For 961 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 55% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Rob Owen's Scores

  • TV
Average review score: 58
Highest review score: 100 Breaking Bad: Season 4
Lowest review score: 0 Dads: Season 1
Score distribution:
961 tv reviews
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    After suffering through too many poorly written, dramatically empty episodes of "Star Trek: Voyager," I was dreading the launch of UPN's "Enterprise" precisely because it came from "Voyager" executive producers Rick Berman and Brannon Braga. Maybe it's the diminished expectations or maybe they've actually come up with something decent, but tonight's two-hour "Enterprise" premiere is surprisingly satisfying. [26 Sep 2001]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Curb is filled with uncomfortable comedy, as always, but its humor stems from the relatable minutiae of everyday life, not unlike what viewers watched on "Seinfeld."
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    This season doesn't really kick into gear until night two, when Bill Buchanan (James Morrison) and Chloe (Marylynn Rajskub) return, operating outside the bounds of the government.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "CSI: Miami" is a carbon copy, for sure, but it's a copy of an efficient show millions of people enjoy watching. [23 Sep 2002]
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    An enjoyable addition to the long-lived genre. [12 July 2002]
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A pleasant surprise. [26 Jun 2003]
    • 46 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A little overheated, too obvious and too cliche-ridden. But it's still an entertaining yarn. [23 Sept 2003, p.B-1]
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Still a claustrophobic show, and some of the uncomfortable stories from last year -- especially teenager Matt (John Hensley) and his involvement in a hit and run -- return, but a lot of the themes are at least a little more palatable and thought-provoking. [22 June 2004, p.B-1]
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The first hour of Heroes answers enough questions and moves the story forward in such a way that a few "Huh?" moments won't matter as long as they're answered in short order and don't linger for too long.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's an entertaining hour sure to appeal to fans of A&E's equally fast-paced British import "MI-5."
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    To be sure, The Office is an acquired taste and sometimes a challenge to watch. Still, it's at least a worthy follow-up to the original, and it attempts to plot its own course in future episodes. [23 Mar 2005, p.E-1]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's a generally strong episode as House attempts to annoy his doctors so much that they'll sign off on his departure.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The episode is a fast-moving two hours that answers enough questions to satisfy fans and raises still more questions in an effort to further the intrigue.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    As creator Marc Cherry explained this summer, he wanted to re-set the series and get the stories back to something more closely resembling reality. Sunday's season premiere does that pretty well with some of the women's stories, especially Lynette (Felicty Huffman), whose twins are now terrible teens.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There is no mistaking "Boston Legal" for anything other than a Kelley office drama. The show and its characters have all the trademark tics that have become his calling card: Quirky cases, outrageous characters, legal arguments as sermons on the mount. Everything is just a little bit heightened, at least when it's not completely over the top; caricatures too often sub for characters. [1 Oct 2004]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    By the third episode... "Big Love" becomes an addictive treat.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "Thief" offers strong moments aplenty, but what it lacks are strong connections, both between those moments and among some of its characters.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's less aimless and has renewed momentum--even if its plots tread familiar ground.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Pretty funny. Pretty profane, too, but still funny, and a better-realized weekly program than last week's Showtime comedy premiere, "Weeds."
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Developments in Brenda's private life also lend the episode some comic relief, which makes "The Closer" a well-balanced prime-time drama that has improved markedly from its earliest episodes.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It is a well-made little show of horrors that's likely to scare and thrill its target audience.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Better than average.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A lively comedy.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Though the characters are quite different, "Earl" somehow brings to mind NBC's "Ed," perhaps because both shows feature a cast of oddballs and are ultimately uplifting, heartwarming portraits of people trying to do good by making a fresh start.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "Sex" proves to be a series with loads of appeal for viewers still mourning the cancellation of "Melrose Place."
