Boston Globe's Scores

For 1,198 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 51% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 5.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Behind the Candelabra
Lowest review score: 0 Unan1mous: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 593
  2. Negative: 0 out of 593
593 tv reviews
  1. Grantchester makes for very easy viewing, in the manner of so many of the “Masterpiece” mysteries. The murder plots are extremely light and undemanding, without being insulting.
  2. If you've been wondering about the art of series-TV writing, and how potent and resonant it truly can be, you need look no further than HBO's extraordinary new In Treatment.
  3. A pretentious exercise in cheap thrills, by great talents who've been allowed to run amok. [11 July 1997, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
  4. While The Path is engaging, and smart when it comes to portraying the strangeness of cult life, it suffers from a bad case of tonal overkill.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sprightly, sharp, caustic and, most of all, funny. [21 Mar 1995]
    • Boston Globe
  5. Tonally, "Private Practice" has not found its sweet spot. Dirty Sexy Money, on the other hand, has. The soap opera fully owns its soapiness.
  6. Pointless and inert.
  7. It's hard to know where The Middle will go after tonight's decent pilot. And that's part of the sitcom's promise, that it has the potential to blossom into a sweet if small celebration of a family of oddballs living distinctly unhip lives.
  8. When The Chair highlights the differences between its two stars, it is engaging and enlightening.... However, the show is significantly less interesting during some of the conversations that surround some of the decision-making.
  9. One of the pluses of Karen Sisco is that, true to Leonard's fiction, the fugitives Karen tracks are more than generic baddies. [1 Oct 2003, p.G1]
    • Boston Globe
  10. On just about every other, deeper level--plotting, acting, dialogue--Hannibal is lousy.
  11. The show digs into the issues too quickly, and with too much intensity, and the drama suffers. [22 July 2003, p.E1]
    • Boston Globe
  12. Despite its unique premise, the show delivers little more than network sitcom material tarted up with cable raciness. [5 Aug 2005]
    • Boston Globe
  13. Like “Ray Donovan,” Billions is addictive, bold, amusing, well-crafted, and rather facile, too.
  14. Louie isn't a learning-and-hugging show by any means; but amid all of C.K.'s cocky bluster and politically incorrect language, there are plenty of rich moments of respite, when people with polarized world views actually hear and like one another.
  15. It’s a bit of a rarity, an intimate, sprawling, and at times touching procedural that makes the networks’ versions of the genre look like simple board games.
  16. The fly-on-the-wall nature of the film, directed by Sam Jones, should appeal not only to fans of Dylan and the artists involved, but also to anyone interested in the process of songwriting.
  17. This is the sleeper series of the year. It's a witty knockoff of 'Something Wild' with Tea Leoni a terrific variation of Melanie Griffith's psychotically sexy free spirit luring a straitlaced young man into a life without boundaries. Unfortunately, the young man is Corey Parker, who's about as funny as gefilte fish. [19 Sep 1992]
    • Boston Globe
  18. ''Sit Down Comedy" is really about the amiable chatter, with only a passing nod at insight.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    As Deb-inside-Jane, Elliott does a great job portraying pathos, absurd disappointment, and wide-eyed discovery. She’s far more interesting to watch than the other characters.
  19. The show is overstuffed with political and pop culture jokes about everything from 9/11 to “The Breakfast Club,’’ but they’re always secondary to the warm ensemble character comedy. The free-floating irony isn’t terminal.
  20. While Halt and Catch Fire captures the professional and financial excitement and mystery of those days, before we knew computers would change the world, it also takes on the complex personalities involved.
  21. It all feels like “Curb”-cutting-room-floor material set atop a feeble plotline and a group of unrealized and disposable supporting performances. Clear History is pretty, pretty average.
  22. If you enjoy slowly piecing together a puzzle without having first seen the final image, Rubicon is right up your alley; if not, the brainteasing will likely unnerve you.
  23. It’s a brave, and at times uneven, experiment. It’s also a reminder of a time when television was a much simpler and campier place.
