Entertainment Weekly's Scores

For 1,540 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 16% same as the average critic
  • 19% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 7.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 72
Highest review score: 100 Murphy Brown: Season 2
Lowest review score: 0 The Pauly D Project: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 1162
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1162
1,162 tv reviews
  1. There are many ways in which Ed, the best new show of the season, could have been perfectly awful.
  2. It has the best tough-guy dialogue around and an acting ensemble that's ferociously effective. Face it: Homicide is a killer.
  3. It's becoming obvious that The Simpsons, now in its second season, isn't just a product of media hype: Matt Groening's cartoon family is one of the few current works of popular art that possess wit and integrity.
  4. The beauty part of The Larry Sanders Show is its subtlety—a kind of sophistication and knowing wickedness that compliments its knowing audience.
  5. The Larry Sanders Show is all tension, cynicism, profound shallowness, and naughty-boy bonding — it's just the way you imagine life behind a big-time TV talk show to be, except infinitely funnier.
  6. After you watch a Larry Sanders show, the rest of television seems like it's on Prozac — smooth and edgeless, where Sanders is prickly and nervous.
  7. If you think Garry Shandling must be running out of ways to deconstruct show business, you're wrong. This will probably prove the most fearless half hour of comedy all year.
  8. Larry Sanders has always contained an undercurrent of tragedy in its portrait of a pathetically insecure man whose work is his life, and whose life is one long, uncomfortable commercial break. Fearlessly, Shandling and his cowriters are pushing Larry to the edge.
  9. A terrific blastoff. ... Groening, deeply influenced by the paranoid fantasies of writer Philip K. Dick, the dystopian surrealism of the Firesign Theatre, and every cornball sci-fi movie, creates an airy atmosphere ripe for satirizing our love of computer technology.
  10. The series is full of surprises ... And as Tony, Gandolfini gives a magnificently shrewd, wary performance. If, like me, you thought you never wanted to watch another Mob story, be sure to check this out.
  11. Miraculous ... One of the myriad greatnesses of The Sopranos is that, to paraphrase the Godfather paraphrase that Steven Van Zandt's Silvio frequently quotes, it keeps pulling you back in — back in on yourself, appealing to your basest instincts, to your fundamental urge to hear a bloody story well told.
  12. The new Sopranos is as good as it's ever been -- ruthlessly emotional, cuttingly funny and frightening.
  13. This may be the first TV show since Pee-wee's Playhouse to treasure youth even as it embodies all of its contradictions, craziness, hopes, and fears (and I'd like to point out that Freaks is the only hour-long sitcom I've ever seen that sustains funniness for its full 60 minutes).
  14. The second season of Murphy Brown was even better than the first, expanding the parameters of its characters' behavior and providing lots of belly laughs.
  15. How pleasurable it is to really care about a TV series, to the point of (national) obsession.
  16. The whole show is complicated in a fun, brain-teasing way, and having seen the second episode, I can say it only gets funner. I know that's not a word, but I'm saying it anyway.
  17. Watching Jerry, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander, and Michael Richards bounce off Larry David makes you realize what Curb had been missing: worthy opponents for Larry to argue and scheme with.
  18. In theory, it all sounds pretty corny and contrived. In practice, The Real World proves to be by far the most beguiling and involving piece of programming MTV has ever offered.
  19. The pleasure to be taken from 'Office' isn't merely that of laughter -- it's the pleasure of watching a piece of entertainment so perfectly made and so delicately acted.
  20. It's loose and rambling; its dramatic climaxes don't coincide neatly with the conclusion of any given episode. Its dialogue, overseen by creator David Simon ... is so good it often sounds improvised. One criticism of the show I've read is that it's repetitive (in showing the slow process of how the police bring down bad guys). But what those critics don't get is that those qualities are exactly what make 'The Wire' the funkiest cop show on TV.