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "Related" won't be for everyone, especially viewers lacking estrogen, but it is a quality weekly "chick flick" for TV.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Cute but not overly cuddly, there's an authenticity to the relationships in "Mother" that makes it a comedy worth meeting.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    If you enjoy complex, murky dramas about morally ambiguous characters, played by a talented cast of newcomers, then enjoy "The Black Donnellys" while it lasts.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Was this resurrection worth the effort? In a word, yes.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "Shark"... is clearly a "House" imitator, but a pretty crisp copy.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Like "30 Rock," "Barker" is more absurd and goofy than it is broadly funny, but it's definitely not as mainstream.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In addition to a less convoluted story, "Kidnapped" bests "Vanished" with its high-sheen cast.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Like his previous series, "Studio 60" features intelligent, quickly spoken dialogue, smart arguments and terrific performances (Perry and Whitford have instant chemistry as longtime co-workers), and it's not a bad show by any means, but it doesn't soar to the heights "West Wing" did, even in its earliest episodes.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Where "Studio 60" takes a scathing and indignant tone toward television, "30 Rock" offers a more sarcastic, less hackles-raised critique. It's also funnier and goofier.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show's trademark time shifts continue, although it's initially unclear if they're connected to the season one story that carries over or to the season two plot.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    An action-packed adrenaline rush.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The lighthearted "Psych" charms even as it duplicates the structure and tone of "Monk."
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show's writers seem to have less of a firm grasp on how to evolve some of the secondary characters, particularly while Dexter is on leave from the Miami Metro police department.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A zippy, fun update.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Against all odds, this mishmash of stark contrasts emerges as a surprisingly engaging film.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    "Mrs. Harris" is interesting but not intimate. It's cold, aloof and distant, much like the relationship it depicts between the principal characters.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    An engrossing thriller... a welcome return to the juicy, complex miniseries of old.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Unlike "Monk," which is essentially warmed-over "Columbo" with a more interesting character in the lead, In Plain Sight augments its plain premise with a full cast of colorful characters.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Disposable as it may be, Starter Wife still has more to recommend about it than, say, NBC's "Lipstick Jungle."
    • 33 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A light-hearted, comedic drama about four wealthy guys with women troubles and work problems.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Some die-hards may be frustrated by inconsistencies in the timeline with "Terminator 3," but unless you get overly wrapped up in the details of time travel, tonight's pilot is an intense adventure.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Once you get past the sex and if you can endure the sadness of the stories, Tell Me begins to have an addictive quality.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Plot contrivances aside, the new season of Chuck gets off to a decent start as friendships rekindle (Chuck and best friend Morgan become roommates) and new parties get involved in subterfuge.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Gossip Girl offers a fun, juicy mix of popular music and melodrama.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    This Bionic Woman pilot is a downbeat drag, but buried somewhere beneath all the moping is an intriguing show that might yet emerge.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Company starts slowly and somewhat confused, but eventually it chugs its way to coherence as it becomes a decent little drama.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The first two half-hour episodes, airing at 9 and 9:30 p.m. Friday, are less raucous and seemingly more adult than the film. There's more attention to character development; Jabba the Hutt's flamboyant uncle isn't anywhere to be found.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show, although plenty entertaining, also feels like it's grasping to keep the drama of Tara's situation at a suitably heightened level while other character story arcs, most notably Marshall's, feel more believable.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Not only do the other stories save True Blood--before you can get sick of Sookie and Bill, Blood shifts its focus to more interesting characters--but the show's persistent humor breaks through with enough frequency to have an impact.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In such rare instances [in the second episode], Breaking Bad achieves a perfect moment of nerdy believability, but too often the series fails to provide details that would help explain its characters' illogical choices.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The humor in Eastbound is a far cry from the cerebral comedy currently en vogue on shows like "The Office" and "30 Rock," but that doesn't mean Eastbound can't do sly humor that falls left of center.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's not groundbreaking TV, but the pilot does a good job of introducing the characters, their relationships, their potential relationships.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The plot of tonight's premiere is silly and campy, but because The Middleman is based on a comic book, that's not altogether out of place. Whether this tone wears well over time remains to be seen, but in its first outing The Middleman rises above the middle-of-the-pack of scripted cable shows.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Privileged has the potential to be a largely positive, female-skewing series.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's an entertaining enough diversion that may grow more intriguing as other series end their season-long runs next month and viewers become more desperate for fresh entertainment.