For 412 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 15 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Tom Shales' Scores

Average review score: 52
Highest review score: 100 The Corner: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Head Cases: Season 1
Score distribution:
412 tv reviews
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    There's enough going on in Caprica to keep a sci-fi fan, or anyone who likes to settle into a good story, satisfied and even beguiled--and though it's shot too dark those watching on an upscale, big-screen TV will be treated to a visual spectacular.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    The results are often wickedly amusing.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 40 Tom Shales
    If you can tolerate one more word on the beaten-senseless subject of weight loss, then, and you don't mind hearing generic cliches yet again, you could conceivably become a Huge fan before the summer is over.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Tom Shales
    Viewers who stumble into this misbegotten "Moonlighting" imitation will likely be bored, too, but not because of too much success.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 40 Tom Shales
    One problem is that sometimes Cohen seems less interested in attacking funny bones than in appealing to sadistic streaks. [21 Feb 2003, p.C01]
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Tom Shales
    Fallon is far from such stature, but though his opening night had disappointments, none were crushing or looked potentially fatal. Once Fallon relaxes, hunkers down and lightens up, the new "Late Night" could win over many a semi-conscious heart and mind.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Tom Shales
    The basic formula is by now so groaningly familiar, and the premise so weak and weary, that there's only the "reality" part of this docu-game, or whatever it ought to be called, to tempt one's interest, and that not much.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 20 Tom Shales
    The show is jumpy, jerky and scattershot. It has the personality of a nitrous oxide abuser. [21 Mar 1995]
    • Washington Post
    • 50 Metascore
    • 10 Tom Shales
    It's hard to imagine that viewers will be dying to learn which graduate kicks the bucket on "Reunion," mainly because none of them gives the appearance of being, or ever having been, alive.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    Even when the transition from music to drama seems abrupt, or the staging of a number a bit too prosaic, "Cop Rock" has the audaciousness and energy of a true original, plus moments of brilliance that are almost blinding. [26 Sep 1990, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 35 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    The overall effect is pleasing, light, cheerful.
    • 13 Metascore
    • 0 Tom Shales
    As rigorously lame-brained as television in our time is likely to get. [11 Apr 1987, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    A smart and funny sitcom....Heaton is splendid as Heck, with a high-profile supporting cast.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 10 Tom Shales
    Muddled and befuddled from the outset, "Drive" represents a new kind of automotive hybrid -- a scripted treasure hunt designed to look like a reality show, well-stocked with the worst elements of both. It's basically "The Un-Amazing Race."
    • 53 Metascore
    • 0 Tom Shales
    Utterly excremental. ... May the room in which "Family Guy" is drawn be sacked, emptied, disinfected and burned to a cinder. Anything to keep them from making any more episodes of this smug and amateurish tripe. [30 Jan 1999]
    • Washington Post
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Tom Shales
    This is no run-of-the-mill production, but it falls under the heading of "acquired taste." The main inducement to acquire it is to watch Gugino have her way with the title role.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 40 Tom Shales
    The significance of naming the hero after T.S. Eliot's famous poem "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" (do you suppose the "J" stood for Jim?) is not readily apparent from the premiere, but then this is a show that doesn't aim to be readily apparent, or even to be reasonably coherent.
    • 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
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    The show seems weightless in the good sense, breezy and airborne, with a brisk and flippant style that's instantly attractive. [12 Sep 1992]
    • Washington Post
    • 58 Metascore
    • 100 Tom Shales
    The show truly teeters on wonderful. This is probably TV's most poignant half-hour comedy in years, a masterfully modulated combination of shrewd satire and a tender, even tearful, central story. [5 June 2005, p.N01]
    • Washington Post
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    Steinberg... appears to be having a good time, and that helps a lot.
    • 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.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    It may be a case of going too far but in such a crazy-daisy way that it can't help but be entertaining. [2 Oct 2004]
    • Washington Post
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    For a cartoon, it's defiantly slow, sometimes a virtual still-life. And yet there's something curiously compelling about its utterly trivial everyday goings-on. [11 Jan 1997]
    • Washington Post
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Tom Shales
    It is a little better than most other sitcoms, past and present -- especially those featuring wacky urban friends in their twenties experiencing the bittersweet mysteries of life.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    Perfectly respectable family fare, yet not so perfectly respectable that it's drippy. [27 Sept 1996, p.D01]
    • Washington Post
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Tom Shales
    Perhaps the writers, director Debbie Allen and executive producer Quincy Jones are afraid to show America how rich people in L.A. really live. As for the new arrival's "outrageous" behavior, that consists mainly of using slang expressions, playing a tune on the drinking glasses at the dinner table and wearing a funky tux to the party. Gracious goodness sakes alive, what next??? [10 Sept 1990, p.B1]
    • Washington Post
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Tom Shales
    A persistently diverting journey by producers and camera crews in search of the glib, the flippant and the ostensibly hip of Southern California.

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