PopMatters' Scores

For 476 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 7.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 The Office (UK): Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Get This Party Started: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 172
  2. Negative: 0 out of 172
172 tv reviews
  1. When Falling Skies is clicking, it remains a very entertaining show that fills a niche.
  2. These political hiccups are unfortunate, but not deal-breakers. Bored to Death is undeniably smart, and so it could very well be laying the groundwork for all these wincing moments to be properly unpacked by an apt post-modern femme fatale (mom?).
  3. As each individual seeks his or her limits, the group is coming together, sharing their difference and their secret. No Ordinary Family is set up to develop these relationships. It is off to a promising start, tweaking a lot of superhero conventions without seeming like a parody.
  4. Sleeper Cell is compelling television primarily for its excellent performances and chilling premises, rather than its plots. Alarming as these may be, they are rendered here with predictable rising and falling action, a bit of romance, and some tidily resolved conflicts.
  5. Based on co-creator Tom Perrotta’s 2011 book, The Leftovers imagines a range of responses (and too often, responses accompanied by anxiety-making piano or violin trills).
  6. The River plainly evokes Lost.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Lacking both comedy and tragedy, Enlisted earns no such commendations.
  7. From a storytelling standpoint, though, the real juice of the show is going to lie in its long-form arcs. It's a delicate balance to maintain, and it will be interesting to see if Person of Interest is up to the challenge.
  8. Details of color and composition do the work usually handled by too much expository dialogue, granting access to Dani and Charlie’s thinking.
  9. Lie to Me offers well-designed (and repeatedly, very white) interiors, utterly formulaic scripting, and familiar characters.
  10. Even with all its CGI trappings and somber Washington, D.C. setting, Threshold feels minor, an amalgam of The Abyss and maybe Dark Skies.
  11. American Horror Story: Asylum reintroduces the first season's nightmarish craziness but also sets it within a coherent basic history. It helps too that the new cast appears to be so tight.
  12. While Hung has its stage set to see some of these types of stories play out, scene after scene positions Ray as a cipher for other characters.
  13. Despite some obvious faults, Strike Back is a decent enough action yarn with slick production values. At the same time, though, the series is more concerned with gratuitous nudity--this is Cinemax, after all, so each episode includes a lifetime's worth of breasts and butt cheeks-than creating a story with any substance, character, or emotional weight.
  14. This is not a show that wants to be analyzed. Rather, it demands that you enjoy it. And there is plenty of humor to mine in the premise.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Love Monkey is an anomaly, an intelligent, well-written dramedy for adults about adults, even if some of the chords it hits are in a minor key.
  15. So no, the jokes aren't as haute as the cuisine. But presentation, on the plate or on television, goes a long way, and Confidential has the look of a winner.
  16. Like The Closer, Major Crimes offers utterly predictable crime-solving.
  17. There's a lot of clunky setup, a lot of piece-moving to send the main characters back to Terra Nova, and a lot of explaining of rules once they get there.
  18. Somehow, this ludicrous premise and uneven plot elements cohere into a fast-moving, exciting hour.
  19. Better With You might try to be a straight-up joke/punchline/laughtrack sitcom. But that dooms it to comparisons with the other ABC shows such as Modern Family and The Middle that bookend it on Wednesday night. Those shows both have more distinct attitudes toward institutions like families and, particularly, marriage, than Better With You seems likely to find.
  20. While this is a lot of plot to deliver in one episode, Revolution manages it efficiently. But still, it doesn't feel very special.
  21. Cavanagh and McCormack bring what you know they will--an effective mix of fast talk and easy delivery to pitch the partners’ situations, which range from silly to predictable.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Despite some promising moments in the first few episodes, the show seems destined for the same fate as Ellie.
  22. When Tara and Sookie speak truth to each other (or seem to), True Blood is almost shrewd.
  23. The show's formula looks to be this: the silly plots swirl, the brokers scheme, and the minions toil, but in each episode, Liv finds a moment to chat with one of these wise, powerful, and inevitably troubled women. In these moments, Scandal is slightly less tabloidy and soapy, and slightly more beguiling.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Perabo shows herself capable of playing Walker tough or sweet, clueless or competent. Unfortunately, in the span of a single episode, she's asked to do all of the above.
  24. The shaman contrivance is surely tedious, but it appears that New Amsterdam uses the immortal design not as a way to Forrest-Gump its protagonist into a set of trite historical situations, but more cleverly, to ask questions about those situations.
  25. With the subtlety of a sledgehammer, the show right away telegraphs that there is more to Kaan than meets the eye, that he's not just a con. We're just not inclined to believe him.
  26. It is to say that this mimicking is just that, as if the creators here have watched those shows ["24" and "Homeland"], but have no original inspiration, and instead think that plot twists in and of themselves make a drama bracing.

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