The New York Times' Scores

For 1,339 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 4.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 The Wire: Season 4
Lowest review score: 0 Notes from the Underbelly: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 621
  2. Negative: 0 out of 621
621 tv reviews
  1. They practice the comedy of female semi-empowerment, in which confidence (tending toward narcissism) and a still somewhat startling sexual frankness combine with old-fashioned insecurity and self-abasement, all of them generating laughs.
  2. The Knick is unusual and very good. It’s a great leap backward in time, yet another ambitious examination of at an important but often overlooked epoch in history.
  3. Jane the Virgin isn’t exactly sui generis: it has traces of past series that blended whimsy and wile, including “Ugly Betty” and “Pushing Daisies,” but this show has a delightful heroine and its own sweetly wicked inflection.
  4. Like some of television’s more out-there animated shows, this one is hard to describe beyond broad outlines, because it’s so odd, a combination of droll and naughty that seems improbable but works deliciously.
  5. The strange little documentary Nixon by Nixon: In His Own Words is engrossing despite itself.
  6. Survivor’s Remorse is mordant and very funny, but there is a redeeming sweetness beneath the satire and b-ball swagger.
  7. Previewing the songs may be enough to draw Foo Fighters fans. For everyone else, Mr. Grohl provides, through interviews, archival clips and his own narration, a musical and social history of the city that’s both surprisingly detailed and decidedly personal.
  8. Happy Valley, in addition to being a smart and absorbing thriller, is a morality play, one in which the mystery is secondary (we know who did what all along).
  9. Transparent is very good, an insightful, downbeat comedy told without piety or burlesque.
  10. The 50 Year Argument, which Mr. Scorsese directed with David Tedeschi, is textured and smart but thoroughly celebratory, a paean to the magazine and the amazingly durable Mr. Silvers, now 84.
  11. This HBO adaptation of her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same title is so respectful and gracefully done that big inventions and small omissions don’t stand out or disappoint.
  12. It’s a dizzying reprise, and also a dazzling one.
  13. It’s an exceedingly watchable history lesson.
  14. This is a smart, informative and compassionate look at the artist known as the Godfather of Soul, whose music changed America.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A likable if lightweight not-too-dramatic series.
  15. 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]
    • The New York Times
  16. This quirky new Fox drama, with traces of wry comedy, sometimes tries so hard to be clever that it turns silly.
  17. Mr. Urich is the perfect television-series star, appealing without being overwhelming or threatening.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    If the writers and producers are able to trust a little more in their characters and resist the broad gags, this may develop into a grown-up show. [14 Aug 1992]
    • The New York Times
  18. Mr. Griffith effortlessly makes the most of the country sophisticate, and Dick Van Dyke is splendidly devious as the judge. Matlock makes easy viewing, so easy that you are liable to forget it's there.
  19. As might be expected with any Gary David Goldberg product, Spin City is smart stuff. The one-liners zing, Mr. Fox and company are disarming and the 22 minutes flow by effortlessly. The only snag is that concept of spin. Are those who toy with the truth all that funny?
  20. The secret of "The Practice" is that it cloaks these workaday attitudes in just enough glamour and heroism to make an entertaining drama. [4 Oct 1997]
    • The New York Times
  21. Mr. Romano has a knack for hilariously obsessing on life's most ordinary details. He's made for prime-time comedy, and "Everybody Loves Raymond" would seem to be his perfect vehicle. [13 Sep 1996]
    • The New York Times
  22. The suspense is effectively maintained in this high-seas whodunit. [22 Sep 1995]
    • The New York Times
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Visually, the world of "Futurama" is much richer than that of the Simpsons. ... But the writing, from the conception of the characters forward, lacks the bite of its predecessor. [26 Mar 1999]
    • The New York Times
  23. [Its] sharp writing elevates it above its strained concept.
  24. Though it has a winning, low-keyed charm, Freaks and Geeks can't escape its sense of borrowed wonder. But at least it has some. [24 Sept 1999, p.E1]
    • The New York Times
  25. Television now seems crowded with so many alien species with meaningful cultural characteristics that we hardly need any new ones, but "Farscape" has its pluses. [19 Mar 1999]
    • The New York Times
  26. Issues of bias and prejudice are moved to center stage, rather heavyhandedly. There are references, direct and veiled, to blacks and civil-rights struggles, the Holocaust, and AIDS hysteria. But Gary Graham and Eric Pierpoint are effective as, respectively, a younger, hipper Matthew and a mellower George. For television, Fox's Alien Nation is different, adventurous and very much worth monitoring.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The creators of "Enterprise," Rick Berman and Brannon Braga, don't reinvent Gene Roddenberry's wheel, they just give it a spirited turn. [26 Sep 2001]
    • The New York Times
  27. Except for Mr. Sutherland, who has a strong and appealing presence, most of the actors seem generic. [6 Nov 2001]
    • The New York Times
  28. "24" still provides an irresistible blend of iPodish computer wizardry and "Perils of Pauline" cliffhanger suspense.
