For 1,087 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 50% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Hinckley's Scores

  • TV
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Downton Abbey: Season 2
Lowest review score: 0 I've Got A Secret: Season 1
Score distribution:
1,087 tv reviews
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Four hours in, living up to past standards no longer is in question. Setting new ones is what's going on here, as "24," partly by cashing in on our knowledge of and commitment to previous seasons and characters, gets off to its best start ever.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Unlike most serialized dramas of late... "24" continues to do everything right.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The language, the acting, the themes - everything in "Deadwood" is good as gold. In TV entertainment terms, maybe even better.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Fabulous in every respect.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    In theme and execution, in caliber of performance and level of dramatic tension, "Sleeper Cell" is an impressive, relentlessly gripping drama.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    One of this season's most tasty and twisted TV treats.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    If you loved "The Office" you may have grave doubts that any followup comedy could be as good and as quote-the-dialogue funny. "Extras" is that - another triumph, and a perfect Sunday-night companion piece for "Curb Your Enthusiasm."
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    As with the Gervais-Merchant "The Office," the more time you spend with the characters in "Extras," the more you feel their pain as well as laugh at their expense.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    It's one of the best new shows from any network this year, and is a total, almost giddy delight from start to finish.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Like the best TV comedies - from "Seinfeld" to "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," and all the way back to "The Jack Benny Program" - "30 Rock" sparkles not just because its central star gets to shine, but because everyone does.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The law-firm arena is one of TV's oldest and most familiar genres, but Damages enlivens it by defying expectations.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    "The Nine," starting tomorrow, is the show most people will want to discuss at the office water cooler.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Every hour is impressive, surprising and entertaining.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    It's bold, different and exciting, with a central character and performance that take your breath away.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    "The State Within" is challengingly cerebral - but at times, it's also almost painfully visceral. Don't miss it.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Pushing Daisies is perfect.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Sameer Asad Gardezi and his writing partners have created something very different in Aliens in America--and something very, very funny.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The team behind this series--creator Tom Kapinos from "Dawson's Creek," executive producer Scott Winant from "My So-Called Life" and "thirtysomething," and Duchovny himself--makes it easier for Duchovny by surrounding him with sparkling female characters and talent.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    With strong performances by a cast that includes Alfred Molina, Michael Keaton, Rory Cochrane and Chris O'Donnell, this adaptation of a Robert Ludlum novel reels you right in.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    It's not comfortable. Just compelling.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The real skill and appeal of Mad Men remains in its characters.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Archer is the rare show that's in love with its own wordplay and good enough that this love becomes endearing rather than annoying.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Justified doesn't have the bite of "Fire in the Hole," from which the first episode was adapted, but it gets much of the tone--droll, a little weary, frequently tense, sometimes conflicted--never forgetting that at the core, good is challenging evil.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Watching HBO's new Boardwalk Empire is like sitting in your favorite tavern and hearing someone say, "Drinks are on the house." Friends, it doesn't get much better.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The next great "Masterpiece Theater" series has arrived.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Season one set the bar high. Season two clears it.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    If Sunday night's two-hour return episode of Mad Men ended after the first four minutes, it would still put the show in contention to win its fifth straight Emmy as the best drama on television.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Whether you've followed the show to this point or not, you can tune in and savor smart TV drama at its best.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    With the bar set at Emmy, Homeland has little room to falter. With this return episode, it doesn't.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    It might be 16 of the best upcoming hours on television.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    [Creator Julian Fellowes] never been afraid to have characters we like do things we don't like. That continues in season three, which finds plenty of new ground even as it inevitably begins treading back over some old.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    While many shows that have reached this point in the road have left their creative peak behind, Mad Men shows no such erosion. It still has things it wants to say and it still has the poetry to say them well.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    The gamble is that other characters can hold our interest and move the ball forward while we wait for Carrie and Brody. Mission accomplished.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Sons is on track to stand among the best TV shows of our current golden age, and we have two more seasons to watch it get there.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 David Hinckley
    Weiner’s ability to capture “human” set Mad Men apart at the first beginning and shows no sign of faltering at the second.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 David Hinckley