  21. It's TV's richest, most satisfying experience.
  22. The best series on TV, period. [15 Sep 2006, p.63]
  23. The fifth and final season of David Simon's peerlessly acted, stunningly scripted, revolutionary drama of 1,000 moving parts kicks off Jan. 6.
  24. The storytelling structure isn't just artiness for artiness' sake. Instead, it ingeniously reflects the fractured nature of investigations.
  25. Deadwood has become one hell of a great gimmick-free Western.
  26. I don't know about you, but I'm not used to laughing out loud alone in front of the TV. Honestly, I was startled.
  27. Smart, unruly, and very fast, Arrested is the ultimate TV series for our TiVo age.
  28. Dark, textured, and lively--this is how Dickens is done. [20 Jan 2006, p.66]
  29. Abrams and Lindelof have created one of only two new shows this season at the end of which I was yearning to see a second hour right away. (The other is ABC's "Desperate Housewives": It could be hoot heaven, could be labored camp.) I was tempted to hedge on my final grade, because Lost is the kind of show that could go anywhere. Then I realized that's exactly why I should commit to the ride.
  30. What's great about the series this season is that you can dive deep into its familiar-yet-fresh bubbling stew of physics, ? numerology, and smoke monsters...or you can just skim across its blinding-sun surface, grooving on the thwarted romances, ?the time-shifting nosebleeds, and how great Kate looks in a business power suit and heels.
  31. It's not a nice show, but it's so damn good. ...Leary has invented simply one of the best characters on TV.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This series is officially on fire now.
  32. The underrated bigamy show returns from a too-long hiatus with a plot-packed season 3 opener, and, not for the first time, the females deliver the best moments.
  33. The best worst series on TV. [30 Sep 2005, p.89]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Sin City dazzle adds spice to the cooking competition's season 6 premiere....But it's the fresh crop of cheftestants that'll really whet your appetite.
  34. By the end of the opening hour, you're already engaged by Coach Taylor's challenge to turn the East Dillon stragglers into guys who can complete the phrase ''Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose'' without mumbling. And Friday Night Lights is headed for more touchdown episodes than you can count.
  35. I'll admit, I was a wee bit worried after last season's annoying Georgina story line and relentless drama about the past that haunts Serena (Blake Lively). But fear not, groupies: Summer's been good to this Girl.
  36. For all its bleakness and darkness, there's a glowing exhilaration about this series: It's a feel-good show about feeling really bad.
  37. Four words: Best. Eviction. Episode. Ever. The only thing that could have made it even more delicious? Zombie Chenbot.
  38. They say analyzing comedy kills it, but in this case, it's one revelation after another. Add rare footage of their early years, some non-Python TV appearances, tense on-set footage filmed during the making of their movies, and clips of their greatest hits, and you've got Monty nirvana.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The four-part docuseries begins with ''The Memory Loss Tapes,'' a moving look at the disease's progression through seven patients at various stages. It's not a question of if you'll cry, it's how soon.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It's the sarcasm (see: Adam Scott), smart dialogue, and refreshing take on the workplace comedy that make the somewhat depressing premise a totally raucous party.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The yuk-filled second ep of the sophomore season rectifies this neglect with a plot that tempts Jeff to return to his soul-corrupting old firm, much to the dismay of his community-college study buddies.
  39. The artistic achievement of Treme is that it blends bluntness with the nuances of gorgeous music.
  40. Tremendously clever fun, Masterpiece Mystery! presents the first of three modernizations of the Sherlock Holmes tales.
  41. Olyphant is surrounded by a terrific supporting cast, including Dirty Sexy Money's Natalie Zea as Raylan's ex-wife and Nick Searcy (Deke Slayton in From the Earth to the Moon) as his deceptively cornpone boss. But in the end, it comes down to hard stares and that combination of drawled amusement and sudden violence that make him so cool yet exciting.
  42. It's getting difficult to keep coming up with superlatives for this sophomore-season drama, especially with a thrilling and tantalizing episode like tonight's.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    As ever, it's all in the details.
