Variety's Scores

For 1,450 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 The Larry Sanders Show: Season 6
Lowest review score: 10 The Hills: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 562
  2. Negative: 0 out of 562
562 tv reviews
  1. The whole melting pot of European coppers swapping insults is a rather stale twist on an old formula. That’s not to say Lines is without its merits, starting with Fichtner.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    [The] cast generally rises above the material, with Lithgow a sort of cross between Steve Martin and Matt Frewer, and tall, raspy-voiced Johnston a real find. Curtin is fine, but somewhat wasted as an uptight professor. [9 Jan 1996]
    • Variety
  2. It has heart but no teeth, charm without chutzpah. [21 Sept 1998, p.46]
    • Variety
  3. A mixed bag both creatively and conceptually. [24 Sept 2003, p.2]
    • Variety
  4. While there are creepy moments--and the show continues to peel away the layers of what makes a monster while questioning whether its protagonist truly is one --Dexter remains well short of the operatic highs it reached in previous cat-and-mouse games between the protag and well-matched foes.
  5. As guilty pleasures go, this one certainly doesn’t lack for moments at which to hoot.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    If the other four new regulars are anything like the three shown here, "Real World II" may be hard to watch for anybody who doesn't slow down to linger on car wrecks. [24 Jun 1993]
    • Variety
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    This first episode scores on most accounts ... But as show progresses, the first-meeting euphoria of the racially and morally diverse contingent gives way to the ubiquitous whining and bickering. [23 Jun 1994]
    • Variety
  6. Although there are elements here that merit continued attention, most notably Demian Bichir as a dedicated Mexican cop, there are too many missteps to ensure safe passage.
  7. By the second hour, though, Camp has already resorted to a “capture the flag” team competition and a slow-motion water-balloon fight, and over-employed the device of having Mackenzie bare her deepest, darkest secrets to a small chorus of friends. The third hour rebounds only slightly, and by then it’s pretty clear an energetic and attractive cast isn’t enough to make the Down Under-lensed doings rise much above the mundane.
  8. For now, Low Winter Sun has created a reasonably compelling universe, without as yet establishing the gravitational pull necessary to ensure viewers stay in its orbit.
  9. While the project proves something of a logistical triumph, it’s only fitfully interesting.
  10. Not as wacky as “Police Squad” or as droll as “Barney Miller,” Brooklyn occupies a comedic no-man’s land--affecting an irreverent tone seemingly designed to keep as many people out as it invites in.
  11. While the show is certainly handsomely done, the fish-out-of-water dialogue already feels a little green around the gills.
  12. Despite promising elements, there simply isn’t a lot in this premise that demands a second date, much less a longterm commitment.
  13. Harmless as it is, The Michael J. Fox Show remains a pretty thin concoction, built heavily around the appeal of its leading man.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The Guardian isn't nearly as watchable as its star. The Eye web already has a chamber full of noble justice hounds thanks to "Family Law" and "Judging Amy," so this legal drama, though powered by a terrific perf from fresh face Simon Baker, feels a bit late to the ex parte. There's even a small subplot in the pilot about young tech titans involved in a dot-com takeover. How yesterday can you get? [17 Sept 2001, p.30]
    • Variety
  14. Despite clever and uncomfortable moments, Ladies falls short of the pay-TV plateau.
  15. Even if the series plays it right down the middle--it’s not exactly good, but not terrible either--that might be all that’s needed to succeed.
  16. Dancing [isn't] without elegant moments. It’s just that in the slow waltz of a miniseries that envelops them, someone forget to hone its edge.
  17. While there are intriguing anecdotes and stories scattered throughout the chapters made available, anyone reasonably well versed in African-American history will have to wade through plenty of padding to find the highlights.
  18. While one suspects Jason will have to wait a while before being reunited with that sub in which his journey began, about the best one can say regarding this leaky vehicle is that it proves slightly better than substandard.
  19. Casting actors like Robert Knepper, Milo Ventimiglia and DeMunn among the assorted cops and robbers certainly lends a patina of quality to the proceedings, but can’t trump the general sluggishness of the presentation--or, for aficionados of the period, the fact these same hoods and heroes have been fictionalized with more verve elsewhere.
  20. The movie settles for a rather dutiful tick-tock of episodes and shootouts, counting down toward the inevitable with plenty of on-air script indicating the time and place before each event.
  21. For the most part [Directors Beth McCarthy-Miller and Rob Ashford] couldn’t make the story sing between the musical numbers, and the tingle one can get from a live theatrical experience didn’t materialize as filtered through the remove of TV.
  22. While hardly a horse of a different color, at least this Weinstein Co.-backed project is a relatively smooth ride for those who’ve been to the reality rodeo.
  23. Even an ardent Holmes aficionado might find two hours singing the praises of a fictional character feel like a bit much.
  24. While the premise might appear to be plumbing some of the same culture-clash depths as FX’s “The Bridge,” in other words, it mostly settles for being an old-fashioned procedural.
  25. It’s harmless enough given how broadly most of it’s played (think the Three Stooges in basic training) but nothing here is particularly distinctive.
  26. While there’s a fairly dense mythology here, as adapted by Daegan Fryklind Bitten feels stitched together from pieces of werewolf tales of yore--undermined, in terms of casting its own spell, by TV’s familiar version of a pack mentality.

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