  24. Human Target is perfectly adequate action fluff. It’s fast-paced, chock full of fight choreography, and filled with gimmicks including an out-of-control train and an upside-down airplane.
  25. Despite a few flaws, The Mindy Project could evolve into an interesting hybrid, an anti-romantic-comedy romantic comedy.
  26. The show is what it is--no surprises, no disappointments.
  27. A stiff, one-dimensional portrait of America's early plague years. Flattened by docudramatic techniques and good-versus-evil oversimplifications, the film is politically correct, easy to follow and emotionally empty. Rather than risking gritty personal drama and fully drawn characters, the filmmakers have fashioned a public-health mystery that surveys all the moral and political issues, but never hits harder than a Newsweek cover story. [10 Sept 1993, p.45]
    • Boston Globe
  28. Haynes takes a few melodramatic moments too many feet over the top--the injuring of Veda's throat, for example, which rises into an almost laughable delirium. But those excesses are forgivable in this otherwise masterful, faithful, and deluxe adaptation.
  29. While the pacing and acting of the new show is admirable, it's an overtold story and its familiarity lessens the intrigue. Baby, maybe he wasn't born to run, and run, and run. [6 Oct 2000, p.D1]
    • Boston Globe
  30. The cases on "Boston Legal" will inevitably become ridiculous; that's the trend in Kelley's shows, as he pushes the envelope beyond reason. But the show's regular cast has great promise. [2 Oct 2004]
    • Boston Globe
  31. Izzard is a great surprise in FX's "The Riches," and just one of this fascinating new series' unexpectedly soulful pleasures.
  32. Fox’s wildly uneven, but potentially addictive new nighttime soap, Empire, feels like an anachronism.
  33. The show works, in its own hokey, feel-good, alt-soundtrack way.
  34. As with most nighttime soap operas, the young-and-restless plot turns come fast and furious and without many nuances, from the sick infant to the two-timing husband. But the characters are so likable, the acting is so effortless, the family feel is so natural, and the look of the show is so pleasingly stylized, you probably won't care too much. [28 Jun 2000]
    • Boston Globe
  35. Like ''Friends," this is not a big-themed series so much as a bunch of little character jokes and relationship confusions getting batted around by an able cast.
    • Boston Globe
  36. Ultimately, though, Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy isn't as sensational as it might have been. It unfolds without too much of the lurid caricature of so many other Lifetime movies.
  37. Entertaining, stylish, and, most of all, slight.
  38. This melodrama isn't high TV art, or even middling; but it's dishy, farcical, and funny, as the willowy Serena (Blake Lively) and her circle prey on one another.
  39. 11.22.63 is a satisfying and smartly developed work that marks yet another step forward for streamer Hulu, which has been featuring increasingly notable series including “Casual” and “Difficult People.”
  40. Not surprisingly, the stylish "CSI: Miami" is as engaging as "CSI," if you can't get enough of the science of mortal disaster. [23 Sep 2002]
    • Boston Globe
  41. Comedy Central appears to have come up with a worthy partner to “The Daily Show,” with Stewart and Wilmore as the salt and pepper shakers of late-night TV. A half-hour of humor, opinion, issues, and conversation, The Nightly Show has the potential to resonate as it evolves in the coming months.
  42. It’s not as sharp and lovable as “Broad City”; Abbi and Ilana, take a bow for an inspired second season of your New York picaresque. But it’s likable, over-the-top, culturally aware, and totally far-out, man. It’s the definition of a madcap adventure.
  43. You've got to be something of a Bette-a-holic to take this much of Midler's raging insecurities and slapstick stylings on a weekly basis. Even when she's missing from a scene in "Bette," which is rare, the rest of the show's character ensemble is fixated on her and her bottomless pit of need. [11 Oct 2000, p.C1]
    • Boston Globe
  44. Even when Leverage flirts with serious issues, including the mistreatment of an Army reservist who is shot in Iraq by a private contractor, the dramatic tone is whimsical and tongue in cheek. This motley crew is a kind of guerilla comedy troupe that can pick pockets and empty bank accounts, too.