    This 10-hour production on World War II in the Pacific is an ambitious, imperfect, intense and often compelling look at combat that gets dirtier and more ragged with each episode.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    There's enough classic "Sopranos" action -- some of it involving extreme physical violence -- to remind the average person that where the Sopranos are is not where most of us want to go. Yet at the same time, these episodes repeatedly return to the ways in which the Soprano clan, in its desperate, sometimes twisted and sometimes touching way, seeks to embrace family values.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    It just might be the kids, the ones who grow up too soon in the hard world of "The Wire," who steal opening night.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    The episodes that kick off this last 10-show run don't feel perfect. But they almost always feel intuitively right.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    How fitting, then, that the plastic-surgery drama returns Tuesday for its fifth season by dangerously reinventing itself. Dangerously - and totally successfully.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    It boldly goes where no man has gone before.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    "Big Love" sounds like a high-concept, comedic, intentionally sensational enterprise. Parts of "Big Love" are sensational, all right. But only in the best sense of the word.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Whichever the case, or whatever combination of the two, watching these 15 aspiring fashion designers compete for their big break is more fun than a new Victoria's Secret catalogue.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    "Thief" brims with strong, potent performances.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Powerful.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    It has everything you want from such a show: quirky characters, gifted actors, a captivating central story - and questions that leave you not only wanting more, but hungry for it.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Tremendously likable.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    It has a sprawling cast, but even before the pilot is over, because of the clever way it's written, directed and acted, you'll know, and like, every single character.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    I can't remember the last time I laughed so quickly and loudly at a new TV series.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    The show itself, however, does much of its best work in the shadows, where nothing is that clear.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    It's as quirky, original and funny a comedy as "Universe."
    • 88 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    FNL didn't get to be the best new show on prime time last season by losing its balance, and tonight's opener has the large cast still making almost all the right moves. [5 Oct 2007, p.147]
    • 57 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    "Raines" not only deserves an audience - with any luck at all, it deserves a renewal, and a firm spot on NBC's fall schedule.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Elizabeth is mercurial, powerful, unpredictable - qualities made real, and a bit frightening, because of the intensity with which Mirren commits to the role.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Hilarious.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Any fan of Westerns, or of Duvall, will not be disappointed if this "Trail" is followed.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Their dance of love and rejection, of giddiness and bitterness, is a warped waltz, and Kingsley and Bening clearly relish every step.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Though the overall tone is light, there's enough darkness in "The Riches," and enough depth in the performances, to make you care about these people - even when you don't totally buy the premise.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    In Treatment feels neither soapy nor formulaic, because of the intensity with which it's presented.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    Chuck sounds like a regrettably derivative idea - a remake of "Jake 2.0." But it's not. Chuck is a blast.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    If you relish the devious darkness of "Dexter" and the wonderful wackiness of "Weeds," you'll love the macabre moodiness of "Meadowlands."
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 David Hinckley
    As You Like It is effortlessly entertaining from start to finish.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    As you would expect from a show entering its 19th season, the acting and the pacing are strong and confident. L&O has always been smart enough to stick with what works.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    There are a lot of good laughs here, and they are not the result of Larry David changing anything about the show or his character, who is the show. He'd still trip his mother to get the last seat on the bus.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The show's long break seems to have rejuvenated its story lines, in which intense, rapid-fire action plays out against the backdrop of a complex, methodical geopolitical chess game.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    That plot crystallizes through a pair of two-hour episodes, Sunday and Monday nights, and at times it crystallizes slowly.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    He has always been wrapped a little tight but now he's about to explode, and Chiklis plays it beautifully, making it sound as if he must measure every phrase so that just opening his mouth doesn't release all the frustration in a nuclear blast.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The show pays more attention to relationships we care about, hints at a sensible number of new ones that show some promise, and thus doesn't rely on obscure medical mysteries to carry the whole dramatic burden.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Other complications arise as well, and Laurie is superb in this episode, carrying scenes so strongly that for long stretches the viewer will forget the absence of his regular colleagues entirely.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It remains one of the best.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Now it must find a way to become more than a routine action drama pitting plucky good guys against amoral, robotic bad guys. It's got the characters who can do that, though, and it's also streamlined its story enough so even a new viewer can figure out what's going on from tonight's back-to-back premiere episodes.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Despite soapy moments, it offers a more honest portrayal of contemporary high school life than a "90210."
