James Poniewozik

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For 572 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 41% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 55% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

James Poniewozik's Scores

Average review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Game of Thrones: Season 5
Lowest review score: 0 I Wanna Marry Harry: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 59 out of 572
572 tv reviews
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 James Poniewozik
    Justice's legal cases are not especially shocking or original, and the supporting characters are empty suits. But it's fascinating to watch for its style.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 James Poniewozik
    Despite energy and a surprisingly timely premise, it generates only sparks and smoke.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    Fast and aggressive as a Porsche on an L.A. freeway, Action is a little in love with its own transgressiveness, but when it passes up broad, vulgar humor for smart, vulgar humor, it's the best excuse you'll find this fall for kicking the kids out of the living room.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 James Poniewozik
    I feel that there's a really good dark comedy about the decline of the American dream struggling to emerge from the often-forced plots.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    It's fun if a little forgettable, and the joy it takes in its characters discovering their new powers so far works better than the fairly familiar parent-child conflicts and midlife crises that play out in the background.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    What Prison Break lacks in plausibility--basically, everything--it makes up for in plotting, pacing and panache.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    Imperfect but chilling.... In the end, Sleeper Cell is every bit as nailbiting as 24, with one crucial difference: neither the terrorists nor the Feds are supergeniuses.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    Even the best version of The Leftovers, if it proves a complete creative success, will not be a show for everyone. Yet it believes fervently, messily, heartbreakingly, that even two percent of everyone means more than you can imagine.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    This My Name Is Girl concept may be outlandish, but Ex List is also fresh and raunchily funny (there's a scene in the pilot comparing feminine waxing choices to historical figures--the "Hitler," the "Gandhi") and Reaser is winning and adorable.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    While the series is inconsistent, it offers enough surprises to make it worth opening and reopening the door.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 James Poniewozik
    Political Animals, an inconsistent, sometimes ludicrous, but also juicily fun political soap, is about something that ultimately makes for better TV: the idea of Hillary Clinton.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    So far it works.... Asylum feels like a more focused, if equally frenetic, screamfest. It's also gorgeously realized.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 James Poniewozik
    Lie to Me's pilot is brisk anthropological fun.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    The show is filled with Lettermanesque non sequiturs and '70s pop-culture arcana... but it has heart too.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 42 James Poniewozik
    As with any knockoff, the onus is on The Fashion Show to offer something different and better, and so far it does neither.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 James Poniewozik
    Noah read his material with good timing, shifting from sly to authoritative to snarky. What’s less clear yet is if he can be off-the-cuff funny.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    Bored to Death is good, very good--but it's pilot isn't, so it wouldn't be terrible to miss it or see it late.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 James Poniewozik
    Rock Center may not be a ratings smash, and not all of its experiments may work. But the good news is, Williams and Stewart can both keep their day jobs.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    It's an uneven Coen Brothers--like mix of dark comedy and darker moral drama, but Cranston is amazing as a desperate, conflicted gangsta-nerd.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 40 James Poniewozik
    Hot in Cleveland, in other words, is like an artificially created rerun, as if someone discovered the masters of a sitcom that had been locked up in a vault since 1987. And I don't mean that in a good way.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 James Poniewozik
    It’s a familiar theme, but thrillingly executed in the early going.... Like many streaming series, though, it seems to be marking time in the middle (Amazon previewed six of 10 episodes for critics), as the characters try to escape Belize and the plot tosses them among so many frying pans and fires that the whole thing threatens to overcook.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 James Poniewozik
    It's the sort of talky tedious drama that is far less intelligent than it clearly thinks it is.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 James Poniewozik
    A globe-spanning series that offers in ambition, action and visual panache what it lacks in coherence, fleshed-out characters and plausible dialogue.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    There's a sweet, good-hearted minuteness of observation to the show, which manages to work in middle-of-the-night wakings and diaper changes without going for obvious gags.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 James Poniewozik
    Hannah's normalcy is refreshing, and it keeps the show light and funny. But it also makes her seem a little dull and shallow.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 40 James Poniewozik
    As with many other instances of men sharing their feelings, Love is better in theory than in practice.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    The pilot... iis actually the least funny of the three episodes I saw; in the other two, "Sarah" and the other characters are much better developed and the stories hang together better. Still, it's an acquired tastelessness.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 James Poniewozik
    The three episodes NBC screened, especially the two past the pilot, aren’t bad, really; they’re studiously un-bad to the point of blandness. The supporting characters are thin types.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 James Poniewozik
    Life's Too Short can be uncomfortably funny in a familiar way, and if you're OK with the familiarity, you might like it well enough. But the problem with the humor of discomfort, which Gervais pioneered with distinction, is that it doesn't last long when it becomes a comfort zone.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 James Poniewozik
    The charming pilot swerves quickly from the expected Bravo-reality-show-catfight scenario and becomes something more complicated and rewarding: a good-hearted comedy about an extended family (including Pete’s two ex-wives) figuring out how to make itself work on the fly.

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