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Kings begins with a refined approach and grows more pedestrian in subsequent episodes. Still, there's plenty to love about this series that dances with symbolism--the butterfly on the Gilboa flag is not a mere adornment--and replaces clandestine backrooms with windowed board rooms.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    My Own Worst Enemy sets up what could be an overly complicated premise and miraculously makes it all seem perfectly acceptable and clear by the end of the first hour.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Beast, named after Barker's reference to his FBI job, seems like a pretty plain cop drama with added "Road House"-style grit until the end of the first hour, when a new wrinkle adds more intrigue.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Stylista is a guilty pleasure thanks to its cast of catfighting, bickering characters, including one who is hospitalized following a panic attack in episode two.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Valentine, created by Kevin Murphy ("Desperate Housewives," "Reefer Madness: The Movie Musical"), is fine but nothing special.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There's definitely some amusing moments but the show will have limited appeal.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    House of Saddam offers a fascinating but limited portrait of the Iraqi tyrant.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The first episode runs two hours and sets up all the characters, their relationships and backgrounds. It presents a serialized show with a lot of potential for growth and interesting plot possibilities, especially considering a scene at the end of the premiere that raises a whole host of questions.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Some of the humor works less well--Martin playing five instruments while flipping through a sketch pad is more strange than funny--but Martin is clearly a smart guy and his intellectual humor succeeds more often than it fails.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Hung remains less of a comedy than HBO presents it as, but it's certainly more platable in season two.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    USA's Royal Pains is an amusing, enjoyable addition to basic cable.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Like "Family Guy," The Cleveland Show jumps from the main plot to tangential asides often built around pop culture. But the show's tone is different because Cleveland is such a well-meaning, likable character.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Of the two new cop shows this week, Southland is the more serious and realistic. It also demonstrates the potential for greater depth in its exploration of characters and their stories.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There's a cool, no-nonsense attitude about Southland that may make it more challenging for viewers to embrace than some other shows, but this cop drama has so many strong performances and enough nuanced writing that it remains one of the better dramas currently in prime time.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Parks was disappointing in its first year but tonight's episode and one airing next week--with a storyline inspired by the Henry Louis Gates-cop kerfluffle--show that the program is making steady, funny progress.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Smith is a winning TV star who's adept at scenes that require great empathy or a withering stare. Given time (and more realistic characterizations), Hawthorne may grow into a series worthy of her talents.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Tonight's pilot suffers from a few up-the-ante, "look-at-me!" moments, like when Coop grabs Jackie's breast and claims it's a nervous tic. Future episodes are more grounded and less desperate to shock for the sake of grabbing viewer (and network) attention, but they're no less enthralling with both drama and humor.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    As a single fortysomething mom, star Courteney Cox is in full frantic mode, yelling at and pushing everyone in sight, which makes for an entertaining (if not exhausting) half-hour comedy.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    O'Donnell and LL Cool J form an easy alliance that's filled with lighter moments of humor even as they investigate a plot that's decidedly obvious and unsurprising.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Vampire Diaries is no "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"--it doesn't have that series' depth--but it's plotted well enough to mix supernatural action with the occasional game of Kiss Me or Kill Me and some surprising cliffhangers, too.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Sophomoric and crude, The Life & Times of Tim may be a viable alternative for fans of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show remains a chilly affair, which will probably limit its acceptance but for viewers who appreciate satire, particularly of a modern workplace, it's difficult to imagine a show on the subject that's funnier than Ted.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show is unlikely to win Emmys but it is worth a few chuckles, spurred on by actresses in an age bracket not generally associated with leading roles on network sitcoms.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Memphis Blues has a similar feel to "The Closer" at the same stage. The secondary characters are not yet developed, and the show feels fairly pat. But it has the necessary ingredients for a lightweight, innocuous procedural.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Pretty much every character and character trait will be old-hat to regular TV viewers but director Tim Matheson makes the pilot episode hang together pretty well.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Archer may be crude but it's far more clever than last fall's disappointing "Testees," and "Archer" wins points with its observational humor about modern life and in its mocking of mundane workplace minutiae, such as computer passwords and the lack of security at a spy agency.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    If you're easily offended, you will be appalled by The League. If you chuckle at smutty, raunchy humor and profanity, this show offers dirty-minded comedic rewards.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's the students that make Teach a sometimes interesting show. They drive the story's forward momentum as much as Mr. Danza does and quickly emerge as his co-stars in a program that touches on teacher quality, student apathy and the plight of urban public schools.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    As long as you're OK with comedy-of-the-uncomfortable, then IFC's The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret is by far the funnier of the two David Cross-Will Arnett series airing this fall (the other being Fox's "Running Wilde").
