Television: The Eternal Flame of Cable

After 40 years, J.F.K.'s death still overshadows his life

It seems like a victory for John F. Kennedy's assassin--assassin(s), for you Warren Report agnostics--to define the President's life mainly by his death. But that's what will happen this month, as the 40th anniversary of his murder inspires the media to cash in--er, reflect on a turning point in history--with a raft of TV specials.

Yet, as the History Channel's ambitious, three-hour JFK: A Presidency Revealed (Nov. 16, 8 p.m. E.T.) reminds us, the morbidness is somehow appropriate. Throughout his presidency, J.F.K. was haunted by premature death: the death of his infant son Patrick, the threat of his own death...

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