• Network: HBO
  • Series Premiere Date: Jul 13, 2008
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 27
  2. Negative: 1 out of 27
  1. 80
    There is a near-perfect symmetry between the sensibility of Wright's book and the work of Simon and Burns.
  2. 90
    HBO's Generation Kill is remarkable.
  3. 90
    It’s as addictive and absorbing, in its own way, as “The Wire.”
  4. Reviewed by: Ken Tucker
    91
    Kill pays both you and its subjects two solid compliments: It doesn't scream ''Take heed: This is a work of art!'' And it lets you form your own opinions about what its social commentary is.
  5. Once again Simon and his producing partner, Ed Burns, plunge us deeply into the culture of foul-mouthed men, many of them barely out of their teens, who have ready access to firearms and agendas that have little to do with the American dream that you and I understood growing up. And, as before, you can’t stop watching it.
  6. 80
    There’s a formal integrity to the Simon-and-Burns storytelling style--predicated on the theory that details matter, complexity rules and you can’t force momentum--that meshes well with the close-up vividness of Wright’s dispatches from an often chaotic front.
  7. Generation Kill tends to play as a series of discrete events. I suppose an argument might be made that this mirrors the way that the constant threat of extinction, and subject always to a sudden change in (rarely explained) orders, makes one live in the moment. I don't think that was what the producers intended, but it works well enough for watching it.
  8. 80
    A raucous, raunchy and utterly loving account of life at the bottom of the military food chain.
  9. Wright is a diligent reporter, and his material has been whipped into a smooth script under producers David Simon and Ed Burns.
  10. Meanwhile, some remarkable television has been made. To report on a new generation of young warriors raised on hip-hop, heavy metal, and video games, Wright went to Iraq as Michael Herr before him had gone to Vietnam, like Dante to hell with a cassette recording of Jimi Hendrix.
  11. 38
    The end result of all that effort, however, is a miniseries that's as dull and throbbing as a severe headache.
  12. If the world that Simon, Burns, Wright and company drop us into can be confusing at first (mirroring, as they intended, the confusion that Wright felt at the time), it's a fully-realized one that's both thousands of miles away (literally and figuratively) from the Baltimore of "The Wire" and one that will feel very familiar to anyone who spent a lot of time watching McNulty and Bunk drink at the train tracks.
  13. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    60
    You get the sense that the filmmakers' vision and Wright's are never quite in sync--or perhaps are in sync too perfectly.
  14. 100
    Generation Kill stands in the tradition of classic war movies. Vivid storytelling, superb acting and a frank approach make this a TV landmark.
  15. An engrossing, detailed military character drama, Generation Kill is a modern-day "Band of Brothers," a warts-and-all account that hits closer to home because it depicts such recent events.
  16. 80
    Like Wright’s book, the series is disjointed and disturbing, a story of youthful workers who are underprepared, underequipped, and underinformed.
  17. Generation Kill is rewarding in its complexity. It feels real - and that realness is bracing, sad and funny in equal measures.
  18. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    50
    It plays like it's been built for antisocial boys--mchair heroes in love with guns and in search of demented adventure.
  19. Bolstered by superb acting and first-rate direction and cinematography, Kill delivers the goods in ways both unexpected and rewarding.
  20. Generation Kill, which has a superb cast and script, provides a searingly intense, clear-eyed look at the first stage of the war, and it is often gripping. But like a beautiful woman who swathes herself in concealing clothes and distracting hats, the series fights its own intrinsic allure.
  21. 50
    If we got to know any of the characters in Generation Kill, the show might be more interesting, or, at least, more memorable.
  22. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    90
    Colbert is the series' rock, and a straightman contrast to the constantly yammering Person, his driver. As the stoic enigma and the hopped-up smart-ass speed through the desert landscape, you could almost take Kill for a surreal road comedy.
  23. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    90
    Critical without being overtly political, with stretches of boredom punctuated by the sudden chaos of firefights where it’s impossible to distinguish innocent bystanders from insurgents, Generation Kill is both timely and timeless.
  24. 100
    What Kill has to offer is clarity and clear-eyed empathy. TV's the better for it.
  25. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    80
    This technically superior project intriguingly mirrors territory the producers explored in tackling Baltimore's mean streets, and while Baghdad's avenues are even meaner, the producers' impeccable craftsmanship is roughly the same.
  26. It's best to get quickly past the confused and shapeless first episode and on to the rest, where the characters become individualized.
  27. 100
    Wright says. "After the Vietnam War ended, the onus of shame largely fell on the veterans. This time around, if shame is to be had when the Iraq conflict ends--and all indications are there will be plenty of it--the veterans are the last people in America to deserve it." Generation Kill makes that point so powerfully as to stand among the truest and most trenchant war movies of all time.
User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 85 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 38
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 38
  3. Negative: 5 out of 38
  1. Stevens
    Nov 28, 2008
    10
    This show accurately depicts being in the military from convoy operations to singing stupid songs out of boredom. Even the incompetence of superiors is captured perfectly. When I watch this show, I feel like I'm there. Like I'm at work with them. What they do on the show is exactly what we do. All the glory and coolness, all the questionable things war makes us do, the acts of atrocities and heroism is in hard to turn away from once you start watching. It superbly tells the story without fancy camera effects and a dramatic musical score. If the story is not fast enough or exciting enough for you, that's because it's pretty close to real life. Unlike the latest Hollywood action movie, real life moves at it's own pace. Excellent TV Show. Full Review »
  2. JohnH.
    Jul 17, 2008
    10
    Sgt Brad Colbert was my daughter's boyfriend all thru high school and part of college. His experiences and growth thru this ordeal and the one in Afganistan are remarkable. He is a natural leader and has always had a calming effect on those depending on him in a crisis. I am proud to see the actor portraying him did not caricature him as a person. it is very difficult to take a combat situation and not glorify it when making a film...I think the filmmakers have something to be proud of here...this from a former Vietnam veteran. Full Review »
  3. JimmyT
    Sep 8, 2008
    10
    Excellent mini-series. I am in the military and granted, some of this is over the top which would and should be expected from "entertainment" much of how they act is straight out of daily life with 18-24 year old men. The acting was good, the special effects were awesome. And many of the events are not only believable, but provable by doing any research. It is unbelievable at some of the dumb things we do, it always amazes me as stupid as we are, how incredibily dumb the enemy is! Full Review »