TV: 'No Reservations' threatens to overstay its welcome - Tv

TV: 'No Reservations' threatens to overstay its welcome - Tv

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TV: 'No Reservations' threatens to overstay its welcome

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Posted: Monday, February 28, 2011 12:01 am

Anthony Bourdain embarks on a seventh season of "No Reservations" (9 p.m., Travel, TV-14). This year, the ever-opinionated Bourdain will concentrate on less-than-trendy destinations, including disaster areas in Haiti and former political hotspots such as Nicaragua and Cambodia. Along the way, he will squeeze in a visit to the American Ozarks.

Let's hope the change of scenery agrees with Bourdain. I couldn't help feeling he was treading water during his last season. He showed a lot of home movies and reminded us he wasn't always famous. His patented snark and his "I used to do heroin and that makes me cooler than Rachael Ray" routine has worn rather thin. Yeah, Tony, we get it. You liked the Ramones before anybody. You're beginning to sound a lot like the old bores you like to complain about. And that's kind of sad.

One troubling sign for season 7 is already on the horizon. Bourdain will be joined by actor Sean Penn when he visits Haiti.

•Can we learn from the events of a century ago? The hour-long "American Experience" (9 p.m., WHYY-TV 12) presentation "Triangle Fire" recalls the horrific fire that broke out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory on March 25, 1911. One-hundred-forty-six garment workers perished, most of them young girls, immigrants from Eastern Europe and Italy who had come to New York to pursue the American dream.

"Triangle" reminds us how New Yorkers responded to the tragedy by enacting some of the toughest workplace safety regulations in the country. It also places the fire in social and historical context. The Triangle factory had been a hotbed of union organizing and its workers had complained about the very safety hazards, including locked doors and inadequate egress, that would lead to so many horrible deaths.

We're also informed that Max Blanck and Isaac Harris, the founders and owners of Triangle, were themselves immigrants who had built up their fortune after arriving penniless in America.

Their vision of the American dream was a system that protected property owners from the demands of organized labor. Like many of the wealthy of their day, they saw the workers' demands for safer conditions, shorter hours and increased wages as an assault on their hard-earned fortune and nothing short of a socialist revolution that would destroy the American way of life.

•A self-involved New Yorker squabbles with her husband on "Bethenny Ever After" (10 p.m., Bravo, TV-14), an odious reality series that makes "Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood" seem like a paragon of sparkling wit.

•An accident blows a worker's secret on "House" (8 p.m., Fox, TV-14,V).

•The gang infiltrates Scales' lair on "The Cape" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

f-9•A bomber strikes city facilities on "The Chicago Code" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-14,V).

f-9•A hit squad targets a visiting former despot on "Hawaii Five-O" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14,V).

f-9•A question of pigment on "Harry's Law" (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

f-9•An imminent crisis draws Beckett and Castle together on "Castle" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).

f-9•Complications arise in the investigation of a shooting death on "The Closer" (10 p.m., TNT, r, TV-14).

Cult choice

Dudley Moore plays the sad sot in the 1981 comedy "Arthur" (8 p.m., TCM).

Series notes

Feelings stir on "How I Met Your Mother" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG) ... Sarah and Chuck plan a bank heist on "Chuck" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-PG) ... Snoop Dogg guest stars on "90210" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14) ... A birthday gift challenge on "Mad Love" (8:30 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... Alan passes for Charlie on "Two and a Half Men" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14,D) ... Billy Baldwin guest stars on "Gossip Girl" (9 p.m., CW, TV-14) ... A snowstorm brings added shifts and professional stress on "Mike & Molly" (9:30 p.m., CBS, TV-PG,D).

Late night

Fitz & The Tantrums perform on "Conan" (11 p.m., TBS) ... Michael Scheuer sits down on "The Colbert Report" (11:30 p.m., Comedy Central) ... Robin Williams and the Zac Brown Band are scheduled on "Late Show with David Letterman" (11:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jay Leno welcomes Christina Applegate and Michael Franti on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC) ... Owen Wilson and Aly Michalka appear on "Lopez Tonight" (Midnight, TBS) ... Bill Maher and Esperanza Spalding appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (Midnight, ABC) ... Topher Grace, Jim Gaffigan and Glasser chat on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (12:35 a.m., NBC) ... Craig Ferguson hosts Isaac Mizrahi and Patton Oswalt on "The Late Late Show" (12:37 a.m., CBS).

Kevin McDonough can be reached at

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