• Network: Starz
  • Series Premiere Date: Oct 21, 2011
  • Season #: 1 , 2
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 98 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 88 out of 98
  2. Negative: 7 out of 98

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  1. Apr 26, 2014
    I think the continuous plot twists keep the viewer fully engaged in the plot.
    The problem, as other people have mentioned, is that none of the characters seem to be completely trustworthy.
  2. Aug 31, 2012
    Good show, Kelsey Grammer is fabulous and a real revelation for those who remember him only from Cheers and Frasier. This is definitely no sitcom. It's a dark and cynical view of politics in general and big city Chicago politics in particular.

    Though the themes are generally depressing, the production is stylish, exciting and keeps our interest. We know from the start the Grammer's
    Mayor Kane is a heavyweight antihero.

    My only complaint is that the plot seems to go slightly overboard at times to demonstrate Mayor Kane's villainy. No doubt successful villains do evil things, but I presume they must be done selectively and not gratuitously.
  3. Feb 10, 2012
    It is rare that you find a show which doesn't care if its audience won't keep up. Boss makes no excuses - it powers ahead, but without falling into the Aaron Sorkin motor-mouth mode. Fans of the West Wing might enjoy this, but Boss is deeper, faster and meaner - in more ways that one. Kelsey Grammer plays the lead character as if he was born for it - and it is hard to think of anyone in TV that quite matches Mayor Kane's power, malice and sheer evil. But before you learn that lesson, you will learn to love Kane and root for him: through his political fights, his estranged relationships and his disease (which makes for some fantastic "Whu?!" moments in the show). Boss is exceptional and arguably my best new show of 2011. Expand
  4. Jan 29, 2012
    Amazing show! I hadn't even heard of it until I saw Grammer win the Globe for best actor in a tv drama. Too bad this is on Starz and hence the limited audience. If this was on Showtime or HBO, there would be much more fanfare associated with the show. I watch quite a bit of TV and keep up with a lot of shows and somehow, I hadn't even heard of this. Thank goodness they greenlit a second season even before the premiere aired. Hopefully ratings will be better in S2 because I can't wait too see what happens with Tom Kane and everyone else down the road. The acting is great and it's produced and written very well. It is however, very dark and cynical. It's probably one of the most cynical shows I've ever seen...but if you like real dramas...this show's got it in spades. Expand
  5. Jan 21, 2012
    An outstanding TV show, that showcases the Chicago Political Machine that runs the United States and World currently. If this is only partially true, we are in big trouble. Kelsey Grammer and an Outstanding Cast put together some great work that is both horrific, adult, Shakespearean and just disturbing. It's a nice compliment in material to Mel Gibson's Apocalypto, which features the same writer....One piece of advice, get rid of Mario Van Peebles episodes. "Stitch Jones" is not a good director. Expand
  6. Jan 9, 2012
    Great show! Compelling storytelling about a conflicted man in power. It is masterfully directed and truly beautiful when it comes to scenography. Instant winner in my eyes.
  7. Jan 3, 2012
    The writers need a Golden Globe as well as Kelsey Grammer for his outstanding no apologies performance. Of course the Chicago gangster style politics is overly exaggerated being a Chicago native, but the show is underrated. The city is known for its brutal governing system, but warns of its danger.
  8. Jan 3, 2012
    This may be the best show I've seen in the last five years, and the last two episodes left me stunned (in a positive way). Kelsey Grammer gives a performance that is incredibly powerful. He shows that he is so much more of an actor than we expect from the former Dr. Frazier Crane. The rest of the cast is outstanding, and the writing left me breathless. What I don't understand is how this show and Grammer have been totally ignored by the recent award nominations like the SAG Awards and the Golden Globes. Is it that the nominators don't spend the $10 a month to get Starz? Or is it that the PR department at Starz just fell down on the job? I hope they get their act together by the time the Emmys roll around. I can't wait for season two. Expand
  9. Dec 31, 2011
