5 p.m. Saturday, May 28
AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2)
So you think you have a hard time getting dates? Try being Typhoid Mary. Having a deadly and virulent disease will definitely put a dent in your swerve. Here, “Nova” dives into the life of a woman whose name has become synonymous with disease: Mary Mallon. An Irish immigrant, Mallon was the first person in America found to be a carrier of typhoid fever. While showing no outward symptoms of the disease herself, Mallon managed to personally infect thousands with the disease, repeatedly breaking pledges to never work in kitchens or restaurants again. She was finally quarantined on an island in the East River for the rest of her life. Delve into the quandary faced by doctors: better to save thousands, or to take away the liberty of one?
6 p.m. Saturday, May 28
AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2)
? Being a degenerate pack ratter, it often runs through my mind in the still, small hours of the night: What if some of this junk is actually worth something? That’s what makes watching PBS’ “Antiques Roadshow” so much fun. Packrats get validated (while overstuffed “collectors” often get deflated when they learn their prized possession is nothing but a copy). Even more fun is when they uncover that one-in-a-million: some saddle blanket that turns out to have been Geronimo’s favorite, some table with George Washington’s name scratched into the top. Here, Roadshow trots out a full hour of those one-in-a-million finds, including a $25 yard sale table worth $200,000, and a gold-handled sword presented to a general by the president.
8:30 p.m., Sunday, May 29
AETN (Comcast Ch. 3, Broadcast Ch. 2)
? Once the palatial home of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, since May 1864 Arlington National Cemetery has become the final resting place of thousands of American heroes, including the astronauts killed aboard the space shuttle Challenger, President John F. Kennedy, and 3,000 freed slaves. In addition to telling the stories of some of those buried there, National Geographic takes viewers inside the day-to-day workings of Arlington, offering a peek at everything from keeping the landscaping neat and tidy to the precise and rigidly choreographed rituals performed by those tasked with providing 24-hour guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers.