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What to Watch in February

Lisa Tipton
A chinstrap penguin. Photo: Courtesy of Elizabeth White/ ©BBC
A chinstrap penguin. Photo: Courtesy of Elizabeth White/ ©BBC

There's a huge amount of worthwhile TV out there nowadays, so it can be hard to choose what to watch. But who better to recommend shows than the person who programs them? Lisa Tipton, WTTW’s Head of Programming and Pledge, constructs the WTTW schedule by searching through offerings from many different sources which include the national PBS network, the BBC, and independent filmmakers to put together a varied and engaging broadcast schedule. Each month, she’ll recommend a few shows that she thinks you should watch.

You can also watch all of WTTW's programming via live stream 24/7 at

American Experience — Riveted: The History of Jeans

Monday, February 7 at 9:00 pm

Jeans are such a part of American life that it can be easy to overlook them. This American Experience gives jeans the full attention they deserve, providing a fascinating journey through disparate corners of pop culture and even politics, from slavery to the Wild West, hip hop to hippies. 

Nature — Penguins: Meet the Family

Wednesday, February 9 at 8:00 pm

Did you know there are eighteen different species of penguins, and that they can be found not only in Antartica but also the Galapagos, New Zealand, and South Africa? Meet them in all their oddities and cuteness in this new Nature

Frontline: American Reckoning

Tuesday, February 15 at 10:00 pm

Wharlest Jackson Sr., a local NAACP leader in Natchez, Mississippi, was killed in 1967. Frontline and Retro Report follow his family as they try to understand what happened more than fifty years ago and examine the history of white supremacy in Natchez, part of a larger initiative looking into cold case civil rights killings. 

Hear more about the investigation of old civil rights murders and a podcast that accompanies the documentary.

Around the World in 80 Days: Unpacking the Adventure

Saturday, February 26 at 7:00 pm 

Jules Verne published his novel Around the World in Eighty Days 150 years ago and it's still holding us all rapt, including in the new Masterpiece adaptation starring David Tennant. Go behind the scenes of that world-traveling show in this special, and then don't miss Endeavour: The Evolution immediately after, at 8:00 pm. As season eight of Endeavour approaches, take a look back on all that has happened in seven seasons and how the characters have changed, plus sneak behind the scenes.

You can find our recaps of both shows at, and WTTW Passport members can stream them any time.