The New York Times' Scores

For 1,860 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 43% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 53% 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: 61
Highest review score: 100 O.J.: Made in America
Lowest review score: 0 Notes from the Underbelly: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 890
  2. Negative: 0 out of 890
890 tv reviews
  1. Friday Night Lights (which begins Wednesday on DirecTV, the satellite subscription service that is helping finance it, and moves to NBC in February) is delivered with the precision and manner of ethnography--it never condescends.
  2. Alice Morgan (Ruth Wilson), whose braininess extends to an expertise in physics and an acute ability to help Luther unravel the most advanced criminal minds. The two circle each other dangerously, their chemistry both bizarre and addicting.
  3. 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.
  4. In its first season, Difficult People distinguished itself with such fast-paced, snippy dialogue, but the show has become more than just a series of quick jokes. The writing has grown increasingly intricate.
  5. Where Sagan’s narrative often approached poetry, Dr. Tyson’s can sound like an overwrought, overamplified planetarium show.... The animation used to present his story resembles low-budget anime and isn’t terribly absorbing. Bruno deserves better. Nit-picking aside, if the new Cosmos doesn’t deliver quite the punch of the original, it’s because this isn’t 1980.
  6. The core portion of Jackie Robinson’s story is so familiar that Part 1 of the new Ken Burns treatment of it may not seem like vital viewing. But Part 2 examines Robinson’s later, less celebrated years, completing a portrait of an eventful life that, in the popular mind, is often confined to the ball field.
  7. Mr. Delaney and Ms. Horgan, as writers and actors, are able to make most of the serious moments believable and bearable, even touching (though the twist ending of the season finale feels like a miscalculation). And while the show’s humor, alternately subtle and pummeling, doesn’t always click, each episode has its moments.
  8. 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.
  9. While Mr. Douglas glides through the film--demonstrating that his talent for portraying carnivorous lechery and polished duplicity works regardless of sexual orientation--and Mr. Damon is earnest and committed, the love, or whatever it was, between Thorson and Liberace never comes into emotional focus.
  10. 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).
  11. The new season takes time to reset, and the movement in the early episodes is slow. The character dynamics are solid, though, and the ’80s details continue to be spot on.
  12. The program has a fair amount of feel-good filler about the bond between the dogs and their handlers, but when it comes to showing these pairs at work, it is blunt and disturbing.
  13. A brisk and concise 82-minute film.
  14. None overdoes the self-conscious creepiness at first. The close-ups of slabs of meat being hacked apart for dinner and a few forced performances from otherwise reliable actors (especially Anna Maxwell Martin as the servant Ethel Rogers) smack of concept getting in the way of common sense.... Once the gathering of the victims has been completed, however, and the murderer goes to work, the series settles into a satisfyingly eerie groove.
  15. Typical of the Netflix large-portions ethos, a few of the new episodes are too long, and compared with the lapidary early seasons, they feel diluted. Still, Black Mirror hasn’t lost its currency.
  16. Legion presents a superhero drama as psychic journey, distinguishing itself in an overcrowded genre by setting its most compelling drama in its protagonist’s mind. It’s no ordinary comic-book show: it’s a head trip, and it’s spectacular.
  17. The Returned is mesmerizing television.... The first three new episodes complicate the plot more than advance it.... But the questions are tantalizing. Like HBO’s “The Leftovers,” this is a gorgeous, full-hearted drama about grief, rich with metaphor.
  18. 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.
  19. 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.
  20. What really sets Key & Peele apart are the stars’ performances.
  21. What sets the show apart is its tireless, formless, free-flowing pursuit of laughs--and a cast that can ride that wave while also giving some human dimension to what are essentially vaudevillian characters.
  22. Everyone is clearly having a good time, and the fun is catching. One should be grateful for that much, perhaps, but the sheer professionalism cannot entirely hide some potential weaknesses. A little too much of the humor is directed at ridiculing certain signs of aging, from having hair in one's ears to incontinence. Bathroom jokes have their limitations. And Miss Getty's character threatens to demolish the ensemble work with the need to get a laugh every time she opens her outrageous mouth. [14 Sept 1985]
    • The New York Times
  23. As with all of the best examples of this genre--this film was not made to provide a feel-good moment that enables us to go back to forgetting about the bombing and those most affected by it. It was made to remind us that recovery is far harder and more complex than we realize.
  24. Absurdity is the only real agenda here, and The Tick hits that target. Whether that is enough remains to be seen. The daffiest shows sometimes flame out early, and in its aggressive incongruity The Tick is certainly a descendant of "Police Squad," an experimental classic that lasted just a few episodes.
  25. While there are some deeply disturbing images, The Honorable Woman is an astute, sensitive and at times delicate psychological drama that is evenhanded in the nonincendiary sense of the word: No side is entirely to blame, and there are villains, innocent victims and foolish dupes on both sides.
  26. The show’s subversiveness, if it can be called that, is partly a matter of degree. It stands out (on basic cable, at least) for its frankness.... You wonder whether Mr. Falk can keep the plates spinning. Some jokes seem to be repeating themselves.
  27. 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.
  28. The television adaptation is surprisingly scary and remarkably good, a show that visually echoes the stylized comic-book aesthetic of the original and combines elegant suspense with gratifyingly crude and gruesome slasher-film gore.
  29. Maron may not delve that deeply [into substance abuse]--by Episode 2 of the new season, Marc is showing signs that he’s the same irksome guy in rehab that he was before. But if nothing else, the premiere does effectively, yet comedically, show two truths of substance abuse: Addicts need enablers who fuel their problem, either deliberately or inadvertently, and most need someone to intervene to help them climb out of the pit.
  30. Humans is a less ambitious production than “Westworld.” But its more pedestrian nature--it’s domestic drama merged with a sci-fi thriller--also makes it more emotionally effective.

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