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Mike & Molly has more of the crude humor of "Men" than "Big Bang" had at the start, but it's offset by a sweetness in the lead characters that makes this sitcom a welcome addition to CBS's Monday night laughter lineup.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Blue Bloods showcases a surprising amount of character-driven storytelling. The potential police department conspiracy pushes Blue Bloods into more sudsy territory than necessary, but at least this show marks another attempt by CBS, following "The Good Wife" last year, to expand its offerings beyond paint-by-number crime dramas.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Big C does not arrive with as sturdy a foundation as "Nurse Jackie," an unusually well-developed show from the get-go, but Ms. Linney completely inhabits a role that's recognizable as a woman who is strong and unusually selfless--at least until her diagnosis.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia returns tonight at 10 with an episode that misses the mark, but another upcoming episode offers more hilarity.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Raising Hope is not for the easily offended and humorless but the pilot is consistently entertaining for viewers willing to embrace Garcia's universe of downtrodden characters.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    As has always been the case, Damages remains a mystery-thriller whose characters and their psychological quirks are more intriguing than the plot.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show suffers from fakey scenes of Joe and his team in the office--they feel pretty staged--but when Maddalena is out meeting people who want to sell the Hollywood memorabilia they own, Hollywood Treasure is a lot of fun.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Conan O'Brien debuted his new talk show, Conan, on TBS last night and it didn't feel all that different from the show O'Brien debuted last year on NBC under "The Tonight Show" banner.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's not the best cop show ever but it's certainly an above-average effort for fans entertained by quality TV drama.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's best not to think of Shameless as a deep, important show. Tune in for the character drama and recognize the characters' anti-social behavior for what it is. There's no shame in that.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Her observations throughout Wishful Drinking are incisive and funny. But at times the production, directed by Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato, gets a little bogged down in minutiae.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    This seven-episode series, written by David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik, doesn't offer many new ideas about the evils of the TV business--a lot of the ground covered here was previously mined by the underrated 1999-2001 Showtime series "Beggars & Choosers"--but it's still fun to join in the mocking of Hollywood, a big, juicy target that Episodes hits with ease.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    What the show lacks in originality it makes up for in crisp, politically tinged dialogue.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    For fans of the original, which is only a few years old, this Americanization may be a bit like going to see a road company version of a Broadway show: It's pretty good but definitely less morose (for some viewers that will be an improvement, for others it will be a betrayal).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The characters lack the depth of those in smarter, premium cable dramas like "The Walking Dead," but they do show some growth as the series goes on. What Falling Skies does best is create a sense of the struggle for survival.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Like any sketch comedy show, IFC's Portlandia has hit-and-miss sketches, but when they hit, they do so with a laughter-inducing amount of comedic force.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Terra Nova walks a fine line and how well it manages to stay on that path will likely determine its ultimate success or failure.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Of the couples comedies to debut so far this midseason--NBC's "Perfect Couples" in January, Fox's "Traffic Light" last week--CBS's "Mad Love" (8:30 tonight, KDKA-TV) is probably the best. That's not to say it's a great show, but it is the least groan-inducing.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    If the concept of Taking on Tyson seems odd, the execution is more predictable, framing Mr. Tyson's pigeon racing, his first competitive endeavor in several years, as a kind of therapy. Still, the show benefits from some surprisingly strong visuals of the birds in flight--at least for viewers who do not see pigeons as rodents with wings.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's more cheekily amusing than hilarious and full of comedy-of-the-uncomfortable moments.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The miniseries feels a little pokey in its early chapters, although it does an excellent job of establishing the primary characters, and then races too quickly toward its conclusion (wait, who is Mildred married to now?).
