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Screens: TV the week of November 23

VicThe Shield (10 p.m. Tuesday, FX) -- Seven years of Machiavellian intrigue and .38-caliber payback finally come to an end when The Shield wraps with a special 90-minute episode. This renegade police drama has already run through so many atocities -- cops murdering cops, cops murdering drug dealers, cops grilling drug dealers' faces on barbecues, cops strangling kittens, cops running illegal vending machines -- that it's hard to know what grotesque mockery of Western morality the show can come up with for its grand climax. Maybe the Treasury Department will bail out Vic Mackey and the Barn?

24: Redemption (8 p.m. Sunday, Fox) -- In this TV movie intended to bridge the gap between 24's last season and the new one that kicks off in January, trusty agent Jack Bauer has gone to Africa for a little peace and quiet. And, wouldn't you know it, a military coup erupts! That Jack just has the worst luck.

A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All (10 p.m. Sunday, Comedy Central) -- The season's first Christmas special promises to be its most bizarre: Mock-right-wing pundit Stephen Colbert hanging out with Toby Keith, Willie Nelson and Elvis Costello? And singing?

The Rape of Europa (9 p.m. Monday, WPBT-PBS 2) -- World War II's last battle is still being waged. This documentary -- based on the Lynn H. Nicholas book of the same name -- chronicles the struggle over the ownership of artworks pillaged by the Nazis, still going strong 60 years later.

Valkyrie: The Plot to Kill Hitler (10 p.m. Monday, History Channel) -- When Tom Cruise's film about a German army conspiracy to assassinate Hitler comes out next month, for better or for worse, everybody's going to be talking about it. This documentary about the 1944 plot -- which failed when a briefcase carrying a bomb was accidentally moved to the other side of a room where Hitler was holding forth -- is your chance to get a head start on the argument.

The Hugo Chavez Show (9 p.m. Tuesday, WPBT-PBS 2) -- If Keith Olbermann doesn't satisfy your appetite for televised left-wing megalomania, perhaps this Frontline documentary on Venezuelan caudillo Hugo Chavez's show Alo Presidente will do the trick. Certainly Chavez has bigger toys to play with on-air; once, in the middle of the show, he sent 10 battalions of the Venezuelan army to the border with Colombia; on another episode, he pulled Venezuela out of the IMF. Now that's reality TV.

Note: Days and times for PBS shows are for the Miami area, and may differ elsewhere.


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