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OF, BY AND FOR THE CHILDREN

Disney's 'Darkwing Duck' enlists a super fowl in fight against crime; ABC telecasts Easter Parade

March 31, 1991|LAUREN LIPTON | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Faster than a speeding bullet! Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a ... no, wait, it is a bird!

Drake Mallard, star of the Disney Channel's new animated series Darkwing Duck, is no ordinary water fowl. He lives a seemingly mild-mannered existence in the suburbs of St. Canard with his adopted daughter, Gosalyn and friend Honker Muddlefoot (fans of Disney's "Ducktales" might recognize another friend, Launchpad McQuack).

But underneath his feathered exterior beats the heart of Darkwing Duck--Drake's costumed, secret alter ego. In his fight against crime, Darkwing Duck finds himself in situations that are sometimes funny and sometimes dangerous--but he never quacks under pressure!

"Darkwing Duck , " sneak preview: Sunday 5:30-6 p.m.; regular slot Saturdays and Sundays 8:30-9 a.m. (beginning April 6) , the Disney Channel. For all ages.

MORE KIDS SHOWS

Easter spirit springs forth in the Walt Disney World Happy Easter Parade (Sunday 11 a.m.-noon ABC), featuring favorite Disney characters, a float filled with 101 Dalmatian puppies and a tribute to the troops in the Gulf. For all ages.

David Faustino ("Married . . . With Children") stars with Cleavon Little and Darren McGavin in the made-for-cable movie "Perfect Harmony" (Sunday 7-9 p.m. and Saturday 9-11 p.m. the Disney Channel), about racism in a Southern prep school in the late 1950s. For ages 10 and up.

"Hearts of Stone" is a short film in which two rival Los Angeles gang members play Russian roulette to settle a territory dispute--and discover that they have more in common than they had ever realized. The film airs at 10 p.m.--the last third of The Showtime 30-Minute Movie Trilogy (Sunday 9-10:30 p.m.). For ages 16 and up.

The KCET-produced documentary Quest for Education (Sunday 10-11 p.m. KCET) compares education in the Unites States with Japan's system by following two junior high school students in both countries. Edward James Olmos narrates. For ages 13 and up.

Veteran newsman Fred Friendly hosts America's Schools: Who Gives a Damn? (Monday and Tuesday 10-11 p.m. KCET), a two-part program that discusses the nation's education crisis and what to do about it. Panelists include New Jersey Gov. Jim Florio, 1989 Teacher of the Year Mary Bicouvaris and Bill Moyers. For parents.

In the new CBS Schoolbreak Special "Abby My Love" (Tuesday 3-4 p.m. CBS), a 16-year-old girl who lives in the seemingly perfect suburban family must cope with long-term sexual abuse by her father. For 12- to 18-year-olds.

Move over, Lassie, and make way for Harry the Dirty Dog (Tuesday 5:30-6 p.m. and Friday 2-2:30 p.m. Nickelodeon), a live-action special about a bedraggled, opinionated canine who weasels his way into the hearts of an American family. It's based on the classic book series of the 1950s. For all ages.

Dudley Moore and Maestro Sir Georg Solti host "Orchestra!," a new biweekly music series that looks at the exciting elements of an orchestra, section by section. This week's episode covers the percussion instruments. The series helps kick off Showtime's FamilyHour (Tuesdays 7-8 p.m.), which will feature programs families can watch together (all are close-captioned). For all ages.

Lakers sportscaster Chick Hearn lends his vocal talents to the All New Adventures of Sport Goofy (Tuesday 8-8:50 p.m. the Disney Channel), a compilation of sports-related cartoons featuring Disney's goofiest character. Hearn announces the play-by-play on the new "Soccermania," the first Goofy cartoon since 1965. For all ages.

"Navajo Moon," a Young People's Special (Saturday 6-6:30 a.m. KNBC), looks at the history of the Native American tribe and how it is faring in the modern world through the eyes of three Navajo children. For 6- to 12-year-olds.

Charlie Sheen, Leslie Caron and Juliette Caton star in the TV debut of the 1989 film Courage Mountain (Saturday 7-9 p.m. the Disney Channel), a continuation of the "Heidi" tale, set during World War I. For 11- to 17-year-olds.

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