San Francisco Chronicle's Scores

For 1,192 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 52% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 45% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Transparent: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Hank: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 649
  2. Negative: 0 out of 649
649 tv reviews
  1. All of the elements that made it must-see last year are working at full throttle in season two, which kicks off Wednesday night: intrigue, deception, sex, duplicity, spy vs. spy stuff and, most of all, irony.
  2. At heart, this is a show about good and evil, but sometimes the catch--for both the characters and the audience--is knowing which is which. You won't be able to stop watching.
  3. The most ambitious storytelling series on television. ... "The Wire" is the best show on HBO, which means it's the best show on television, period. If you want in on it, even if you missed the first go-around, you'll find a way to make sense of it all.
  4. Mamet is very much on his game in Phil Spector, but so is every member of his cast, including Al Pacino as Spector and Helen Mirren as attorney Linda Kenny Baden: Watching these two titans of acting work is half the fun.
  5. The Hour stands perfectly well on its own merits. It's so good that other shows should start looking to it as something to emulate.
  6. In the end, there will likely be a lot of unhappiness, dead bodies, same-as-it-ever-was institutional failure, lack of responsibility and the triumph of self-interest over the greater good. Not exactly a Hallmark card, but one hell of an artistic achievement.
  7. Courage or crazy, or maybe both, everyone involved is following the same directive: to blow up the traditional sitcom. It’s just crazy funny.
  8. The emotional authenticity of Downton Abbey continues to make it a classic.
  9. David's ability to hone in and magnify the most socially awkward moments in life is almost frightening. If this series didn't make you double over in laughter every couple of minutes, it would be a whole other kind of torture.
  10. Having seen the first four episodes, you need to be a part of this. You need to doff the skepticism and get on the ride.
  11. Sherlock is an electric marriage of great writing with great performances.
  12. Awake grabs you, unnerves you, breaks your heart and even makes you work a little.
  13. Notaro is funny because she is so creatively droll. But she’s also funny because she is --maybe not fearless, but brave enough to stare fear down and get beyond it.
  14. When you have a story as thoroughly involving as this one, evoking both "King Lear" and "Citizen Kane," and when the performances are this good, Boss almost directs itself.
  15. Stranger Things reminds us of a time marked by a kind of no-strings escapism. And as it does so, we find ourselves yearning for it because the Duffers have made it so irresistibly appealing. There may be other equally great shows to watch this summer, but I guarantee you won’t have more fun watching any of them than you will watching Stranger Things.
  16. At least the first episode of the new Cosmos is terrific. And if the other 12 episodes are as good, the series will serve as a valuable continuation of Sagan's legacy.
  17. The fall's funniest sitcom.
  18. The three Roosevelts come back to memorable life in Burns' epic through archival footage, some of which has been seen before in other Burns' films, and insightful commentary from historians and writers such as Jon Meacham, Doris Kearns Goodwin, David McCullough, Blanche Wiesen Cook, William Leuchtenberg, and others.
  19. "City of Men" pulses with the kind of energy you don't get often on American television, and the realness of the shot-on-location scene really makes each episode feel like a minimovie.
  20. A gorgeous new documentary series on the Discovery Channel.
  21. The breadth and ambition of "The Wire" are unrivaled and that taken cumulatively over the course of a season -- any season -- it's an astonishing display of writing, acting and storytelling that must be considered alongside the best literature and filmmaking in the modern era.
  22. A cleverly crafted, ingenious thriller with only scant moments of implausibility. Most of it has the unmistakable imprint of a smart premise beautifully executed.
  23. All the elements Mad Men does well - the humor, the note-perfect clothing and sets, the creeping cultural change - are still there to be savored.
  24. Lost has a stellar, varied cast, it is shot beautifully and it surprises more often than it makes you wince or wheeze, which, in the math of action-adventure-sci-fi-thrillers, is a good thing. [22 Sept 2004, p.E1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  25. Stunningly great execution.
  26. The period details are exquisite, aside from a couple of stray modernisms that wander into the dialogue here and there.... But the brilliance of the series is the balancing act of the scripts, by Darabont and Buntin, executed with astonishing precision between the past and the modern version of the past.
  27. "Deadwood" fans already know that Milch doesn't make it easy for viewers to get a purchase on his series, but for those willing to do the work, Luck, pays off.
  28. This is a series that was completely unexpected, and Hall has hard-and-fast rules about what Joan and God can do. She's not making up the story arcs on the fly, which gives confidence that this unusual creation is in good hands. [25 Sept 2003, p.E1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  29. Klondike grabs you with terrific performances, an unusually rich script, magnificently sweeping visuals of jagged mountains overlooking valleys of ice and snow, and such a convincing attention to period detail, you'll believe you're back in Dawson City at the end of the 19th century.
  30. Nothing Left Unsaid offers great insight into the lives of its subjects, but its even greater achievement as a film is unanswered questions it provokes in its viewers.

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