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a brand new ballgame. It looks to be a winner.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The show's droll and mostly apolitical humor fits the exaggerated characters well, it's still got a good fast rhythm, and the five major players work well as an ensemble.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Damages is a show that has always required a viewer's full attention, and the rewards are there for those who do.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A relationship with Julie, which has been percolating for some time, might be just a good cover for Dexter. But it feels more complicated than that, which at the very least reflects good writing and acting.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Admit it: You've probably never considered the potential impact of sleep deprivation on a serial killer. Well, the creators of Dexter have, and the results make for highly entertaining television.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Mary doesn't win 'em all, but In Plain Sight is a W for USA.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's still not a show for everyone, since 99% of the action is conversation. But it's intelligent conversation, and the problems of the patients, including Weston, are multilayered and compelling.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    In general, we like his character, and Reese's. They have a new boss named Kevin Tidwell (Donal Logue), who doesn't start off all good or all bad. Neither does the show. But if it can maintain this level of quality, it's got a shot.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It knows exactly what it wants and needs its new hybrid product to be. The hockey fights video of teen romance drama.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Everything isn't perfect on Burn Notice. Some of the subplots have to be wrapped up a little neatly. But the interplay of the core group has enough ambivalence and shadows to keep the show intriguing.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This will be good news to people who enjoy watching train wrecks in which the engineer accelerates as the precipice nears, which is Grace's signature move.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It plays at its own pace, a little more deliberate than other TV dramas, and its strongest moments are often understated.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's unavoidable that True Blood will fall into some of the same dramas as other vampire shows. It's just got sharper teeth.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Bryan Cranston's Walter remains one of the best-played characters on television, and he's surrounded by a strong cast that, knowingly or unknowingly, plays off his desperation.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The shadows are deep enough over "Breaking Bad" that it's hard to imagine a ray of hope or light shining through anywhere. But the actors and writers are so good that, like Walt, we'll keep looking for it.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    What matters is how well it's done, and Disney does a lot of things right. It's multicultural. Parents are portrayed as people. The intrapersonal dramas are small enough so viewers will understand them.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Wright is a diligent reporter, and his material has been whipped into a smooth script under producers David Simon and Ed Burns.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It has good characters and plenty of action. It keeps its science fiction accessible, not abstract. Maybe best of all, it has a great sense of humor.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Fortunately, someone finally grabs hold of the wheel and steers it back to where it belongs, as one of the great character dramas of contemporary television.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency takes some time setting itself up Sunday night, but those who stay with it will be rewarded with the funniest and most charming lady detective series since "Murder, She Wrote."
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Sewell radiates the kind of fascination you can't buy off the rack at the TV drama store, and that alone gives Eleventh Hour a strong start.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Harper's Island is an elaborate horror movie, a twentysomething slasher flick with a really good wardrobe, a first-rate cast and 13 weeks worth of twists and subplots.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    To say we actually like any of these characters would be stretching it. But we're drawn into their lives, and as it starts its second season, Sons of Anarchy can't be left out of any conversation about the golden age of cable drama.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The likable Pete and Myka are a classic match, bickering until they need to stop and work together, which they do. Artie provides both comic relief and a reminder that their job is difficult and dangerous--point also made by Artie's boss, Mrs. Frederic (CCH Pounder). Not too much new here. But there's nothing wrong with taking the old and doing it well.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Some of the pirates tonight, perhaps inevitably, take on a little of Johnny Depp's Jack Sparrow. But the acting is generally solid and the action is both stirring and, happily, easy to follow.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Mainly, underneath the sitcom setups and witty banter, this show moves to the pulse of the ad game. The mystique and power of raw ideas push this story as surely as they push the characters of "Mad Men."
