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TV: Five shows worth watching tonight: Nov. 27

A select viewing guide for Tuesday, November 27

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FOOD Chuck’s Week Off (Food Network, 7 p.m.) Not to be confused with Chuck’s Day Off, which documents the culinary adventures of rock ‘n’ roll chef Chuck Hughes on his home turf in Montreal, this new short-run series was filmed entirely in the sun-drenched climes of Mexico. In tonight’s first episode, Chuck rolls into Guadalajara to sample the city’s famous Torta Ahogadhas, which translates loosely into “pork sandwich swimming in chili sauce.” In the second show, he’s in the Yucatan to make his own hot sauce using freshly-picked habaneros and receive a crash course in exotic Mayan cuisine. Hasta la vista, baby.

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DRAMA NCIS (CBS, Global, 8 p.m.) Still one of the most-watched shows on television–in both Canada and the U.S.–this no-frills crime procedural series brings back a familiar TV face in tonight’s new episode. British actress Alex Kingston, best known for her stint on ER and playing a companion on Doctor Who, guests as an enigmatic and powerful woman named Miranda Pennebaker, to whom NCIS agent Gibbs (Mark Harmon) reaches out while investigating the kidnapping of a teenage girl. Could it be that Miranda and Gibbs have a past romantic history? Watch and see.

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REALITY The Big Decision (CBC, 9 p.m.) That’s a wrap. This smart series wherein Dragon’s Den fixtures Jim Treliving and Arlene Dickinson go behind the scenes of two struggling businesses and then decide which one is most worthy of a cash injection brings its second season to a close tonight. In the finale, Arlene drops into two Vancouver businesses with big troubles. At Save On Meats, she finds an operation with mounting debts and a desperate need for renovations; at the custom flag manufacturer The Flag Ship, she discovers some seriously difficult ownership issues. Choose wisely, Arlene.

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DRAMA Vegas (CBS, Global, 10 p.m.) At 58, Dennis Quaid is looking good as TV’s freshest new face. The former star of features like The Right Stuff and The Big Easy provides reason to watch this period-piece crime drama that recently received a full-season renewal. Quaid is a natural fit for the real-life role of Ralph Lamb, a good ol’ boy rancher and Second World War veteran hired to stem the tide of mob guys flooding into Las Vegas in the early sixties. Michael Chiklis, formerly of The Shield, chews up the scenery as resident mobster Vincent Scavino. In tonight’s new episode, Ralphie butts heads with the local military types while investigating a murder at the local air force base, while Savino steams when his ex-mistress Diane (Ivana Milicevic) becomes the headline act at his lounge.

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MOVIE Constantine (AMC, 10 p.m.) Although film critics have had a field day making fun of the deadpan acting style of Keanu Reeves, sometimes it’s a good fit. In this 2005 horror feature based on a graphic novel, Reeves’ minimalism is perfectly suited to the role of “occult detective” John Constantine, who is blessed/cursed with the gift of being able to see evil spirits posing as normal people. Constantine’s supernatural reputation precedes itself and he’s approached by the real police detective Angela (Rachel Weisz) to help prove that her twin sister’s death was not a suicide. As it turns out, Constantine discovers that the woman’s death is connected to a plan by underworld demons to break through to the human world, which results in a showdown with ol’ Satan (Peter Stormare) himself.

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