PopMatters' Scores

For 492 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 34% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 61% 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: 58
Highest review score: 100 The Flag
Lowest review score: 0 Get This Party Started: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 184
  2. Negative: 0 out of 184
184 tv reviews
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    In 10 years of reviewing film and television for various publications, no comedy has given me as much pleasure as The Office.
  1. One of Gus' thugs (Jeremiah Bitsui) simplifies all of his chemistry class geek-speak in the season opener: "It all comes down to following a recipe. Simple, complicated, it doesn't matter. The steps never change." The same might be said of Breaking Bad: it's a formula made of actions and reactions, choices and consequences.
  2. Louie is back, as raunchy, candid, and hilarious as ever.
  3. Unlike their previous show [24], Homeland takes its time: it doesn't make clear right away who's trustworthy and who's a traitor. Based on the first episode's strong script and performances, it looks as though the reveal will be worth the wait.
  4. Frozen Planet recycles some material from previous films from under the same umbrella (I'm pretty sure those duck-hunting wolves were in Life) as well as covering territory very well-trodden by other films.
  5. The new episodes present an almost a too intricate meditation on power. Game of Thrones demands that you pay attention or be left behind.
  6. Quarles and Limehouse can't replace Mags, but they add new dimensions to Raylan's ongoing dilemma, that is, how to be a lawman when the law seems anachronistic.
  7. Perhaps the most disturbing possibility--the subtext that makes Breaking Bad both enthralling and often unbearable to watch--is that Walter is becoming who he always was. He hasn’t changed. He’s been purified.
  8. The networks have been wondering how to compete with the no-holds barred nature of cable programming. This is it.
  9. Treme sketches and interweaves stories and desires, hopes and disenchantments.
  10. While The Flag ponders the whereabouts of Shirley and Spiro’s flag, it raises other, broader, variously resonant questions too, questions concerning how symbols and icons become significant, as well as how stories are told and myths are disseminated.
  11. With its precisely drawn characters, winning performances, and frank, well-observed humor, Girls is a knockout.
  12. It was disappointing that this premiere lacked a lot of fun, usually Community's strong suit. Still, it reminded us of the distinct joys of the first season, offering cartoonish physical comedy, densely written jokes, and obscure pop culture references.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    As the fifth season begins, Southland appears to be stronger for its ordeals. The ensemble is streamlined to the most compelling characters and the direction is crisp.
  13. This being The Good Wife, a show renowned for complicating what might seem obvious, Alicia's new position as a kind of moral compass leads to a new series of dilemmas. Some of these are predictably topical.
  14. With its deft writing and sharp performances, the show is a telling snapshot of how families live now.
  15. Its layered and nuanced analysis of male identity makes Men of a Certain Age worth watching.
  16. The major flaw of "The Great Game" is not allowing Sherlock and Watson to work enough as a team. This flaw makes clearer what the other episodes do well, which is to emphasize the most interesting and important aspect of the original stories, Holmes and Watson's complicated and entertaining relationship.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not only does Show Me a Hero deal with the same type of intricate institutional power struggles of city government--this time in 1987 in Yonkers, NY, where a battle over the desegregation of low-income housing is waged with newly elected mayor Nick Wasicsko (Oscar Isaac) caught in the crossfire--but it does it with the kind of nuanced, ensemble-driven, character-based stories that made The Wire one of the most acclaimed television series of all time.
  17. The portrayal of Thomas’ decline is visceral from the first moments to the last, evoking that same second-hand queasiness one experiences watching, say, Leaving Las Vegas, with explicit images of obliterating drunkenness, retching, and emotionless, mechanical sex, as well as the spasmodic gasping for breath coming out of a blackout or descending into an asthma attack. Watching Thomas’ experience is riveting.
  18. No such show has come even near to Glee's success. Nashville may be the exception, with its clever, even cynical, mix of middle-aged crises and youthful ambitions set in country music's Mecca.
  19. Paul’s sessions this time around are sometimes soapy--as they were last year--but they are always mesmerizing.
  20. If the premise is standard--an excellent cop is dragged back in, just when she's headed out, in this case, from the Northwest's renowned rain to California's sunshine--the details are insistently odd and creepy.
  21. Simon's Treme is an equally astute portrait of "an urban people" still struggling to come back from a brink.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Again, Breaking Bad promises to be quite a ride.
  22. There are a few elements of Silicon Valley that are still works in progress at this point. The force of Miller’s personality can be overwhelming, and a little of Erlich goes a long way.
  23. Summon your patience and settle in for the long haul. By its end, the series' exploration of how ordinary human fallibility is transformed into shocking human depravity is compellingly inventive.
  24. Each of the firefighters here reveals a nuanced, complex mindfulness, a sense that what they do is dangerous, but also rewarding, exciting, important, and, in a word, what they do.
  25. Though some action is depicted outside the two therapists' offices, most episodes are dominated by the sessions themselves, which unfold as brilliantly performed one-act plays.
  26. The show, adapted from Robert Kirkman's comic book series, quickly moves past its familiar premise. It's about what happens after the apocalypse, in the struggle to remain human after society's collapse.

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