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Crucial, sometimes hopeful and sometimes worrisome as the larger issues of modern medicine are, Hopkins excels on the human side.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a fun ride and Wyle has gotten a little better each time. That's why it's a shame there apparently won't be another.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    With 19 episodes remaining in this season, there's plenty of time for all this drama to intensify and the characters to sort themselves out as good and not-so-good.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Shirley MacLaine will get most of the attention for playing fashion legend Coco Chanel in this smart-looking and solidly crafted new Lifetime biopic premiering Saturday night.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Add strong performances by a dozen major characters, starting with Claire Foy as Little Dorrit, and you've got the kind of production television is often accused of having abandoned.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The best moments in Wednesday night's chat between Elvis Costello and Elton John, which are good enough to recommend the show for fans of both men, serve up small but sparkling musical pleasures.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Tuesday night’s premiere packs a lot of trash into 42 minutes, between the quips about “jewelry whores” and an almost pathological concern with whose “bubbies” are and aren’t authentic. It plants the first seeds of drama, too.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    There are no actual fires involved, and several key scenes are played in near-silence. The emotional intensity, though, rips right through the screen.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Unlike shows that rely on flamboyant judges for much of their color, Top Chef has mostly risen and fallen on the personality and skills of the contestants. So it's off to a good start this time around.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    While some of their "family values" are perverse and illegal, most are rooted in the same principles embraced by the straightest arrows in town. That's what makes them more than motorcycle thugs and makes their show worth the discomfort it sometimes takes to ride with it.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    To be as much fun as it strives to be, Warehouse 13 can't be just a cop show with a gimmick. It needs to make the gimmick interesting and fun. Season one was promising and season two seems to be staying on track.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's well-paced, it's fun to watch and none of the characters needs to be anywhere near as annoying as, say, Nick Castle.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Based on the first episode, the team seems to work about two cases at a time, and while neither of tonight's feels wildly creative--one warns of the downside to an intense religious upbringing, the other catches an elected official in an ethics scandal--both are engagingly told, with humor and little twists.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    What Southland has, already, is its own swagger, a get-outta-my-way style of moving and talking that says it's going for the raw edges we see on cable shows like "Breaking Bad." Southland pulls it off, too. If Thursday night's premiere episode is an indication how it plans to roll, it's a keeper.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Just reciting plots can make Southland sound like a soap opera, and in some ways that's what ensemble shows are. But this one is more than that.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    As viewers, we're less interested in the destination than the ride, and this one starts out feeling like fun.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The new musical-comedy drama Glee dresses like "High School Musical" and has the heart of "Porky's." That's a compliment.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Everyone in "How to Make It" isn't a winner. But the show looks to be just that.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A splendid new addition to pay-cable's stock of dark comedies that keep a human heart beating behind the laughs.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's now even easier to get so caught up in the dramas that you can forget this show is really funny.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    ABC's new FlashForward requires concentration and endurance. It's well worth the investment of both.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It sounds soapy, but it's all handled well enough, and with enough humor, that we believe it.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Undercover Boss isn't spectacular TV. But its real appeal lies in the exercise itself: watching a CEO meet actual workers and realize they work hard at jobs often made harder by petty rules and policies.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Margulies puts a powerful combination of cold fury, bewilderment and tenacity into Alicia Florrick, the wife of a disgraced Chicago politician in a new series that readily admits it ripped itself from the headlines.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The good part is that the drama should be fun to watch for us. And for the guy at Pizza Shack, too.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's hard to imagine reinventing the concept of the doctor show. But in a way, that's what Private Practice sets out to do in its new-look second season Wednesday--and it doesn't do a bad job.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The droll office comedy Better Off Ted could have quickly turned into a one-joke bore. Instead, it sails into its second season tonight as one of the best sitcoms on television.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It all adds up to a dizzying series of cross-plots and so many brief and often odd alliances that some viewers may wonder if they've wandered into "Survivor." On the positive side, it's all done with standard Glee fun, the tongue never far from the cheek, and it's punctuated with upbeat musical numbers.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If the premise is somewhat forced, it sets up a situation with enough comic potential to sustain Hot in Cleveland indefinitely.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    TNT's new Memphis Beat has a great soundtrack and a pretty good cop drama in between.