USA Today's Scores

For 1,126 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 55% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 42% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 True Detective: Season 1
Lowest review score: 0 Lucky Louie: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 668
  2. Negative: 0 out of 668
668 tv reviews
  1. Platinum does a decent job of establishing its world and its family, setting up the internal jealousies and exposing the undercurrents. But the show is a bit too willing to fall back on easy stereotypes (the evil tycoon, the cowardly reporter) and a bit lazy when moving the story along. Music videos are a nice diversion, but they shouldn't be used as filler to avoid plot. [14 Apr 2003]
    • USA Today
  2. Three years may have passed, but Psych's return doesn't feel "too-soon" or in any way tired. It feels like a just-right dose of cheer at the holidays, even if it's only tied to them by timing and some Christmas trees in the background.
  3. The aggressively, self-consciously weird Carnivale is a sideshow step away from most any TV series you've ever seen. You may find its oddity appealing, or you may find it off-putting, but its distinctiveness is unmistakable. Next to Carnivale, Twin Peaks looks like JAG. [12 Sep 2003]
    • USA Today
  4. Although this harmless adolescent fantasy may be diverting enough for the intended kiddie audience, Sabrina needs to learn some fresh magic to appeal to anyone who can actually tie his own shoes. [27 Sept 1996, p.3D]
    • USA Today
  5. But the moments it goes too far or feels too slight are countered by the sense you're watching two men who care about their clients and are good at what they do, and by the emotional hook that helps provide. And that may be enough to turn it into a hit.
  6. Enlisted may feel curiously dated and dangerously slight, but it's not offensive (a low bar many Fox comedies fail to reach) and it's not cynical. If nothing else, this is clearly a show with heart. Now if only it would show some sign of brains.
  7. A strong cast and that things-that-go-bump-in-the-night shooting style so far keep the show on course.
  8. Why watch a show this silly? In part because Alexander is able to make us empathize with Jane's emotional upheaval while still creating a heroine who is believably feisty and capable.
  9. Ballers and The Brink aren't at that level [of Veep and Silicon Valley] just yet, both show promise--and both are welcome summer additions.
  10. The Mentalist may be a copy, but it's a well-done copy sparked by an actor who has come into his own as a TV star.
  11. Like most cable and streaming series, Good Girls takes its time. Still, it’s time generally well-spent, and not just on the show’s primary issue, but on other conflicts of the ‘60s that come into play.
  12. Cash and Geere make the most out of every cutting line and look. But too often, the show mistakes being unpleasant for being amusing.
  13. Give Maria Bello credit, if you like, for having the courage to take on a character so indelibly linked to one of the great actors of our time, Helen Mirren--and then take it away for the ridiculously behatted mash she and the show have made of the character.
  14. Ordinary just feels too crowded, as if it's straining to serve too many genre masters at once. Still, there is pleasure to be found, much of it provided by Chiklis.
  15. Friday's opener is intriguing, but shows such as Doe have a habit of collapsing quickly — usually because the rules governing the hero's behavior bend and stretch to suit the needs of the writers.
  16. Prison Break may not hold up as a weekly series; it's much too soon to tell. But by and large it works as a two-hour premiere special, one that grabs your attention from its first scene to its startling cliffhanger ending.
  17. Without Sedgwick, The Closer would be a standard-issue police procedural — a decent bit of TV entertainment, but nothing more. With Sedgwick's unforced charm and her witty iron-fist-meets-velvet-glove performance, The Closer rises to the top of TV's summer bill.
  18. Among the innumerable improvements here that lift Jack over Dad, start with turning the paternal lead over to Christopher Meloni--an actor who can convey warmth, brains and masculine menace with a glance--and giving him an actual person to play, rather than an insult-spouting cartoon. Then throw in making his wife a regular character, casting Rachael Harris and moving the story back in time, so that the son is now a more empathetic teenager, rather than an adult moving back home.
  19. It isn't terrible, as TV hours go, but nothing about it leads you to believe turning the movie into a series was a good idea. [14 June 2002, p.13E]
    • USA Today
  20. Cobbled together out of hundreds of undercover/caper movie clichés, Sleeper Cell is so absurdly detached from the real world, it makes 24 look like a documentary.
  21. In the end, you may not be able to escape the feeling that the material, worthy and well-presented though it may be, is being forced into a format for which it's unsuited.
  22. The problem is that these opening outings feel too much like they’re cramming in all the time-travel basics--establishing the rules (no do-overs), explaining the risks, posing a variation on the old “Would you kill Hitler” question.
  23. What threatens to remain a drag is the format itself, with its weekly focus on plea bargains--and, so far, weekly speeches defending the new focus.
  24. While gratitude and humility are admirable traits, there were times in Monday's opening moments when Fallon risked taking them to uncomfortable extremes.... Luckily, he rescued the moment with one of the show's better bits. A seemingly offhand remark about an unnamed star owing him money for betting him he'd never get the Tonight Show job led to a surprise-guest parade.
  25. Colbert was an invaluable part of the Daily Show, but as the whole show, he's not enough and too much simultaneously.
  26. Keep your eyes on Thornton and the shading he brings to his work--because most everything else in Goliath, the title included, is so on-the-nose it could make you cringe.
  27. It is nowhere near as sharp or as on-point as it needs to be.
  28. "Mad Men" is the genre's gold standard, and the inevitable thematic comparisons just accentuates Trust Me's flaws, making the show seem even more dispensable.
  29. Better than the movie...How often can you say that about a network knockoff? [30 Sept 1996, p.3D]
    • USA Today
  30. Sentimental but not simplistic, warming the heart without turning the brain to mush, this series version of Catherine Marshall's enduring novel is a romance, to be sure, but braced with a rugged realism. [1 Apr 1994]
    • USA Today

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