Neil Genzlinger

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For 352 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 50% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 7.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Neil Genzlinger's Scores

Average review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Fargo: Season 2
Lowest review score: 10 Stalker: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 38 out of 352
352 tv reviews
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Neil Genzlinger
    The new season offers even more [with casting], with delicious results.... An entertaining season of this sublime series.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Neil Genzlinger
    The core portion of Jackie Robinson’s story is so familiar that Part 1 of the new Ken Burns treatment of it may not seem like vital viewing. But Part 2 examines Robinson’s later, less celebrated years, completing a portrait of an eventful life that, in the popular mind, is often confined to the ball field.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Neil Genzlinger
    A blistering, demented animated series.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s a vehicle for two graying actors that gives both a chance for tour-de-force performances, and in the new television version Monday on Starz, a couple of esteemed veterans, Anthony Hopkins and Ian McKellen, get about as much out of the tale as there is to get.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Neil Genzlinger
    An absorbing film by Michael Tucker and Petra Epperlein, has both [insight and subtlety], making it as rewarding as it is thought-provoking.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 90 Neil Genzlinger
    [The] brilliantly deranged animated show returns for a second season Sunday on Adult Swim, picking up where it left off: with time stopped.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It doesn’t try to be the movie or outdo it in terms of fright factor, nor does it provide any reasons for mockery. It’s well-made, well-acted television, which is more than can be said for some of the reboots rolling out this fall.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    A deranged series that is simultaneously the highest possible use of the medium and the most profound statement ever made about the human condition. Also, it's hilarious, in an I'm-ashamed-to-be-laughing-at-this sort of way.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The casting is delicious, the characters and their stories grow more complex with each episode, and Graham and Roxanna find that you can’t serve the rich without becoming caught in the quicksand of greed. And you know how quicksand works. The harder you struggle against it, the farther it sucks you in.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The advice here is to forget the politics and enjoy the performances and the trip back in time.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Michael Ian Black is the wonderfully deadpan moderator, overseeing a debate between two two-person teams that uses the familiar structure: arguments, responses, closing arguments and so on. ... What makes it all work, though, is that these debaters aren’t merely improvising, which would have resulted in lazy comedy, at best. They have put in serious preparation time.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s been brought into the present (Clarke’s jumping-off point was the Cold War space race), but the depth and ambition are still there.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The smooth telling of Russo's story juxtaposed against the present day, when gay marriage is sanctioned in some states and gay characters are all over prime-time television, drives home how different the cultural landscape is from the one Russo knew.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    This is a deceptively difficult form to nail; often those who try end up with little more than a collection of flatulence jokes. Done right, though, as it is in "Galavant," a mindless comedy is not the same as a dumb comedy. It’s smart, just in a carefree way.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    An unpredictably enjoyable ride.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The show’s premise could easily have made this a silly enterprise, but with Mr. Skarsgard’s tight performance anchoring things, it instead is a first-rate psychological study.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    This is a thoughtful series that lingers over death rather than using it for shock value; one that finds its story lines in small power struggles rather than gruesome palace coups.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    In general, the program successfully walks a fine line between glorifying technology and treating it as a curiosity. No one knows where all this is headed, but Dark Net is at least peering into the possible futures with more sophistication than most.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    A well-chosen supporting cast rounds things out.... And yes, they are self-absorbed, hypercritical people who you would and should hate. But the reason the show works is that, very subtly, it’s mocking them. Julie and Billy are all about self-loathing, and they invite you to loathe right along with them.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Under the Dome gets off to an addictive start on Monday, so much so that it’s hard to imagine any second-episode falloff in viewership.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    In any given episode, all three of these actresses may be called upon for slapstick comedy (for Ms. Metcalf, in the season premiere, there’s an outlandish scene in a bathroom stall), deadpan humor and actual pathos, since their patients are often frail, facing dementia or outright dying. And they deliver with nuanced performances that turn quick glances or sighs into punch lines.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Starz, though, knows the formula for these costume-heavy action dramas from experience with shows like “Spartacus” and “Camelot.” And that formula is executed with particular skill in Black Sails, thanks to some strong performances and an exploration of the consequences of greed that could have come out of modern-day Wall Street.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Ms. Bans employs a flashback structure that keeps things lively, repeatedly revisiting the day that Adam vanished from different angles. Yes, this show is guilty-pleasure fare, but, at least after two episodes, it holds interest rather well, and it has only just begun to open all those closets where family secrets hide.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    When Salem isn’t being deliberately outrageous, it’s cultivating a dynamic that could be fruitful as things move along.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Every so often a staff member, usually DiDi, is shown in a quiet moment with a patient, providing actual care. These small scenes end up being surprisingly moving because this fictional hospital unit, in all its ridiculousness, feels somehow true to life.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Just when the crowd thinks it knows where he’s going, he jerks the string and sends things in a different direction, to great effect. It’s a gimmick that takes a refined sense of timing and a mastery of misdirection, and Mr. Cosby, who is 76, shows that he still has both.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It hardly needs saying that Ms. Silverman’s material is not for everybody.... But she isn’t spewing things out randomly, hoping to get by on shock value. The execution is fairly intricate.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Once the annual avalanche of Halloween-themed episodes, specials and movies overtakes TV, you probably don't expect to be using the word "charming" very often. But charming perfectly describes one such entry, Toy Story of Terror!