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This requires commitment, it requires paying attention and it has few cartoonish interludes to give the audience a breather. It also reminds us the value and satisfaction we can find in a complex production executed well.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Treme, created by "Wire" mastermind David Simon, may not ultimately get to the level of those others, because it's going to take a while to sort out the characters and lay down the themes. It also looks to have a deliberate pace, and it doesn't seem to be setting up for a lot of blood-and-guts action, so it may end up attracting a more cerebral crowd.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A new ABC Family series built around four teenage friends and an ominous hint of supernatural forces that mean no good, makes most popular vampire romances look anemic.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    But if Ugly Americans comes with a message, it is at least equally determined to just be funny, and at that task, it frequently succeeds.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A viewer who knew nothing of the earlier incarnations could come to this one and find it immediately engaging, like a good modern police buddy-team drama.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's like three, maybe four sitcoms all squeezed into one, and quite an enjoyable one.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Life Unexpected is TV pleasure unexpected.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's broad, accessible comedy - the kind of show where you aren't sure what to expect, but once you sit down, you keep watching.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If you enjoy following complex machinations, however, and enjoy watching smart TV characters try to figure them out, Rubicon is your ticket.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The show still occasionally talks about this stuff more than real-life guys probably would. But mostly it lets the action speak for itself. Men of a Certain Age is aging well.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's nasty, hard-core stuff--a tale well told.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    "Fun" hasn't been a big part of her job description, but she may have found some of it here.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Spy dramas sometimes get too enamored of their own twists, subplots and dark details, but this one never becomes impenetrable.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Tuesday night by plunging its characters deeper into a web of crisscrossing dramas that suggest the law and politics ultimately come down to soap operas. Whether it's true or not, The Good Wife makes the theory entertaining to explore.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The best new cop drama of a TV season that has more police than a presidential motorcade. Blue Bloods doesn't have the best time slot on TV, but it's got some of the strongest characters and performances.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    [Executive producer Shawn] Ryan's a good juggler, especially when he can work at a cable pace. He likes to take a moment and roll it around in his hands. He's helped by first-rate chemistry between the show's two main dudes, and a uniformly strong supporting cast.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Human Target was a good wise-guy action adventure last season. It's already looking like a better one this season. The main reason: Two girls, Indira Varma and Janet Montgomery, have crashed the testosterone party.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    So they mirror the plight of way too many Americans today, and while that isn't good news for the unemployed, it does give this Apprentice a bit more edge.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Patty returns to the unanswered question that Ellen asked her last season: "Is it worth it?" For viewers, yes, it is.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The game has always been better and more joyous than many of the people who played it. "The Tenth Inning," like its predecessor, makes that point as cleanly as a line-drive single to left-center.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Body of Proof would be interesting enough if it were just "Quincy" with better legs. Add the other elements and you have something worth checking out.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The result is intelligent if occasionally dense tales that focus on the hardest part of a detective's job, which is trying to outthink someone whose thinking is already, by definition, off-center.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The new guest cast is uniformly solid....The whole show is now on its own for the first time, since the previous two seasons were adapted from an Israeli series. That series ran for only two years, so this new In Treatment will have to work from scratch. What it has scratched out so far is impressive.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Moguls & Movie Stars has been assembled with obvious care, using a wide range of illustrative material and charming interviews with surviving major characters, descendants and historians.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Whether the people here are fifth-generation circus or they ran away to join it, their lives make for a good tale.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This seven-part National Geographic series on the world's great migrations turns out to be riveting--not just beautifully filmed, which you would expect, but bursting with great stories about how diverse creatures have learned to survive in a world where everyone is fighting for the same food, air, turf and water.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Very often, reality-show participants stop seeming like real people, as if being on TV makes them abstract characters. [Daughter] Bailey's bad moment here makes Downsized feel painfully real.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Doubtless there always will be some of the Gen. Patton mentality, that a soldier with no physical wounds must be "yellow" if he or she can't just shake it off. Wartorn argues, powerfully, that blaming the victim is not our finest hour.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This cop series immediately delivers intense, richly interwoven drama that sets it apart both from other recent new shows and from well-established standard police "procedurals."
