Mark Your May Calendars: Sleeper Picks | CET Connect

Mark Your May Calendars: Sleeper Picks

Last Updated by Kellie May on

Each month, Public Media Connect (ThinkTV and CET) Program Director Jim Wiener puts together a list of sleeper picks – shows he thinks will be awesome even though they’re not making major headlines. Here’s what he suggests you catch in May.


Independent Lens

Monday, May 2, at 10pm on CET

Friday, May 6, at 10:30pm on ThinkTV16

“What did you do during the war?” Baby Boomers asked their parents, and may have heard of tales of action seen in the European or the Pacific Theatres, or posted far from everything in the Aleutians or South America, or working double shifts at home in a defense plant. Even DAYTON CODEBREAKERS was built on that premise as Debbie Anderson unraveled her father’s top secret work in Dayton cracking the German enigma code.

Here, INDEPENDENT LENS goes to the dark side with the sons of two Nazi war criminals, and how each deals with their inherited guilt. Screen Daily hailed this as “a layered examination of brutality, self-deception, guilt and the nature of justice.”


Janis Joplin: American Masters

Tuesday, May 3, at 8pm on CET and ThinkTV16

Wednesday, May 11, at 9pm on ThinkTV14


Jimi Hendrix: American Masters

Wednesday, May 18, at 9pm on ThinkTV14

You know who they are, but did you know (or remember) they died all of three days apart?


Prince Philip: the Plot to Make a King

Thursday, May 12, at 9pm on CET

We love our documentaries about the Royal Family, and the public attitude toward Queen Elizabeth has softened over the years since the death of Diana. But then there’s Elizabeth’s husband, Prince Philip. Warm and fuzzy was never his middle name, and the public never took to him like the Queen. Further, his marriage to Elizabeth embodied old world values among royals, namely that it was an arrangement between powerful families more than the product of a whirlwind romance.

It was still a tough sell for the public as Philip was foreign born and had sisters married to Germans with Nazi ties.  Elizabeth and Philip were engaged, though King George didn’t want it made official until his daughter turned 21. That gave Philip time to drop his Danish and Greek royal titles, become a British subject and adopt the surname from his mother’s family: Mountbatten.


Joan of Arc: God’s Warrior

Monday, May 16, at 9pm on ThinkTV16  

In an era when women weren’t allowed on the battlefield, Joan’s faith drove her transformation from an ordinary peasant to a legendary warrior and historical icon. Historian Dr. Helen Castor utilizes an original court manuscript from Joan’s trial to separate fact from fiction and uncover the true story of her life.


The Highwaymen: American Masters

Friday, May 27, at 9pm on CET

Country music had its own supergroup as Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash and Kris Kristofferson joined forces in 1985 and brought critical mass to the outlaw country sound. They released three albums and had three big singles with “Highwayman” hitting #1 on the country charts.

This features some vintage performances and interviews with those who worked with them.