I just finished watching all of the episodes for the first season of Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown. I was really bummed when I found out that his earlier series No Reservations was cancelled, and I was a little sceptical about his move to CNN. For those of you not in the know, Anthony Bourdain is a chef and travel writer who has hosted a couple of shows on the Travel Channel. He is known for his snarky, blunt attitude, which is what makes his shows so awesome.
It turns out that getting a new show on CNN was exactly what he needed, they seem to be a lot more leniant with him than the Travel Channel was. Then again, the Travel Channel let him get away with a lot! While No Reservations focused on food, Parts Unknown is much more journalistic; which is probably why its on CNN. Each episode focuses on a different country or region that has a lot going on right now, but isn’t exactly a tourist hotspot. In one episode he travels to Tangier, Morocco to investigate the expat mecca where his favorite writer William Burroughs lived. Another episode had him going to Peru, where he and one of his business partners journeyed to find the perfect cocoa bean for their new fair trade chocalate brand. For me the most interesting episode focused on post Khaddafi Libya, where it seems that democracy has finally been achieved.
Overall Parts Unkown isn’t dramatically different from No Reservations, but I really like the current events emphasis the new show has. I really enjoyed the first season and am looking forward to the second. I highly recommend catching up on the reruns.