July 2017 Sleeper Picks | ThinkTV

July 2017 Sleeper Picks

Last Updated by Kellie May on

Mark your calendars and clear off that DVR – we have some awesome programming coming your way in July! In addition to our ongoing programming like Big PacificGreat Yellowstone ThawGrantchesterTennison and more, we also have some great shows you might not have heard about. Here’s what Jim Weiner, our Chief Programming Officer, is watching this July:


Free to Rock

Tuesday, July 4, at 11pm on ThinkTV16

After the rousing music from the National Symphony Orchestra in A Capitol Fourth earlier on this 4th of July evening, enjoy this documentary about how rock and roll helped to end the Cold War.  

So the Beatles’ “Back in the USSR” was more than just a Beach Boys parody. It was an open acknowledgement that when it came to rock and roll, anything behind the Iron Curtain was really Nowheresville.  

For decades, the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe were beaming news into the Soviet Union, and also plenty of rock. This forbidden music inspired thousands of underground rock bands and millions of passionate fans. Narrated by Keifer Sutherland (a musician himself and playing on The Kate 6/29 on ThinkTV16), this includes interviews with Billy Joel, Mike Love, Jimmy Carter, Mikhail Gorbachev and plenty of then Soviet-era rock artists.


Wonderful World of Gordon Watson

Thursdays, July 6 through July 20, at 9 and 9:30 on CET

If you’ve seen the movie Beetlejuice, you’ll recall the character of Otho, the pretentious interior decorator employed by the new occupants of the house… still occupied by the ghosts of Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis.

Maybe the character of Otho was inspired by Gordon Watson.

Watson’s wonderful world involves him working for royalty and Britain’s uber- elite who need the new extension on their old estate decorated, and money is certainly no object.  So he’ll inspect the premises, visualize what’s needed, then scour the finest stores and auction houses for a few showcase items. Unlike Otho, Watson doesn’t believe in the paranormal or ultra-modern design. He’s just an old school kinda guy when it comes to finding those objects to accent that intimate little 40’ x 60’ study.


Mapp & Lucia

Sunday, July 9, from 2pm to 5pm on CET

Is a three-part series really considered binge watching? We’re not sure, but it’s going to be a great way to spend a hot afternoon. It’s mid-summer in the bucolic English town of Tilling and Miss Mapp is leasing her Queen Anne house to a woman known by her friends as Lucia. These two are both schemers and women of great self-importance, so they butt heads in a battle of words (sorry, a catfight in the fountain a la Joan Collins and Linda Evans would be very much beneath them).  Miranda Richardson and Anna Chancellor co-star.


Billy Connolly’s Tracks Across America

Mondays, July 10 through July 31, at 9pm on ThinkTV14

Scotland’s famed comedian/actor is no longer the easy rider who rode his chopper across America in a previous series. Now in his 70’s, he rides trains across country. Naturally he engages the locals, and who could possibly not enjoy talking to Connolly? If you like your travel with a bit of attitude, check out this four-part series.

And wouldn’t you love to see a travel series with the ever sedate Rick Steves paired up with Wild Billy? It would be a Saturday Night Live skit in the making.


Genius of George Boole

Tuesday, July 18, at 10pm on ThinkTV14


Counting from Infinity: Yitang Zhang and the Twin Prime Conjecture

Tuesday, July 25, at 10pm on ThinkTV14

Films have chronicled the lives of real life scientific genius. Russell Crowe played John Nash in A Beautiful Mind, Benedict Cumberbatch was Alan Turing in The Imitation Game, and Dev Patel played Srinivasa Ramanujan in The Man Who Knew Infinity. So if Hollywood needs a new vehicle for, say… Martin Freeman and BD Wong… here are two profiles of interest.

More than a century ago, George Boole’s work with symbolic algebra played a critical role in the design of digital computer circuits. Jeremy Irons, who played a mathematics professor in The Man Who Knew Infinity, narrates.

Yitang “Tom” Zhang made a huge breakthrough in number theory by solving the Twin Prime Conjecture (pairs of prime numbers that differ by two… like I’d have a clue as to what that means), and becoming an overnight celebrity.


River Valley Rhythms

Fridays, July 21 through August 4, at 9pm on CET

Two new CET local productions capture Cincinnati jazz groups in performance. On July 21st, it’s the Brian Newman Quintet. They’ve toured with Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett. Here they play the Gallagher Theater at Xavier University.

On July 28th, we feature the ‘Nati 6, which is made up of pianist/composer Dan Karlsber, bassist Jim Anderson, drummer Art Gore, saxophonist Brent Gallaher and Marc Fields on trombone.


Sunday Afternoon Sitdown with Seback

Sunday, July 23, on ThinkTV16

1pm: Sandwiches That You Will Like

2pm: A Few Good Pie Places

3pm: A Few Great Bakeries

4pm: Breakfast Special 2: Revenge of the Omelets   

Rick Seback’s travelogues are always fun, especially if they involve food. Rumors were rampant that his Hot Dog Program had vegetarians storm Tom’s Market in Yellow Springs to clean the Kahns off the shelves. Rick always makes these shows geographically diverse. You really can get great pie or a hearty breakfast throughout this great land of ours. But I used to kid him about that diversity as his excuse to travel to Alaska or Hawaii.

Years back, a clip of Sandwiches was shown at the PBS Annual Meeting right before lunch, and the moans and groans over the 5” high pastrami sandwiches at Katz’s Delicatessen in New York ushered in the concept of “food porn.” Enjoy the good eats!