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July 4th TV schedule: Movies, TV marathons, more

James Cagney in the all-American film classic

James Cagney in the all-American film classic "Yankee Doodle Dandy." Photo Credit: Turner Classic Movies

Independence Day 2016 gives us a three-day weekend, with lots to watch for celebration and relaxation.


America, the Story of Us (8 a.m.-8 p.m., History) revisits the country’s entire history, from pilgrim settlements to revolution, westward expansion, the Civil War, both world wars and superpower status.

Patriots Rising (11 a.m.-2 p.m., repeats 2-5 p.m., AHC) highlights little-known people who aided the American Revolution. It’s followed on AHC by the 2005 docuseries “The Revolutionary War” (5-11 p.m.).

All-American films (7 a.m.-4 a.m., Turner Classic Movies) include Revolution dramas “The Howards of Virginia” (7:30 a.m.), “John Paul Jones” (9:30 a.m.), “The Scarlet Coat” (11:45 a.m.) and “The Devil’s Disciple” (1:30 a.m.), plus the declaration musical “1776” (1 a.m.). Also, James Stewart in “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” (3 p.m.) and Oscar winner James Cagney in “Yankee Doodle Dandy” (10:45 p.m.).

Patriotic vintage sitcoms (8:30-11 a.m., again 2:30-5 p.m., 8:30-11 p.m., Decades) have Sgt. Bilko joining the Navy on “The Phil Silvers Show,” Lucy visiting the White House on “The Lucy Show,” Lucy as a Revolutionary War statue on “I Love Lucy” and the Clampetts heading to Washington on “The Beverly Hillbillies.”


Howdy Doody (9 a.m.-3 p.m., Cozi) offers a retro treat with episodes of the legendary kids show, featuring the title puppet and Buffalo Bob Smith.

Comedy — “The Three Stooges” (6 a.m.-6 p.m., IFC), “Andy Griffith” (9 a.m.-8 p.m., TV Land), “Veep” (2:30-7:30 p.m., HBO2) and “Night Court” (5 p.m.-1 a.m., Laff).

Drama — “Empire” continues (through 5:05 p.m., TV One), “Twilight Zone” continues (through Tuesday 4 a.m., Syfy), “Wagon Train” (6 a.m.-midnight, Encore Westerns), “Lonesome Dove” (7:45 a.m.-2:05 p.m., Encore), “Homeland” (8 a.m.-8 p.m., Showtime) and “Blue Bloods” (9 a.m.-7 p.m., WGN).

Unscripted — “Undercover Boss” (5 a.m.-1 p.m., CNBC), “How It’s Made” (6 a.m.-8 p.m., Science), “American Ninja Warrior” (7 a.m.-8 p.m., Esquire), “The Carbonaro Effect” (11 a.m.-2 p.m., 4-7 p.m., truTV) and “Shark Tank” (1-11 p.m., CNBC).


Superhero flicks (7 a.m.-2 a.m., FX) include “X-Men: The Last Stand,” “The Wolverine” (9 a.m.), “Iron Man 3” (noon), both “The Amazing Spider-Man” movies (3-9 p.m.) and “Captain America: The First Avenger” (9 p.m., 11:30 p.m.).

Other flicks — The “Pink Panther” films from 1964 to 1993 (5 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Movies!), Christmas TV movies (10 a.m.-3:30 a.m., Centric; 1-11 p.m., HMM), “Jaws” and “Jaws 2” (1-6:30 p.m., again 6:30 p.m.-midnight, AMC), the “Back to the Future” trilogy (5 p.m.-12:30 a.m., Discovery Family) and Eddie Murphy’s first two “Beverly Hills Cop” movies (5:30-10 p.m., VH1 Classic).

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