Darren Franich

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For 58 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 63% higher than the average critic
  • 8% same as the average critic
  • 29% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Darren Franich's Scores

Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Grease: Live
Lowest review score: 0 The Pauly D Project: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 39 out of 58
  2. Negative: 5 out of 58
58 tv reviews
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Darren Franich
    Grease: Live defied modesty, transcended nostalgia, served up cheese as a ten-course gourmet meal.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Darren Franich
    There’s a precision in the show’s expansion, a sense that the creative team wants to explore every corner of their comedy world--and every corner of the character’s psyches. Season 3 builds to one of the funniest, weirdest, and most profound moments I’ve ever seen in a television show--and that’s before the season finale.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    Riley Keough makes an intriguing figure, at once more empowered and more desperate than her cinema alter ego. I have no clue if this is a profound mediation on intimacy or a daylight-noir origin story for Basic Instinct, but I'm hooked. [1/8 Apr 2016, p.101]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    It's a beautiful mess. Don't miss it. [29 Nov 2013, p.66]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 56 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    Meticulously unhinged. [15 July 2016, p.62]
    • 75 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    At best, Daredevil feels like a pulpier Batman Begins, complete with daddy-issue flashbacks. At worst, it's a much better Gotham. [10 Apr 2015, p.58]
    • 76 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    Night One felt almost fully-formed, as if Oliver has spent his Daily Show tutelage making a list of everything that works-- and everything he wanted to do just a little bit differently.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 91 Darren Franich
    What followed was one of the most confident premieres in this suddenly never-ending phase of late-night debuts.... Full Frontal already feels like an essential voice in this political year.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    The fun and challenge of The Detour is how it seems to be going for comedy in every direction, from delicate character comedy to sight gags to gross-out humor to full-fledged farce.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    There's plenty to enjoy in this period drama. [28 Sep 2012, p.64]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 66 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    With Hairspray Live!, more was never more enough. There were pleasures to be had from all the much muchness.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    The laughs-per-minute rate is high, though, so the worst you can say about Great News is it's merely pretty good. [28 Apr/5 May 2017, p.99]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • tbd Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    The show can feel disorienting--a mix of reality competition and infomercial targeted at millionaires--but hosts Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond have an infectious geek-patrician enthusiasm.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    Much of Taboo's fun derives from watching Hardy's charisma explode onto a small-screen costume drama. His Delaney is infused with bull-in-a-china-shop paranoia; he looks trapped, and the only way out is to chew all the gorgeous scenery. [13 Jan 2017, p.54]
    • 64 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    It's two moody-cop procedurals for the price of one, with deeply felt emotion in the performances. [7 Oct 2016, p.51]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    Carter's aiming for something between His Girl Friday, Dick Tracy, and Alias--a tough tonal mixture, especially on a weekly broadcast budget. But Atwell's firing on all cylinders. [9 Jan 2015, p.74]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    Spotless is messy, and Grondin is a bit of a blank, but the pilot promises gruesome-funny delights. [13 Nov 2015, p.57]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 74 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    It’s admirably lighthearted, and much more kinetic than the typical period piece. The show’s largely played for dramedy and candy-colored history, all pastel set design and elaborate costumes that make everyone look like the Bride of Bowie Frankenstein. But the cheerful casualness defies a tough, battle-hardened heart.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 83 Darren Franich
    Even though Fallon is a big fan of The Tonight Show, you get the pleasant vibe that he is unencumbered by any extraneous anxiety of influence.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    History? Possibly. Trash? Definitely. Fun? Pretty.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    Some limp decisions make it feel more like a Models Inc. reboot with fewer models, more Bit coin. But it's worth watching just for Edi Gathegi, who bring star-making charisma and unwarranted pathos to the role of a criminal who (sigh) wants to go straight. [9 Sep 2016, p.55]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • tbd Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    It's a podcast masquerading as a sitcom, but the fifth-season premiere is a good display of the show's shaggy charm.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    Duchovny and Anderson both seem more relaxed, finally rediscovering their old zip-zap chemistry. Guest stars Kumail Nanjiani and Rhys Darby are delightful. It’s scary, then funny, then existential, then shockingly moving.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    Few shows on television look better than this one, but it’s coming up on great-drama retirement age. Game of Thrones is getting older. But it’s not dead, yet.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    This series is both ambitious and overstretched. [2 May 2014, p.60]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Darren Franich