  45. The scripts pander too much to the sensibility they should be mocking - that Hollywood is a playland for big boys with an eye for scrawny women. Entourage doesn't need to become moralistic or politically correct, just self-aware. If the writers took another step back from their immature characters, the show's satirical edge might be sharper. [16 July 2004, p.C1]
    • Boston Globe
  46. It's good, but not quite inventive or mysterious enough to demand we swallow yet another serving of serial.
  47. I do think it has real potential to become a solid dramatic addition to the FX slate, as The Shield enters its final season.
  48. Ultimately, Baskets isn’t a cold-hearted laugh at his expense. Chip’s downward spiral is affecting, and by episode three, I was emotionally invested in his journey.
  49. As it is, Kennedy buffs will enjoy Ethel enormously. Others likely will think it's about half an hour too long.
  50. It's subject matter that speaks to the train-wreck spectator in all of us, and designing a weekly show around it is a little uneasy-making. It's dangerously close to "reality" programming. That said, Special Victims Unit is an uneven hour that could improve with some aggressive fine tuning.
  51. It’s straining to be TV’s new obsession, instead of a riveting drama.
  52. "Flight of the Conchords" is one of the few TV comedies that truly can be called unique.
  53. You won't be bored, as you strain to keep track of everything, and Isaacs, with his piercing eyes and reserve, is a great lead.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The show has all the necessary ingredients. It's fast-paced, it's mildly sexy, and you don't have to pay too much attention to get hooked - it just sort of insinuates itself into your consciousness.
  54. By the way, I don't mean the word "trash" as an insult. I enjoy well-made, quick-witted trash, and if you do, too, then you will find "Rome" as irresistible as ever.
  55. The romance and the attractively stylized innocence of the era is addictive, but the espionage plot, with its link to political history, is absurd.
  56. The characters may be shallow, but that doesn’t keep the show from giving the easy pleasures of reading a quickie mystery novel. And a few of the actors are entertaining despite the limitations of the script.
  57. All the masturbation jokes in the world don't help a script that is as inherently stale and as turgidly moralistic as "Dragnet"...This program only makes me want to shut the TV off, not put a foot through the screen. [12 Sept 1990, p.51p]
    • Boston Globe
  58. Based on a preview of two episodes, Idiotsitter is fairly amusing.
  59. By the end, I was wrung out from disappointment, from the awareness that Cross’s script was woefully underdeveloped, more like a double episode of a “Criminal Minds”-like procedural than part of an outstanding franchise.
  60. Oscar winner Berry and the dependable Visnjic, as well as familiar supporting faces, all do a good enough job in the first episode with a tantalizing premise--and lot of grade A special effects--to make Extant worth checking out before it becomes extinct.
  61. The debut isn't disastrous by any means, it just doesn't crackle.
  62. "Sons & Daughters" is a sitcom whose method -- a script embellished by actors at play -- celebrates the unexpected comedy that can emerge among talented people.
  63. The tension between true worship and religious lip service gives Greenleaf an extra spark.
  64. The CW remake isn't awful, by any means. The pilot rushes ahead nicely, with a twist at the end that gestures toward many possible future plotlines. But we've seen the whole thing many times before.
  65. The power and ambiguity of the soldierly bond is one of the fascinating things in Nightingale. Alas, it’s the only fascinating thing about this movie, the only idea in the movie that isn’t blaringly obvious and hammered home. It’s a shame. What could have been an evocative journey into the mind of a lost veteran, as he opens up his thinking across a one-man show set entirely inside his house, is more like a quasi thriller revolving around a very mad hatter.
  66. A promising newcomer that recalls the ethnic comedy and spirit of the movie "Moonstruck." [29 Sept 2000]
    • Boston Globe
  67. After the electrifying start, Fringe unfolds as an uneven, unwieldy piece of work that provides very few chills and thrills.
  68. The different elements hang together as a nicely faceted whole--until the final minutes, that is. Ultimately neither movie nor series, neither beginning nor end, Virtuality is a flight with no destiny.
  69. "Freak Show" aspires to be both infantile and yet politically and socially astute, and it falls short on the latter. The satire doesn't quite hit its marks.
