San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times' Scores

  • TV
For 384 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 68% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 30% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 70
Highest review score: 100 The Sopranos: Season 3
Lowest review score: 0 In Case of Emergency: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 283
  2. Negative: 0 out of 283
283 tv reviews
  1. Still, "Chronicles" is worth an early sampling, particularly given the current TV landscape where scripted drama and comedy is at a premium. Certainly, there is some promise to the opening episodes.
  2. Yes, this highly addictive -- and often painfully funny -- soap can trample all over your comfort zone, but that can be a good thing if you give it some slack. It is rough and visceral and intense and defiantly alive -- commendable qualities, considering how so many banal (and derivative) TV dramas these days carry the mind-numbing effect of pre-op anesthesia. [22 June 2004, p.D01]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
  3. If you've ever wondered how television screws up so many promising projects, check out Episodes, a new Showtime series with Matt LeBlanc that provides the answers in deliciously hilarious detail.
  4. Occasionally, something will pop up to remind us of just how good television can be when smart writers come up with an intriguing concept and execute it well. A case in point is Breaking Bad, an edgy, challenging new series.
  5. Torchwood is grand fun and great adult entertainment.
  6. A smart, sophisticated spoof.
  7. Arrow does what a solid pilot should: Suck us in, make us anxious to see what's next and set up several intriguing possibilities.
  8. "Sleeper Cell" is a compelling, kinetic ride that matches "24" in its power and is far more realistic and topical.
  9. Saturday's opening episode has a frustratingly deliberate pace. But "Outlander" eventually gains traction and becomes good escapist fun with doses of intrigue, suspense and, of course, steamy romance.
  10. There’s not a ton of depth to Shrek the Halls but it is fun.
  11. [Entourage] has gotten funnier, more human and more insightful with age.
  12. Viewers who look to Downton Abbey for loads of escapist splendor may want to temper their expectations when the wildly popular British drama returns for its fourth season on Sunday.
  13. An ambitious and wildly paced around-the-globe journey... "The Amazing Race" appears to have what it takes to become reality TV's next big thing. [5 Sep 2001]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
  14. As it turns out, Veep might be even more hilarious if it didn't hit so uncomfortably close to the truth.
  15. The first hour... is as kinetic as any episode the show has done. [26 Oct 2003]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
  16. For those who loved the original - and for those who liked it for its good nature, charm and peppy production numbers (that includes me)--the good news is that, if anything, the creators have managed to improve on the basic formula.
  17. There's a crispness to the series that was lacking at times last season, and it's impossible not to get caught up in the twists and turns that come in rapid-fire succession.
  18. [There are] moments of pure brilliance--and moments that had me doubled over in mirth.... Unfortunately, there are stretches in this new batch of episodes that feel more flabby than snappy, and there are some lulls that leave you downright fatigued.
  19. We've seen plenty of these high-concept TV conceits start well and then sadly unravel. For now, though, there's no place like Dome.
  20. Much of its strength comes from a group of actors so skilled that, like the ensemble on "The Sopranos," they draw us into the lives of their characters even if we don't initially want to go there.
  21. "Invasion'' has the look of a winner.
  22. Whether Rome attains that stature is entirely up to the Nielsen gods, but one thing is certain: The series is a lusty, violent, rollicking saga that is sure to seize plenty of initial attention, if not for its ravishing production values, then for its rampant depiction of ancient-style decadence and debauchery. [27 Aug 2005, p.F4]
    • San Jose Mercury News/Contra Costa Times
  23. "Thief" is a worthy addition to [FX's] schedule.
  24. Friday's moody pilot unfolds at a listless pace and, occasionally, gets bogged down in its own density. But in it's favor, there are enough compelling characters and tantalizing questions to keep us engaged for the time being.
  25. Every AHS series has now featured at least one [rape scene]. Isn't it time to move on? At least he and his collaborators, as usual, do their best to soften the blows with healthy doses of camp and humor.
  26. It all makes for a scattered, hit-or-miss proposition. Some gags land. Others fall flat.
  27. Californication is a near-perfect match with the established show, a caustic, sharp-edged mix of humor and drama that tiptoes along the edge of disaster but never drops into the looming abyss.
  28. It manages to remain faithful to the tone and lively style of the original. Newcomers really don't have to be well-versed in Torchwood lore or "Doctor Who," the series that spawned it, to get a kick out of sci-fi craziness of it all.
  29. The solid acting performances and the family dynamics contained in Blue Bloods make for an absorbing hour of television.
  30. The revived 24 is still instantly involving and packed with a dizzying rush of suspenseful crescendos. The new Jack, meanwhile, is the same as the old Jack, which is to say he flips the bird in the face of terror and squirms his way out of major messes like a gun-toting Houdini--all while managing to make a man purse look good.

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