For 160 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 73% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 24% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 10.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Chuck Barney's Scores

Average review score: 74
Highest review score: 100 Steel Magnolias: Season 1
Lowest review score: 25 Bob's Burgers: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 160
160 tv reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Chuck Barney
    Viewers who look to Downton Abbey for loads of escapist splendor may want to temper their expectations when the wildly popular British drama returns for its fourth season on Sunday.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Chuck Barney
    Based on Sunday's pilot episode, Crisis has the potential to be one of the spring season's most addictive network offerings. It's intense and suspenseful.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Chuck Barney
    The revived 24 is still instantly involving and packed with a dizzying rush of suspenseful crescendos. The new Jack, meanwhile, is the same as the old Jack, which is to say he flips the bird in the face of terror and squirms his way out of major messes like a gun-toting Houdini--all while managing to make a man purse look good.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    There are a lot of characters and budding plotlines crowding the "Soul Food" pilot, which give it a disjointed feel at times (It tales a while to sort things out). In addition, the deployment of Ahmad as a sporadic narrator comes off as rather clumsy. ... But "Soul Food" eventually gains traction and becomes thoroughly involving especially by its second episode. [26 Jun 2000]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    It's this sense of wonder that sets "Enterprise" apart from the more stodgy Star Trek offerings and injects some much-needed fresh energy into the 35-year-old franchise. [26 Sep 2001]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    Entourage is showing its age, but still offers a reliable dose of frat-boy humor and Hollywood-style hilarity. It also continues to be a show where men ride high (in more ways than one).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    Every AHS series has now featured at least one [rape scene]. Isn't it time to move on? At least he and his collaborators, as usual, do their best to soften the blows with healthy doses of camp and humor.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    Saturday's opening episode has a frustratingly deliberate pace. But "Outlander" eventually gains traction and becomes good escapist fun with doses of intrigue, suspense and, of course, steamy romance.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Chuck Barney
    "Falcone" essentially is "Donnie Brasco" lite--tightly plotted and mostly absorbing, but watered down in terms of acting and storytelling (not to mention dialogue). Still, it's sharper than most of the typical network fare. [4 Apr 2000]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 78 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    But the feeling here is that Simon may have dipped into his Baltimore crime well one too many times. Tonight's pilot episode, while intriguing in spots, is hampered by a convoluted tangle of multiple plot threads and numerous characters, most of whom seem to have no interesting wrinkles. Worse yet, the story moves at an annoyingly sluggish pace. [1 June 2002, p.4]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 72 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    Friday's moody pilot unfolds at a listless pace and, occasionally, gets bogged down in its own density. But in it's favor, there are enough compelling characters and tantalizing questions to keep us engaged for the time being.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    What it lacks thus far are the laugh-out-loud oments that made the movie such a joy....That's not to say Parenthood isn't worth a look. Graham, the adorable "Gilmore Girls" alum, rocks the heck out of every scene she's in.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    If you're a sucker for tangled mysteries--and are in need of a few heebie-jeebies--the show has enough oomph to its early episodes to suck you in.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    With her Texas twang and feisty demeanor, Giddish is instantly engaging, and she and Bishop share a nice on-screen chemistry that make them worth our time. As for the Past Life cases, they are adequately compelling.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    The pilot episode isn't a total knockout, coming off as a tad bland and safe. Although Abrams does enough to hold our interest, it feels like he's let up on the gas pedal.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    Not everything worked, of course, and anyone expecting Conan to reinvent the wheel or drastically shake up the genre is probably disappointed. But if you were simply glad to see his brand of quirky comedy back in late night--and free of the network guardrails--it was cause for celebration.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 67 Chuck Barney
