Trendsetters and jumpers

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“Pawn 90210” 
Wednesday 10pm, E!
Pawn-store shows are big right now, between “Hardcore Pawn” and “Pawn Stars.” E! never met a trend it didn’t want to cash in on, so this special follows three formerly rich Californians looking to liquidate their assets at the “Taj Mahal of pawn stores.” One is a divorcee and widower convinced by her healer that she must sell all of her personal belongings so that she can start a new, more fulfilling life. One is a spoiled trophy girlfriend whose split from her bankrolling boyfriend has left her with a limited cash flow. And one is actress Bai Ling, who tries to pawn a vintage necklace so that she can finance a film project she believes will show America that she is a real actress, and not just a crazy woman who flashes her nipples all over Los Angeles. (But Bai, we like your nipples!)
 
“Mel Brooks and Dick Cavett: Together Again” 
Friday 9pm, HBO
Mel Brooks is a comedy legend who has given us gems over his 50-year career, from The Producers to Blazing Saddles to Spaceballs. We can forgive him for recycling his own material over the last 15 years, because dude is EGOTing. (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony.) Dick Cavett is an actor, comedian, and television host whose career has frankly always left me baffled. He’s witty and urbane, and probably makes a great party guest, but somehow carved out a five-decade showbiz career with talk shows on seven different channels. That’s a lot of hustle. Here are two smart, funny people talking for an hour or so. You could do worse.
 
Casablanca 
Sunday 8pm, TCM
Turner Classic Movies takes a novel approach to commemorating the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks by inviting two first responders who were on the scenes that Tuesday morning to program the evening with some of their favorite American films. Patrick McNally, retired chief of operations for the New York City Fire Department, was on site when both of the towers fell, while Vernon Webb, retired supervisory special agent of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency, investigated the attack on the military institution. The films chosen do not have a direct link to the 9/11 tragedies, but instead resonate with McNally and Webb for personal or patriotic reasons. They include Casablanca at 8pm, the Henry Ford/Jack Lemmon Mister Roberts at 10pm, Sidney Poitier and Alan Ladd in All the Young Men at 12:15am, and John Wayne’s Red River at 2am.

 

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