Dan Jansen is a great guy, a great athlete and a great example.
The movie based on his life, however, isn't so great."A Brother's Promise: The Dan Jansen Story" (8 p.m., Ch. 2) isn't a bad movie. But it takes an uplifting story and makes it pretty mundane.
That story, of course, is familiar. Young Danny Jansen forming a strong bond with his older sister, Jane. Jane (Jayne Brook of "Chicago Hope") growing up and developing leukemia. Her death during the 1988 Winter Olympics, and the distraught Dan (Matt Keesler) failing on ice.
More troubles at the 1992 Games. Eventual triumph at the 1994 Games.
And the movie treats all of this just that tiredly. Not to mention the mild soap opera-ish aspects of Dan's love life.
This should have been a good movie. It's not bad, but it's not particulary good, either.
GREAT NEWS: Well, we're finally going to find out how that "Sliders" cliffhanger will be resolved.
The promising series, which had a tryout run last spring on Fox, has been on hiatus ever since. But the Sliders will start hopping from alternate dimension to alternate dimension in a two-hour season premiere on Friday, March 1 at 7 p.m. (One-hour episodes begin airing Fridays at 7 p.m. the following week.)
Fans of the show may recall that Quinn (Jerry O'Connell) had been shot and seriously wounded in the cliffhanger. Not to give anything away, but O'Connell recently appeared before critics to hype the upcoming return of the show.
CBS REVAMPS SITCOM SCHEDULE: The Big Eye is about to add one new sitcom, return another from hiatus, send two on hiatus and move still another.
"Good Company," a promising new comedy set in an advertising agency, joins the schedule on Monday, March 4, at 8:30 p.m.
("High Society," which currently occupies that time slot, will have completed its run for the year - and is pretty iffy for a return in the fall.)
"The Bonnie Hunt Show," which did very poorly in the ratings when it aired briefly on Fridays last fall, returns on Sunday, March 10, at 7:30 p.m.
"Almost Perfect," which is vacating that Sunday time slot, is moving to Mondays at 7:30 p.m. on March 4.
("Can't Hurry Love," which currently occupies the Monday at 7:30 p.m. time slot, will have completed its run for the year - and is a strong candidate to return in the fall.)
ABC SHUFFLES SITCOM SCHEDULE: There's great news, bad news, more bad news, and a bit of a question mark upcoming from ABC's schedule.
The great news is that "Muppets Tonight!" joins the schedule on Friday, March 8, at 7:30 p.m. Can't wait.
The bad news and more bad news is that a pair of exceptionally lame new sitcoms are also coming to ABC. "Buddies," a weak new buddy comedy, previews Tuesday, March 5, at 8:30 p.m. before moving to Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. a day later.
Then there's the even lamer "The Faculty," an awful new comedy headlined by Meredith Baxter, debuting Wednesday, March 13, at 7:30 p.m.
The unknown is "Aliens in the Family," which premieres Friday, March 8, at 8 p.m. It's the story of a human single father who marries an alien single mother - whose baby just happens to be the emperor of the universe. Really. It's a mixture of real people and Muppet-created animatronics.
ABC is sending four shows - "Boy Meets World, "Drew Carey," "Step by Step" and "The Naked Truth" - on hiatus, and the future of all three is uncertain.
BIG, MEANINGLESS NEWS: The latest news from the world of network TV - which means that it's pretty meaningless to most of us - is that the four major networks have decided to extend the so-called "regular season" through the end of the May sweeps.
Traditionally, the regular season runs 30 weeks and ends in April, at which time various people who write about TV declare a winner in the ratings. Then come the May sweeps, when the networks trot out all kinds of new programming to hype the numbers.
What does this mean to viewers? Nothing. We're not going to get any more new programs or specials than we already have.
It just means that people like your local television editor will be writing about who won the 1995-96 regular season a month later.
(And, for the record, we could write about that right now. NBC will be first, ABC second, CBS third and Fox fourth in the traditional, household ratings. Among viewers 18-49, Fox will replace CBS in the third position.)