Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 1,750 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 54% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 43% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Homeland: Season 2
Lowest review score: 0 Cavemen: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 970
  2. Negative: 0 out of 970
970 tv reviews
  1. If the characters are not particularly original, neither do they come off as artificial. The dialogue is 75% banter, but it is crisp and tart, and the actors make even the ripostes you can predict sound spontaneous.
  2. Once you accept that you are in for a certain kind of joke repeated over and over again — or three kinds of jokes, if you include those regarding the deterioration of mind and body and those about kids these days — and settle in to the show's rhythms, you find yourself, paradoxically, laughing more easily.
  3. Indeed, the fleshed-out secondary characters have better material than do Sookie and her vampire Bill (Stephen Moyer), who labor under the burden of replaying for the umpteenth time the forbidden love between the living and the dead, the light and the dark.
  4. Despite its troublesome subject, the series succeeds, moderately, in letting you know that it knows that Bond, as his creator conceived him, is a relic, and that Fleming's pulp-novel aspirations are worth skewering.
  5. Although it looks at first to be a sports-world "Entourage," a horrifying thought, it proceeds to reach for something better.
  6. The flavor is high-style retro-modern, high-style B-picture.
  7. It's a warm, gentle, amiable little comedy, one calibrated to smiles instead of punch lines followed by noisy laugh tracks.
  8. It is a worthy, highly watchable effort. While a bit tonally uneven in early episodes and not especially groundbreaking--it is, at its core, yet another legal procedural--Doubt is elevated by witty banter and a stellar supporting cast.
  9. While it goes out of its way to cast these soldiers as the heroic equals, if not betters, of their "Greatest Generation" counterparts, the series does not have the same impact--mainly because these images, though at times awful and upsetting, are also much more familiar.
  10. Entertaining. ... While the musical numbers are all beautifully realized--everything seems to be performed live--the miniseries is more drama than musical; and as a drama it’s more a sampler of Early Scenes from Great Lives than a deep or driven narrative.
  11. [George] is not terribly believable in any of them, forcing viewers to rely on the reactions of those around her to see that she is convincing as an uber agent. Fortunately, the other performances are strong enough to carry it off for the most part, and as the plot divides and subdivides, sending tendrils up through the vaunted British intelligence agency, recalling the Cold War and evoking more current international concerns, Hunted takes on a smart and disturbing personality of its own.
  12. The show is exceptionally well made from top to bottom and pulls you in and pulls you along, owing not least to a host of terrific performances.
  13. Though funny and fabulous, the tone of the season premiere is as harsh as those famously flung slushies, with an emphasis on girl fights and not nearly enough of Mercedes (Amber Riley), Brittany (Heather Morris) or Kurt.
  14. It was an exuberant, technically audacious staging.
  15. This kind of straight, no-chaser approach to patient care is what makes House a satisfying riff on any number of doctors I've seen on TV and know I will never have taking care of me. [16 Nov 2004, p.E1]
    • Los Angeles Times
  16. With a talented ensemble and exquisite location work, it’s a solid night-time soap with top notes of consciousness-raising and the added bonus of returning Winfrey to the flat screen (albeit in a co-starring role).
  17. Created by Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams (both of whom worked on “The Accountant”), Ozark does most things right. Not every plot point feels completely plausible, but the show looks good and plays well; the writing is crisp and not too colorful; the performances are unforced and believable.
  18. It's all great fun, especially for those of us who have not read the book and so do not know if there is a clever cause or a nifty solution. Even if there is not, we get to watch a solid cast work its way through this latest spin on a classic tale, while keeping a wary eye on our own pets.
  19. Full of doe-eyed children talking to invisible and possibly sinister forces in the ceiling, the shrubbery and the night sky, The Whispers gets as much mileage out of the Steven Spielberg hand-stamp (he's an executive producer) as possible.
  20. After a relatively overstated first episode (relative to what follows, that is, not to cartoons as a whole), it settles down into a gentler, more delicate, behind-the-beat groove.
  21. A disorienting labyrinth of a show that's as seductive and visually arresting as it is frustrating.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Ultimately, Life Is but a Dream remains a victory for her fans. Casual viewers will most likely glean the same sense of the superstar's life as one might from a magazine feature. But for serious fans of the fiercely private superstar, this remains a window into her life.