  70. I'm on board with Tara, but so far mostly for the supporting characters, whose number expands in the coming weeks to include a self-empowered "Vita-self" saleswoman who is overly curious about Tara's disorder.
  71. The abundance of material plays out naturally, in a nicely arranged script by John Pielmeier that leans heavily on the R-rated soap side of things. You'll probably get lost in the high melodrama while watching this massive chess game, where the pawns are as prominent as the bishops, the king, and the queen.
  72. The new series works just OK. The problem is, there actually isn't much of a need for the two dopes and their anti-wisdom anymore.
  73. The show has a nice sense of innocence, thanks to Wood's gentle performance and the theme of personal transformation; but it is also filled with uneven sexual and scatological jokes, delivered with a dog-like lack of modesty, so viewer be warned. For some, that level of humor is a deal breaker.
  74. Despite a reportedly huge budget, the special effects look tacky and the writing has no wit. The Flash is nothing more than the reincarnation of "The Incredible Hulk." [20 Sept 1990, p.81]
    • Boston Globe
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A clean, clear, and often compelling slice of TV, documenting the day-to-day unreal reality of Caitlyn Jenner, fresh from her public debut as herself.
  75. It all felt safe and predictable, a warm goodnight salvo without any of the tartness or twistedness of Ferguson or of the show’s lead-in host, David Letterman.
  76. It’s sweet but not syrupy. The pilot is so beautifully written and acted that it’s difficult to offer any kind of resistance, flaws and all.
  77. Essentially, Mary and Martha operates like an EZ-to-read Lifetime movie with HBO production values.
  78. Linney and this role were made for each other. There are a few problems with The Big C. Occasionally, the tone veers off course into forced comic absurdity. But my cavils are irrelevant in the face of Linney's extraordinary work.
  79. It’s as candid and absorbing as reality TV isn’t.
  80. Winfrey had said that she wanted O'Donnell to be herself, and her new hire lived up to that expectation with perfectly familiar results.
  81. There's a lot to enjoy... But "30 Rock" is more sitcommy than most of the single-camera sitcoms on the air now, and it has none of the sharp bite of "The Larry Sanders Show."
  82. "Top Design" is so derivative of "Project Runway," from the setup to the structure of the judging, that it's impossible not to make a point-by-point comparison, with the new show falling short on every level.
  83. It fails to transform those events into anything valuable or special, beyond docudramatic re-creation. Ultimately, it's scope is too big, and it fails.
  84. The plotting of The Bridge can be dense. That doesn’t undermine my enjoyment of the show, but there are moments in between revelations when I sometimes feel at sea.
  85. "Casanova" is a giddily unconventional tale of an adventurous youth, but then it's also a stock and inflated portrait of old age.
  86. The Company delivers no real chills, just a quaint Cold War amusement park ride.
  87. Together, they [Dakota Johnson & Nat Faxon] bring a whole mess of cute.
  88. Television dramas rarely get therapy right, and State of Mind only adds to that reputation.
  89. Those [dialogue] imperfections never jolted me out of the spell Copper casts.
  90. It's just a thoroughly conventional multi-camera sitcom rooted in familiar Felix-Oscar shtick and that tried-and-true comic standby, a cute kid. It's old school...And happy to be that way. [22 Sept 2003, p.B7]
    • Boston Globe
  91. The lack of a human entry point renders the whole thing passionless. It's more of a slick contraption than a truly thrilling hour.
  92. It was vintage Conan stuff, proof that his absurdist sense of humor won't change much on the West Coast. And yet last night also contained some grand nods to O'Brien's fancy new home.
  93. The nonfictional veneer feels authentic, and so does Lilley's talent.
  94. Like "Lost," it has the potential to grow into a cross-genre drama that reaches beyond cultiness to all kinds of TV viewers.
  95. The new ABC show is significantly better than its corny title promises.
  96. If you haven’t figured this out yet, Man Seeking Woman is plenty weird. But it’s also wild, wily, and, depending on your taste for high-risk jokes that don’t always fly, wonderful.

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