Mai’s America (August 6; 10 to 11:30 p.m.; Channel 13) follows a Vietnamese teenager from Hanoi, where her father is a businessman, to Meridian, Mississippi, as a high-school exchange student who will spend her senior year among self-described rednecks who seem to respond to her curiosity about everything with a lack of interest in anything. But then there’s the history teacher. And after that, a transvestite nightclub performer. And finally, not only some sympathetic African-Americans, but an expatriate community of Vietnamese who were on the American side in the war. Marlo Poras films it all for P.O.V.
Liberty Stands Still (August 10; 10 to 11:45 p.m.; Cinemax) asks us to believe that Linda Fiorentino is the last in a family line of gun manufacturers and weapons dealers; that she would actually marry Oliver Platt, who bribes congressmen and judges to keep the bullets flying; that she would be caught on the street, outside her limo or the theater, long enough for Wesley Snipes to shackle her to a hot-dog stand he’s wired with a bomb, and call upon her to repent her part in the gun traffic that kills innocent bystanders like his daughter; and that we would be moved by all this noise to rethink our position on the Second Amendment. Redeemed by the always mesmerizing Fiorentino.
The Sid Caesar Collection (August 11; 8 to 10 p.m.; Channel 13) features some of the best comedy sketches from Your Show of Shows, plus interviews with that remarkable writing team (Woody Allen, Mel Brooks, Larry Gelbart, Danny Simon, Neil Simon, Mel Tolkin), plus such spear-carriers as Carl Reiner, Howard Morris, and Nanette Fabray.
First Shot (August 11; 8 to 10 p.m.; TBS) is the third TBS movie in which Gregory Harrison is the president of the United States and bad people want to do bad things to him and/or members of his family, although they will be foiled by the Secret Service. Mariel Hemingway is the Secret Service agent who derring-does the foiling. The same old militia is back again, this time kidnapping Mariel’s husband, and it also bombs the officer’s club at an Army base, and quite a lot of clap is trapped.