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's a fascinating glimpse into a culture that I suspect many Americans would prefer to remain ignorant about.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Given the topic, Too Big to Fail might seem like a movie made only for policy wonks but even if you don't understand the finer points of monetary policy, it's still entertaining because it features that great equalizer in American popular culture: Wealthy, well-heeled people behave like jerks, allowing the less wealthy a certain superior satisfaction.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Viewers who want TV to wash over them as light entertainment may enjoy Franklin & Bash, but viewers who prefer thought-provoking TV programs that engage on a higher level may not be satisfied.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Writer/series creator Julian Fellowes weaves together an engrossing tapestry of stories, although some of them stretch credulity or peter out.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Protector is fairly routine plot-wise but the breezy tone--conveyed through upbeat music and snappy dialogue--and strong, collegial performances make this series a welcome summer diversion.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Overall [it] is more charming than hilarious.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's a strange show and I'm sure some people won't find it funny at all. But if you have just enough of a cracked sense of humor, it's worth giving Jon Benjamin Has a Van a try.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The series remains an intense, engrossing crime procedural with strong moments of character development, but Mr. Cross gets a bit sloppy in his plotting.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It seems like the show will basically be a weekly dose of two-steps-forward-one-step-back for Ryan with Wilfred as his teacher/tormentor. Wilfred certainly has moments of high (and low) comedy but it's also hard to imagine the premise won't get stale pretty fast.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Expedition Impossible, executive-produced by Mark Burnett ("Survivor"), is [not] the worst reality show ever (not by a long shot), but it reveals how challenging it must be for producers to introduce a whole mess of teams in a season premiere.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Big C feels much more alive, even though it's a show about a woman, Cathy (Laura Linney), who's dying of stage 4 cancer.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Entourage offers a reason for fans to be encouraged about the quality of its last episodes.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's a static look that makes these half-hour shows a bit tough to endure visually (don't try watching two episodes back-to-back). This format lends itself better to web shorts but it is fun to see Dr. Wallice's world expanded, especially for fans of comedy that doesn't telegraph a joke well in advance.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Thanks to clever dialogue, Awkward manages to rise above its been-there, watched-that premise.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Hour looks fantastic but it moves at a snail's pace that's sure to irk impatient viewers.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Against the Wall is not nearly as ambitious as "Chicago Code" was but there's a warmth to the characters and their relationships that should satisfy Lifetime's core audience.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The relationship plots are less interesting to me than the comedy.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Every television series launches on a wing and a prayer, perhaps none more than this entertaining, glossy drama.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Prime Suspect improves as the hour goes on. The guys' attitude toward Jane evolves.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Depending on your tolerance for edgy humor, 2 Broke Girls ain't broke, but a greater effort by the show's writers to be funny without being overly crude/cruel would help fix it for a broader audience.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    All-American Muslim [may be] a bit dull for viewers conditioned to expect ginned-up drama but given the potential sensitivities of the subject matter, it seems appropriate.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Viewers who appreciate slow-moving stories set in gritty, somewhat sleazy environments with characters of questionable morals are most likely to be rewarded by betting on Luck.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    TV Land continues its foray into original scripted programming with The Exes, the network's best sitcom effort since "Hot in Cleveland."
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Finder is not sophisticated TV but it does have its charms, mostly stemming from star Geoff Stults.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It no longer feels like you're watching a dozen different TV shows now that the main characters actually interact with one another. And the show's pace seems more brisk, less stodgy.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    A gripping tale of police investigation and a criminal's mischief-making.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    House of Lies is not a revolutionary show, but it is a fun study of men behaving badly.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The River lacks the sophistication of "Lost" but its formula is more flexible than recent Fox addition "Alcatraz."
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Generally they do their best to walk a fine line, attempting to execute the show in as uncomplicated a way as possible so less devoted viewers keep watching while rewarding obsessive fans with small steps forward in the exploration of Britten's condition.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The first episode offers a somewhat overwhelming dose of midwifery, to the point that some viewers may wonder how Call the Midwife won't grow tiresome with repetitive birthing stories. The addition of Chummy to the cast in episode two and a broader role for the midwives--in episode three Jenny simply spends time with an elderly man--allows the series to avoid growing stale.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Girls grew on me. As annoying as the characters can be, they also evince recognizable traits in absurdly realistic situations.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    This fast-paced Titanic miniseries gets better as it goes along.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Judging by three episodes sent for review, the[se] course corrections work.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Elementary entertains intermittently, particularly in exchanges between Holmes and Watson, but its draw will be strongest among viewers who can't get enough crime dramas in their TV diet.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    As with any pilot, Longmire barely scratches the surface of the possible directions it could go but the premiere does an excellent job establishing a sense of place and character. It's enough to make a viewer want to return for more.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    If Vegas goes the "Good Wife" route and focuses on characters and politics, it could develop into a worthwhile series.