Film & TV

Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations: Mozambique Is a Downer

If you recall, I groused through Tony's fluffier show, The Layover (which, by the way, was picked up for one more season), opting to reserve my critical eye for the more serious, eyeglass-wearing cousin, No Reservations. The season eight opener, which featured the African country of Mozambique, went beyond serious -- straight to depressing.

Some people may say it's pretty darn impossible to not make a depressing show in Mozambique. After all, this country's history includes centuries of slavery, followed by decades of colonialism under the thumb of Portugal. There was a period of communism, followed by a civil war, before the young country could begin to heal. But what we learn by travel is that there is beauty in every culture, despite (or maybe because of) the incredible hardships its people might have endured.

Not that there weren't moments of hope and enlightenment in the one-hour season opener that aired last evening. There was the requisite goat slaughter for a child's birthday celebration (which was tempered by a shot of their daily dinner menu -- rats on a skewer), as well an interesting moment when an older white couple mused about how they used to take family vacations in Mozambique before the country was ravaged by decades of war.

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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times. She has been featured on Cooking Channel's Eat Street and Food Network's Great Food Truck Race. She won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature about what it's like to wait tables.
Contact: Laine Doss