Matthew Gilbert
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For 827 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 7.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Matthew Gilbert's Scores

Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 Breaking Bad: Season 4
Lowest review score: 0 Rules of Engagement: Season 1
Score distribution:
827 tv reviews
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It is reverent enough, and profoundly heroic; and yet it is a living, breathing piece of work that brings American history down to earth.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Like "Lost," it has the potential to grow into a cross-genre drama that reaches beyond cultiness to all kinds of TV viewers.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    If you're looking for sexual tension amid the laugh track, or social and political point-making between the punchlines, then "Will & Grace" may not work for you. It's a sitcom that has the potential to prove to prime time that attractions between adults are not always rooted in lust. [21 Sep 1998]
    • Boston Globe
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Too often, TV's sci-fi creators fail to give us characters to identify with, focusing instead on special effects and plot manipulations. But the father-son-bond material in Falling Skies brings humanity to the story and grounds it in emotion rather than spectacle.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Project Greenlight distinguishes itself with its surprisingly warts-and-all approach. As it progresses, we get to see the sort of naked-ego shots and bottom-line talk you'd expect Miramax and its mob to have kept under wraps. [30 Nov 2001, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Thankfully, this season Dexter continues to play with our moral bearings, which is the show’s best quality.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Mazzello and Dale both add to the humanity of The Pacific with their committed performances, even when the disorienting narrative seems to be working against them.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    If you're prudish or just polite, in other words, you'll be turned off by all the happy offensiveness. If you're not turned off, though, you may be entertained, as I am. The show is the quintessential slacker comedy. [29 Jun 2006]
    • Boston Globe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    All the performances are rough and under-rehearsed, which makes them appealing. Costello also keeps the atmosphere relaxed during the interviews, never seeming too eager to interject his own commentary or jokes.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    If you haven’t figured this out yet, Man Seeking Woman is plenty weird. But it’s also wild, wily, and, depending on your taste for high-risk jokes that don’t always fly, wonderful.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    "Studio 60" is one of the best new dramas of the season, assuming you aren't Sorkin-phobic, and with some tweaking it could be the very best.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Unique, fresh, and quite entertaining. [1 Oct 2004]
    • Boston Globe
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The Walking Dead may depend more on suspense, desolate atmosphere, and creative storytelling than fine acting. The show takes a nightmare generally told in movies and opens it up for the medium of TV. I'm optimistic that Darabont & Co. will continue to find ways to make the characters interestingly human as they dodge death's slow, ruthless pursuit.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Izzard is a great surprise in FX's "The Riches," and just one of this fascinating new series' unexpectedly soulful pleasures.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    So much of the pleasure of Lost is in the way surprise twists arrive completely out of the blue.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    This melodrama isn't high TV art, or even middling; but it's dishy, farcical, and funny, as the willowy Serena (Blake Lively) and her circle prey on one another.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    They've pulled together a vivid cast and evoked the ideal tone - not comedy, not psychodrama, not sci fi, but an intriguingly evasive blend of them all.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    One of Colbert's strengths has always been wordplay, which is in full force on ''The Colbert Report" and gives the show an added level of wit.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    One of the pluses of Karen Sisco is that, true to Leonard's fiction, the fugitives Karen tracks are more than generic baddies. [1 Oct 2003, p.G1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Even when Leverage flirts with serious issues, including the mistreatment of an Army reservist who is shot in Iraq by a private contractor, the dramatic tone is whimsical and tongue in cheek. This motley crew is a kind of guerilla comedy troupe that can pick pockets and empty bank accounts, too.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Like ''Friends," this is not a big-themed series so much as a bunch of little character jokes and relationship confusions getting batted around by an able cast.
