Slate's Scores

For 455 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 38% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 59% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 6.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Transparent: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Roseanne's Nuts: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 216
  2. Negative: 0 out of 216
216 tv reviews
  1. Justified is slumming it: not nearly as sharp or rich as it has been or could be, but still much more clever and enjoyable than its procedural peers. It’s begging to be graded on a curve, when it should be setting it.
  2. There are just enough witty lines and interesting choices, such as in the editing of the bulimia scene, to create fleeting sensations that all is not dross.
  3. A black comedy working many shades of gray, Enlightened is about dark mornings of the soul and the fool's-golden glow of the new convert, and it measures the weight of the world with an eccentric scale.
  4. Dallas may not always compel your attention, but it does a good job of telling you what you missed.
  5. Its greasy-spoon spunk is regularly palatable, good for a cheap chuckle.
  6. As a thriller, Manhattan mostly works.
  7. As with J.J. Abrams’ ode to Spielberg, Super 8, Stranger Things is extremely watchable and a little empty, a paean to the Duffer brothers’ own youth masquerading as a compliment to a master.
  8. The success or failure of Little Britain USA will depend on the prevalence of a particular strain of Anglophilia.
  9. The show is almost entirely unoriginal, from the plot to the fight scenes, but it wears its unoriginality with a certain panache.
  10. It's an ambitious if occasionally pushy effort.
  11. Because the show is sidling up to its premise very gently, it looks more like a sweet-natured high-school comedy than the risky riff on tolerance it teases us with.
  12. Provocative, hammy, absurd, and irresistible—so far. ... [But] Boston Legal would do well to limit the narrative hocus-pocus and concentrate on its strength—the chemistry between the two fine main actors.
  13. Sitcoms, far more than dramas, are about chemistry rather than premise. Faxon and Greer have chemistry, with each other and with the very strong supporting cast.... [The characters] may not like their circumstances, but at least they like each other, and that makes them good sitcom company.
  14. It's less a vision of what a real female presidency might be like than an extended allegory about gender politics in the workplace. And that's not necessarily a bad thing.
  15. I appreciated the miniseries’ willingness to reach beyond moral satire. There are glimmers of big cosmic tragedy in this Vacancy, when the camera swings away from two characters arguing (or hooking up) in order to highlight some mythic element in the landscape.
  16. If Lucious and Cookie and Jamal’s dynamics seem unique and complex, other parts of the show are messy and flat.... Generally speaking, the arc of the soap opera is long, and it bends toward insanity. But, one episode in, Empire feels insane in exactly the right measure.
  17. The long play of television is supposed to give writers, and audiences, time to get to know characters more intimately, but Hap and Leonard repeats itself, pleasantly enough, instead of going deeper.
  18. After watching the first four episodes, I'm content to settle on the euphemism deliberate and to note that the performances-centrally that of James Badge Dale as an intelligence analyst named Will Travers-have so far been sharp enough to ward off outright drowsiness.
  19. In all, Oprah's Big Give is a triumph of virtue, which leaves only the question of who would want to watch it.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    American Idol... has been excellent Tuesday-Wednesday entertainment this summer. ... The individual efforts at star turns have been genuinely exciting. ... For our part, American Idol fans, who watch chiefly to see if we can pick a winner, have become accustomed to the show's tackiness, its repetitions, and its garish product placement.
  20. Rhimes hustles the audience into episodes in the middle of things. Pope and her colleagues speak at a clip suggesting years of study at the West Wing School of Elocution and Composition. In the rush, I scarcely had time to scoff at the over-the-top content of the pilot.
  21. No one element of this show feels original, and yet I would totally watch more, even if just to peep at the sleek futuristic garbage cans again.
  22. The Honey Boo Boo clan often transcend the narrow condescension of the series’ producers--between-scene interludes include shots of humping dogs and the sound of a toilet flushing--with a deep familial affection and a rousing, Amelia Bedelia-esque esprit de corps.
  23. The new season of True Detective is, especially given the burden of expectations, remarkably solid. It’s not a belly flop. It lacks the obvious hook of its predecessor, but I still am eager to see how it develops.
  24. The new Cosmos starts slowly and reverently enough: deGrasse Tyson, a warm, avuncular presence, standing on the same cliffs Sagan did, talking about the universe, our place in it, and preaching the gospel of the scientific method in a glossy episode, which, scientifically speaking, doesn’t advance much beyond middle school.
  25. Dancing With the Stars is an improbable, goofy delight, more fun to watch than the bombastic American Idol for at least two reasons. The first: Unlike Idol wannabes, contestants on DWTS know they're amateurs. ... The second reason DWTS makes for better watching than American Idol is purely kinetic: Bad dancing is simply more fun to watch than bad singing is to listen to.
  26. Viewers of a particular sensibility--that is, mine--will find themselves unwholesomely engaged by the tone Stylista brings to scenes about laying out sidebars and rethinking silly hats.
  27. Billions is quintessentially Showtime: It uses its of-the-moment premise and its blue-chip cast to tell a story that is both thoroughly enjoyable and completely eye-rolling.
  28. Confirmation is not a particularly good production, but it is gripping.
  29. The Strain has a kind of earnest and respectful fanboyishness, in which every single ridiculous element mandated by the genre is rendered seriously but not exactly unknowingly.

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