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Critics Salute '24,' 'Bernie Mac'

July 22, 2002

The new Fox series "24" and "The Bernie Mac Show" were named program of the year and best comedy by the Television Critics Assn. at its annual awards ceremony Saturday in Pasadena, with another honor going to the latter's star, Bernie Mac, for best achievement in comedy.

The series "24," starring Kiefer Sutherland, drew modest ratings and almost wasn't renewed for a second year.

HBO, following an industry-leading haul in last week's Emmy nominations, also garnered honors for its drama "Six Feet Under" and miniseries "Band of Brothers." The remaining dramatic award went to Michael Chiklis, star of the FX crime drama "The Shield."

Additional awards went to PBS' "Frontline" as best news show and Nickelodeon's "SpongeBob SquarePants" for children's programming. Bill Cosby and "The Simpsons" were also recognized with career and heritage awards, the latter for its "impact on society and popular culture."

The group consists of more than 200 print critics and reporters in North America. Some major critics do not participate, including The Times' Howard Rosenberg and the Washington Post's Tom Shales.

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