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Don't let all this make the show sound complicated. Based on opening night, it looks like Shameless fun.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The reason to watch anyway is that it can also be rewarding on levels you rarely find in television drama.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    As in past seasons, a few moments this year may seem made for TV. But this is a show that's scored way more than it has faltered, and the opening episode suggests that streak will continue.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Lights Out isn't always comfortable watching, because it forces people we like to do things we don't like. But if it's sometimes hard to watch, it's harder not to.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It all adds up to plenty of action and suspense, with heroes we like and villains we can boo and hiss. And the fate of the planet at stake. Who says there ain't no cure for the summertime TV blues?
    • 96 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Like "The Sopranos," Breaking Bad finds nuance and drama within this compromised world, and in the process suggests intriguing and sometimes unsettling parallels to the world in which the rest of us live.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Nurse Jackie is delivering quite nicely with the personnel on hand. Among other things, it confirms that the best comedy is often rooted in things that are not funny at all, but make people act in funny ways.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It would be a stretch to call Mad Love subtle--one running gag is an elevator that stops a few inches short of the floor--but neither does it feel compelled to spell out every nuance, like how Larry and Connie really feel about each other.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Okay, it gets silly. But silly can be funny, too, and Archer is, as noted, consistently funny.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Olyphant's even a little better this season than last, as he settles further into the Givens skin. He captures the marshal's essential confidence while never giving away one syllable more than he wants to reveal about the hand he's holding. Further enhancing the fun, there's a new crook in town.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Sunset Limited requires considerable engagement, an assignment made easier by the superb performances of Jackson and Jones. Their verbal sparring may not be a reason to live, but it's sure a good reason to watch this production.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The Killing marks another bull's-eye for AMC in presenting complex, literate, well-crafted television.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    South Riding creates memorable characters, particularly Burton and Carne, and it's beautifully filmed.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    While he can be matter-of-fact, bemused and self-deprecating, he never loses a sense of forcefulness, purpose and pride. As Fishburne obviously understands, the story requires no hand-waving or rhetorical embellishment.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a feel-good story, and what makes it more satisfying is that in contrast to so many reality shows, the people here feel genuine, with no sense they're performing for the camera. This one's a contender.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    What makes for a mixed stewardship of the Roman Catholic Church can also make for lively television.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The new Mildred isn't perfect. Sometimes it has too much time on its hands, holding scenes just because it can. But watching it is time well-spent, because it reminds us that not everyone gets over the rainbow to the place where the dreams you dare to dream really do come true.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Sons has hit the ground roaring.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Whether you agree or disagree, the film sorts out a complex situation in simple and human terms.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It may also turn out that "Twilight" and "The Vampire Diaries" and their kin have satisfied the target audiences for these wistfully romantic bedtime fantasies. But if there's room for one more, Teen Wolf could be it.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    So The Closer is still the same fast-paced cop drama. It's just that now we also have the subtext of finding out what road we take to the close.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    [Garbus] captures the epic, almost mythical scope of his talent and thus the tragic height of his fall.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    By shrewd editing and maybe a little luck, the contestants here almost immediately give off the same sense of camaraderie as the "Glee" cast in its warmer, more sentimental moments, like when they're in a competition and realizing that better individual efforts only enhance the whole.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    One of the new season's potentially best sitcoms is born.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    These four hours pack as much intensity and darkness as 22 episodes of many other police shows.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    While the move to New York opens new story lines, the first episode doesn't feel like a city show. It has a sprinkling of exteriors, but it doesn't feel as if it's really happening here yet. With a little time, though, Nancy can make just about anything work.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Once you sort out all the teams and players, Game of Thrones falls together like a good Western. But you may need all 167 hours, at least at first, to do the sorting.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Curb remains an acquired taste. Still, even if you never watched a minute of the previous seven seasons, you can tune in and get some laughs. Guilty and otherwise.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A strong documentary that examines a sympathetic yet imperfect character while admitting it's impossible to pin down his precise impact on history.