    • Boston Globe
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Linney and this role were made for each other. There are a few problems with The Big C. Occasionally, the tone veers off course into forced comic absurdity. But my cavils are irrelevant in the face of Linney's extraordinary work.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    30 Rock returns tonight with its best foot forward.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The entire series... has been amped up this time around. It's all gotten a little more Hollywood, even if it's as ensconced as ever in the plush offices and dramatic skyscrapers of New York. [9 Sep 2004]
    • Boston Globe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The show, as fast-paced as ever, is crammed with subplots this season, some of which will be more engaging than others.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    [It] passes quickly but gleefully.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    By episode 2, though, after the crammed (and super-sized) premiere, [creator] Weisberg reveals a sure sense of detail that bodes well for the future of the series.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It's not too early, however, to heap praise onto this astute, well-written show and its many specific wonders.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Dirty Sexy is right on the money.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Nashville falls somewhere in between the two extremes, a story that thrives on heightened melodrama and big twists but gives its characters more depth than you generally find in network lather-fests.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The abundance of material plays out naturally, in a nicely arranged script by John Pielmeier that leans heavily on the R-rated soap side of things. You'll probably get lost in the high melodrama while watching this massive chess game, where the pawns are as prominent as the bishops, the king, and the queen.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    If you enjoy slowly piecing together a puzzle without having first seen the final image, Rubicon is right up your alley; if not, the brainteasing will likely unnerve you.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The best of a recent group of heist dramas, including NBC's "Heist" and FX's "Thief."
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The FX drama returns for its fifth season tonight at 10, after a 19-month absence, and it returns to its former glory after an unfortunate fourth-season slump.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    A finely constructed docu-dramatic piece, Cinema Verite folds together the stories of the Louds of Santa Barbara and the PBS filmmakers who took over their home, and it adds in both real and expertly re-created footage from the 12 episodes of "An American Family."
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Olyphant creates a sense of suspended time whenever Raylan comes into contact with thugs--as if a gun standoff isn't so far from standing at a bar with a drink in hand. His Raylan is the kind of guy who doesn't say much, but gives us plenty to talk about.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The shamelessness of Nip/Tuck returns intact, which is a good thing.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    For a new series, Sports Night already has a nicely developed sense of ensemble and texture. Charles and Krause show a natural chemistry as anchors and friends, and Robert Guillaume has strong presence as the imposing executive producer. The most appealing actor, though, is Huffman, who is dynamic as the committed producer who lives only for airtime. She's got caffeine running through her veins. [22 Sept 1998, p.C1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    If the show can stay as gripping as its premiere... it will be a welcome new prime-time puzzle.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    I do think it has real potential to become a solid dramatic addition to the FX slate, as The Shield enters its final season.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The story line is expertly structured, especially after the first hour's exposition, as potential explanations emerge and the pieces begin to fit together. And the writers maintain an all-important sense of humor, not just with the one-liners among the team members but with shrewd social satire.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The actor [Lewis], who uses a flawless American accent, makes Life worth a gander. And he is surrounded by a distinctive cast.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Angel the WB's new child of "Buffy," is no ordinary spinoff, and it has the potential to become a witty hour of unearthly allegory in its own right. If it can maintain a sense of humor about itself, Angel, which stars David Boreanaz as Buffy's brooding former beau, may become one of those rare spinoffs that isn't merely a flat-out cash-in. [5 Oct 1999, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Still, even if Curb has lost some of its original wallop, it remains a great comedy of manners.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    I was surprised at how much adrenalized horror there is to be found in the story, as it races forward into bloody human-zombie battles and scary entrapments. This isn't a wink-winkfest so much as a sly screamfest, with lots of post-apocalyptic misery and carnage afoot.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    A strange, fascinating, and sometimes brilliant contemporary take on the father of forensic crime-solving.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Mr. Dynamite isn’t hagiography, and we hear enough about Brown’s personal flaws to make him quite human.