For 413 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 22% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 73% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 9.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Mike Hale's Scores

Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 90 Louis C.K.: Oh My God
Lowest review score: 10 Amish Mafia: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 30 out of 413
413 tv reviews
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Some viewers won't find much of anything in Bob's Burgers funny, but in fairness it's at least partly a question of style--of whether you respond to the show's minimalist, conversational, antijoke aesthetic.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    This narrative pokiness is redeemed, as usual, by the machine-tooled professionalism of the production, the lavish attention to the mock-medieval costumes and setting, and the mostly crisp, understated acting by the international cast.... More than ever, though, you may find yourself impatient for the plot to wind around to the more engaging story lines.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Episodes end with a sit-down interview labeled "Amy Goes Deep"--everything on this show is a double-entendre--in which Ms. Schumer might talk to a sex columnist, a phone-sex operator or a pornography cameraman. That’s a lot of extra business for a half-hour sketch show, and as charming and quick on her feet as Ms. Schumer is in these segments, they can feel like filler.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Mr. Cox and Elden Hanson, as Foggy, do earnestness well and put across the sometimes dopey dialogue better than you’d have a right to expect. There’s not, however, a lot of wit or shading to their performances--the writing can be blamed, but they could be doing more to amplify it, to make the show more fun. For that, we can turn to Deborah Ann Woll, who jolts the show to life every time she appears as Karen.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    It's decent popcorn TV, if you've got nothing better to do.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is great to look at. It moves along at a gallop, and it’s not boring, even if it’s not exactly engaging either. Most important, it has appealing performances by Bertie Carvel as Strange and particularly by Eddie Marsan as the crabbed and proud Norrell.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    It's all just window dressing on a standard crime drama, however, and while the pilot sets up running story lines involving the gangster and the officials he controls, they feel squeezed and a little perfunctory.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    As palace-bound melodramas go, Victoria is perfectly easy to watch, as long as you don’t mind that it never for a second feels as if you were watching something that could actually have taken place in the mid-19th century.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    As crime shows go, it’s pretty good. As comic book shows go, it’s a demonstration of how tricky it can be to turn a comic book into a show.... It’s just that too much of the story feels indistinct, like disconnected chunks of a much-better-than-average cop show.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    It has the show’s virtues--its loose, casual vibe, the gorgeous San Francisco locations and the excellent performances by Mr. Groff and by Murray Bartlett, as Patrick’s levelheaded friend Dom. It also has its faults, including some surprisingly flat acting for an HBO project and a tendency to get dull when the script moves away from the personal and into the larger issues of the gay community. Those glitches are more noticeable in an 85-minute film than they were in half-hour weekly episodes.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The first few episodes of Santa Clarita Diet suffer from an excessive amount of gore--as if Mr. Fresco was afraid we wouldn’t get the joke--and the last third of the season flattens out as the mystery and thriller elements take over. But there’s a stretch in the middle where Mr. Fresco and his writers have a lot of fun subverting the formulas of the suburban comedy.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Death Valley's scattershot satire has so many targets--scary-monster series, cop shows, mockumentaries, Hollywood posers, the suburban weltschmerz of the Valley--that despite the lackluster production and hit-and-miss writing some of the jokes are likely to connect.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Ringer is nearly all melodramatics, but the pilot has a throwback, B-movie vibe that's entertaining--empty calories, but with a little kick.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    It still has plenty of clever touches in word and picture.... But it’s not particularly scary, and doesn’t even feel that creepy or freakish, despite the sideshow setting and the obvious attempt to emulate one of the eeriest of American movies, Tod Browning’s “Freaks,” from 1932.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Mr. Gregg hits the same appealing note of wry authority that he struck in “The Avengers” (it’s not yet clear whether he has any others), and the newcomer Brett Dalton shows some charm as a Bond-style operative. Joss Whedon, meanwhile, has fun with the show’s obligatory jabs of self-awareness.... The first week’s adventure feels perfunctory, though, even given the constraint of introducing characters and back story, and most of the team members are still strictly two-dimensional.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Credibility aside, the slow disintegration plays out in satisfyingly tense if formulaic fashion.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Kirstie, with Ms. Alley mugging through her role as a kindhearted narcissist, is more like the Ford Focus. If it’s late and it’s all the rental company has left, you might as well take it.... Rhea Perlman is funny as Thelma, but the real revelation of Kirstie is Michael Richards as the shady chauffeur, Frank.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Some of these segments are quite amusing, but they're rarely more amusing than they would have been if published in The Onion (the newspaper or the Web site).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The story ends with a final, not quite believable, flourish on John's part, but Mr. Mackintosh carries it off, riding comfortably above his middling material.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The series is in the "NYPD Blue" and "Southland" vein, trying for realism. It isn't in those shows' league, but it's a welcome change from the glossy triviality of other summer filler like "Rookie Blue" or "The Good Guys."
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Hatfields & McCoys is a perfectly respectable piece of work, and probably better than we could have expected for a History mini-series....The mini-series's main problem is that six-hour running time.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The execution of this premise, which takes up not quite the first half of the pilot, is taut, fast-moving and reasonably believable, offering some promise that Designated Survivor could develop into an entertaining hybrid of political thriller and family drama. Once Kirkman arrives at the White House, though, the momentum fades as various tedious-looking subplots are introduced, and disbelief becomes more difficult to suspend.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Do No Harm is a resolutely lightweight entertainment whose silliness isn't necessarily a deal breaker--if you turn off the right parts of your brain, you might enjoy it.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The result--for the person with a casual interest in cars, anyway--is a show that at this point lacks the character of the British original but is, particularly in its second and third episodes, reasonably entertaining by American reality-TV standards.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    The low-key, improvisatory nature of the work can strike some as remarkably natural and authentic, and others as fingernails-on-the-blackboard exasperating. ... [The actors are] all good, though only Ms. Mbatha-Raw really breaks through the restraints of the short format and delivers something powerful.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    When you get beyond the premise--Ginny Baker (Kylie Bunbury), a minor leaguer who throws in the high 80s and has a highly effective screwball, gets called up by the San Diego Padres to make a start--you’ll find that Pitch is a highly conventional sports tale, a fastball down the middle rather than a darting curve. You’ll also discover that the soap opera beats and sylvan images of the traditional baseball picture are still pretty effective.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Watching "Sherlock" is like dropping in on old friends who are as smart and sarcastic as ever but don’t seem to have as much joy in their lives anymore.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    It would be nice to report that Vinyl sustains the momentum Mr. Scorsese establishes in the pilot, but through five episodes, it tends to bog down.... But the show quickly begins giving less time to the music and more to duller, formulaic plot lines including a marital crisis, a murder investigation and a female secretary’s attempts to break the hemp ceiling of the recording business. You might want to keep “Vinyl” spinning, though, if only for Bobby Cannavale’s smart, sardonic portrayal of Richie Finestra.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Matador is definitely B-level--serviceable dialogue, not-quite-cartoonish characters, gimmicky editing--but it’s not grindhouse.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Mike Hale
    Mr. Hodge and Mr. Crouch, who share the writing in the early episodes, can’t seem to find the balance between suspense and incipient romance. The best part of the show is the sniping banter between Ms. Dockery and Mr. Botto, but there isn’t enough of it, and it’s so out of tune with the mystery and murder plot--which is grim and rather pedestrian--that you’re never really prepared for it.

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