Variety's Scores

For 1,602 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 Office (UK): Season 2
Lowest review score: 10 The 1/2 Hour News Hour: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 626
  2. Negative: 0 out of 626
626 tv reviews
  1. One of the best conventional half-hours to come along in a while.
  2. Beyond a couple of truly gut-churning moments courtesy of the special-FX wizards, the second season showcases the topnotch cast the producers have assembled, as well as the program's skill milking terror in broad daylight.
  3. The storytelling is spare, with few of the by-now customary compromises to reality-TV (or dramatic expectations weaned on "ER" and "Grey's Anatomy"), other than the oncamera interviews and musical flourishes that close each hour.
  4. Corden and Baynton bring considerable charm to their broadly drawn roles, and have the natural rapport necessary for any odd couple pairing.... Production values are solid, and film and TV director Jim Field Smith opts for a classic style that foregrounds both the action and comedy without any stylistic fuss.
  5. For those unfamiliar with the Broadway version, the songs are great fun, and work particularly well juxtaposed with animation.
  6. Based on this first of four installments, State of Play augments that profile [aggressive and serious journalism], at a time when sports has become such big business it’s incumbent on the media--often grappling with conflicts by being in bed with the various leagues--to step up their games.
  7. There’s admittedly nostalgia in seeing Cosby perform again after a 30-year TV standup special hiatus, but he still delivers some of the old wonderfulness.
  8. It helps enormously that Dinicol and Soni find the right mix of vulnerability and awkwardness in the leading roles. The show also captures a general atmosphere of Silicon Valley as a youthful place not far removed from absorbing the Harry Potter books.
  9. Gripping and slightly unnerving, Durst’s impassive demeanor ensures this six-part series will be widely discussed, trumping some artistic choices that, like Durst’s account of events, can easily be second-guessed.
  10. An enchanting six-part series about lost love, missed opportunities and second chances.
  11. Chuck possesses modest charm, impressive stunt work and another mildly appealing reluctant hero.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cheeky and charming, Joss Whedon's attempt to fuse oaters with "Star Trek" is just silly enough to work -- and there's absolutely nothing else like it on TV.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    An impressive, handsomely engineered launch. ... "Voyager" includes all the elements of Roddenberry's original vision: a future full of hope, curiosity, wonder and respect for all cultures; sexual and racial (and for that matter, species) equality, embodied in a diverse but largely harmonious crew; and adventures that intrigue rather than lull viewers. [16 Jan 1995]
    • Variety
  12. It's too early to declare victory just yet, of course, but Tower Prep appears to have the right lesson plan for the task at hand. And based simply on the needs of a network still getting its feet wet in a new genre, the show passes its first test with flying colors.
  13. If this prequel can maintain the quality of its initial salvo, that will likely motivate at least those viewers to beseech whatever gods they pray to that Caprica be blessed with a prolonged stay in this place called Earth.
  14. Those who wade through the slow-going first three or four hours of this stately production will be richly rewarded by the engrossing final four.
  15. Galavant largely overcomes the challenges that have traditionally bedeviled TV musicals with rambunctious energy, cheeky lyrics and music, and — significantly — a half-hour format, thus condensing the need to create songs into a manageable task.
  16. Under director David Nutter and show-runner Josh Friedman, the first two hours roll a slick brand extension off this profitable assembly line.
  17. Unlike “Girls,” it feels less self-conscious about being provocative, with the situations flowing organically out of the characters. It is also, happily, occasionally pretty funny.
  18. The producers do a shrewd job of not just building toward the reveal, but then following its aftermath, with the emotions of the previously unseen party brought into the equation.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sutter, a writer and producer on "The Shield," fully understands the power of violence in getting a point across, yet the premiere's closing sequence runs a very fine line between demonstrating the neo-Nazis' brutality and a gratuitous display.
  19. Lights proves not only that it's possible to produce a smart drama with teenage characters, but that a series can be better than the movie (itself inspired by a bestselling book) that spawned it.
  20. The new season relies heavily on the show’s rich mood and atmosphere, inasmuch as series creator Terence Winter and his crew appear content to ease back into the proceedings while hitting the reset button.
  21. If "Tiny Furniture" filmmaker Lena Dunham's series is in places too mannered, it's also fresh, honest and raw.
  22. The documentary goes beyond mere hazy tribute, offering parallel windows into the civil-rights era and the barriers women have faced in comedy.
  23. Somewhat plodding through its opening hour, "Elizabeth I" gains steam and then soars through its concluding installment.
  24. FX has often made its bones by seeking to push the pay-cable envelope in terms of standards, sometimes gratuitously so; Damages demonstrates that envelope-pushers needn't be edgier, necessarily, just smarter.
  25. Like its vague title, Men possesses a certain charm that's not always easy to characterize, but is, thankfully, easy to watch. And based on season two, the show, at least, is aging quite gracefully.
  26. Mary and Martha is a moving return to intimate form for HBO.

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