  43. It possesses a different rhythm from any other show on TV. [13 Apr 2012, p.73]
  44. C.K. is writing, directing, and starring up a storm here, and his usual opening-segment stand-up routine, involving nearsightedness, is funnier than most sitcoms are in an entire season.
  45. The arc of this character--series creator Vince Gilligan's invention of Walter White as a sick soul--is, it's clear now. one of the great narratives in Television histpory. [13 Jul 2012, p.62]
  46. There are funny moments and heartbreaking ones on this fascinating docuseries. [13 Jul 2012, p.68]
  47. Outspoken yet charismatic, politically radical yet traditionalist in his love of family, the man is captured in all his complexity.
  48. Laura Dern and Mike White continue their bold, hilarious, tremendously moving exploration of Amy Jellicoe's ongoing attempt to give meaning to her life. [18 Jan 2013, p.74]
    • 71 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Not since Freaks and Geeks has adolescent humiliation been handled so warmly.
  49. Slowly, a smartly constructed epic is taking shape.
  50. There’s something communal about Schumer’s approach to comedy. It’s not just about punchlines. It’s about conversations. And she makes the women around her seem funnier, just by letting them in on the joke. Some of the best moments happen when she’s interviewing people, inspiring the type of real talk you don’t often get to hear once you’ve outgrown the girls’ locker room.
  51. [A] beautifully crafted, tough-minded hour ... I'll Fly Away has already lived up to its hype as the season's strongest new drama.
  52. The best new series that few people in America are likely to watch. ... Stiller and his small cast of writer-players ... don't make fun of one thing at a time: They combine their subjects, creating rich layers of ridicule.
  53. There's a lot to love about Murder One, bless its parodically sleazy, shrewdly opportunistic, talent-engorged heart.
  54. Six hours of raucous laughter, bone-rattling suspense, and god-awful tragedy. ... The Corner is a marvel of craft.
  55. By the end, it's unclear which of these people are alive or dead, literally or spiritually. But The Returned still qualifies as a new zombie classic--a haunting tribute to the lost loves who feed on your brain forever.
  56. Each season of this anthology drama tells a new story with a new cast, but McConaughey and Harrelson are so good, you immediately begin grieving the prospect of getting only eight episodes with them. [10 Jan 2013, p.67]
  57. You won't want to watch this, Yes, it will wreck you. But you'll be grateful you let it. [8 Nov 2013, p.61]
  58. A delicious deep dive into six Stephen Sondheim songs.
  59. Hannibal captures your imagination with the prospect of Graham using his imagination to figure a way out. [28 Feb 2014, p.65]
  60. It sounds heavy, yet the premiere is as buoyant as it is deep, light as it is layered. It is many things at once, including absolutely fantastic.
  61. A sprawl of engrossing setup. [4 Apr 2014, p.61]
  62. Such a nice surprise: A sharply written show about a mother-daughter relationship filled with vibrant emotions instead of cheap sarcasm.
  63. At its best, Friends operates like a first-rate Broadway farce, complete with slamming doors, twisty plots, and intricately strung together jokes. And even when it's not at its best, the crack acting and piquant punchlines give Friends a momentum and charm that win you over even if you're not laughing.
  64. The show's energetic fearlessness in depicting someone who is fearful in her loneliness gives Ally McBeal an overriding purpose. The result is irresistible television, whether you experience it as a sexual-differences safari or as a blueprint for your own life.
  65. It not only has all the classic sitcom ingredients but also adds a new, more refined aggression to the mix.
  66. Sex and violence certainly have their place here, but they're placed in the context of a vivid city that, as dangerous, seamy, and profane as it can be, is a place you want to revisit every week.
  67. King has turned out to be a near-perfect synthesis of Seinfeld and [Everybody Loves] Raymond, recombining many of the best elements of each show into something wholly, delightfully new.