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    After the forced setup, evolves into a rich portrait of hard lives and the possibility of healing. By episode 3, the miniseries feels like a smart crime novel, steeped in very specific locales and individuals.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    I promise you will roll your eyes at least once. And yet, each hour is so spellbinding, you may not realize you're leaving grip marks on your couch.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Those [dialogue] imperfections never jolted me out of the spell Copper casts.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The beautifully filmed half-hour comedy, lets Ullman clown around with her face and her voices and her wigs without confining her to too much story line.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    When you watch the show, which returns for season two tonight at 10, you'll find a legal thriller that's trashier and more fun than you might have expected.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    You'll love "The Sarah Silverman Program," but only if, like me, you have a healthy appetite for sick comedy.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Compared to the grittier British version, the American Queer as Folk has a sweet, romanticized aura. At times, it even recalls the TV adaptation of "Tales of the City." The script has plenty of conflict, and the sexuality is hard-core, but the show also exudes an ensemble coziness and jokiness that finds the gang gathering regularly for late-night snacks at Debbie's diner. [1 Dec 2000, p.F1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Like the epic Jenga tower that Phil is constructing, the show is really quite impressive, but it could all fall down just a little too easily.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    No gold mine of symbolism is worth a damn when the show itself doesn’t have good old storytelling mojo behind it. And, based on the premiere, V has enough narrative drive and character definition to pull viewers into the creepy suspense of its dystopian world.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Dexter enters season 3 on Sunday at 9 p.m. with an increasing--and pleasing--urge to make us like the curious man-child at its center.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It's witty, irreverent, and joyously juvenile.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    There's no false modesty here, just a level-headed look back as Belafonte recalls decades of music, family, and activism, but mostly activism.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey is certainly trippy and visually dazzling, but it’s also a big-thought-provoking series crammed with scientific and historical fact. Hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, it is a transporting mass of CGI special effects and cartoon sequences, but it has the heft and scope of cable’s most esteemed science series, “Planet Earth” and “Life.”
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The show unfolds like a rich, gritty, and addictive novel, with some surprising detours and lots of transporting, grainy imagery.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It’s an inviting, beautifully acted, and smartly written period drama set in the 1950s
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    As with most HBO series, "Curb Your Enthusiasm" isn't for everyone. Prerequisites include not only a desire for more of the best of "Seinfeld" but a willingness to go along with David's Brooklyn-bred grumpiness. [13 Oct 2000]
    • Boston Globe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It’s a remarkable performance in its straightforward simplicity; she’s like a feral animal ferociously protecting her secrets.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Breaking Bad works as an unabashedly bold story about a man in extremis, told with the iconographic and ironic sensibility of Quentin Tarantino.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    "The Boondocks" takes on racism the way ''All in the Family" did, by sending up ignorance and extremism rather than moralizing about them.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The impulse to protect his family comes much less naturally to David Duchovny's Hank Moody, the hero of Californication, which returns in top form for its second season.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The show no longer has that compelling air of discovery about it, since we know many of the characters well. But still, all of the small-town tensions and relationship undercurrents remain as direct and immediate and engaging as ever.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Everything else about A Poet in New York, which is timed to air alongside the centennial of Thomas’s birth, is small and underwhelming. That sounds like a damning complaint, but the limits of the script, by Andrew Davies, actually benefit Hollander’s performance to some extent.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    ''Big Love,"... is layered enough to do what HBO's ''The Sopranos" and ''Six Feet Under" have done so well: make atypical heroes knowable and universal. It pulls us into its parallel moral universe, rather than keep us standing outside in judgment.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Berg has done a fine job of lifting his series above familiar teen melodrama and making it into a group portrait of a town.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    There are a few revelations in this rich adaptation, concisely written for the screen by Lucinda Coxon.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The filmmakers deliver a fine balance of both elated big-gun worship and humiliated bathroom cleaning, melting-pot team-making and the cliquishness of ethnic groups.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Weird and jagged, inventive and energetic, Orphan Black is a small blessing. While Hollywood is busy cloning, this show about clones is a singular pleasure.