San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times' Scores

  • TV
For 346 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 70% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 28% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 70
Highest review score: 100 Game of Thrones: Season 2
Lowest review score: 0 In Case of Emergency: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 255
  2. Negative: 0 out of 255
255 tv reviews
  1. Murder One is a giant step above the other new fall attractions and proof again that Bochco is America's most experienced chef when it comes to cooking up irresistible adult drama. [19 Sept 1995, p.1D]
  2. It's never easy to say goodbye to a drama as mind-blowingly magnificent as Breaking Bad, but savvy creator Vince Gilligan has picked the right time to put his end game into motion
  3. The special stays true to the tone and searing wit of the original series and makes for a spectacularly funny coda to "The Office." [18 Oct 2004]
  4. If you stick with it, you will be rewarded with some of the most compelling, provocative drama ever produced for television.
  5. Jammed with characters and story lines, it has a Dickensian quality in its ability to capture time and place with precision. It is almost never predictable, avoiding the cliches of the Mafia genre even while it revels in them. Just when you think a story line is going in a particular direction, the show will suddenly shift gears and veer off into unfamiliar terrain without stretching plausibility to the breaking point. [16 Jan 2000]
  6. "The Sopranos" has renewed and refreshed its ability to surprise. [4 Mar 2001]
  7. As good as some other cop shows are -- "The Shield," for example -- no other comes this close to a true-to-life portrayal of life on the mean streets. [29 May 2003]
  8. One of TV's most invigorating and intellectually stimulating series.... provocative television that transcends its genre.
  9. Deadwood may not offer the vision of the Old West Americans have had for years, but it is a stunning, intelligent, almost poetic view of how we came to be a nation. [5 Mar 2005, p.1E]
  10. The comedy is so darkly cynical that it's off-putting. If you're a glass-half-full kind of guy like me, it's hard to make the show part of your regular TV menu. [13 Sep 2002]
  11. For five decades, the cop drama -- the good guys vs. the bad guys on the streets of our cities -- has been one of the cornerstones of network television, from the days of "Dragnet" to newer shows such as "Hill Street Blues" and "NYPD Blue" that altered TV. But never, ever has there been a cop drama quite like The Shield, and it could have an impact on pop culture that rivals the best of the police shows that came before it. [12 Mar 2002, p.AE 1]
  12. Sunday night's opening episode, Public Relations, delivers some jaw-dropping moments.
  13. Homeland has a chance to be a much tighter--and smarter--endeavor with more nuance than "24" ever had. But if a cougar suddenly appears, and/or if someone comes back from the dead, all bets are off.
  14. Stick with it, and this Sherlock proves to be a fun and exhilarating TV experience.
  15. Powerful stuff. [16 Apr 2000]
  16. Those who make the investment are richly rewarded. There's enough tension, betrayal, treachery, greed and sex, after all, to fill eight seasons of "Scandal."
  17. Boomtown offers hope that it could be one of those rare shows that looks sharp, is sharp and actually has something to say...In lesser hands, it could have been hackneyed or pretentious. But creator Graham Yost is a skilled writer who handles the shifting perspectives and the time jumps with aplomb and without sacrificing characterization. [27 Sept 2002, p.SE1]
  18. Put together, all these elements make Rescue Me one of the television's top dramas, on a par with the likes of "Deadwood" and "The Shield." It is that rare TV series that offers insight, generates heartfelt emotion and challenges the viewer to consider the darker corners of the soul. [21 June 2005, p.2D]
  19. This season's opening four hours are as good as anything the series has ever done.
  20. The one truly original new show this season and certainly the funniest comedy. It is outrageous. It is odd. It is fresh. It is smart. And, given the track record of such refreshingly sophisticated comedies on network TV, it will be lucky to last three episodes. [31 Oct 2003, p.9E]
  21. In the end, The Wire is extraordinary television. It has a richness, a depth and an intelligence that transcend the medium and makes it the kind of superb literature that A.O. Scott found lacking in the world of books.
  22. By the end of the opener, a web of intriguing plot lines (and their treacherous overtones) are firmly in place. As ensuing episodes unfold, the story finds its beating heart as the characters substantially deepen.
  23. [It has] a rich mix of sharp observant humor and a sure feel for the family dynamic.
  24. That Thrones remains so utterly unpredictable makes it even more mesmerizing.
  25. And as far as the plots are concerned, don't sweat it. Tonight's engaging season-opener is easily accessible. Spend some time with these characters and soon you'll find yourself developing a strong emotional connection to them. [5 Oct 2007]
  26. They could have made for some deadly passages, but thanks to Morgan's writing and a superior cast, these discourses on the nature of evil, and whether the truly evil ever can be restored to humanity, are mesmerizing.
  27. The top-notch acting is still intact, as is the attention to aesthetic detail.
  28. The Cold War may be over, but this addictive spy thriller is just heating up.
  29. The good news is that it's still got game. [7 Nov 2004, p.C09]
  30. One of the most fully realized, innovative and flat-out exciting television debuts ever. [4 Nov 2001]