  22. Viewers sad about the end of "Happy Town" and looking for another creepy municipal drama filmed in Canada may find this a port in the storm, though it is more cheaply appointed and less spectacularly cast. Still, it would be pointless to attack the show for not achieving things that are beyond its ambitions.
  23. Brosnahan is full of the spit and vinegar that makes Midge a character worth watching. Performances by Shalhoub and Zegen help bolster the dysfunctional and oppressive family dynamic. But the show would be better served by 30-minute episodes rather than hour ones.
  24. Breezy, smart-alecky fun.
  25. Taylor and Gross balance just the right amount of competence and bewilderment, while Mulroney emotes the pain of a rejected father. The pilot is all but stolen by Joshua Erenberg, who plays the kid Finley rescues.
  26. There's something not quite right about this show's approach to homosexuality.
  27. Unlike many series--especially cable series--and despite the propensity of some family members to take undue advantage of Cam's new good fortune, the show is not broadly cynical about people or institutions, which makes it easy to like, despite its sometimes wobbly tone and occasional clumsy construction.
  28. It's perhaps appropriate to the subject matter that the show's main appeal is sensual rather than cerebral, grounded in a host of superb performances.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If not terribly revelatory about the youthful human condition, the series is better, and certainly more addictive, than it sounds. [21 May 1992]
    • Los Angeles Times
  29. The series feels familiar but also fresh; predictable but not without character.
  30. In this case familiarity breeds more comfort than contempt. Caan and Lawson spark when they spar, Crichlow's Lulu is a delight as is Gluck's Danny. And even Dick, though burdened with far too much sexual innuendo, has a few good moments.
  31. Despite a certain built-in B & B preciousness, Cedar Cove evokes certain splendid shows of another time and place, including the late-great "Family" and the longtime Irish hit "Ballykissangel."
  32. It is nothing new, but it is well assembled and expertly played.
  33. Not a new story, but in Gomorrah, familiarity breeds relief rather than contempt.
  34. Everyone does their bit, performance-wise, but O'Malley, who came to everyone's attention as Kurt's father in "Glee," is the key player here. He and McCormack instantly create a dryly endearing couple, while he and Chavira may turn out to have the most fruitful antagonism since Maude met Archie Bunker.
  35. Surely that elevator knows it's you when it decides to do its devilish little bounce. That's one of the jokes of ABC's not-so-scary-but-still-great-fun 666 Park Avenue.
  36. What makes the show worth watching are some old-fashioned character relationships; no single performance tears up the place, but together they make something interesting.
  37. The Menendez story is not as immediately consuming as the celebrated O.J. series, perhaps because there was no dramatic car chase or fallen-celebrity scenario to kick off the story. But with a solid cast and Falco in the lead, The Menendez Murders has the potential to dominate in an otherwise crowded field of true-crime dramas.
  38. In between bouts of underage drinking, texting, girl-bonding, and the inevitable minor-key whine of a soundtrack, that is. "True Blood Lite" or "Transylvania 90210." And you know what? It is. Almost exactly. But this is not a bad thing, not a bad thing at all. Because Vampire Diaries knows precisely what it is--a Gothic romance--and doesn't try to be anything else.
  39. Trial & Error is solid and funny, impressively cast and in no significant sense groundbreaking.
  40. Disjointed is a thoroughly professional, overall pleasant, largely painless piece of work. The cast is good company; the jokes land often enough (only a few in the four episodes available for review felt actively ugly).
  41. There is something highly appealing about this atmospheric CBS series.
  42. Though constructed from off-the-rack tropes and predictable dialogue, the show also keeps moving forward, causing its characters enough trouble that you feel compelled to stick around at least to see how they get out of it.
  43. I'm not wholly convinced by the American Life on Mars.
  44. Important Things is inconsistent--the sketches are on the whole less funny than the stand-up, but they have their moments, and the show is on the whole worthwhile.
  45. Breaking Bad is as good as a show on this subject could possibly get, but the subject has its drawbacks. I like it, I admire it, but I can't say I enjoy it.
  46. The production itself is sunny and conducive to a good mood. Coughlan wears well, as does Jason Priestley in the role of the fiancé she puts on hold.
  47. A to Z is the most promising comedy premiering on broadcast networks this fall. That's not saying much — this is not a particularly good year for new comedies — but it's saying something.
  48. Strike Back unfolds quickly and confidently with brilliantly choreographed fight sequences and the exotic locales. But nothing trumps the friendship of the two male leads.
