All Along The Watchtower

films . videos . television

Monday, March 27, 2006

A show with heart (and liver, and other internal organs)

Sometimes I feel like my more off-beat viewing choices are, well, on a different wavelength from some of the other participants here, readers and fellow bloggers alike. So be it. But in this case, I really, really want you to check something out. I've already posted about it several months ago at my personal blog, and I realized tonight I needed to mention it here.

That something is "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations," on the Travel Channel.

Did you watch any of the Fox sitcom "Kitchen Confidential"? It was based on Bourdain's book of the same name. The sitcom character "Jack Bourdain" is really supposed to be Tony Bourdain, except that the real-life Chef Bourdain is much funnier than any sitcom character. I first found out about him on his Food Network show, "A Cook's Tour." "No Reservations" is basically the same show, only with an hour-long time slot and a little more non-food content (and a parental advisory!). Bourdain travels the world in search of exotic cuisines and delicacies, smoking like a chimney, mocking himself, mocking the process of making a TV show, and mocking everything else, and downing things like cobra hearts and duck feet without a second thought. Actually, he had second thoughts about the duck feet -- not because of the duck feet themselves but because he was a little too generous with the sinus-clearing Chinese mustard that came with them.

It's so droll and deadpan that you sometimes don't realize until later how much you've learned about another culture.

I noticed while writing this post that Food Network is still running reruns of "A Cook's Tour" in the wee hours of the morning, so those of you with TiVos should check it out as well.


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