Newark Star-Ledger's Scores

  • TV
For 382 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Deadwood: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 In the Motherhood: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 184
  2. Negative: 0 out of 184
184 tv reviews
  1. Like "Queer as Folk," The L Word is essentially a mediocre soap opera in soft-core porno drag. There's lots of hot, sweaty, half-naked bodies, but the heads attached spend so much time droning on and on and on about their mundane lives and loves that the sex scenes just feel like an intermission in between all the tepid girl-on-girl dialogue. [16 Jan 2004, p.55]
    • Newark Star-Ledger
  2. Fortunately, Ritter is such a seasoned pro at this sitcom thing that he makes "8 Simple Rules" vaguely watchable, and at times actually funny, when in lesser hands it would be thoroughly unpleasant. [17 Sep 2002]
    • Newark Star-Ledger
  3. Silly as it is, the show works as pop-mythic eye candy. The pilot alone a motherlode of iconic pictures. [3 Oct 2003, p.53]
    • Newark Star-Ledger
  4. Eddie Kaye Thomas is fun as the occasionally felonious brainiac psychologist, but the rest of the characters are pretty one-dimensional, that one dimension being their social awkwardness.
  5. The worst that can be said for Manhattan Love Story is that it's bland.
  6. The humor is generally broad, although Wilson doesn't always play it that way, and when she showcases a bit of wry, knowing wit we remember from "Pitch Perfect," I see glimmers of hope.
  7. Only intermittently funny but unceasingly crass.
  8. The show wallows in lowest common denominator jokes that more often than not don't land.
  9. "Vanished" is already lacking in the kind of star performances that make "Prison Break" or "24" worthwhile even when they're foot-dragging.
  10. There's potentially a good show here; the pilot's just a miss.
  11. It's not a great sitcom, not even really a good one, and the strain of trying to sell such mediocre material will no doubt get to Garrett in a few weeks, but it's still vastly better than its companion show.
  12. [Of the two new soaps,] only "Fashion House" seems to understand that it's supposed to be a guilty pleasure.
  13. A work in progress.
  14. If "Donnellys" wants a shot at doing better than "Studio 60" in its timeslot, it needs at least a hint of a larger-than-life figure.
  15. Despite two fine leading performances by Eddie Izzard and Minnie Driver and a premise that's not like anything else on television, there's something missing in the execution.
  16. Unfortunately, the idea's a little too thin to support a weekly sitcom.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Californication doesn't have the courage of those movies' ["Shampoo" and "Blume in Love"] convictions. It acts like it wants to tell the story of Hank's comeuppance, his growth from obnoxious man-child to real man, but it can't bear the thought of the audience not liking Hank (and, by extension, Duchovny) right out of the gate.
  17. None of those jokes serve any purpose except to be jokes, and they suffer for the fact that real people don't talk, think or act this way.
  18. It's a watered-down, TV version of the familiar tale, as bland and inoffensive as possible.
  19. The show plays like bad imitation noir where the private eye can occasionally sink his teeth into the villain.
  20. There's some amusing material on the margins of the show--the guys use OnStar to settle a debate about the lyrics to a song on the radio, Dougie admits his marriage isn't perfect and his wife "sometimes she gets up in the middle of the night and bakes in her sleep"--but outside of Jerry Minor's winning performance as the overextended but always cheerful Aubrey, it's completely forgettable.
  21. Samantha Who? isn't remotely as bad as the worst of this season's rookie class ("Cavemen," "Big Shots," CBS' upcoming "Viva Laughlin"), but it's ultimately forgettable in a way that a show about an amnesiac would probably want to avoid.
  22. On paper, the idea of building a new democracy from the ruins of war while government contractors run amok--in other words, showing what would happen if the reconstruction of Iraq took place in our heartland--is just as strong as the original premise of Jericho. But the execution remains mediocre.
  23. Any show that's willing to go to such a silly place, to have its main character utter a line of dialogue that's like a parody of a parody of stuff these guys were writing two decades ago on "thirtysomething," is not a show I have time for, even if other shows won't be back until April.
  24. New Amsterdam is essentially three shows in one: Amsterdam flashing back on all the exciting things he's done in the last 366 years; Amsterdam trying to find The One, and Amsterdam and partner Eva Marquez (Zuleikha Robinson) solving murders like the leads on some kind of supernaturally-charged "Law & Order" spin- off. But only the first of those shows is remotely interesting.
  25. The longer you watch the show (I've seen all eight episodes of its first season), the emptier and more frustrating it becomes, to the point where even the brief running time begins to feel too long.
  26. True Blood looks terrific, especially whenever it has to depict a vampire in action, as they can move almost too fast for the naked eye (but not the high-def camera) to see. But unless the thought of vampire/human love makes your pulse quicken--or, even better, makes you wish you didn't have a pulse to quicken--most of it is not really worth seeing.
  27. Heroes may be better this year than it was last year, but it's still a very dumb show that just wants you to think it's smart.
  28. Valentine is more what I was anticipating when I heard about the MRC-on-CW deal: low-budget, disposable and artery-clogging in its levels of cheese.
  29. Unlike "Life on Mars," the concept seems elastic enough that the show could run for a long time, but first its American producers would need to work on storytelling basics like pacing and developing interesting characters.

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