Variety's Scores

For 1,410 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 Wire: Season 4
Lowest review score: 10 I Survived a Japanese Game Show: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 548
  2. Negative: 0 out of 548
548 tv reviews
  1. 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.
  2. [It manages] to be extremely entertaining, packed with amusing details and highly relevant to today's politics.
  3. Appropriate Adult will hardly be everyone's cup of tea (or coffee), but it's such a formidable showcase for its leads as to merit the opportunity to reach a discriminating audience.
  4. 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.
  5. Series creator Alan Ball and company have assembled a solid ensemble and instilled such a cheeky attitude the show remains great fun, and clearly benefits from being back on a better-directed course.
  6. 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.
  7. There's no denying the emotion in what transpired, firmly placing this in the same elite league with some of the sports network's fine "30 for 30" documentaries.
  8. If "Tiny Furniture" filmmaker Lena Dunham's series is in places too mannered, it's also fresh, honest and raw.
  9. Even with some amusing bleeps and pixelation to obscure saucy language and (apparently) beer labels, L.A. Complex feels pretty authentic, and gets the relationships much better than something like the increasingly preposterous "Smash" does.
  10. [The Weight of the Nation is] a little flabby. Still, this multimedia endeavor delivers a powerful and important message.
  11. What has the potential to be absurd--a title pun in search of a series--plays, albeit slowly, as taut and absorbing.
  12. [A] slickly made, shrewdly conceived series.
  13. TNT's take on the classic primetime serial is exactly as it should be: Texas-sized, frothy and unwilling to settle for a double-cross when a triple can be executed.
  14. Sherman-Palladino's snappy banter and slightly melancholy characters only enrich the texture of a series perfectly pitched between comedy and drama.
  15. While it's hard to anticipate the next several moves, Braugher, Speedman and supporting players like Robert Patrick (a "Unit" alum) provide incentive to tag along for the voyage, at least for awhile.
  16. it all works--or at least most of it does--in no small part because everyone has known (or God forbid, has been) one of these kids, stupidly initiating school clubs to impress a girl (as Will does in a later episode) or being embarrassed by that horrible-looking starter car cheerfully purchased by dad.
  17. That the show delivered so ably under the stewardship of Glen Mazzara makes season three less surprising but no less riveting, with the first couple of episodes offering a buffet of character, tension and the inevitable can-you-top-this, stomach-churning gore.
  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.
  19. Unlike a lot of TV documentarians, Burns steadfastly refuses to include dramatic re-creations, relying (as he did in "Prohibition," an early-20th-century companion to this) on photographs, grainy video, actors' readings of diaries or news articles, and of course those aforementioned interviews. The last might be the most compelling, providing a bridge from the macro to the micro.
  20. The program returns from its surprisingly tasty maiden run clicking on all cylinders, with plenty of bed-hopping, two-timing and Texas-sized dealmaking to go around.
  21. There's no pulling punches, and exec producer Kevin Williamson delivers a full-throttle ride that, four episodes in, proves twisty, unpredictable and tense.
  22. Developments are doled out at a measured clip, and the filmmakers seem less interested in sustaining forward momentum than in painting a vivid panorama of this broken community, a town cloaked in a dark and vaguely incestuous malaise.
  23. Without giving anything away, the guest cast is unusually strong, offering the prospect of fertile subplots going forward, while some of the regulars don’t figure prominently at first--again, pretty par for the course.
  24. Hosted by Vice founder Shane Smith--hardly a natural on camera--the magazine nevertheless resonates precisely because it zeroes in on unsettling tales of violence and cruelty abroad, at a moment when TV news frequently seems preoccupied with trifles at home.
  25. 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.
  26. Mary and Martha is a moving return to intimate form for HBO.
  27. 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.
  28. Perfectly cast and cleverly paced, consider it a mini-"Masterpiece Mystery" for that franchise’s crime-loving loyalists.
  29. Amazon’s Alpha House is a polished comedy--not a game-changer, but the kind of show a premium service should be happy to have.
  30. Buoyed by a riveting supporting performance from Jon Voight, it’s a dense, highly organic world--at its best, playing like a present-day “Chinatown.” More often, it’s eminently entertaining, if not initially quite worthy of a spot alongside TV’s velvet-roped A-list.

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