  29. Despite the repetitions, the first four episodes are slick, fast-paced and engrossing, but that’s not new either.
  30. We surely didn’t need another filmed version of Austen’s first published novel--not after Ang Lee’s sublime adaptation of “Sense and Sensibility” 13 years ago--but we are content enough to have this one.
  31. Shaped by directors and camera people, given the familiar MTV gloss of breathless pacing and quick edits, "The Real World" is a relentlessly artificial concept. ... Accepting that, viewers can sit back and enjoy the carefully cultivated performances, keeping them in skeptical perspective.
  32. It comes as close to resurrecting the old show as you can without hauling Jerry Seinfeld himself back on television.
  33. Treat Williams has rarely looked as comfortable as he does in Everwood, a promising new drama full of wry touches that has its debut tonight on WB. Now if he would just get rid of that annoying teenage son!
  34. The first three episodes are beguiling enough to suggest that beneath the show's mystique there is a mystery worth puzzling. But there is also the mystery of how long viewers' curiosity can stay piqued.
  35. Socially, that reversal is a profoundly stupid idea. There's too much sexual stereotyping around, too much of a lingering sense that what makes a man a playboy makes a woman a slut. And The Bachelorette is hardly trying to explode those cliches. With its hokey title (a word no one ever uses) and its smarmy attitude (viewers are going to be looking for signs of sluttiness), this gimmicky series plays right into those stereotypes while pretending not to...The show also promises to be as irresistibly entertaining as "The Bachelor."
  36. If, while keeping its dialogue suggestive and surprising, Karen Sisco dramatizes the eccentricity, and the drinking problem, of its central character, rather than merely her sexiness or her skills, this show could thrive. But is Ms. Gugino up for it? With such a small cast -- only three characters are fixed at this point -- much will depend on Ms. Gugino's performance, on her drunken mistakes and on her cellular soliloquies.
  37. Another well-plotted show by Donald P. Bellisario.
  38. [An] enjoyable and not insincere reworking of the much-reworked legend by Edgar Rice Burroughs.
  39. Even familiar plot points are told in the expertly spooky Bruckheimer style.
  40. Mr. Kring has assured interviewers and fans that the third season will correct those mistakes and recover the fast-paced suspense and tension of the first season. The premiere episode lives up to that pledge, with lots of violence, special effects and laser-fast editing. The plot and ever-escalating conspiracies are hard to follow, but even first-time viewers can easily get the gist.
  41. 'Reno 911!' is not as ambitious or witty as Comedy Central's best offering, 'The Daily Show With Jon Stewart.' It is not as wickedly funny as 'The Office,' a parody of office life in a dull corporate outpost of London, on BBC America. But it is in the same tradition, and in the same spirit. And that is close enough.
  42. As silly as [it] sounds, the series is actually pretty good.
  43. The show, the first original drama series made for Starz, is hardly the most original depiction of Los Angeles, but Crash has a noirish appeal, and ambitions to tell a big story.
  44. The comedy is nifty, light and kind, even as it tries to be real, slitting open the stand-up themes of marital sex, masturbation and dope smoking until it's dirty enough to convince you that you're not being condescended to, but smart enough not to be grim. That's a huge feat.
  45. Like the fledgling “John From Cincinnati” but with fewer side effects, “Big Love” derives suspense, humor and thrills from HBO’s signature insight: that Americans are profoundly anxious about how their families are different from other families.
  46. 'Unscripted' is a small thing, but it has funny and clever moments. [7 Jan 2005]
    • The New York Times
  47. "Sleeper Cell" is better than "24."
  48. “Weeds” is still an outstanding show, but it would be better if it didn’t push so hard to stand out.
  49. It thrives as radical comedy because it challenges one of our most preciously held assumptions: that parenthood is ennobling, rewarding work; that it grounds us and makes us marginally better people.
  50. The pilot's mutilated corpse and offbeat clues are intriguing, and Ms. Sedgwick has a compelling screen presence, though her accent is too generic to pass as authentic.
  51. The story lines and characters are layered and more intricate than in most detective series.
  52. The series is smart and engrossing, though not in a particularly novel way, and that is not a bad thing.
  53. Well written and playful with its premise.
  54. "Modern Men" is funny, but it is actually all about role reversal, depicting an imaginary world in which young men are as deeply concerned about their love lives and future spouses as women are.
  55. It's funnier than a similar new Fox sitcom, "Free Ride," about a college graduate who moves back in with his parents. Partly that is because "The Loop" has a faster pace and bolder writing.
  56. Mr. Johnson is surprisingly deft, and even at times poignant, in the part. Even when the plot and other characters turn cartoonish, he manages to strike a deeper chord.