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If the dramas are exaggerated, Jenna makes the trauma feel legitimate, and her narration gives everything a knowing undertone of humor and self-awareness that keeps the most uncomfortable moments from being painful.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    No, The Hour is unlikely to remind anyone of "Mad Men." Except that it's superior period drama with a deliberate pace.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Lifetime's new Against the Wall turns out to be first-rate drama. In fact, it's one of the best new shows of the year.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Jenna's buoyancy in a life of constant land mines keeps Awkward fun and refreshing.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This year, once again, Benedict Cumberbatch's modern-day Holmes and his intrepid sidekick Dr. John Watson (Martin Freeman) provide breathtaking non-stop exhilaration.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If something has been missing from your TV screen since "24" went off the air, like an unapologetic, fist-pumping, nonstop action thriller with compelling good guys and loathsome bad guys, Cinemax's new Strike Back needs to be your appointment television for the next 10 weeks.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Some viewers won't buy the premise of the Social Security numbers. Its beauty, though, is that you don't have to.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Like many sitcoms, 2 Broke Girls stretches a little to set up the premise, but once it gets there we're sold, mainly because the two lead actresses are funny and endearing with great chemistry.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Montgomery's last gig on CBS, "Without a Trace," lasted seven years. Unforgettable has a ways to go, but it's got a lot of the right stuff.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Boardwalk Empire loses sight of neither the large nor the small pictures as it moves into season two.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Despite living on pay-cable, Homeland also doesn't feel obliged to create explicit moments just because it can. But it's also possible it's just keeping something in reserve--a lot like its compelling characters.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Boss makes the stories compelling and chilling all over again.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Where it diverges [from many trappings of a Western] is the lack of white hats and black hats. The axis of good and bad is constantly shifting, which is part of what makes the story intriguing.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    What the show doesn't say, but wouldn't mind our noticing, is that even today we should be very careful about giving up some part of our freedom because someone tells us it will "solve" some other problem.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If these all sound like the same kinds of dramas that would go on in any American community anywhere, they are. That's the point.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's not that we haven't seen the polar regions before. But this special, narrated by Alec Baldwin, puts it all together in a way that makes it feel consistently more intriguing than the nature films you remember from school.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Method to the Madness leaves no doubt, in any case, about the appreciation he has inspired in others over the years, and not just the French.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The Loving Story is a different kind of 1960s civil rights tale, one that in many ways has a deeper level of warmth.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It remains a show to which the viewer must pay close attention.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's gripping stuff, seamlessly blending the larger tension of the world with the smaller dramas back at 165 Eaton.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Season four continues the good work of past seasons by building on all the trouble Jackie has heaped upon herself.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's popcorn TV well worth settling in to watch.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    After an episode or two, when you sort out the characters and how their lives bang together in the dark, elegant shadows of late-1950s Miami Beach, you'll find rich drama, well written and beautifully styled.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    One of the triumphs of Boss is that we care as much as he [Tom Kane] does about what kind of Chicago he will leave behind.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Hatfields & McCoys doesn't just explain a feud, it humanizes the people on both sides and reminds us how differently some of our ancestors lived just a few generations back.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A lot of viewers may say, "I can't watch this." It will reward those who do.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Sherlock Holmes may hail from two centuries ago, but Elementary, this latest incarnation of the old chap, produces the the season's best new broadcast drama.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Watching this show feels like walking around Manhattan, and you don't have to be a dog person to think that's fun.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's nicely crafted with a slower pace than the average police "procedural," but more than enough character intrigue to compensate.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    In between the romantic dramas, a lot of sharply written comedy and some long passages of news-wonk stuff, it aims to make viewers do a little thinking.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Nashville plays as a smartly written and well-appointed soap.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a show about someone trying to figure out life, one little thing at a time, and realizing that sometimes, hey, you can't.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The dialogue can be crisp, sharp and witty, particularly among colleagues in both the White House and at the Globe.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a big cast where every piece fits, and at least upfront, the writing and jokes are good enough that Anger Management only uses sex gags where they work, not to cover up any lack of other ideas.