Variety's Scores

For 1,638 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 8.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average TV Show review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 The Larry Sanders Show: Season 4
Lowest review score: 10 'Til Death Do Us Part: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 642
  2. Negative: 0 out of 642
642 tv reviews
  1. Clearly, there are few more durable figures in fiction, but capturing the fundamental appeal of Holmes is quite another matter. And on that level, Sherlock cannily cracks the case.
  2. Like "Manchurian Candidate," Homeland does some of its best work via flashbacks to Brody's time in captivity, sprinkling additional tidbits with each glimpse into the past.
  3. Bright and breezy, The Middleman manages the increasingly rare feat of being knowing but not snide. It's a show, frankly, for people who love (and have probably watched too much) TV. By that standard, it's far from the middle, but rather rises straight to the top.
  4. Not every beat works, but after watching an hour it was hard not to stick with The Returned for the full ride.
  5. It's reassuring to see the program refocused and mostly back on track as it opens its fourth season, which finds new torments with which to plague its central trio, as well as a plethora of showy guest stars in deliciously perverse roles. [31 Aug 2006, p.6]
    • Variety
  6. The second-season opener, fortunately, featured a couple of knockout, buzzworthy moments as well as a tantalizing new plot thread, promising that this suburban soap's back alleys and side streets have plenty of stories left to divulge. [27 Sep 2005]
    • Variety
  7. On the surface, the concept of Criminal Intent seems like a gimmicky way to milk some of the success from its predecessors, but in the capable hands of exec producers Wolf and Rene Balcer, who also serve as the show's head writers, it makes for taut, engaging television. This self-perpetuating franchise of cops and lawyers is hardly running out of steam. [28 Sept 2001, p.8]
    • Variety
  8. Rectify is a more-than-credible addition to the DVR menu--one more worthy option as we escape into our own little electronic cells of solitary amusement.
  9. Flitting among three storylines, it's smart, nimble and best of all, funny, while actually making a point about the evolving nature of what constitutes "family."
  10. A slickly produced and irresistibly engrossing docu series that offers a multilayered look at various forms of politics.
  11. Somewhat diluted in its split focus on Richard Nixon’s presidential malfeasance and the movie devoted to those acts, the two-hour doc doesn’t break much new ground, but does pore over familiar terrain, and its lingering implications, in an entertaining way.
  12. The feature format is better suited to heroes with clearly defined goals and a fixed timeframe in which to achieve them, whereas Olive Kitteridge has more existential concerns on its mind. That may lead to viewer attrition, as auds tune in for the first hour but may not be necessarily hooked to the end, though each successive episode takes those who remain deeper into the family’s private world.
  13. Whatever its chemistry, the show surely knows how to go for the throat. And like its mythical night-prowlers, once Blood sucks you in, its attraction is awfully difficult to resist.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    For the uninitiated, the show's dense plotline has become a head-scratching web of scorned relationships between Armenians, Mexicans, corrupt politicians, dirty cops, police commissioners and Mackey, of course, in the center of it all, doing whatever it takes to hang on to his badge. For the longtime fan, however, the story is complex yet riveting, making complete sense, especially after witnessing Mackey's hellacious journey to get here.
  14. Perfectly cast and cleverly paced, consider it a mini-"Masterpiece Mystery" for that franchise’s crime-loving loyalists.
  15. This latest caper isn't at 'Burn Notice's" level yet, but based on the channel's track record, you'd be ill-advised to bet against it tracking down an audience.
  16. Justified has a clear sense of its strengths and shrewdly plays to them. For FX, that savvy combined with Olyphant's charisma has all the makings of a series destined to nail its target.
  17. Having shot more than 1,500 hours of footage, the crew mostly eradicates the conspicuous influence of the filmmakers' presence, capturing harrowing moments graced by genuine humanity.
  18. Though clunky in places, at its best the series captures the essence of what the movie version of "A Chorus Line" didn't, providing an illuminating window into the creative process.
  19. Sharply satirical and playfully dorky without getting bogged down in its own mythology, this iteration should continue to broaden the show's appeal beyond its twin fanbases of Comic-Con lifers and Anglophiles, though both groups will certainly give their seal of approval.
  20. There’s a lot to like, in a series with genuine laughs.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Gavin has evolved, and the writers are making sure he's more multidimensional than ever thought possible. It's a winning move.
  21. Austen's simple tales of love -- deferred, nearly derailed but eventually and inevitably triumphant -- hold up extremely well, and this latest "Sense & Sensibility" has done a splendid job casting its various roles, despite an inevitable wattage deficit compared with the most recent theatrical version.
  22. "Deadwood" remains a series like none other.
  23. The Killing remains compelling, and the writers (led by Sud, adapting the show from a Danish series) are adept at overcoming the stodgy pace by dangling tantalizing clues near each hour's end, creating a strong pull to see what transpires next.
  24. Impeccably cast, extremely handsome, predictably soapy and a trifle slow moving, it’s another first-rate costume drama.
  25. Frankly, six hours is a whole lot of time for any documentary, but the treasure trove of Python material ensures that Almost the Truth goes down smoothly, or at least almost so.
  26. If the premise sounds cheesy and busy, the execution is crisp and efficient--and manages to sell dialogue like, "Together, we can take this city back," which often sounds better in a word balloon.
  27. Sit back, relax and savor a genuine treat infused with Hollywood nostalgia, riotous storytelling and only a few easily forgiven drops of mutual admiration.
  28. Prone to slow starts and whiz-bang finishes, Justified opens its fifth year in midseason form.

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