“The Human Family Tree”
Sunday 9pm, National Geographic Channel
No matter whether you believe in the process of evolution or that God created Adam and Eve, bottom line is we all come from the same place. Scientists generally agree that place is East Africa, “the cradle of humanity.” This special tries to put that theory into practice, by seeing just how far back we can trace specific lineages. DNA was taken from a couple hundred racially disparate residents of Queens, New York, and geneticists went to work trying to figure out how the various neighbors may be related, or if their ancestors possibly crossed paths way back in the day. It’s part of National Geographic’s Genographic Project, which seeks to chart the migratory history of the human race. And who better to narrate a special about the unseen connections between people than Mr. Six Degrees himself, Kevin Bacon?
“Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations”
Monday 10pm, Travel Channel
At this point, Anthony Bourdain is probably one of the best-known celebrity chefs in the country—possibly the world—thanks to his books, TV shows and speaking tours. He’s certainly charismatic, even if I think he occasionally lays on the attitude a bit too thickly to be believed. But his Emmy-nominated show is undeniably addictive. Bourdain travels all over the globe, immersing himself in the food culture of the various locales he visits. Sometimes that leads to some really fascinating, delicious-looking exotic food. Sometimes that means he ends up eating wildebeest anus. It’s a wild world out there, folks.
Monday 10:30pm, VH1
Perhaps humanity hasn’t really evolved all that much from our cavemen forebears. Earlier this year, VH1 unveiled the first season of “Tool Academy,” in which the douchiest of douchebags were brought on a reality show under the pretense of competing in the Mr. Awesome Pageant only to discover their pissed-off girlfriends were dragging them into public couples therapy. Somehow the whole thing ended up being heartwarming (ignoring a couple ’roid outs). Now we’re back for Season 2, and I’m concerned. The guys seem toolish enough, but they have a lot to live up to. I mean, are any of them going to show up with one girlfriend, ditch her for the longer-term girl he’d been secretly seeing the whole time, and then show up at the reunion after impregnating a third girl? The bar is high. Or, rather, low.