  49. There is little in the way of humor. What relief there is comes from supporting characters, like Chance's office manager, Lucy (Greta Lee), who let in a little fresh air from the normal world offstage. The performances are enjoyable.
  50. The show fails only when it wants to make you feel something warm about their mission, rather than just letting you enjoy the icy suspense and snappy dialogue.
  51. If you make it to the end, the payoff is sweeter for the suffering. In the meanwhile, enjoy each scene on its own merits, which are not inconsiderable.
  52. It’s a sketch, essentially, effectively blown out to 40 minutes--not too short, not too long. Apart from the generally good jokes and the amusing imitations of period style, what makes Tour de Pharmacy good company is the overarching sense of play. That describes a lot of modern comedy, for better or worse, the sense that the players are on board primarily for the good time and camaraderie as much as for the material or the paycheck. It’s a feeling the modesty of this production only enhances.
  53. Timeless is a mostly straight-faced, frequently corny, occasionally high-minded adventure thriller--pulp that stops every once in a while to reflect on the dark marks of American history or consider its characters' deeper feelings and predicaments. Yet it works best when it remembers that there’s something inherently nutty in the whole business, when it does not deny its inner “Back to the Future.”
  54. Enlightening without feeling quite essential, the sort of PBS package that seems at times designed to warm the hearts and loosen the purse strings of viewers of a certain age and income.
  55. Though the laughs may come through gritted teeth and a pained wince, they are there. It's an enjoyable series, at least for the three episodes available for review.
  56. Even when it's irritating, Episodes is funny. And if, at times, it intentionally or unintentionally pokes fun at itself as much as anything else well, that works too.
  57. No doubt there will be many lessons about the importance of pulling together and being true to oneself, etc., but Make It or Break It seems prepared to take on not only the obvious Life Lessons but also the crucial undercurrents that move so many lives well into adulthood. And that, as much as the graceful wonder of gymnastics, will make it worth watching.
  58. It's all very tense and fun, underscored by sirens and ominous techno music, shot in that popular, over-caffeinated jumpiness that here at least makes sense.
  59. This is good summer entertainment, like a Saturday afternoon B-movie matinee transposed to Monday-night TV.
  60. There are certainly plot points that seem insufficiently thought through. But the actors--including Sean Teale, Jamie Chung, Emma Dumont and Blair Redford as the mutant resistance--give a good account of themselves.
  61. He is kind of irritating.... but Passmore largely pulls it off, in part by making the character a bit daffy; he just can't help himself. And the producers surround him with jerks and dweebs and men less handsome or clever than himself to ensure that he's the person with whom we identify and whose opinions we share; the plot conveniently supports his genius.
  62. Yet silly and unsurprising as it seems, Miss Guided has something going for it that many predictable sitcoms do not: a uniformly talented cast.
  63. Here he has both--mood galore and a premise strong enough to not only sire a great pilot but to sustain a solid series.
  64. Breathlessly paced and festooned with some pretty groovy computer graphics--the chip allows Holloway to walk through scenes of past destruction in his mind--Intelligence isn't trying to be anything more than what it obviously is. The show is a panoply of familiar elements anchored by a new and attractive leading man.
  65. It's at its funniest when it moves out of the studio and into the world, where Triumph does his rude-dog-on-the-street act, like a canine Billy Eichner channeling what is not yet the ghost of Don Rickles. There is something actually audacious about these bits but also genuinely fun; you're let in on the game.
  66. While the narrative never quite coheres into a compelling whole, there are enough independently arresting, unexpectedly moving moments to carry you through, hopping from one to the next like stones in a river, on the way to a strenuously tidy conclusion.
  67. All in all, it's a pleasant, sunny and well-played ephemeral farce; Gilbert, Grier, Hansen and Davis are all good to see again, and Graynor inhabits her character with verve and increasing grace.
  68. For reasons known only to its creators, the pilot for Sleepy Hollow seems determined to jam into one hour what could have easily, and more enjoyably, been spun out over several.
  69. While all the characters have boilerplate for bones--the brainy one, the pretty one, the smart aleck, the tortured hunk--crisp writing and buoyant performances keep the story from trending too trite or too "Twilight."
  70. If anything is liable to make "Smith" above the well-made caper show it already is, it's what might be done with the relationship between Liotta and Madsen.
  71. The 2003 edition has the edge on the 1942 in terms of raw excitement.
  72. The situations are stock--John Hughes wrote this playbook pretty thoroughly--and the dialogue does not exactly crackle. But it is all well-staged and believably played and at times it becomes quite lyrical and, even, moving.