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Bunheads feels like it's taking shape but hasn't coalesced in its first episode. But what it does get right is the introduction of characters from whom a lot of potential stories can flow.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It's a pretty good introduction but there's no guarantee future episodes will live up to that positive first impression.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The New Normal is at its funniest when it's most outrageous; other times it feels as if it might have worked better as a one-shot movie than a weekly TV series.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The pilot is a pretty solid hour of television, setting up the show's premise and in several instances defying TV norms with plot twists viewers won't see coming.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In its first hour, at least, Major Crimes appears to be making a pretty seamless transition.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There's enough to recommend about Copper that it's worth tuning in to see how the series develops.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    most importantly, The Office is generally funnier than it was last season.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Tuesday's pilot is not as consistently funny as one might hope and Mindy's flightiness could turn off some viewers, but she and the show are amusing enough to warrant watching.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There's nothing particularly new about a superhero show, but Arrow exhibits a stylized ferocity that, in its initial hour at least, makes a positive enough impression.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In its first two episodes The Neighbors is an enjoyable, broad comedy that encourages co-viewing among parents and their children.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Sunday's premiere doesn't advance the story much--shades of early season two--but there's enough zombie carnage that fans of mayhem may not care.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Restless could benefit from a little more development of the characters Eva works with--it would make their stories more meaningful and poignant--but overall this four-hour miniseries is a strong entry.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    If there's a downside to the Americans pilot, it's that it has some pace problems. The premiere runs long--an hour and six minutes--and spends time on flashbacks to Elizabeth in training 20 years earlier and the pair's first meeting.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Ripper Street is decent enough entertainment that's most likely to appeal to fans of procedural crime dramas, viewers who gravitate toward CBS shows but don't mind wading through sometimes thick British accents.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It gets off to a slow start and then takes a while for the whole enterprise to get up to speed. At about the third episode, enough of a foundation has been set that the jokes start to come more easily and more quickly.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In its early going, it's a fun, summer TV frivolity--an entertaining enough hour of TV that sneaks in moments of social satire.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The composition of the cast and presence of a grandma (Lupe Ontiveros) makes the show structurally and thematically similar to ABC's "George Lopez Show," but Tucson is more entertaining and better written. [20 Sept 2002, p.40]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It remains to be seen whether either will merit watching for a full season but the pilot does exactly what it should: It intrigues and makes the case for viewers to come back next week for more.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Bates Motel takes a few episodes to get going as the writers build the world of White Pine Bay, and the story appears poised to really kick into a higher gear with a revelation at the end of the third episode. Up to this point Bates Motel is an OK character drama, but in building the broader world it inhabits the show begins to come into sharper focus.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The path The Big C takes is fairly predictable and unsurprising, but that doesn't mean these last four hours aren't occasionally heartfelt.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Schumer is brash, outspoken, bold, raunchy and tomboyish enough to fit right in and her show is often quite funny for viewers (especially men) who are not easily offended.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Millers won’t be confused with highbrow entertainment but taken on its own terms and thanks to a talented trio of cast members, it’s a welcome addition to CBS’s Thursday night comedy block.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    True, it may be a little too high-concept, but it held my attention much better than plenty of other, much worse TV comedies.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The pilot episode of The Fosters is pretty entertaining and well-plotted.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    King & Maxwell doesn't have much that's new to offer, but it's fine, forgettable, escapist summer fare.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    In a cable universe where antiheroes dominate the scripted drama landscape, there's something reassuring about spending time with characters who, though flawed, usually try to do the right thing.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The emphasis on kids makes From Script to Stage a safe glimpse behind the curtain that's cute and sometimes informative but dramatically sanitized.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Guardian is a show with promise, and it may well develop into a high-quality program in the coming weeks. But it's not a warm, fuzzy, easy-to-love show like, say, "Judging Amy." It's rough and tumble, a challenge to watch. [25 Sept 2001, p.C-1]
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    There's a casual, informal, willing-to-take-chances tone to The Writers' Room, which works most of the time but in the second episode, devoted to NBC's "Parks & Recreation", the show suffers from too many people trying to be funny.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The pilot episode is more amusing than hilarious, but it's often delicately funny thanks to Mr. Thomas' odd duck character and his reactions to those around him. When Geoffrey (Wade Briggs) hits on him, he's flummoxed.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It’s always hard to tell how any series will go, especially one as reliably twisty and turny as American Horror Story, but in its first hour at least, Coven offers a clear, entertaining set-up for a potentially strong season.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    HBO's Clear History, a cable movie that plays very much like an overlong episode of "Curb."
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    While scenes with a crime crew drag, in part because it's not always clear what's going on with them, anytime the focus shifts to crooked cops Frank Agnew (Mark Strong) and Joe Geddes (Lennie James), Low Winter Sun proves to be a gripping drama with a vibe most reminiscent of "The Wire."