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Like some of television’s more out-there animated shows, this one is hard to describe beyond broad outlines, because it’s so odd, a combination of droll and naughty that seems improbable but works deliciously.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The shock bar is set pretty high, but Season 7 proves up to the task, if subtly. For the new football season, the league switches from a snake draft to an auction draft.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Though these people may not resemble any job seekers you know, the portraits feel about as honest as reality TV gets.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    [David Attenborough] has eschewed the soapbox in favor of subtlety. This program (the series producer is Tom Hugh-Jones) does, too, for the most part.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    We’ve come to expect an eclectic mix from the American Horror Story anthology, and the formula works particularly well in this installment, thanks to uninhibited work by the big-name cast.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The main reason to watch is for its signature gimmick, a set tilted at 22 degrees, where, several times per episode, performers are imprisoned and told to improvise a scene.... There’s no describing how hysterical this is; you have to see it.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The real stars are the designers, and it's an eclectic bunch, some already working in the industry, others who dream to.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It would make an interesting documentary even without Mr. Tyson. With him, it becomes a personal test for the viewer.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It features lots of erections, absurd couplings and R-rated language. But it’s also smart and deliriously unpredictable. Even the throwaway lines are gems.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    A ridiculously enjoyable but mighty raunchy stop-motion animated series.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The program finds the human moments in the big-picture timeline.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Humans, a British product based on a Swedish series, feels fresh nonetheless, thanks to a multiple-plotline approach, a deft cast and its refusal to be simplistic.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The program consists of just clips and still images with an occasional caption. No academics in office-chair interviews interpret things for you. No survivors grow weepy while dredging up their decades-old memories. No narration intrudes. The idea is to come closer to putting you in the historical moment, to give you a sense of what people experienced and felt at the time. It works quite well for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Mr. Burns and Ms. Novick, commendably, don't beat you over the head with the obvious lessons for those today who would legislate personal behavior; they largely let the story of Prohibition speak for itself.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The plotting and pacing are what draw you in. The series works like a good page-turner.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    A documentary on PBS that has little to do with the war but is quietly revelatory, just as that earlier work was.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The show probably doesn’t need to resort to voice-overs as often as it does, but it’s generally pretty smart, witty and well acted, and not afraid to turn dark on occasion.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The Challenger investigation story doesn’t have quite the level of malfeasance or the cloak-and-dagger undertones of other movies about real-life government or business debacles. But it still makes for an absorbing tale, one that seems well timed for our current moment of bungled websites, unrestrained eavesdropping and public skepticism.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    As with most things Forrest tries in this drolly hilarious show, neither goes quite as planned.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    If Mr. Spielberg’s "Lincoln" achieves greatness largely through the detailed performances of Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and others, Killing Lincoln also has details to recommend it--historical details, the kind of tidbits that (along with Mr. Hanks’s assured narration) can hold your attention, even though the tale is familiar.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    As it starts Season 3 on Monday night, it has evolved into a deftly acted story of small-town dysfunction, creepy when it needs to be yet far more wide ranging than the movie that inspired it.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It takes things nice and easy, ending with a lot still to be conveyed as to who is who and what is what in this lush show about the police and the mob in 1947 Los Angeles. But your patience is likely to be rewarded. Episode 2, also being shown on Wednesday, brings things nicely into focus, and prospects seem good that this six-episode series will be a satisfying trip back in time.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    S3 cranks up the absurdity level to hilarious proportions.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    If your own family is anything like the clan in this delightfully demented show, seek help immediately.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The work is different, but personality-wise, Archer and his comrades are much the same. At least at first. The show seems to be giving itself license to explore.