For 407 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 45% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 13.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Tom Shales' Scores

Average review score: 52
Highest review score: 100 Generation Kill
Lowest review score: 0 Hidden Hills: Season 1
Score distribution:
407 tv reviews
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    No matter how often we're told how unbearably fascinating it all is, it isn't. It's more likely to trigger horrifying flashbacks to algebra class. [22 Jan 2005]
    • Washington Post
    • 23 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Actually, the calamities and catastrophes occur with such frequency and ferocity that, yes, indeed, "Apocalypse 10.5" suffers the curse of being unintentionally funny -- even hilarious -- no matter how guilty one might feel about laughing even as hordes of extras are being turned into Kentucky Fried People.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The premiere is filled with flaws that may well be endemic to the series, one of them being that the characters behave so stupidly that one loses sympathy for them.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    It's an imitation of something already being imitated here, there and everywhere.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Trust Me shares another characteristic of those series("Nip/Tuck" and "Mad Men": dumb, numbing soullessness. It has the emotional intricacy of a Ritz cracker.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Throughout the show, his behavior is quirky and smug in cloying and annoying ways, which seems a self-destructive miscalculation.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The characters' lives just aren't fascinating, and by reverting to a more traditional way of telling crime stories, Wolf simply reminds us how superior his other version is.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The wondrousness of the art direction and the oomph in the computer-generated illusions can hold one's attention just so long. Then the pitiful plodding plotlessness of the thing becomes all too painfully apparent. What we're left with is essentially "Dinotopia, the Bore." [28 Nov 2002]
    • Washington Post
    • 58 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    A nasty-minded, overacted and poorly cast sitcom, Married ... With Children gets the schedule off on a rousing limp. [4 Apr 1987, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    A good idea has been largely bollixed through crummy execution. [18 Sep 1989]
    • Washington Post
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The two Samanthas are simply irritating and hyper in different ways, and don't add up to one complete, compelling kook.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    But when it's not literally up in the air, "JAG" sinks. It's bottom-of-the-barrel "Top Gun." The exploits of a Navy lawyer who walks around as if he's balancing a chafing dish on his head prove to be yawnable and predictable. [23 Sep 1995]
    • Washington Post
    • 34 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    It has the air of something two teenage pals concocted while goofing around on the Internet, but the result of that would probably be fresher and bolder than Surviving Suburbia is.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The facetious drama series--not quite a comedy, not quite not one--gathers together an annoying collection of eccentrics and misfits, all of them rich and greedy, few of them worth knowing.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    If Dollhouse, a pretentious and risible jumble premiering tonight on that most quixotic of national networks, were a piece of music, it would have to be some sort of funky-junky, hip-hop, rinky-tinky, ragtime madrigal.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Considering the ways it's been scaled down for TV, "The Adequate Seven" or "The Essentially Competent Seven" might have made more accurate titles. [3 Jan 1998]
    • Washington Post
    • 34 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Hays, who sometimes shows qualities that suggest a young James Stewart, but not enough of them, seems lost in the alien role, and the character has been made so passive that all sense of urgency is lost, too. He stands around wondering what to do, which is never very exciting to watch. [19 Sept 1986, p.D2]
    • Washington Post
    • 75 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    A feeble collection of filmed sketches starring a comic clearly not ready for prime time. [26 Sep 1992]
    • Washington Post
    • 67 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    The film is overwrought and wearying, salvaged mainly by its occasional gory details and a few enjoyably hammy performances.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    "Mr. Belvedere" is the sort of thing people have in mind when they say they hate situation comedies. [15 Mar 1985]
    • Washington Post
    • 40 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    It's nearly a certainty that someone will call Lipstick Jungle, NBC's new drama series about sensual and successful women, a "guilty pleasure," but it's really more of a guilty horror.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    First, the good news: It's handsome, scenic and colorful, produced with a lavish flourish rare for television. Now, the bad news: It's a rompety, clompety bore. [4 Mar 1992, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    To say that the series is not for everyone is lavish understatement. The real question: Is it for anyone? [13 Aug 1997]
    • Washington Post
    • 37 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    One view of the skyline against Lake Michigan is breathtaking. It's kind of a bad sign when you wish there were more scenery in a show and fewer scenes with characters and dialogue and stuff like that.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Noble endeavor, bad movie...Has the unfortunate aura of something patched together by a committee, and when all is said and done, it seems less like a movie than a position paper on film.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    None of this is really funny, most of it is excruciating, and the half-hour would be entirely abominable if Craig weren't such an unruffled good sport.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    It might sound callous to say that "Jericho" has managed to make nuclear war look boring, but there you have it.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    13: Fear Is Real is cruel in its premise, drably inevitable in its concept and supremely dull in execution. No one risks being scared to death, but being bored to death seems a credible threat.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    If the prospect of accompanying comedians on a comedy bus does have a certain allure, don't get too excited.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Navy NCIS may not be ghastly, but it's a mutation, gratuitous and clunky. We don't need another criminal investigation show and we don't need another military justice show, and this series is those two, two, two shows in one.

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