  57. Not all the jokes are funny, but the characters are winningly unlovable.
  58. It's... a lot of fun: "The O.C." for the Stanley H. Kaplan set.
  59. "Threshold" holds back more than it reveals, and that is the right contingency plan for a successful science fiction thriller.
  60. There's something stylishly scary at work here.
  61. It's an enjoyable, intriguing look at what can happen to a group of ordinary, cash-strapped people who wake up one day as multimillionaires.
  62. Pleasant to watch.
  63. It does have a lively pace, a warm spirit, a contagious sense of fun, some very pretty 18th-century European settings and Peter O’Toole as the title character in his later years.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Like so much British science fiction, especially Douglas Adams's "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" series, this "Doctor Who" has a goofy, homemade quality; it's less interested in gizmos than in characters.
  64. A memorable horror show.
  65. "Random 1" is not nearly as melodramatic [as "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition"], but it doesn't manufacture its miracles. It offers small, random acts of kindness, and that is sometimes a much better deal.
  66. If "Laguna Beach" looked perpetually like late afternoon -- the mellow light of cocktail hour, the promise of a party -- "The Hills" looks like a workday.
  67. “My Boys” is certainly a charming knockoff.
  68. "Day Break" has enough suspense and clever turns to tempt viewers to stay and see how the next day breaks.
  69. Mr. Woods has found a television role that suits his gift and runs away with it.
  70. This peculiar series seals NBC’s new role as the skinflint’s HBO. The shows “30 Rock,” “Friday Night Lights” and now “Andy Barker, P.I.” are all so engrossing and so creatively untrammeled that it’s almost suspicious.
  71. “Kidnapped,” which is filmed with a keener intelligence [than "Jericho"] and elegant restraint, focuses on a much smaller catastrophe and finds more to say.
  72. The idle, boozy time between one romantic relationship and the next turns out to be a sweet spot for a sitcom.
  73. Icy-dry satire laced with moments of farce and inspired lunacy.
  74. But the particular stories are not what “Six Degrees” is ultimately about. Instead the show’s forte, for viewers like me who don’t mind piety on television, is its ambience of faith.
  75. The first episode of “Traveler” is well made and quite gripping.
  76. “Ugly Betty” is a sweet, funny show. It’s worth watching. And we’ll see.
  77. The break-in may never take place, but the characters are appealing, and the writing is spirited enough to carry the sitcom at least for a while.
  78. Intriguing.
  79. "Elizabeth I" was made for television and is not a lavish, big-budget production. Visually, it is no match for the 1998 movie. But what "Elizabeth I" does offer is not insignificant: a richly drawn portrait of a powerful woman who is both ruthless and sentimental, formidable and mercurial, vain and likable.
  80. Both the humor and the storytelling can be blunt. But the performances are mostly appealing--the ensemble really seems to be having fun--and the jokes often slip past you more quietly than you expect.
  81. There’s plenty to laugh at here.
  82. Briskly paced and amusingly corny.
  83. An unsparing, and at times hyperbolic, portrait of bureaucratic turf wars, buck passing and complacency.
  84. The episodes are not as layered or intricately constructed as Mr. David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” but the humor is fueled by a similar jolt of the politically incorrect.
  85. The camp factor churned out is fairly high, and with Primeval, a new series starting Saturday on BBC America, it climbs up Big Ben and right on over the top of the London Eye.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The Bronx Is Burning succeeds because of the mutually-assured-destruction brand of combustibility among its lead characters - there is something of “Barbarians at the Gate” in the gleeful madness of the Yankees plot - and because of the incidents that the writers and director choose to recreate.
  86. Mostly the series functions as an entertaining if pale sequel to its HBO prototype.
  87. The filmmaker Lasse Hallstrom has directed the pilot with cool, almost metallic tones, as if trying to conceal the show’s distorted bedrock sentimentality. He can’t.
  88. The subtext of Kitchen Nightmares is that ordinary middle-class business owners need brash and brilliant moguls to save them from a sad reliance on their own mediocrity. It is an ugly message that Mr. Ramsay makes undeniably hypnotic.
  89. “Flight of the Conchords” is funny in such an understated way that it is almost dangerous to make too much of it.
  90. Season 2 begins on Sunday, and the off-kilter charm is still there, though some strain is beginning to show.
  91. The series is bold in its candor and unhurried attention to detail, but not quite brave enough to lay bare the bleakest, pettiest injuries that can scar a marriage.
  92. It's a sleek, glossy, musically enhanced soap opera centered on wealthy, gorgeous high school students who connive and cavort to the sound of Rihanna, Justin Timberlake, Peter Bjorn and John, Angels & Airwaves, and Timbaland.
  93. Mr. Donovan is likeably lighthearted and cool as a smart-mouthed loner; his character is a watered-down version of the kind of wiseguy once played by Michael Keaton.
  94. Burn Notice resumes its second season on Thursday like a sarcastic friend whose absences may not be lamented but whose reappearances are always surprisingly well met.

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