Variety's Scores

For 1,605 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: 56
Highest review score: 100 Felicity: Season 1
Lowest review score: 10 The Bachelor: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 627
  2. Negative: 0 out of 627
627 tv reviews
  1. Better With You fits in with that lesser two-thirds of ABC's returning sitcom block, and while it's by no means an eyesore, it hasn't done anything to improve the neighborhood.
  2. Corden comes across as natural and likable, including the self-effacing little song with which he closed the show.... Still, having landed that golden ticket is one thing; possessing the imagination to make it last is going to require not just good fortune, but based on first impressions, some ongoing tinkering with the assembly line.
  3. The mean-spirited (if ultimately loving) nature of the series could easily be a turn-off for some. Others will simply wish the writing was as consistently clever as McKellen’s line readings.
  4. While the project proves something of a logistical triumph, it’s only fitfully interesting.
  5. O'Donnell's program didn't exhibit the fireworks one might have expected, allocating most of the hour to guest Russell Brand, in an interview that was relaxed, charitably, but almost wholly uninteresting.
  6. As is, the pilot created by Emily Kapnek ("Hung") and directed by Michael Fresco finds some warmth in the father-daughter bond and labors rather feebly to expose Hines' character in a less-than-harsh light, but the too-familiar start doesn't bode well for consistently tapping into such elements.
  7. Beyond its handsome locations (shooting extensively in Israel) and impressive list of players, Dig keeps referencing the grand forces at work, but also does little to divulge what they are. And while that might be fine for those determined to hunker down for this entire 10-episode event, it can feel a bit tiresome to others still debating whether the show merits such a commitment.
  8. Pioneers of Television often provides less than half the story, and in some instances, that’s enough.
  9. ESPN's eight-episode mini-series plays remarkably flat despite a sharp portrayal by John Turturro as the eye at the center of the storm.
  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. This is really just a protracted, more explicit (virtually a prerequisite, given the venue) "Mission: Impossible," spreading its caper across multiple episodes. Yet even with bursts of bloodshed, Hunted bogs down in the episodes previewed.
  12. Cupid remains a rather wispy premise, with this second go-round bookending other similarly themed premises, such as NBC’s “Miss Match,” which failed, too--and in that case also featured a female lead who couldn’t quite follow her own romantic advice.
  13. The pilot is breezy enough, and there are solid supporting players, including Ashley Jensen and Grant Show. Those ingredients, however, are thus far more promising than what first comes out of the oven
  14. Moone Boy can’t help but play like a minor trifle at best, a semi-sweet but not particularly memorable indulgence.
  15. The series' overall sweetness makes up for a number of its failings.
  16. A model of midseason mediocrity, an hourlong that neither excites nor bores, driven by professional if uninspired acting, writing and direction.
  17. While there are a few good lines (Jimmy notes that their meeting place “has a definite ‘Godfather’ vibe”), more often the dialogue sounds stilted and even distracting.
  18. While it's nice to see McCormack and Cavanagh back in episodic form, their similarities diminish their interplay, inasmuch as it's not a reach to envision both in either role. Everyone else pretty much falls into predictable archetypes, from the nerdy young creative team to Griffin Dunne as the constantly frazzled boss.
  19. All told, Fairly Legal feels as if the network--despite riding a nifty string of successes by placing a light spin on familiar genres--has dipped into this particular shallow pool once too often.
  20. Mobbed seems akin to explaining a magic trick--a novelty that quickly wears off. In the case of TV, after all, it's often easier to assemble a mob than it is to motivate them to stick around.
  21. Even an ardent Holmes aficionado might find two hours singing the praises of a fictional character feel like a bit much.
  22. Taken on its own terms, this eight-part series--which begins in the middle, months after aliens have invaded Earth, thus turning a ragtag New England band into modern colonial resistance--has its moments action-wise, but the soapier elements mostly fall flat.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    To become more than middling in tone and entertainment value, the show will need to let loose its based-on-fact restraints and allow the punches and punch lines to flow with greater freedom.
  23. Despite its modest merits, Life ultimately spends most of its time paddling in the shallow end of the dramatic gene pool.
  24. Despite promising elements, there simply isn’t a lot in this premise that demands a second date, much less a longterm commitment.
  25. This latest legal franchise appears to harbor no such ambitions [as "The Good Wife"]--and the gambling, booze and sexual debauchery associated with the town is inevitably going to be rather tepid and implied, even in a 10 p.m. timeslot. The show would be more defensible, oddly, if its characters could be a trifle sleazier.
  26. For the most part, however, she hasn’t shaped the comedy well enough to prevent a lot of this from feeling more like a public-service announcement than a stand-up performance.
  27. The problem, as always, is that the time-travel element can be disorienting from a narrative standpoint.
  28. Undercovers has its moments, but the show itself in some respects mirrors the initial problem with the central duo's relationship--comfortable, perhaps, but failing to spark the kind of passion necessary to elicit fidelity from viewers.
  29. For the most part, the actors chosen do a reasonably laudable job of looking real, but there are also pregnant pauses and exaggerated reaction shots where they hit the inaudible rim shots a bit too hard.

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