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If you prefer television that puts something into your brain instead of cutting something out, there are three worthy documentaries all airing on Tuesday, November 14 (and re-airing later in the month). Family That Walks on All Fours (Nova, Channel 13, 8 p.m.) goes to rural Turkey in search of two parents with five grown children who walk on their palms and feet—then seeks out scientists who argue about single genes, missing links, the evolution of human bipedalism, and the sociology of a village where Islamic fundamentalists let their children taunt the hand-walkers. You won’t know what to think when the family makes its first visit to the sea, nor when, with the aid of aluminum walkers, they try for the first time to walk upright. In Thin (HBO, 9 p.m.), Girl Culture author Lauren Greenfield, whose book was a wonderful and scary look at what society makes girls do to their bodies (grooming, makeup, plastic surgery), here turns to eating disorders. The emphasis is on four young female patients in Coconut Creek, Florida, but the statistical picture isn’t neglected: For example, 10 to 14 percent of anorexics die from the disease. And in A Hidden Life (Channel 13, 9 p.m.), Frontline goes to Spokane to tell the story of Jim West, a Republican mayor so opposed to gay rights that he proposed banning gay teachers from public schools, and who was later revealed by the Spokane Spokesman-Review to have been a closeted gay man himself since his Boy Scout troop-leader days and to have trolled gay Websites under such handles as “RightBiGuy” and “Cobra82nd.” It was Foleygate before Foley, as sad as it is infuriating.


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