PopMatters' Scores

For 463 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 33% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 62% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 7.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 The Flag: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Get This Party Started: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 165
  2. Negative: 0 out of 165
165 tv reviews
  1. Even if it makes for far less gripping viewing in its sophomore iteration, Luther remains notable in the police drama pantheon for this stark perspective.
  2. Herzog listens and interjects his own helpfully perverse insights.
  3. What follows shows how Johnson exploits and also struggles in this "element," but the problem, as usual in The Closer, is that the cops' experience here is more familiar than believable.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    As effective as the big numbers can be, they don't always pay off. The show also has a bad habit of delivering easy solutions to the kids' problems.
  4. Even the actors in the smallest roles are three-dimensional, a rich tribute to Britain’s theatrical talent. If these are, as Horowitz claims, the last episodes of Foyle he writes, both he and his longtime actor-collaborators are bowing out on a very high note indeed.
  5. Of course, satire doesn't need to rely on realistic or three-dimensional characters. (In fact, it most often relies on two-dimensional types.) But it does need a fresh and consistent point of view. Absent that, ONN is best when it indulges in simple absurdity.
  6. What's so wonderful about My Name Is Earl is that it's a comedy with its heart in the right place and everything else gleefully in the gutter.
  7. As much as the series' pitch seems clear--it's another period series, with terrific design details, long story arcs, and complex performances--it is also something else, a reframing of what it might mean to be Americans, then and now.
  8. Despite the pleasures of these performances, the series drags. Inside each of Zen's 90-minute episodes lies, one suspects, a crisp hour.
  9. Much like last season, this one already has Adams and Ben standing in for viewers. Their insights, or their reactions, mold yours.
  10. Even as all of these seeming oppositions are set up, the show insists on the blurring of lines, the bridges as well as the borders.
  11. The actor’s embodiment of seemingly counterintuitive emotions is riveting, as House’s placidity demonstrates sorrow, while anger represents a kind of giddy id. Even if House isn’t offering new stories or themes, it remains a terrific showcase for a terrific performer.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Watching the cast play doubled characters promises to be one of the great pleasures of Fringe's coming season. Certainly Torv and Noble face the biggest challenges, she depicting two characters in flux, he portraying polar opposites. But the alt-world also offers alternatives for all the players.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While I expected the obvious jihadist jokes and Muslim stereotypes, the good news is that Aliens in America doesn’t just fall into such jingoistic scapegoating. Instead, it shows and complicates the process.
  12. When so much of the series depends on psychological nuance, the lurch into Hollywood action thriller confrontations is an outright admission of defeat. Sensationalism trumps subtlety once more. Both Luther and Idris Elba deserve so much more.
  13. Just when it could've coasted off its accumulated good will and anticipation, Boardwalk Empire raised the stakes instead.
  14. Nurse Jackie offers both gripping drama and outrageous comedy.
  15. While Kieren does contend with zombie-style gore, the show isn’t a kill-fest like The Walking Dead. But as it raises the sorts of questions that classic zombie fare, In the Flesh also draws some perceptive connections to our own social and political contexts.
  16. The show is becoming more complex along with its characters, and as a result, the viewer feels a greater investment.
  17. Even as this plot pattern bodes ill, Margulies and Panjabi make a formidable team.
  18. While the picture it provides is certainly strange and paradoxical, it is also limited.
  19. By turns treacly and rapturous, pedestrian and insightful, the documentary submits that, as Howard Bryant observes, "Most people have found a way to make their peace with the sport they love." Still, the history rankles. And here, too much of it is noted only briefly.
  20. As before, the “big picture” plotlines are often the least convincing, mostly because the trippy angel talk is tough to pull off.
  21. The Chicago Code appears to be aiming for a heady mix of action and political drama, and it mostly works. But it also takes itself very seriously, offering precious little levity to ease tensions.
  22. Terriers teases out both the pleasures and the perversities.
  23. As it walks a line between between mockery and compassion, Raising Hope most obviously evokes a comparison with creator Gregory Thomas Garcia's last series, My Name is Earl. In the new show, however, the players are more believable and less caricatured.
  24. Interactions are rendered in smart, layered compositions, with elements that crowd and obscure, colors that distract and focus your attention. Such plot intricacies might appear contrived, but twisting even in the first episode suggests otherwise.
  25. Each member makes a case for his or her status as the team's "linchpin," allowing the rest of us to see a little more about all, rather than the series' usual focus on Bones and Booth. A love letter to group synergy and the fruits of hard labor, the entire episode makes its own case for the team's existence. The whole is much greater than the sum of the parts.
  26. While the designated flawed hero John espouses an essential grasp of the purpose of medicine and the workings of disease (“Despite what you may believe,” he tells Cornelia, “Sickness isn’t a result of poor character, germs don’t examine your bankbook”), he’s also stymied, by his own prejudices as well as money concerns. That these might take him in different directions suggests the series has some sense of the difficulty of medicine then and still.
  27. Unfortunately, the rest of the episode follows Dexter's descent into a routine guilt spiral, blaming himself for Rita's death (he should have "been there" to "protect her"), rather than ruminating on how it feels to be on this receiving end of a serial killing. How a series this smart could overlook the far more interesting angle is as much of a wasted opportunity as it is a disappointment.

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