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Nothing in Dracula is as unique or as wonderfully weird as "Twin Peaks," and Dracula plows through plot more quickly, introducing and then writing off several intriguing plots and characters within its first three episodes. It's too soon to say whether that will turn out to be wise or foolhardy, but Dracula at least gets off to a mildly promising start.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show has its amusing moments, though not from an abundance of 1980s nostalgia clips (“The Karate Kid,” “Knight Rider,” “ALF,” “Different Strokes” and “Back to the Future” all whiz by on screen) and music cues. The humor comes from the characters and their relationships.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Enlisted is often still funny and the bond among the brothers is sweet without getting too cloying.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    History purists who loathe artists taking creative license steer clear, but for viewers who enjoy a good soap, gorgeous costumes/locations and a winning soundtrack, The CW’s Reign delivers an entertaining romp in its premiere outing.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The Birthday Boys is a consistently funny show for viewers who are regular consumers of pop culture and recognize the elements from TV and film that are being spoofed.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It plays more like a science thriller than a biopic, with Feynman receiving clues scribbled on pieces of paper by NASA engineers.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The show pretty much picks up where it left off. Gone are the seasons when Justified would slowly run up to a serialized storyline with a few stand-alone episodes--I kind of miss those because the bad guys were so fleshed out for a TV show--instead jumping back into established storylines and jump-starting new ones..... The season premiere [is] a strong set-up episode.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    It’s entertaining enough, filled with battles and occasionally interesting character turns and cultural twists (particularly when the priest joins a raid on a church), but it’s not essential quality TV viewing along the lines of “Mad Men,” “The Good Wife,” “Game of Thrones,” etc.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The psychological cat-and-mouse games the characters play are more interesting and a welcome respite from the intense, horrifying serial killer stories.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Growing Up Fisher offers earnest, heartwarming stories about "a new kind of family," as ABC Family promos would call the divorced-but-still-friendly Fishers if the show aired on the basic cable network instead of NBC.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The mix of characters works well and provokes a fair number of laughs.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Bates Motel developed into a watchable, character-driven thriller in its first season. As season two begins, it seems poised to maintain that same level of quality.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Some of the plot falls into the No-Good-Can-Come-From-This category, especially Jensen’s cover-up efforts and his willingness to call a truce with Kopus. But mostly The Red Road, written by Aaron Guzikowski (“Contraband,” “Prisoners”), is a thrilling enough, character-driven crime drama that doesn’t shy away from cultural explorations, especially through Ms. Tunie’s Earth Mother character.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The recurring gag is the absurdity of nerdy Forrest reviewing often illegal/immoral activities, and it’s a pretty good joke in the early episodes. It remains to be seen if that joke holds up or grows tiresome over time.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    Later episodes are funny enough. Perhaps it’s just the usual early episode growing pains.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    While the flashbacks deepen the characters, some elements are smack-you-in-the-head obvious. Still, the stylization of the story is impressive as is the way Rodriguez, who wrote and directed the premiere, introduces the robber characters, the more level-headed Seth Gecko (D.J. Cotrona) and his possibly crazy/possibly prescient brother, Richie (Zane Holtz).
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Rob Owen
    The first episode is pretty much just as entertaining as "Face Off" or "Project Runway" or similar creative endeavor shows.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Rob Owen
    The Grey's Anatomy writers acknowledge last season's ratings decline by offering a parallel plot that finds Seattle Grace's ranking as a teaching hospital suffering in tonight's entertaining and ridiculous-in-the-regular-Grey's-ways two-hour season premiere.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Rob Owen
    Creatively, the show seems to be in pretty decent shape.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Rob Owen
    It's not a great show but it's not a terrible teen drama, not by a long shot.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Rob Owen
    Virtuality is a fascinating, over-stuffed pilot episode, and as intriguing as its concept is, you can see by the end of tonight's two-hour premiere why Fox passed on making it a weekly series.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Whatever the politics of it, The District is a decent drama. Not great, but certainly interesting, especially if it actually deals with issues of race and politics. [7 Oct 2000, p.B-8]
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Charmed has none of the wit or intelligence that characterizes The WB's superior supernatural series, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," but "Charmed" is an OK drama for the post-"Sabrina" crowd. [7 Oct 1998, p.E-4]
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    If you hate this genre, don't bother with Popular. But if you actually like spending time with teens or remember your own adolescence, Popular isn't the worst depiction of the not-so-wonderful years. [29 Sept 1999, p.E-1]
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's not terrifically awful, but it's also not as reliably fun as Scrubs was in its prime.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    A slickly shot, competent series with a talented ensemble cast. It's not revolutionary or groundbreaking by any means, but it is a decent crime drama.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The new season of "Carnivale" continues to showcase the series' potential, but it still doesn't live up to the show's enormous promise. It's a cryptic series full of mysteries and that should suck viewers in. But I've yet to feel the full effects of its gravitational pull, which is disappointing because, as they said so often on "The X-Files," I want to believe. [7 Jan 2005]