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    They make an appealing team, and it doesn't hurt that they're chasing bad guys through the breathtaking--and HDTV-ready--beauty of Hawaii. There's nothing groundbreaking going on here, just old-fashioned action-adventure fun. New old-fashioned fun, that is.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It's funny, but painfully funny, as it skewers the world of banal sitcoms and youth-market mania. It's mean, but touching, too, as Kudrow's Valerie undergoes the humiliations of being a Nixed Big Thing. [3 June 2005, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The action is intense in "Sleeper Cell," and each episode includes at least one stunning moment of violence or betrayal. But character depth isn't sacrificed to keep the pace moving, and there are valuable calms between the storms.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Why watch The Wire if it's such tough-going--so difficult to follow and then, once followed, so pessimistic? Because it offers the kind of earned understanding that leads to progress.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The ABC show... is one of the pleasures of the new season, although it may strike some viewers as too conceptually loose to love.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Occasionally, logic is forsaken. But still The Escape Artist maintains its suspense despite the flaws, thanks to rich acting and smart direction.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    You don't like comedy that pushes the boundaries of good taste, you have no business here. But the material is presented with enough comic skill, cultural resonance, and clever mockery to rise above.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The Wire is a cop drama from top to bottom. It does take a systemic view of the issue, like "Traffic," Steven Soderbergh's drug-trade saga. But it never sacrifices drama and character for lecture. [31 May 2002, p.E14]
    • Boston Globe
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    All of the characters are misfits, and the pleasure of Party Down is watching the actors riff off one another as they go to extremes.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Orphan Black has the potential to be memorable entertainment, if they [creators Graeme Manson and John Fawcett] can continue to deliver each and every plot development with a human touch.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Collision is a satisfying emotional journey through the twists, turns, and overpasses of a dozen or so lives.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    ''24" is still an addictive amusement park ride of a show.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Based on the pilot, [the] mystery promises to be surprising, psychological, and addictive.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    I like Archer because it succeeds where so many of the snarky animated series tend to fail. Reed and his writers and voice actors balance all the pop satire and raunch with a strong sense of the characters.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Truly there can be something rich and lovely about hospitals, and there is something rich and lovely about Boston Med.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It's a more visceral impression of a band on fire, and as such it offers plenty of satisfaction.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    A surprisingly stylish adaptation of a story that would seem to be played out after so many incarnations on the small and big screens. If Smallville can keep its supernatural plots engaging, and avoid focusing solely on Clark Kent's familiar teen alienation, it could evolve into a top-tier WB series. [16 Oct 2001, p.D16]
    • Boston Globe
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    While it's not the triumph that "Downton" was, it's a special, lovely miniseries that lingers in your imagination like a richly drawn memoir.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The series is gripping, nicely styled, and smartly written, with a solid leading performance by Matthew Macfadyen as Inspector Edmund Reid, the head of H Division.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    No, it's not "groundbreaking," as HBO calls its programming. And I doubt it will give the ratings-slipping channel its much-needed hit. But it will probably find a small, loyal, "Deadwood"-size audience that enjoys a good serial melodrama charged up by a villainess named Atia who turns mothering into something akin to pimping. [26 Aug 2005, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    It’s honest, credible, trustworthy storytelling.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Every so often, a show arrives and instantly feels lived-in, like a comfortable old couch with slight depressions in all the right places. FX's Terriers is one of those shows, beautifully torn and frayed from the get-go.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    An eerie -- and excellent -- new series that makes ''24" look more than ever like a broadly drawn comic strip.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Never mind the clichés, because Duchovny makes his character worth watching, as he swaggers from bad predicament to bad predicament, pretending not to care about his life anymore.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    The story races forward happily and aggressively, but none of the plot strands among the many characters is ever dropped or given short shrift.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Matthew Gilbert
    Based on the first two episodes of season two, "24" returns tonight with the promise of another year of ambitious, outrageous, and addictive TV drama. [29 Oct 2002]
    • Boston Globe

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