    Unfortunately, things just never really gel in a pilot episode that falls flat and is only intermittently funny....In fact, only Janney, whose gleefully oblivious character spews un-PC zingers and keeps a huge self-portrait in her office, makes a truly fresh impression.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    The Playboy Club isn't in the same league, or even the same galaxy, as the critically adored "Mad Men." While the latter offers nuance and depth and keen insights into its era, the former settles for stock characters, cliches and superficiality, punctuated by a lot of come-hither looks.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    So far, though, it has mostly kept its ambition in check, preferring to follow the playbook of a typical crime procedural, with a little more darkness and a little less energy.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    Homeland has a chance to be a much tighter--and smarter--endeavor with more nuance than "24" ever had. But if a cougar suddenly appears, and/or if someone comes back from the dead, all bets are off.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    Although the show features strong performances and is piercing in its emotional honesty, it also get bogged down in its own existential angst.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    It's a scattershot approach that ultimately undermines what is admirable about Luck, including some gorgeous photography.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    It all makes for a scattered, hit-or-miss proposition. Some gags land. Others fall flat.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    The good news is that Sunday's two-hour opener answers several key questions in relatively rapid fashion and in ways that don't seem totally unreasonable. The bad news is that it also puts Sarah back at square one, and therein lies the problem.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    While these [butt-kicking] scenes contain a certain intensity and exhilaration, you can't help but think that, had the writers of Missing devoted as much time to plot and character as they did to the fighting, they might have wound up with a much more enjoyable show.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    The cast around Washington is also quite solid, and the show looks and is refreshingly different from a typical procedural. But it also feels a little too slick and superficial, and those gaps in logic may be a problem for some viewers.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    Based on two preview episodes, Anger Management is at least more interesting than "Two and a Half Men" (take that, Ashton Kutcher). That's certainly not saying much, though.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    You get sort of an odd, been-there-done-that feeling when watching the pilot, which contains, to varying degrees, traces of "The Hunger Games," "The Walking Dead," "FlashForward," "Jericho," "Lost" (Elizabeth Mitchell is in the cast) and other dystopian fare.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    The story piques your curiosity, but it takes too long to gain traction. The characters are certainly functional, but they lack compelling quirks. The subject matter is worthy, but it just doesn't crackle.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    This is a show that has its heart in the right place, but is, ironically, pretty mindless.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Chuck Barney
    What we're left with in The Leftovers is a show that, at least early on, is nothing but chaos and dread and bleakness and chill, as it relentlessly delves into the most troubling aspects of human nature.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    At its very best, '24' creates an almost tactile sense of tension that no show can match. From one harrowing moment to the next, your pulse races and your skin prickles with apprehension. On the other hand, the show's gimmicky structure forces its writers to keep the plates perpetually spinning, and they often aren't up to the task. [5 Jan 2005]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    Judging by the pilot, George Lopez is no laugh riot, but it definitely has its moments, and it's refreshing to find a touch of Mexican-American flavor on TV somewhere other than Showtime and Nickelodeon. [27 Mar 2002, p.D01]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    The pilot managed to hold my interest for the most part, and I'll credit Hall for bringing a moody allure to the role...Who knows? The show could still flatline over its 13-episode run, but for now it seems to be alive and kicking. [16 June 2002, p.C4]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    The humor in the pilot is anything but razor-sharp: The writers too often confuse coarse language for jokes, and a subplot in which Calvin coaches a Nigerian co-worker on the finer points of the booty call sputters badly. Still, there is promise here, thanks mainly to a collection of intriguing characters. [14 Aug 2005, p.F4]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    [There are] moments of pure brilliance--and moments that had me doubled over in mirth.... Unfortunately, there are stretches in this new batch of episodes that feel more flabby than snappy, and there are some lulls that leave you downright fatigued.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Chuck Barney
    The show crackles with witty (and jargony) banter and mostly succeeds at making its tech world fun and engaging -- something Randi Zuckerberg's "Start-Up: Silicon Valley" reality series too often failed to do. But the problem with Betas is that it's an uneven endeavor that's just good enough to make you wish it were better.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 58 Chuck Barney
    Some viewers will be riveted to the sex, violence, beautiful nude bods and sensory gluttony of Spartacus: Blood and Sand. Others will be turned off almost instantly.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 58 Chuck Barney
    Surely it will have Palin lovers rushing to plant wet smooches on the screen and all the haters citing it as proof that TV is, indeed, full of dreck.