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    This brand of humor can be an acquired taste, but fans with a tolerance for out-there buffoonery will want to make the trip to "Reno." [20 Jul 2003]
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The whole thing is pretty cheesy, but I could see "The Apprentice" becoming addictive a few episodes in. [4 Jan 2004]
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    HBO's most obtuse, impenetrable series.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    A mixed bag. Diagnosis: Some good dialogue, but it also suffers from a mild case of predictability.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Occasionally funny.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The show hits the right Hollywood insider notes, but this season "Entourage" begins to feel a little tired.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's an entertaining enough diversion if you're not expecting much.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Despite the cliched sitcom trappings... it's an amusing, if slight, diversion.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Although the series hypocritically and formulaically exploits stereotypes before proving some of them wrong, "Survival of the Richest" is rich in entertainment value in spite of itself.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's disappointing that Kenny felt the need to make this series so far over the top, because at its core, there's a great family show worth watching.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    "Painkiller Jane" doesn't soar to the dramatic heights of "Battlestar," but it is a step above some of the network's other programs, a procedural thriller with a sense of humor and stylish action scenes.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    "Invasion" offers a few scares, but it's more a sense of dread and something subtly awry that gives this drama its creepy vibe.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Somewhere within this bloated six-hour miniseries there's a lean, mean four-hour miniseries trying to escape.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Solidly plotted and filmed.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Lightweight and unaffecting.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The acting talent here is marginal compared to the sitcom it replaces, "Out of Practice" (returning later in the season), but I found "Courting Alex" more enjoyable.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Ridiculous, and somewhat predictable. [4 Aug 2005]
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Personally, I found "Arrested" funnier, but "Sons & Daughters" has its moments.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's more an intellectual, in your head, "hey, that's clever," than a laugh-out-loud funny.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Entertaining in the way the problems of the rich often are. [21 Mar 2006]
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    This story of professional thieves is beautifully shot, but the structure of the pilot -- it begins with the start of the robbery, flashes back to the planning of the robbery, returns to the robbery and shows its aftermath -- is a little repetitive, which takes away from attempts to build tension and surprise.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    As close-ended procedurals go, "Raines" certainly offers an intriguing hook, but I'm not sure it's one with much staying power.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The pieces may be familiar, but there are enough new elements that prevent this series from feeling like a total rip-off.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's TV for a generation of attention deficit disordered kids.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    "The Winner" may not be able to go the distance, but it's a fun little show in the here and now.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    As enjoyable as this first episode is, its premise may be too slight to sustain a long-running series.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    It's a cute show, but the premise is so paper-thin you have to wonder how the writers will sustain "Knights" for a full season, let alone many years, if successful.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    "The Lost Room" is certainly a more creative exercise than past Sci Fi miniseries (including "The Triangle"), but it sometimes feels rushed.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Three episodes in, I started to buy into the world Milch has created. I don't understand it, I don't think I even really like it (almost all of the characters are damaged and rather unpleasant), but I am intrigued by it.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The show is subtitled, which helps viewers understand the thick accents and British slang, but the whole thing is a bit nihilistic and the characters come across as somewhat debased.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    [A] cute wisp of a series.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Ignoring all that, shallow Mafia entertains in key moments.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    For viewers willing to give themselves over to whimsy and let go of any expectation that they're watching characters who resemble real-life human beings, this comedy has its minor charms.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Margulies is an ideal actress to carry off this icy role. Perhaps in the hands of a more deft writer, Canterbury's Law could be the edgy show it aspires to be instead of the common courtroom drama it is.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    In Treatment is fascinating TV, but it's not a pleasant experience. Watching these therapy sessions is akin to eating your TV broccoli.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    Levi exudes an everyman appeal that may catch on with viewers, but the show's plots need to grow beyond the action-adventure tropes of 1970s TV if Chuck hopes to avoid being chucked off NBC's prime-time schedule.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The show is gently entertaining in a way reminiscent of variety shows of old.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    The pilot's plot leads them in a direction where "this just in" becomes an obvious sexual metaphor--some of it is funny, but there's just too much.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Rob Owen
    For all the show's missteps, there's always Ullman's undeniable talent to entertain. Her parodies of women (e.g. Renee Zellweger, playing a movie character who suffers from "chronic narcissistic squint") generally succeed better than her men.