    Great show worth watching, it may not be perfect or as good as Breaking Bad or Homeland, but compared to most other shows on other networks this is bounds and leaps ahead of them, I'd say this year Homeland, The Killing and Boss are the best new shows on TV.
  10. Dec 14, 2011
    I'm very much impressed. Homeland was my favorite this year - before I've started watching The Boss, and now the tale from Chicago has me among it's most avid fans. I didn't expect such level of artistry from the Starz, the channel that was peddling T & A in "historical" settings, it's a very pleasant surprise.
  11. Dec 10, 2011
    Gritty, dark, and intense. Shows a side of politics that many never see and for good reason. The performances, writing, and production are all top notch and it's hard to find any flaws.
  12. Dec 5, 2011
    An amazing show. The acting, script, intricate plotting, are all executed near perfectly. Definitely the same realm as the wire, but I would say Boss is more subtle and requires the viewer to pay close attention to every nuance, making it very rewarding. Easily the best show on TV, and the fact that Gus Van Sant is producing shows - the shooting is equally excellent. I have to believe that this show being rated lower than Breaking Bad or Homeland is an inaccuracy caused by the relatively small number of people who are able to watch it or are even aware of it (since it is on Starz). I hope this show gets the attention it deserves and is in for a long run. Expand
  13. Dec 3, 2011
    Awesome show, the acting and dialogue is just fantastic. If you liked the political parts of The Wire you should check this out. Grammer is just amazing in this as the main actor and gives his best acting of his career, to me its some of the best acting ive seen on tv since The Wire and Carnivale. Was not expecting much from this show but wow I have really been having a blast watching it, going to buy season 1 dvd when it comes. Expand
  14. Nov 29, 2011
    Unbelievably good and it's all due to Grammer who is absolutely riveting as the brilliant/corrupt/evil mayor of Chicago. Chicago is almost too small a venue for this show.
  15. Nov 11, 2011
    Terrific TV! If this were only about politics, it might get dull, but Grammer's character's spiraling sickness draws the story forward. High production value to boot.
  16. Nov 6, 2011
    Gritty like Mad Men. Wielding power like Tony Soprano. Heartless like Charles Foster Kane. Boss' main character, superbly directed by Gus Van Sant and powerfully portrayed by Kelsey Grammer, Tom Kane, even shares the surname of Orson Welles' cold protagonist. At this writing, Boss has, in 3 episodes, beaten every new network television show in terms of directing, writing, acting and entertainment. I've always thought highly of Grammer, but I've always said the only way for him to move past Frasier is to take on a role that is the opposite likeability of Frasier in every way. And, boy, has he finally nailed it. This is the next great television show. Watching Tom Kane deteriorate over the course of this show, especially given the public nature of his very existence, leaves the viewer salivating. Expand
  17. Oct 24, 2011
    Boss unlike most shows this season doesnâ
  18. Oct 22, 2011
    Grammer is stunning in this new drama. The story is incredibly complex and intriguing, and it keeps the viewer wanting to see more. It looks like Starz has already ordered a 10 episode second season due to such an overwhelming positive response from critics. After one episode, I am addicted already. I am praying that this show takes off with viewers just as well as it has with critics.
  19. Oct 21, 2011
    This show is great, from the acting to writing, directing, and screenplay. Kelsey Grammer puts on a powerful performance in the first episode alone. It's smart, eye opening, disgusting, fascinating, and much more. Strong language and violence should be expected, but that's the way life is. It ain't pretty. This show is real.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    Oct 21, 2011
    Even at its worst, Boss radiates intelligence and toughness, and an appreciation of politics as a nonstop performance in an unscripted drama.
  2. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Oct 21, 2011
    Boss is electric with self-importance, and that is in itself is a hoot, given its particular combination of thematic pomp and expressionistic pulp.
  3. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Oct 21, 2011
    Its early episodes are a mix of power and disappointment.