Variety's Scores

For 1,507 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 35% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 62% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 8.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 Undeclared: Season 1
Lowest review score: 10 South Beach: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 586
  2. Negative: 0 out of 586
586 tv reviews
  1. [The] pilot is cleverly written giving the characters a heady, just-specific-enough mix of mystery, intrigue and charm.
  2. The premiere plays like a solid thriller.
  3. The show exhibits some welcome bite.
  4. Michael C. Hall's portrayal of the title character remains a towering achievement, one that eclipses the show's other shortcomings and rough patches.
  5. Cliffhangers help pull the episodes along, and the idea behind Trinity--whose murderous reign might date back three decades--is intriguing.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Strange and clever, "The Lost Room" is full of winding corridors, peculiar twists and wry, oddball humor, set against a mystery that recalls TV's better Stephen King productions.
  6. Production values are outstanding, and the producers have captured the appropriate tension and devotion that surrounds this world.
  7. In its energy and penchant for the absurd, [it] resembles a latter-day version of "Pee-wee's Playhouse" pitched to the college-frat set.
  8. The soapy elements are generally a rollicking snooze, and in the premiere, one worries that too many of the dinosaurs will resemble those in "Land of the Lost," stampeding around but never really doing much. Yet the investigation surrounding the anomalies--and Cutter's personal story--does thicken as the series progresses, and many of the computer-animated visuals are striking, especially given the TV budget.
  9. It's a formula nevertheless--one that renders Eli Stone engaging but not fully involving, particularly once the vision/trial/puzzled-looks-from-colleagues ground rules are established, based on a sampling of two subsequent hours.
  10. Nothing in Welcome to the Captain is particularly fresh, but there's nevertheless a genial charm to this CBS comedy, whose main drawback is that it focuses on the wrong characters.
  11. While the kids are alright, Pietz alone makes the series recommendable
  12. Even those whose historical knowledge goes no further than the whole "six wives" thing can ascertain that the future doesn't bode well for poor Jane, but the particulars remain fascinating amid all the bodice ripping, torture and jockeying for the king's favor.
  13. Graced with a sly voiceover and strong supporting characters, it's the kind of breezy romp that dovetails nicely with [USA's] most popular fare and which manages to look more effortless than it surely is.
  14. A little messy in its conception, the series still exhibits considerable potential--the kind that inspires checking out a second episode.
  15. The selections in the first two episodes possess compelling strength, whimsy and ambiguity in both the stories and the characters, providing a solid transformation from radio to TV.
  16. Saving Grace is less about its procedural storytelling than it is about simply creating a venue to showcase Hunter's undeniable smallscreen star quality.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Bee has some promise, but the concept has the potential to grow old fast.
  17. Fortunately, the series never veers terribly far from the central duo, each of whom--to borrow a bit of vernacular--is played in cracking fashion by Horne (from "The Catherine Tate Show") and Page ("Love Actually").
  18. 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.
  19. 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.
  20. 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.
  21. DeMange draws out the helplessness and frustrations of the men who visit Belle, which are complemented by Tat Radcliffe's framing of the action.
  22. It's loud and only marginally coherent, but, for a made-for-TV version of a theatrical blockbuster, it looks utterly polished.
  23. 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."
  24. 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.
  25. 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.
  26. 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.
  27. 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.

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