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The whole enterprise is wrapped in a big-budget look and served with a respect for the ability of young minds to perceive offbeat, incongruous humor, the very quality that made the books so successful in the first place.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    All of the actors are good; Mr. Raymond-James is scary good; and the story rips along at a brisk pace. No one who works in the penal system will like the portrayals here, but lovers of mystery and suspense could easily be hooked.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    As with all of the best examples of this genre--this film was not made to provide a feel-good moment that enables us to go back to forgetting about the bombing and those most affected by it. It was made to remind us that recovery is far harder and more complex than we realize.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Harder is capturing the tone of another era. The Duffers manage that quite well, too, thanks to a fine sense of restraint that increasingly seems a lost art these days. There are a few good shocks here, but mostly there is patience. None of it would work without solid acting, and the series has that in abundance.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s sophisticated, well-acted television for a warm-weather series.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s built on sharp writing and equally sharp acting, as any good series needs to be.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s an exceedingly watchable history lesson.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Absurdity is the only real agenda here, and The Tick hits that target. Whether that is enough remains to be seen. The daffiest shows sometimes flame out early, and in its aggressive incongruity The Tick is certainly a descendant of "Police Squad," an experimental classic that lasted just a few episodes.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    This quietly addictive program isn't really about what goes on inside the Big Apple's single ring. It's about the people, both under the lights and behind them, who make those performances possible.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Storage Wars is an especially entertaining addition to the genre. Who doesn't love the sound of an auctioneer's voice? Beyond that, the four buyers on whom the show focuses are well chosen, and the "reveals"--the moments when the buyers see what they've acquired and get estimates of its value--are great fun.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    If the longstanding "SNL" segment is a sort of introductory course in wringing humor from headlines, and Mr. Stewart's "Daily Show" is the advance-level class, Onion News Network is graduate school, requiring much quicker thinking and a greater tolerance for comfort-zone invasion.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Because everyone in the Duck dynasty has a well-defined role and sticks to it, the bit works. So does the show.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Mr. Moura is inscrutably brilliant at the center of it all.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Valentine Road, directed by Marta Cunningham, is clear in its sympathy for Mr. King, but it is also bracingly willing to explore other sides of this disturbing case and complex subject.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s hard to imagine even the haters not enjoying Annie: It’s the Hard-Knock Life, From Script to Stage, a delightful documentary.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    It’s not loud or frenetic. It’s not particularly cutting-edge. It’s just funny, in a relaxed way that’s welcome somehow in a television spectrum full of pushiness and intensity.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The movie, adapted by Mr. Kramer and directed by Ryan Murphy, simultaneously exposes some of the play’s flaws and finds alternate sources of power in the story.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The list of people who have been reviled and labeled, explicitly or subtly, as something less than human is long: blacks, Jews, foreigners, people with AIDS, people with disabilities. Zombies notwithstanding, this appealing series, created and written by Dominic Mitchell, works this territory as credibly as any more conventional drama.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    For the most part, though, The A Word feels true and honest. Other shows that have used characters with disabilities for secondary plotlines have often seemed simplistic or glib, going for quick tears or feel-good moments. This one’s unblinking, and more powerful for it.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Beneath the light moments and the spy-versus-spy stuff, the series has a perspective that makes it refreshing.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    A succinct and well-conceived documentary.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    CW's Oh Sit!, a raucous competition show is a hilarious return to the childhood you never had--the fun, danger-filled, almost-anything-goes one.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Sometimes this focus on technology feels a bit heavy-handed, but in general this is a series that seems to be growing more assured as it goes along.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    [David Holbrooke] puts just enough of himself and his extended family into The Diplomat to give it some audience-friendly poignancy.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Mr. Cranston keeps it watchable with a performance that grows ever more fervent but never goes over the top.