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 66 Metascore
    • 58 Chuck Barney
    Hamming it up big time, William H. Macy plays a booze-addled father of six kids in this uneven drama that seems more intent on taking its pay-cable liberties (nudity, profanity, etc.) to the extreme than weaving an engaging story.
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Chuck Barney
    This is by no means a lousy show. The performances are solid and the brothers-working-together dynamic is intriguing. But the pilot lacked dramatic oomph, and it did a poor job of actually taking viewers inside the math and explaining how it works. Consequently, "Numb3rs" just doesn't add up. [22 Jan 2005]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Chuck Barney
    Unfortunately, The Cape fails to fly. Lyons has all the charisma of a fence post, and the leaden scripts bring no fresh twists to the genre.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Chuck Barney
    What's more bothersome about Skins from a critical standpoint is the thin plotting, the aimless narrative, and the generally flat and artificial feel of the production.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Chuck Barney
    Very little of it feels fresh or funny. Nor does Allen's character strike me as someone viewers would want to spend a great deal of time with.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Chuck Barney
    Unfortunately, no one pops off the screen the way Farrah once did.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 42 Chuck Barney
    The problem is there's nothing here that hasn't been done before, and often done better. Even more disheartening: The cast, which includes Matt Long and Billy Zane, is stocked with forgettable and/or boorish characters.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 42 Chuck Barney
    $#*! My Dad Says feels hopelessly old school. It relies on a stock sitcom character--the crabby dad--that we've seen over and over. It mainly anchors itself to a claustrophobic sitcom-y living room, and it relies too heavily on a tired, rat-a-tat setup/punchline delivery.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 40 Chuck Barney
    In desperately straining to be so uncommonly edgy, so explicit and so provocative in its sexual candor, the show all but tramples its dramatic structure in the process. [3 Dec 2000, p.C05]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Chuck Barney
    1) It's not all that funny, which could be a problem considering it's supposed to be a comedy, and 2) It continues a rather arrogant presumption on the part of show-biz types that we're all ceaselessly interested in the inner workings of their industry. [4 June 2005, p.C01]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Chuck Barney
    The stars (Trista Sutter, John O'Hurley and Joey McIntyre, et al.) are strictly marginal. The host (Tom Bergeron) is excruciatingly lame. And the dancing is only sporadically scintillating. [26 Jun 2005]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 48 Metascore
    • 40 Chuck Barney
    With her winning smile, Southern twang and a tough-but-tender demeanor, Giddish makes for an instantly appealing lead. Unfortunately, she's about the only thing going for Chase, which is hampered by an unimaginative script.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Chuck Barney
    Malibu Country is so old school, in fact, that it feels like a leftover from ABC's TGIF days, complete with a studio audience, an irritating laugh track and a sitcomy march-time pace.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 30 Chuck Barney
    Much of Tarzan feels more like a marketing strategy than a show, and it seems to have a few flaws that "Smallville" doesn't. Chief among them is the incoherent plotline, which, in the pilot at least, does little to explain the motivations of Pileggi's character. [4 Oct 2003, p.D01]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 33 Metascore
    • 30 Chuck Barney
    Jillian... was so obnoxious and smugly hostile in the opener that I found myself practically rooting for one of the big-bellied contestants to squash her like a common household bug. [26 Oct 2004]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
    • 54 Metascore
    • 25 Chuck Barney
    The opener is riddled with juvenile humor consisting of jokes pegged to corpses, crotches and child molestation. It's almost enough to trigger a case of mad cow disease.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 25 Chuck Barney
    We're left with a shrill sitcom that's hard not to hate.