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'Scandal,' 'Portlandia' marathons airing before season premieres

Kerry Washington at the Academy of Television Art

Kerry Washington at the Academy of Television Art and Sciences' event in North Hollywood, Calif. (May 16, 2013) Credit: AP

Off the Wall, we're needed.

RETURNING SHOW MARATHONS Before new seasons start, previous episodes repeat for drama faves. "Scandal" (Saturday 11 a.m.-9 p.m. on BET, before its Thursday 10 p.m. return on ABC/7), "Rizzoli & Isles" (Tuesday 9 a.m.-9 p.m., leading into a 9 p.m. TNT return ) and "Vikings" (Wednesday 3 p.m.-midnight, before Thursday's 10 p.m. season 2 start on History). Both previous seasons of the continued soap "Dallas" (Sunday 8 p.m.- Monday 9 p.m., TNT) lead into 9 p.m.'s season 3 start. Comedy marathons revisit "Legit" (Saturday night midnight-5 a.m. on FX, before Wednesday's 10 p.m. season 2 start on FXX) and "Portlandia" (Sunday 9-11:30 a.m., before Thursday's 10 p.m. season 4 start on IFC). The "Dallas" marathon features social media goodies with additional original content online at

'ROCKY' + LONG ISLAND We've seen those TV ads for the new Broadway musical, but c'mon -- Rocky and Adrian as youngish cuties? There's only one real deal: Sylvester Stallone's 1976 best picture winner "Rocky" (Saturday night at 9, encores at 12:45 a.m., WNET/13), co-starring Talia Shire and Burgess Meredith. It's followed by a moving local portrait -- the 2006 feature "Diggers" (Saturday night at 11:05, encores 2:50 a.m., Ch. 13), about young clamdiggers whose East End family legacy threatens to slip away. The '70s-set tale is written by West Islip's Ken Marino ("Party Down"), who stars alongside Paul Rudd, Ron Eldard, Lauren Ambrose, Josh Hamilton, Sarah Paulson and Maura Tierney. Trailer at

AWARDS ALERT Oprah Winfrey pays tribute to Nelson Mandela, as Anthony Anderson hosts the 45th annual "NAACP Image Awards" (9-11 Saturday night, encores midnight, TV One). Other honors go to Forest Whitaker and "Sons of Anarchy"/"Glee" director Paris Barclay. Presenters include Idris Elba, Archie Panjabi, Regina Hall, Tyler Perry, Vin Diesel, Ed Asner and Ben Vereen. Red carpet preshow starts at 8 p.m. More at

'MRS. PEEL, WE'RE NEEDED' Forget costumed superheroes. Vintage tube fans know the best entertainment titled "The Avengers" (Monday-Friday at 1 p.m., Cozi TV) can be found in the British '60s series starring Patrick Macnee and Diana Rigg as secret agents. It's launching this week in Cozi's afternoon lineup with the first color (or should we say colour?) episodes. Here's hoping they run Rigg's stylish black-and-white first season, too. Visit the meaty Web ring at

UNSCRIPTED ARRIVALS Is there really an entire series to be found in arm wrestling? "Game of Arms" (Tuesday at 10 p.m., AMC) looks at five competitive clubs, including one in New York City, to find out. Other newbies -- for informational purposes only, no endorsement implied -- include the docusoap "The Private Lives of Nashville Wives" (Monday at 10 p.m., TNT), the clan war in "Clash of the Ozarks" (Tuesday at 10 p.m., Discovery), the biker prep of "Road to Sturgis" (Wednesday at 8 p.m., Destination America), and true crime's "House of Horrors: Kidnapped" (Wednesday at 10 p.m., ID).

ROCK DOCS Steve Stoute's book about the music and the cultural movement comes to life in the new four-part docuseries "The Tanning of America: One Nation Under Hip Hop" (Monday-Thursday at 11 p.m., VH1). See how the sound from the Bronx wove its way into the fabric of American life: Jewish Harvard students start The Source magazine, Tommy Hilfiger apes Harlem's baggy jeans, Mariah Carey makes music with O.D.B. -- and then there's Eminem. Telling all: Diddy, Dr. Dre, Russell Simmons, Rev. Run, Fab 5 Freddy, and many more. Lots more at


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