Variety's Scores

For 1,451 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 36% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 61% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 8.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 Gideon's Crossing: Season 1
Lowest review score: 10 Modern Men: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 562
  2. Negative: 0 out of 562
562 tv reviews
  1. Comedy Central's programming usually falls squarely into the sublime or the ridiculous, so consider Root of All Evil a rare tweener in terms of quality--one that proves a whole lot of Black is preferable, albeit marginally, to a black hole.
  2. As a serialized drama, the program's situations aren't especially stirring, even with its solid, perfectly outfitted cast. The sheer atmosphere, however, proves intoxicating.
  3. As the show progresses, the stronger moments indicate that Showtime has a more durable commodity here than just the sales pitch for "Sybil: The Series." That's in part because the producers have done an exceptional job of casting beyond the central roles.
  4. DeMange draws out the helplessness and frustrations of the men who visit Belle, which are complemented by Tat Radcliffe's framing of the action.
  5. It's loud and only marginally coherent, but, for a made-for-TV version of a theatrical blockbuster, it looks utterly polished.
  6. The adaptation is meticulous almost to a fault, including a fidelity to language and accents (a hybrid between British and American) that initially appears to handcuff some of the cast --beginning, most glaringly, with Giamatti, fresh off his turn as a jollier icon in "Fred Claus."
  7. As constructed by series creators Lowri Glain, S.J. Clarkson and Rachel Anthony, there's a strong momentum to the serialized storylines, and the key players are so innately appealing.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    After starting slow in the Nielsen race early on last year and then finding its footing, Fringe should settle in nicely.
  8. Script by show creator Mick Garris and ensemble acting are serviceable but pale in comparison to the cinematography of Attila Szalay, production design of Stephen Geaghan and Brian Tyler's tension-inducing orchestral score.
  9. Dialogue by Diane Ruggiero is sharply written and realistic, observational and unhurried. It remains to be seen, though, whether 9 p.m. Friday viewers are ready for the debate over Vivian's new Brazilian.
  10. Great it’s not, but the fizzy mix of soapy elements, screwy comedy, high-society hijinks and romance dovetails with where the netlet has been heading programming-wise.
  11. Certainly nothing here is "groundbreaking," as WE's production notes claim, given past exercises such as Michael Apted's landmark "7 Up!" series. Yet High School Confidential is the kind of personal document that merits attention--inviting curiosity not just regarding how these teens navigated through high school, but what their lives will be like seven years from now and beyond.
  12. A series that departs from past pay TV heavyweights in possessing no more heft than a pleasant breeze. Then again, amid all the tumult in today's busy and bustling dramas, that may be just the sort of soothing balm that could make both HBO and an acceptable swatch of its viewers happy.
  13. That NBC has bought into this concept reflects network TV's lowered expectations, but the series' two-hour premiere is a respectable effort--handsomely shot and offering old-fashioned end-of-the-week escapism, albeit with a character unable to escape his own island purgatory.
  14. It remains to be seen whether Teddy's work on behalf of the needy can become an unexpected gift to needy NBC, but strictly as light summer entertainment with a touch of heart, The Philanthropist delivers.
  15. Men isn't a great series yet, but it has the assets to grow into one. And in the interim, watching it certainly isn't a Sisyphean task.
  16. Nothing here is dramatic enough to be genuinely or consistently interesting, as if they couldn't get waivers to present any of the juicy stuff that might give the show sizzle. The result is a high school version of "The People's Court."
  17. The absurdity of watching the band engage in an escalating feud with a rival trio of kid performers is genuinely chuckleworthy, and the series' rough edges seem well suited to its latenight IFC berth.
  18. Director Coky Giedroyc's grittier, reality-based approach to Sarah Phelps' adaptation contrasts sharply the popular and nostalgic musical account "Oliver!" Nevertheless, this version does stay true to Dickens' original intent to call attention to social evils in harsh times.
  19. The episodes don't really go anywhere, but the star-writer-producer has a genial Everyman presence and surrounds himself with a rich array of characters.
  20. Survivors isn't great or groundbreaking, but it's a whole lot more than nothing.
  21. It's a familiar formula, to be sure, but handled with enough panache and conviction to invest the BAFTA-honored pic series with an element of freshness.
  22. Whitechapel can be enjoyed for what it is--an excuse to take another bloody stroll down memory lane, while tacking on yet another cinematic addition to the house that Jack built.
  23. Playing to the cameras, even many elements that feel slightly staged (including convenient intra-housewife feuding) prove nearly irresistible, again reminding us that horrible people you'd never want to associate with are often the spice of reality. This show puts the Bada-Bing in Bravo.
  24. Ultimately, the series contains just enough skepticism to mitigate charges of being exploited as a questionable enterprise's PR tool.
  25. Wells and company have delivered a cop drama with its own racing pulse, albeit for a network that's uncomfortably close to flatlining.
  26. So while the checklist of assets might not add up to 10, there are several things to like about this series, which bodes well for its desire--shared by TV and teenagers--to become popular.
  27. The series can at best be lauded for its efficiency and at worst be chided for resorting to the convenient fallback of Mexican drug lords as its initial heavies.
  28. All those plot threads could be beneficial in sustaining the series on a serialized basis, but Parenthood's multifaceted vision of family risks feeling too precious in places.
  29. Williamson and Julie Plec--working from L.J. Smith's books, which actually preceded "Twilight"--mix these familiar elements into a crimson cocktail that even gets reasonable mileage out of its cliches, which ought to give this early riser a chance to establish some fan loyalty before the other networks launch their Thursday lineups.

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