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What to Watch in November

Lisa Tipton
Chicago AIDS activist Danny Sotomayor speaks at a microphone at a rally
Chicago AIDS activist Danny Sotomayor speaks at a rally. Credit: Lisa Howe-Ebright, photographer

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.

Find all the ways to watch WTTW here. Many of the below shows are available to stream or will be once they premiere.

Chicago Stories 

Fridays at 8:00 pm

There's an endless amount of fascinating people, places, and things that came from Chicago, and we continue to explore a few of them in the last few Chicago Stories of the season. The Outrage of Danny Sotomay (November 3) looks back at the AIDS crisis and a fiery local activist who fought to bring attention to the disease while dying of it. The Rise and Fall of the Mail Order Giants (November 10) profiles Sears, Marshall Field's, and other companies that transformed the country from Chicago. And then November 17 brings an encore of the story which started this season: Race to Reverse the River. We have an interview with the producers of that documentary.

Find even more stories at 


Tuesday, November 21 at 7:00 pm 

Tennis champion Billie Jean King brings together other groundbreaking women athletes from Naomi Osaka to Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Chloe Kim to Nancy Lieberman to celebrate their achievements in this inspiring program.

Frontline: 20 Days in Mariupol 

Tuesday, November 21 at 9:00 pm

This harrowing documentary from Frontline and the Associated Press shows twenty days that filmmaker Mstyslav Chernov spent in the Russian-besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol. It has been selected as Ukraine's entry for this year's Academy Awards.

Check back at for an interview with Chernov later this month. 



Hotel PortofinoWorld on Fire, and Annika all wrap up their second seasons on November 19, while Little Bird's finale is the following Sunday, November 26. Then there are some specials focused on those and other dramas: Farewell Doc Martin on Saturday, November 25 at 8:00 pmHotel Portofino: Touring Portofino on November 26 at 7:00 pm; and All Creatures Great and Small: Christmas in the Dales on November 26 at 8:30 pm.

A Lineup of Favorites

Tuesday, November 28

Tuesday, November 28 is Giving Tuesday, and we've got some favorite shows to thank our members and viewers for their contributions to WTTW. There's Finding Your Roots featuring Carol Burnett at 7:00 pm, followed by the Chicago Stories episode Angels Too Soon: The School Fire of '58 and the most popular American Experience of the year, Ruthless: Monopoly's Secret History. And we've got a marathon of Rick Steves' Europe the day before, with Rick Steves himself live in our studio!