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The Globe and Mail

TV: Five shows worth watching tonight: March 1

A select viewing guide for Friday, March 1

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FRIDAY MARCH 1 REALITY The Real Housewives of Vancouver (Slice, 7 p.m.) Recently returned for its second season, this Canadian entry in the ever-expanding Real Housewives TV franchise (seven shows and counting) is little more than a video diary following several Vancouver doyennes forever in search of some new thrill to inject excitement into their otherwise meaningless rich-woman existences. In tonight’s show, Robin is deeply disappointed when her plans of singing at a local event are dashed, but Amanda and Ioulia have a grand old time when they volunteer as models at a bikini fashion show. Call it lifestyles of the rich and pointless.

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REALITY Kitchen Nightmares (Fox, Global, 8 p.m.) Where Gordon Ramsay goes, viewers follow. Fox has tested this reality series wherein the mad Brit chef attempts to turn around foundering restaurants on nearly every night of the week and the show always pulls in solid U.S. ratings. Tonight’s new episode is the first half of a two-parter and takes Gordo into the rural climes of Norwalk, Ohio, to visit a restaurant called The Mill Street Bistro. Although the eatery claims to serve “farm-to-table” fare, the meals are tasteless and overpriced to boot. The owner, Joe, is stubborn and boasts an ego that even rivals Ramsay. Watch the fun when irresistible force meets immovable object.

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DRAMA Touch (Fox, Global, 9 p.m.) Just back for its second season, this supernatural drama starring ex-24 fixture Kiefer Sutherland as Martin, the widower father of a mute lad with astounding mental abilities requires strict commitment viewing. Miss one episode and the average person will be wildly confused as to the events unfolding onscreen. The premise became even more confounding recently with the addition of Maria Bello as Lucy, a single mom with her own gifted child. In tonight’s new outing, Martin and Lucy are scrambling to find their kids who have been kidnapped by some nefarious (read: government) agency. Meanwhile, in Mexico, another sinister plot is unfolding with a priest who may not really be a priest. Are we confused yet?

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NEWS 20/20 (ABC, CHCH, 10 p.m.) How did it take so long for the newsmagazines to seize upon the Oscar Pistorius story? The South African athlete was a beloved global figure after making history as the first double-leg amputee to compete in the Olympic Games. The media even bestowed him with the cool nickname “Blade Runner.” All that good publicity went out the window when Pistorius shot and killed his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp in the bathroom of his home–on Valentine’s Day, no less. The 20/20 correspondents interview Dr. Gerry Versfield, a longtime friend of Pistorius and the doctor who amputated his legs and Steenkamp’s ex-boyfriend. The program also provides a computer simulation of the runner’s bedroom and bathroom to provide much supposition as to what really happened that fateful night.

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MOVIE Monsieur Verdoux (TCM, 8 p.m. ET; 5 p.m. PT) The late Charlie Chaplin took the concept of black comedy to a higher level into strange new territory with this vastly underappreciated 1947 film. Based on an idea by Orson Welles, who envisioned the story as a drama, the film was directed in a breezy offhand manner by Chaplin who naturally assumed the lead role of mild-mannered Henri Verdoux, a lowly bank employee in downtown Paris. When Henri is laid off, he hatches a new scheme of marrying rich widows and then murdering them in order to support his invalid wife and young son. The scariest part: The movie is actually based on a true story.

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