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Kurt Sutter's epic tale of an outlaw California motorcycle club launches its fifth season Tuesday with the same visceral intensity that stamped season four.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    In many ways, Branagh's Wallander slides seamlessly into a long line of screen detectives who think more loudly than they talk.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Maybe the best new sitcom of the fall is one of the first.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Some Dexter fans have thought the show meandered around for the last couple of seasons as if it were waiting for something to happen. Now it has.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Lots of location shots give Strike Back an unusually acute sense of realism, and the show wisely spends more time with the boys in the field than with the command unit back home.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This handoff is clean.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A half-dozen plots routinely swirl around Copper, banging into each other. Levinson and the cast never let them unravel.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Life is annoying Nucky Thompson as Boardwalk Empire starts its third season, and that gives this first-rate show just the push-off it needs.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Bomb Girls isn't a fancy show. It's just a whole bunch of good stories.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Just the beginning scene, which lasts almost six minutes before anyone says a word, will plunge everyone right back into a world where there may be no way out.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    No one in Westeros is going soft, and there is no shortage of intrigue and sly drama that doubtless foreshadows death, destruction and plentiful violence to come.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Superb performances by Toby Jones as Hitchcock and Sienna Miller as Hedren keep the story alive and moving.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    For outlining the way Cornelius Vanderbilt, John D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, J.P. Morgan and Henry Ford literally shaped the America in which we still live, this special stands as tall as Rockefeller Center.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The jokes flow nicely, the music is fun, and the pop culture references will make almost everyone smile.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    You don't have to know a thing about "Firefly" to enjoy this fascinating victory dance.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The Dust Bowl sounds like a dry subject, no cheap pun intended, and Burns works hard to humanize it by talking with some of the now-elderly people who made it through.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    As with "Mad Men," we all recognize the workplace dynamic here. And as in "Mad Men," it's satisfying to see it dramatized in such a fresh and knowing way.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    As the plot simmers and thickens, Restless keeps its focus on the core story, avoiding the temptation to become a war epic. This serves viewers well. Call it December's best-bet sleeper.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Brooks makes it fresh, and not just because he comments on clips from "Blazing Saddles" or "Your Show of Shows," the seminal TV show he worked on with Sid Caesar in the early 1950s.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    For viewers, most of the jokes still click.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    It's a premise that requires as much clever dramatic footwork as you might expect, and creator Joe Weisberg, a former CIA agent, handles the challenge.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    The trump card of Hollow Crown, of course, is that it was written by Shakespeare--and if the language sounds stilted to modern ears, anyone who listens for more than a few minutes will be properly seduced.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    If you can make it through Monday's first episode of Fox's much-anticipated new suspense drama 'The Following,' you have some intense, but high-quality, television ahead.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Arrested Development often feels like an interwoven series of droll sketch comedies, which means viewers can walk in at almost any time and enjoy the gags.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    A Cherry drama rises or falls on the pretty simple test of whether it’s fun, and Devious Maids has the right stuff to get to there.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    HBO’S new miniseries Parade’s End won’t stop the “Downton Abbey” DTs. But it can soothe the pain with wonderful visuals and superb performances by Benedict Cumberbatch, Rebecca Hall and Adelaide Clemens.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    For all the familiar elements here, however, nothing feels like a gimmick. It’s a crime-and-cop story with enough time to paint detailed pictures of all the people the murder affects.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Top of the Lake doesn’t fully get rolling for a while. Happily, Moss doesn’t let us become disinterested.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    In the end, the movie transcends the legal chess match, defining itself instead by the sheer wattage of Spector’s personality and his high-level sparring with a woman whose brains match his own, minus the madness.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    [Holder and Linden are] fascinating to watch as they work around Holder’s lazy partner and strong new characters who include a brilliant psychopath about to be executed.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    Sunday’s opening of season five proves again that Falco makes this show, primarily by connecting all the passageways between comedy and tragedy.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 David Hinckley
    This HBO special, it must be noted up front, is not for all ages. Like the other best comedians, though, Louis never seems to tack on the graphic subject matter and language simply for shock. His nongraphic bits are also just as funny, like his riff on divorce and parenting.