For 392 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 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Tom Shales' Scores

Average review score: 52
Highest review score: 100 NYPD Blue: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Category 7: The End of the World: Season 1
Score distribution:
392 tv reviews
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Tom Shales
    It's a grim, evocative look at some of this country's ruggedest but most disreputable roots -- a meticulously detailed portrait of a time, place and people that makes even today, with its punishing headlines about suicide bombs and other terrorist atrocities, seem almost safe and sane.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Tom Shales
    As much as any other Western town in any other Western, Deadwood -- which is really a camp hoping to be a town hoping to be part of the United States -- seems really to exist, so vivid are the characters and so rich the texture. [5 Mar 2005, p.C01]
    • Washington Post
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 Tom Shales
    Queer as Folk gets off to a triumphantly provocative start. The least that can be said is that there's nothing else like it anywhere on the air. [2 Dec 2000, p.C01]
    • Washington Post
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Tom Shales
    No one could maintain that the show deals in grueling realism. But the characters and their time do seem affectionately and thoughtfully portrayed, and genuineness along these lines is rare in TV. The Wonder Years is first-class time travel. [15 Mar 1998, p.1]
    • Washington Post
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Smart, sassy and delightful.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    No matter how opulent this production, Mirren is never upstaged, and she is the best reason to keep watching.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    "Entourage" returns with feathers fully unfurled, zooming and soaring across the Sunday-night sky and elevating escapism to dizzy new altitudes and basically untroubled new attitudes.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    "Shark" is one of the season's best and fastest-moving new dramas.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    It's sweet, touching and deliriously cheerful -- the best new show of the year and a great big blast of happiness.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    "The Knights of Prosperity" is knee-slappingly and side-splittingly funny stuff, or as close to that as TV gets these days.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    What it lacks in edge, it makes up for in charm.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Nearly everything is done right, most conspicuously in the casting of Glenn Close as Patty Hewes.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Here and there, The Company is so evocatively dark and creepy it approaches the artistry of a John le Carré thriller, at least as adapted for TV back in the '80s and '90s.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Tell Me You Love Me is not only more provocative than any of the broadcast networks' new fall shows, but also more sophisticated--even than those shows that aspire to be "adult."
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    The show has a happily palpable likability going for it, a lot of that courtesy of Zachary Levi, who plays the unlikely and in fact unwilling hero.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Reaper works on its own cleverly devilish level and proves one of the happier, snappier surprises of the season.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    NBC's lavish and splashy new version of Bionic Woman, is not, as one might fear, a BW stripped of everything that fans loved about the '70s original.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    It isn't high literature nor even perhaps high television, but In Treatment does have a welcome, and occasionally riveting, pulpy streak, perhaps inevitable with its promise of peeks behind doors that usually remain closed.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Factory is the network's first try at a situation comedy and, surprisingly enough, it's neither perfunctory nor primitive. It is, in fact, one of the few pleasant surprises of the summer.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    True Blood isn't meant to be an exercise in good taste. Just a romp and a wallow--and a bloody good one.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    As superbly superior as Shannon is (a comparison to Lucille Ball, while inevitable, would not be overreaching), the whole cast shines, and not just in refracted glory.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    It still isn't quite the hugely confident, competent hit one longs for--especially considering that "Saturday Night Live" creator Lorne Michaels is an executive producer--but it's high in quality, as well as in spirit.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Lilley's script and performances are rife with recognizable personalities, neuroses and human absurdities.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    A chilling and riveting essay on the evils that men do and continue doing, year after year, century after century, millennium after millennium.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Whatever it is, it's fascinating, the television equivalent of the book you can't put down and maybe the jigsaw puzzle you never quite complete.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Long story short: These girls are golden.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    A new limited-run series from HBO that is engaging, charming and intoxicating entirely on its own.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    The fact is, Harper's Island is a cunningly constructed, habit-forming mystery that makes for an intriguing departure from normal episodic television.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Grey Gardens is tragicomedy of a very rare and rarefied kind--priceless, precious and, thanks largely to Lange, potentially unforgettable.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Tom Shales
    Whatever else it is, the show is supremely entertaining. Smartly edited and cleverly constructed--the George Washington Bridge serving as a visual transition--the series marks another auspicious entry to television's vast stockpile of Guilty Pleasures.

Top Trailers