    There’s a revelation in episode 3 that adds a new shade to Laurie’s paranoid performance. And Mol brings humanity to what could’ve been Hitchcock pastiche.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    This lighthearted, thin import is worth a watch. [20 Jun 2014, p.60]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 47 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Rogue is trash, but thanks to Newton, it's delightful trash. [5 Apr 2013, p.62]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 55 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Sequoyah is an appealing presence, doing what she can with an impossible wonder-kid role. And Cuarón is incapable of creating a boring shot. But he won't direct every episode. The only actor in the pilot who seems to be having any fun is Sienna Guillory as a hitwoman.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Any potentially thorny issue get pushed aside by excess mythology. [7 Oct 2016, p.50]
    • 57 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    The Son will rise--if it can live up to its ambitions, if it can more convincingly explain how young Eli on the frontier became old Eli at the dawn of civilization, and if it can be even half as wild as the West it wants to explore.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Fine acting can't overcome some wildly melodramatic plot turns and on-the-nose dialogue/ Fun for Europhiles, boring for everyone else. [15 Apr 2016, p.47]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • tbd Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Vincent D'Onofrio, who transformed this Law & Order spin-off into an addictive showcase for gleeful Method wackiness and is back as Detective Goren for the final season. The series remains a dependably bland procedural.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    The eighth-season premiere is an enjoyable tangent, with House solving a medical mystery behind bars, but nothing can hide the by-the-numbers plot.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    The thriller elements are mostly nonstarters, but the show does offer some genuine pleasures, thanks to the overqualified cast. [8 Mar 2013, p.73]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 64 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Fine performances and a fascinating true story buoy this disappointing adaptation of Rebecca Skloot's bestseller. [21 Apr 2017, p.58]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 62 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Out of the corner of your eye, The Strain almost looks like a real show. [19/26 Aug 2016 p.106]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 69 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    They [Rupert Penry-Jones and Phil Davis] make an appealing upstairs-downstairs odd couple, even if the nifty concept--studying centuries-ago crimes to help solve contemporary cases--is starting to wear thin.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 67 Darren Franich
    Wilfred, the vulgarian talking dog, [is] beginning to feel like the same lame joke repeated ad nauseam.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 58 Darren Franich
    Conviction doesn’t have the courage of its, errr, principles. It wants to prove the justice system is broken, but it still believes justice comes from a cool office with glass walls and attractive people.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 58 Darren Franich
    The show veers precariously between low-budget and lazy, and the sketches are hit-or-miss. Still, Jacobson and Glazer make an appealing odd couple. [24 Jan 2014, p.64]
    • 61 Metascore
    • 58 Darren Franich
    Hunter Page-Lochard sines as an amoral Hair "passing" for human. And Game of Thrones' lain Glen deliciously leans into his Untrustworthy Media Mogul role. Unfortunately, Cleverman can't settle on a tone, weaving ham-handed political melodrama with a yet-more-ham-handed mystical chosen-one narrative. [3 Jun 2016, p.101]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 52 Metascore
    • 58 Darren Franich
    Beyond him [Big Jim (Dean Norris)], Dome remains bland and opaque, running on lo-fi sci-fi. [4 Jul 2014, p.58]
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Darren Franich
    Like fellow Canadian import Rookie Blue, Combat Hospital seems almost purposefully forgettable. Watch a China Beach rerun instead.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Darren Franich
    The new Lethal Weapon is more modest, and nicer; less offensive, thus, less interesting.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Darren Franich
    Flaked is another horrid post-Togetherness drama-com that's too cute to be serious and too lame to be funny. [11 Mar 2016, p.78]
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Darren Franich
    Crackle's TV adaptation is Kidz Bop at best. [17/24 Mar 2017, p.89]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Darren Franich
    Two tunes in this attempt to reverse-engineer a new High School Musical are decent.... But the rest is dull as sand. [19 Jul 2013, p.80]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 43 Metascore
    • 42 Darren Franich
    The Show With Vinny is better than Snooki & J-Woww and The Pauly D Project. That ain’t saying much.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 42 Darren Franich
    [Justin Kirk's Gideo Reeves]'s so dumb, but this show thinks he's so smart, because this show is so dumb. [Feb 3/10 2017, p.102]
    • 42 Metascore
    • 42 Darren Franich
    Here's a show descending into self-parody before it even has a self to parody. [14/21 Sep 2012, p.133]
    • 45 Metascore
    • 42 Darren Franich
    It has exactly three things going for it: Zoe Lister-Jones, Rick Donald, and the assumption that their next respective projects will be more entertaining than this. [18/25 Apr 2014, p.102]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • tbd Metascore
    • 42 Darren Franich
    By focusing on their [millionaire's] catharsis, the show suggests that lifestyle tourism counts as heroism.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 33 Darren Franich
    The pilot starts with a gag about hemorrhoids. Things trend downward. [2 Oct 2015, p.68]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 39 Metascore
    • 33 Darren Franich
    It is very, very bad. And yet: Dinosaurs! [31 May/7 Jun 2013, p.131]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 47 Metascore
    • 25 Darren Franich
    This is Crowe's The Newsroom, the moment when his trademark sincerity crosses over into preachy didacticism. [24 Jun 2016, p.54]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 42 Metascore
    • 8 Darren Franich
    [A] morass of vanilla quirk and stereotype whack-a-mole. [28 Sep 2012, p.66]
    • Entertainment Weekly
    • 36 Metascore
    • 0 Darren Franich
    Alas, this Joey-ish spin-off is pure hagiography.

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