What to watch: Covering the JFK assassination anniversary

Friday marks the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination. Television will honor the former president with various special programming. We have a guide for figuring out what to watch and when.

JFK Assassination anniversary

On Nov. 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy and his wife, Jackie, rode happily along in the back of a car in a parade through Dallas. That was until one man chose to end the life of our most glamorous president. There are dozens of conspiracy theories behind the assassination and thousands of people who believe JFK didn’t die that day but went into hiding after being severely brain damaged. Putting the conspiracies aside, President Kennedy’s presidency, although short, has survived as a legacy of change and hope for a better tomorrow that never came.

Killing Kennedy: A first look in photos >>

Spend your Thursday and Friday getting to know the man, his family and his presidency and take time to look back on one of America’s saddest days. We’re here with the best television programming to make that happen.


JFK: The Lost Tapes: Previously unreleased recordings from the Dallas Police responding to the assassination and from Air Force One on the day of the assassination. (Discovery Channel, 7/6c)

The Lost Kennedy Home Movies: From sailing on the Atlantic to hanging around the house, revisit the Kennedy home movies featuring the president and his siblings as children, as well as adults. You’ll no doubt recognize plenty of familiar footage, but it’s still fun to watch. (H2, 8/7c)

The Assassination of President Kennedy: An in-depth look at the assassination as part of a 10-part documentary on the sixties, produced by Tom Hanks. (CNN, 9/8c)

From John to Jackie O. — Baby names brought to you by the Kennedys >>


The Kennedys: A marathon of the most recent miniseries about the Kennedy family, starring Katie Holmes and Greg Kinnear. (Reelz, 10 a.m./9 a.m. central)

Killing Kennedy: Based on the book by Bill O’Reilly and telling the story of the assassination with an in-depth look at Lee Harvey Oswald and his family as well. Features Rob Lowe as a strikingly convincing JFK. (National Geographic, 4/3c)

JFK: The Smoking Gun: Think we’ve long since reached the bottom of the assassination theories? Think again. (Reelz, 6/5c)

NBC Nightly News: Anchored from Dallas by Brian Williams (NBC, 6:30/5:30c)

CBS Evening News: Live from Dallas. Scott Pelley interviews a former Secret Service agent who was working the motorcade during the assassination. (CBS, 6:30/5:30c)

Where were you: The day JFK died: Brand-new special hosted by Tom Brokaw (NBC, 9/8c)

Nightline: Interviews with family and friends of people who were in Dallas on the fateful day. (ABC, 12:35/11:35c)

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More history on Friday

Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis: A look at one of the president’s most important decisions and the politics behind it. (Military Channel, 8/7c)

The Kennedy Brothers: A Hardball Documentary: Hosted by Chris Matthews, a rerun of a previous look at life with and the love between John and Bobby Kennedy. (MSNBC, 8/7c)

JFK: In his own words: A documentary on the president, featuring rarely seen film and audio tapes. Originally from 1988. (HBO, 9/8c)

Image courtesy of WENN


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