people like me) are in awe of war correspondents like Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger.

These guys plunge into the world's most dangerous places, emerging with results that are balanced, solid and deeply human. Their "Restrepo," following one unit in Afghanistan, was beautifully done.

Hetherington was killed last Wednesday in Libya. Tonight (Monday), the National Geographic Channel reruns "Restrepo," adding a tribute to him. Here's the story I sent to papers, from interviews last August: