The New York Times' Scores

For 1,261 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Murphy Brown: Season 2
Lowest review score: 0 Notes from the Underbelly: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 579
  2. Negative: 0 out of 579
579 tv reviews
  1. Now it's a compliment to say that Season 3 does: Paul's relationships with his new patients are as finely etched as before. The writing may seem a little less sophisticated--each session offers incremental insights about the patient that can seem a bit pat or forced--but over all In Treatment is still an absorbing dramatization of psychotherapy.
  2. This quietly addictive program isn't really about what goes on inside the Big Apple's single ring. It's about the people, both under the lights and behind them, who make those performances possible.
  3. It's impossible not to root for the Bruce family. But it's just as hard not to dread the series's success.
  4. Wartorn sometimes starts to feel prim and preachy. But it also has its share of quietly devastating, haunting scenes, echoes of the nightmares that veterans are bringing home with them from Iraq and Afghanistan.
  5. The Cape is far more economical in its storytelling, far less weighted by its own mythologies and a much better time. Someone in network land as learned a lesson [from "Heroes"].
  6. Public Speaking perfectly captures the pleasure she takes in observing the world while subtly revealing the crippling dimensions of perfectionism, the outsize ego it requires to achieve a certain kind of creative failure.
  7. Storage Wars is an especially entertaining addition to the genre. Who doesn't love the sound of an auctioneer's voice? Beyond that, the four buyers on whom the show focuses are well chosen, and the "reveals"--the moments when the buyers see what they've acquired and get estimates of its value--are great fun.
  8. Shameless is deftly adapted and surprisingly appealing, crude, funny and also touching.
  9. HBO does an expert job of turning Ms. Fisher's 2 hour and 20 minute monologue into a documentary, with only a few, artfully chosen embellishments.
  10. In other words, even the soapier subplots of Lights Out are sparingly written and tautly filmed, and the story never strays too far from the violence that is at its core.
  11. There is little resistance to cliche in all this, but the cliche is so visually appealing that you'll feel like a spoiled child if you complain. And you're given such a treat that you'll also feel like one, begging for more.
  12. Gervais serves as a bullying sidekick to Mr. Pilkington and steps out of the way, letting his strange and funny collaborator take the lead. The series is not a full-blown comedy show; it's a collection of Web-styled sketches and proof that big laughs can come in small doses.
  13. If the longstanding "SNL" segment is a sort of introductory course in wringing humor from headlines, and Mr. Stewart's "Daily Show" is the advance-level class, Onion News Network is graduate school, requiring much quicker thinking and a greater tolerance for comfort-zone invasion.
  14. It would make an interesting documentary even without Mr. Tyson. With him, it becomes a personal test for the viewer.
  15. The Olympian spirit is all about relentless rigor, steely self-discipline and doing the impossible. Twenty Twelve celebrates sloth, inattention and surrender. There should be a gold medal for that too.
  16. Upstairs Downstairs sticks to the rules established by the original and defies the odds by being as good, and in some ways, even better.
  17. New Girl is charming and quite funny, but especially when compared with the other two shows, it seems quite old-school.
  18. Awkward is a wry show about longing--for love, certainly, but also for consistency, that great intangible in the ever-morphing world of high school life.
  19. The plot twists of The Hour can at times be puzzling, but the series is never dull.
  20. Sometimes this focus on technology feels a bit heavy-handed, but in general this is a series that seems to be growing more assured as it goes along.
  21. The series embraces the absurdities of its subject with enough compassion to avoid outright parody.
  22. Mr. Burns and Ms. Novick, commendably, don't beat you over the head with the obvious lessons for those today who would legislate personal behavior; they largely let the story of Prohibition speak for itself.
  23. An absorbing and beautifully made film in its own right, whose 208 minutes mostly fly by.
  24. Now they are the last blinkered women in the bunker, hoarding designer shoes and awaiting an Evite back to the glamorous life. They don't belong there, and that's what makes them so welcome.
  25. The hero of Awake has a psychiatric problem; there are no aliens or ghosts to explain away the more improbable turns, and this adventure is far more compelling.
  26. The advice here is to forget the politics and enjoy the performances and the trip back in time.
  27. It's the Lovings, not Loving v. Virginia, that hold our attention. Their reticence, even under such close camera scrutiny, is intriguing and even charming.
  28. Ms. Palin dominates as a disarming egotist whose presumption is balanced by charisma and animal cunning--and in this film, as in life, she has the last smirk.
  29. A surprising element of the series--making it both compelling and perversely enjoyable--is that Mr. Herzog loosens up, getting more argumentative in the interviews and presenting moments of mordant humor.
  30. The real stars are the designers, and it's an eclectic bunch, some already working in the industry, others who dream to.
  31. Because everyone in the Duck dynasty has a well-defined role and sticks to it, the bit works. So does the show.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The supporting cast is very strong--Tony Hale (perhaps best known for "Arrested Development"), in particular, excels as Selina's goofy and limpetlike personal aide--the various internecine plotlines are building well; and no one is allowed to riff uncontrolled.
  32. On the evidence of Friday's season opener, Fringe will continue to be the best show of its kind since "The X-Files" at the grace notes, intimate or humorous instances like Olivia's Crate & Barrel moment (which won't be further spoiled here). When you get the small things right, it's less crucial that your universes and time shifts exactly line up.
  33. The series is acted with razorlike timing. [21 Sept 1998, p.E5]
  34. As forced as its concept seems, John Doe is alluring because it flows so easily from humor to drama then back again and because Dominic Purcell's smooth performance as John is perfectly in tune with that fluid style. [20 Sept 2002, p.E26]
  35. The smooth telling of Russo's story juxtaposed against the present day, when gay marriage is sanctioned in some states and gay characters are all over prime-time television, drives home how different the cultural landscape is from the one Russo knew.
  36. CW's Oh Sit!, a raucous competition show is a hilarious return to the childhood you never had--the fun, danger-filled, almost-anything-goes one.
  37. Though these people may not resemble any job seekers you know, the portraits feel about as honest as reality TV gets.
  38. The story of the Dust Bowl is complicated, twisting together ecology, economics and politics, as well as divisions of class and region, and Mr. Burns and his writer, Dayton Duncan, have done as careful and admirable a job as you would expect in laying it out.
  39. It's a subtle, complex portrait of a relationship etched into an engaging espionage thriller set in 1981.
  40. People eat this stuff up, and a skeptic can find himself riveted by the best of it.
  41. If Mr. Spielberg’s "Lincoln" achieves greatness largely through the detailed performances of Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and others, Killing Lincoln also has details to recommend it--historical details, the kind of tidbits that (along with Mr. Hanks’s assured narration) can hold your attention, even though the tale is familiar.
  42. Under the Dome gets off to an addictive start on Monday, so much so that it’s hard to imagine any second-episode falloff in viewership.
  43. What Broadchurch has to offer, beyond its central performances and its intelligent but not particularly original plot, is mood: a tasty icing of gloom and foreboding that leans heavily on the music of Olafur Arnalds and the cinematography of Matt Gray, whose shots from every possible angle of the dramatic cliffs behind the Broadchurch beach are essential to the show’s ambience.
  44. The list of people who have been reviled and labeled, explicitly or subtly, as something less than human is long: blacks, Jews, foreigners, people with AIDS, people with disabilities. Zombies notwithstanding, this appealing series, created and written by Dominic Mitchell, works this territory as credibly as any more conventional drama.
  45. All the President’s Men Revisited is nonetheless well worth a look, less because it is so well made than because the subject is still so captivating.
  46. Both series [The Bletchley Circle and "Call the Midwife"] find a clever, entertaining way to pay tribute to women who in their time were often overlooked and underestimated, and nevertheless found ways to never be ordinary.
  47. [Mom is] both both wittier and sweeter than the new Fox show "Dads."
  48. It's by no means assured that American viewers will commit themselves to what is, in effect, a very long mini-series with no tidy wrap-ups each week. But Murder One sets the stage skillfully for what promises to be the television equivalent of an absorbing excursion into a good Mary Higgins Clark mystery. I wouldn't dream of missing, at the very least, the next few episodes.
  49. "EZ Streets" may sound depressing, but its fiercely dark vision keeps viewers off-kilter and engaged and makes this one of the season's most exciting new series. [26 Oct 1996]
  50. If you fall into its languorous rhythms, you’ll be rewarded by a story that builds tension with clockwork precision and expertly maintains a mood of clammy dread.
  51. It’s hard to imagine even the haters not enjoying Annie: It’s the Hard-Knock Life, From Script to Stage, a delightful documentary.
  52. We’ve come to expect an eclectic mix from the American Horror Story anthology, and the formula works particularly well in this installment, thanks to uninhibited work by the big-name cast.
  53. A memorable comedy about a man trying to be forgotten.
  54. It takes things nice and easy, ending with a lot still to be conveyed as to who is who and what is what in this lush show about the police and the mob in 1947 Los Angeles. But your patience is likely to be rewarded. Episode 2, also being shown on Wednesday, brings things nicely into focus, and prospects seem good that this six-episode series will be a satisfying trip back in time.
  55. The writing is smart and the episodes well structured, but much of the credit goes to Mr. Kinnear, who maintains a veneer of charm without stinting on his character’s underlay of seedy desperation.
  56. A succinct and well-conceived documentary.
  57. Masters of Sex does an elegant job of reframing their [Masters and Johnson's] strange, complicated and at times deeply cynical partnership into a twisted but intriguing love story.
  58. Latino Americans is the kind of polished, intelligent documentary series that PBS does so well.
  59. It’s polished, manic, funny and a bit thin; visually, it’s like a toned-down version of the comic-book expressionism of Terry Gilliam.... The two actors are wonderful in their scenes together.
  60. Valentine Road, directed by Marta Cunningham, is clear in its sympathy for Mr. King, but it is also bracingly willing to explore other sides of this disturbing case and complex subject.
  61. The result is surprisingly interesting, fun and, at times, even quite moving.
  62. Once the annual avalanche of Halloween-themed episodes, specials and movies overtakes TV, you probably don't expect to be using the word "charming" very often. But charming perfectly describes one such entry, Toy Story of Terror!
  63. Inspiring stories of brave men, women and children introduce us to Harry Washington, one of George Washington’s slaves, who ran away from Mount Vernon and joined the British Army; to the first sit-in (a refusal to worship from the “black pews”) at a Philadelphia church in 1786; and to Mound Bayou, Miss., an all-black town founded proudly by former slaves. But we’re left wishing there were time to learn more.
  64. Presumably the producers’ realization of what they had in Maria and her bright, gorgeous, unfettered children led to the bifurcated structure of the series, and it’s the ups but mostly downs of her last eight months on earth that make Time of Death worth watching.
  65. The Challenger investigation story doesn’t have quite the level of malfeasance or the cloak-and-dagger undertones of other movies about real-life government or business debacles. But it still makes for an absorbing tale, one that seems well timed for our current moment of bungled websites, unrestrained eavesdropping and public skepticism.
  66. Mostly, though, The Wrong Mans coasts along on the strength of Mr. Corden, Mr. Baynton and Tom Basden’s sneaky-funny writing (“You know what danger doesn’t do? Call ahead. Unless it’s the I.R.A.”) and the pleasure of watching Mr. Corden timidly but delightedly snorting drugs at a mobster’s party or trying to blend in with a group of svelte dancers.
  67. Just when the crowd thinks it knows where he’s going, he jerks the string and sends things in a different direction, to great effect. It’s a gimmick that takes a refined sense of timing and a mastery of misdirection, and Mr. Cosby, who is 76, shows that he still has both.
  68. Every so often a staff member, usually DiDi, is shown in a quiet moment with a patient, providing actual care. These small scenes end up being surprisingly moving because this fictional hospital unit, in all its ridiculousness, feels somehow true to life.
  69. It hardly needs saying that Ms. Silverman’s material is not for everybody.... But she isn’t spewing things out randomly, hoping to get by on shock value. The execution is fairly intricate.
  70. Even though it’s moving to watch a bunch of young people turning to one another for strength and counsel, finding what they need in the others, the clear narrative through-line of the show is Breeanna’s mission.
  71. The engineering of the plot is pretty obvious, and the sentimentality that’s part of the Harmon package goes overboard toward the end of the episode.... Everything is back on track, though, in Thursday night’s second episode, a sterling example of Mr. Harmon’s ability to deploy fanboy obsessiveness in the service of funny and affectionate storytelling.
  72. These four women are amusing, at times poignant, but not easily likable. The show is caustic and hard to watch, but harder to turn off. In Season 3, their solipsism and callousness are even more pointed, all the more shocking, and still quite funny.
  73. House of Cards is “Scandal” for naysayers and misanthropes, and that’s actually quite cheering.
  74. Both shows ["About a Boy" and "Growing Up Fisher"] are well written and actually quite engaging, but what is most interesting is the focus on the brighter side of splitting up. It’s a new genre of heartwarming family show.
  75. Both shows ["About a Boy" and "Growing Up Fisher"] are well written and actually quite engaging, but what is most interesting is the focus on the brighter side of splitting up. It’s a new genre of heartwarming family show.
  76. The movie, adapted by Mr. Kramer and directed by Ryan Murphy, simultaneously exposes some of the play’s flaws and finds alternate sources of power in the story.
  77. The pilot is terrific, and it was directed by Phillip Noyce, whose credits include the Harrison Ford movie “Clear and Present Danger” and the pilot of ABC’s “Revenge.”
  78. You might assume that this meant sacrificing some measure of journalistic credibility in the quest for attention. But the truth is, Mr. Ford and Mr. Cheadle are just as good as any seasoned television correspondent at the newsmagazine drill.
  79. Like the movie, the series is peculiar, with an irregular rhythm and lots of black humor, and it is also oddly winning.
  80. When Salem isn’t being deliberately outrageous, it’s cultivating a dynamic that could be fruitful as things move along.
  81. Louie is a comedy that seeks to provide something besides laughter. Louis C.K. will try anything, and not everything works. But it’s the willingness to defy expectations and experiment that makes Louie special.
  82. Staking out a distinctive place within the genre isn’t easy. Penny Dreadful tries to do so with a combination of literary allusion, fine acting, patience and fearlessness, which, at least for the first two episodes, clicks deliciously.
  83. There are shades of “True Blood” and “Being Human” here, and you hope that the show doesn’t drift away from the everyday dilemmas of the Walkers, who are excellently portrayed by Mr. Newberry, Harriet Cains (Kieren’s no-nonsense sister) and Marie Critchley and Steve Cooper (their parents).
  84. Maron may not have the depth and adventurousness of “Louie” or the crude energy of Jim Jefferies’s “Legit,” but it’s consistently well written (or improvised) and smartly cast.
  85. The main reason to watch is for its signature gimmick, a set tilted at 22 degrees, where, several times per episode, performers are imprisoned and told to improvise a scene.... There’s no describing how hysterical this is; you have to see it.
  86. A documentary on PBS that has little to do with the war but is quietly revelatory, just as that earlier work was.
  87. Rosemary’s Baby bends to current fashions, and, accordingly, is more straightforward and much gorier than the original film. But partly because the story has been so altered, it still has mystery and suspense.
  88. It’s sophisticated, well-acted television for a warm-weather series.
  89. It’s a smart, imaginatively made and unusually sweeping look at what happened to the world from Sarajevo in 1914 to Hiroshima in 1945, or as Churchill put it, “one story of a 30 years’ war.”
  90. While this new show is not as innovative as its predecessor ["Murder One"], it is, in its own way, similarly well paced and compelling.
  91. As gripping as Steven Soderbergh's 2000 movie or the 1989 British mini-series. [26 Jan 2004]
  92. It’s the expertly rendered combat scenes and vivid depictions of danger that provide excitement and suspense in this action-adventure tale.
  93. It’s like watching old episodes of “Served” or “Keeping Up Appearances” or “Allo Allo”: slightly horrifying, like a slow-motion train wreck, but also, every few minutes, convulsingly funny. This has everything to do with Mr. Jacobi and Mr. McKellen.
  94. Once the show gets going, and it takes more than one episode to do so, The Leftovers bores into the characters and the fissures that crack their community so astutely that the cause is almost secondary.
  95. It is a smart, intense thriller inspired by the Innocence Project.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A likable if lightweight not-too-dramatic series.
  96. Traditional Trekkies may object to the grit and occasional flippancy of the cheeky spinoff. The rest of us are likely to feel, at least for the time being, fairly optimistic about the future of "Deep Space 9." Mr. Brooks's performance alone is certainly encouraging. [7 Jan 1993]
  97. This quirky new Fox drama, with traces of wry comedy, sometimes tries so hard to be clever that it turns silly.
  98. Mr. Urich is the perfect television-series star, appealing without being overwhelming or threatening.

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