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Maron may not delve that deeply [into substance abuse]--by Episode 2 of the new season, Marc is showing signs that he’s the same irksome guy in rehab that he was before. But if nothing else, the premiere does effectively, yet comedically, show two truths of substance abuse: Addicts need enablers who fuel their problem, either deliberately or inadvertently, and most need someone to intervene to help them climb out of the pit.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    In its first season, Difficult People distinguished itself with such fast-paced, snippy dialogue, but the show has become more than just a series of quick jokes. The writing has grown increasingly intricate.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    The series is structured as an ever-evolving medical detective story, but the filmmakers give it heart as well by juxtaposing the history lessons with present-day personal profiles of cancer patients.... It’s a well-conceived approach to a subject that in other hands might have been dry. Still, be prepared to give it your full attention.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Neil Genzlinger
    Staking out a distinctive place within the genre isn’t easy. Penny Dreadful tries to do so with a combination of literary allusion, fine acting, patience and fearlessness, which, at least for the first two episodes, clicks deliciously.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    The presentation is familiar, maybe a little too familiar, by now: actors reading journal entries; vintage photographs lovingly panned; historians adding commentary.... But Mr. Burns, cutting between [Theodore and Franklin's] life stories, probes the intersections with playful insight.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Vikings is a mini-series about a band of professional pillagers with a disregard for human life and a relentless focus on gratifying material desires. So it is somewhat surprising that it is also a refreshing study in restraint.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    The premise sets it apart, the premiere promises a lot of plot wrinkles and a fast pace, and the acting (with a few exceptions) is decent.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    The funniest bits rely on incongruity rather than vulgarity. But even the crude stuff has a silver lining.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Lots of amusing cameos add to the fun.... Mr. Gaffigan may not be the greatest actor, but he has a genial charm, which is the first prerequisite to making a show like this work.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Not all of the sketches are home runs, but even in the weaker ones, it can be fun just trying to figure out which character she’s playing and how the crew managed to effect such a transformation.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    The premiere episode tends to lapse into a "You go, girl" mode typical of shallow treatments of disability, with fist-pumping and treacly background music.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Though the show is a drama, it is served up with a droll comic sensibility that is a refreshing change.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Limitless retains the flippant style of the movie, especially in Brian’s voice-overs, which distinguishes it from many of the others. The guy is a mega-genius, but he’s a likable one.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Jack is no Jeff, and this series, an old-school set-up-punch-line comedy, is no “Community.” That said, there are plenty of good laughs, and the show is an equal-opportunity roaster.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Would You Rather ...? With Graham Norton on BBC America proves that a fair amount of fun can be generated simply by putting people in chairs and letting them crack wise.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Mr. Pollan’s messages are important to hear and are engagingly presented in this series. Still, there’s a disconnect that’s never addressed.... The world’s poorest people--some seen in idyllic imagery here--have to devote long hours to basic subsistence, and the world’s relatively well off have the luxury to indulge in artisanal cooking. Yet applying his ideas across the whole range of human circumstances is a trickier subject than this pretty series wants to tackle.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    This Good Marty/Bad Marty dynamic may prove more fruitful for the show in the long run than the well-worn punching bag that is corporate America.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    By Episode 3, Wrecked is what it wants to be: An enjoyably mindless comedy well suited to the carefree months.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    Give this reasonably absorbing series a little credit, even though it often seems to be merely reworking various fantasy formulas. It moves quickly and does a nice job of weaving together two story lines involving an elfin world that is threatened when a giant tree.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    An often entertaining series.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    It actually manages to be thought-provoking once or twice per half-hour episode as it assaults its chosen subjects with wisecracks and skewed logic.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Neil Genzlinger
    [Justin Spitzer] keeps things fairly silly but does show a willingness to explore that most vexing of 21st-century problems: What is appropriate on-the-job behavior.

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