  73. As long as you're not a classic mythology purist or looking for something more than a fun, occasionally hilarious sword 'n' sandal romp, Atlantis is a fine, family-friendly addition to BBC America's Supernatural Saturday.
  74. Its sometimes distracting and oppressive aspirations aside, Low Winter Sun does nevertheless strike me as promising, solid at its core, powered by plausible cross-purposes. Strong and James are excellent.
  75. It’s a testimony to Spielberg’s career that a two-and-a-half-hour documentary on his life and work could both feel too long in some places and yet oddly inadequate in others.
  76. A perfectly entertaining period piece that has the misfortune of arriving shortly after a similarly themed but dramatically more compelling series, Netflix’s “The Crown.”
  77. Rush Hour, the Jackie Chan-Chris Tucker big-screen martial-arts action-comedy franchise, has now given birth to a noisy and likable TV series.
  78. While the broad strokes tend to remind you that you're watching a fiction, the finer details are well done - the bits and pieces are satisfying, even as you note the rivets and seams that join them.
  79. There are well-written and well-mounted scenes and some good performances. It is not without suspense. But even at four hours, House of Saddam feels incomplete and scattered--a lessened, not a heightened reality.
  80. The leads each fare better when her character is a little off base--Fonda's when she defrosts a little, Tomlin's when she toughens up--and the show is more fun when they're in a mood to cooperate than when they're trading barbs.
  81. What executive producers Carol Mendelsohn and Don McGill and their team have done by creating Russell is promising, both for the show and the genre.
  82. It chokes a bit on its own whimsicality. But it stays on its feet.
  83. Standard sitcom issue--yet they feel convincingly bound to each other from the start.
  84. Even though his relentless boyishness and flight from adult reality at times wears thin, Dave is a comfortable character, as well as being a nice fit for Anderson, who performs here with confidence and ease.
  85. Graceland is an entertaining addition to a strong summer lineup in which attractive people trade witty banter and engage in serious work that provides good clean episodic fun while teaching the main characters the importance of love and loyalty.
  86. It's funny, but it doesn't go for big laughs so much as a mood of whimsical parody.
  87. Marked by logical elisions, word-balloon dialogue and conveniently located plot holes though it may be, this is a machine for putting its heroes in tight spaces and watching them kick their way free, and it does its work efficiently and with flair.
  88. It does what it does more than acceptably well, and promises to be subtler than its big-screen model--not that subtlety is necessarily what you come for. In any case, the template shows no sign of wearing out, or wearing out its welcome.
  89. This isn’t Allen at his wittiest or wildest--his career is almost by definition a thing of peaks and valleys, and he can be satisfying and frustrating within a single film. But he has a voice, and he has not yet lost it. Anyone susceptible to that sensibility will find many familiar pleasures here.
  90. The tone may veer a bit wildly from grim to hilarious for an American audience's taste, but once Hamm and Radcliffe settle into their roles (and Hamm into his accent), it could very well live up to its U.K. rep and provide Ovation with some skin in the game.
  91. Fine character actors abound, playing people on the rural edges, but it's the main character and Olyphant's performance that lift the sometimes labored plot lines and carry them over the finish line.
  92. Things get pretty wacky by the end--actually, they get wacky well before the end--but however unlikely, the proceedings are kept watchable by a cast that notably includes Ian McShane, Donald Sutherland, Rufus Sewell, and Eddie Redmayne.
  93. It plays in many ways like a leisurely, bucolic version of "Curb," with a larger cast of characters and something like a "journey" for the main character.
  94. In recent months, star Denis Leary and his co-creator/producer Peter Tolan have repeatedly promised a different show, one less bleak and heavy-footed than Season 4, and on this they most certainly deliver.
  95. The plots that spin around the two main characters unfortunately suffer by comparison.... But in all honestly, Crossbones is all about Blackbeard being John Malkovich.
  96. Fast-paced, with a certain "learn-as-you-go" air, the premiere episode, supplied a nice number of laughs and the inevitable angsty moments of group competition. The number of games could prove a problem, however, especially since many of them involve team members getting up and down from their seats, which is a time waster and visually distracting.
  97. A pleasingly soapy story of beating hearts and changing times.
  98. A likable new Disney Channel cartoon series about twins spending a summer with their strange great-uncle in a weird little town in the Pacific Northwest.

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