  68. There are times when you wish the jokes in this series were a little funnier, but right now its unique situations — there's comedy gold being mined from Malcolm's gifted-child class of awkward brainiacs — make it distinctive.
  69. An immensely enjoyable, carefully crafted, well-performed creation. Take it from a viewer who has given every Trek incarnation a try and always come away admiring the concept but disappointed with the execution: Voyager hits pay dirt.
  70. The more leisurely pace allows for some singular moments. [17 Mar 2006, p.101]
  71. In its pilot episode, Chicago Hope looked smart but trite — Trapper John, M.D. with book-learnin'. ... [But David E.] Kelley's writing in [the second] episode is worth any number of Picket Fences.
  72. Brooklyn Bridge is beguiling, simultaneously the warmest and most intelligent new show of the season. It's also a vindication of artistic control in the TV industry.
  73. 'Scrubs' is a TV rarity: a new sitcom with an original look and point of view, and the merciful absence of a familiar star attempting a comeback.
  74. [The first episodes are] four of 24's best hours to date. [20 Jan 2006, p.59]
  75. Sure, the new Real World is beating the dead horse of the old one, but its derivativeness carries a fresh sting.
  76. The first season of Real World had a lot of momentum just because of its sheer novelty. The second season began to drag because the El Lay crew proved generally to be self-absorbed bores. But the current Real World benefits enormously from two ticking time bombs: Puck's outrageously boorish behavior, which is destined to set off explosive fights with his roommates; and, more profoundly, Pedro's HIV-positive status, which adds another layer of self-consciousness to this TV project.
  77. Season openers don't get much more incendiary: There are severed feet, a ''beef'' between rival Armenian, Mexican, and Salvadoran gangs, and a murder committed by another member of Vic's Strike Team.
  78. Everwood ain't brain surgery, but that's also what helps make it an easygoing charmer.
  79. When the series premiered in July, 'Reno' looked like a one- or two-joke stunt, a smartly sustained 'Saturday Night Live' sketch. ... As this series has evolved, its format has proven remarkably expansive and emotionally rich, using parodic elements to explore these characters and place them precisely in a social environment.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    For such a quick-witted comedy, the eight episode commentaries aren't as sharp as you'd expect, and Carell is entirely absent. But some three hours of deleted scenes--funnier takes of already hilarious sequences, beefed-up stories for the supporting cast--compensate.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A trite, untrue mental-illness mystery insults the show's high IQ, but doesn't diminish the opener's capture-the-imagination thesis: that a redeemed House can be just as compelling as a rude House.
  80. Any show that can accommodate decadent cruelty, tragic bravery, and political divisiveness is one you ought to be watching, frakkin' spaceships or not.
  81. The series' brilliant conceit is that enemies are often sane and rational, and many good guys and gals are obsessed, flawed, and ruthless.
  82. What makes Veronica so strangely touching is that on a larger scale, her quest mirrors the common teen conundrum: My family's screwed up, and I'm not cool enough. How can I fix it?
  83. With Rescue Me, [Leary] redeems himself by doing what we always suspected he could do: really act.
  84. It returns with an emotional and surprising (hint: you'll never look at icicles the same way) premiere.
  85. Big Love is very, very good this season.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The show immediately bursts at the seems with personality. [16 Nov 2007, p.68]
  86. Tim Gunn still motherhens the designers, the dramatic arcs feel familiar (one designer is a recovering addict, another gave up a career as a surgeon), and--wonders to behold--there's even a branch of the fabric store Mood in Runway's new Los Angeles home.
  87. As a profane peek into current showbiz, Entourage is excellent, dirty fun.
  88. Almost preposterously enjoyable. [16 Jun 2006, p.67]
  89. Prison Break has the dark social hierarchies of Oz and the clever inventions of Escape From Alcatraz.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Thank you, HBO, for airing Australia's outrageous Office-like, eight-part high school mockumentary, rather than getting a lesser comedian to do an American version.