• Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Jun 1, 2014
Season #: 1, 2
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 122 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Former IBM sales executive Joe MacMillan (Lee Pace) recruits reluctant Cardiff Electric engineer Gordon Clark (Scoot McNairy) and programming prodigy Cameron Howe (Mackenzie Davis) to reverse engineer IBM's BIOS system, setting up the PC revolution.
  • Genre(s): Drama
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Jeff Korbelik
    Jun 2, 2014
    83
    The thrill comes not from the actual computer building, but the people doing the building. These characters are complex and well-developed, especially Pace’s fiery exec, who is a mesmerizing manipulator.
  2. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    May 27, 2014
    80
    The good news is that Halt and Catch Fire is a triumphant pilot with excellent writing, impressive acting and a noteworthy cinematic visual style. ... But ultimately that means nothing until we see the next episode. And the one after that. And the one after that. So take this early praise with that caveat.
  3. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    May 30, 2014
    80
    It all adds up to a promising, surprisingly lively and fast-paced drama that humanizes those early computer geeks.
  4. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    May 30, 2014
    70
    First impression is that Halt is fresh and fraught with calculated promise, but whether that's enough to catch fire remains to be seen.
  5. Reviewed by: Ellen Gray
    May 30, 2014
    70
    You don't need to speak geek to watch Halt and Catch Fire, any more than you need to know corporate law to love "Suits."
  6. Reviewed by: Chris Cabin
    Jun 23, 2014
    63
    With little exception, MacMillan is the sole character given scenes that seek to bring out his antic inner life, the most memorable of which being his meltdown in an electronics store, where he tries to find a hold of his ambition in a torrent of comingled rhythms emanating from various speakers.
  7. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    May 28, 2014
    50
    At least in the one episode sent to critics--Halt doesn't offer up complicated, three-dimensional characters. Instead, we get versions of familiar types pulled from the character storage room by the writers.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 25
  2. Negative: 3 out of 25
  1. Jun 1, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. While the comparisons to Mad Men aren't exactly there, this show seems determined to make it's own path by exploring the early days of the personal computer boom in 1980's texas and by showing these three desperate characters making it much more personal.
    Joe Macmillan seems to be the lead star with the almost Patrick Bateman-esque bad boy charisma.

    The only real fault of the show so far is rushing through some of the technical details like in the montage in Gordon Clark's house when they are taking apart an IMB computer.
    Expand
  2. Jul 22, 2014
    10
    I wanted to wait until I have seen a few show to write a review on this series. I have seen 7 episodes. Going into the series not sure howI wanted to wait until I have seen a few show to write a review on this series. I have seen 7 episodes. Going into the series not sure how they were going to approach the topic. I thought this is an interesting time for PCs and the market.

    I will say that this show is wonderful. The acting is great and the story is intriguing and engaging. I did not watch Mad Men, but did watch Breaking Bad. Breaking bad is on a level all it's own and a handful of shows are on that level. I would say that this show is on the level right below that.

    The writing is great and the attention to detail to the technical side is spot on. They nailed the font style for the PCs for that era. I would recommend this to anyone who deals with computers and for anyone who is not tech savvy.
    Expand
  3. Dec 17, 2014
    10
    The performance of Lee Pace as Joe is magnificent, you can understand the character even if sometimes the you are loving or hating him! A veryThe performance of Lee Pace as Joe is magnificent, you can understand the character even if sometimes the you are loving or hating him! A very well written show with great potential ahead! Expand
  4. Jul 11, 2014
    9
    I'm a big fan of this show. It does a great job capturing both the corporate dynamic and the techie frustrations on a large-scale project.I'm a big fan of this show. It does a great job capturing both the corporate dynamic and the techie frustrations on a large-scale project. My only criticism would be the tendency to jump time-frames between episodes with little explanation. Probably my favorite new show for 2014. Expand
  5. Jul 25, 2014
    9
    Show is really enjoyable. I think it just needed a few episodes to get the characters lined out Now that that's done, the show should takeShow is really enjoyable. I think it just needed a few episodes to get the characters lined out Now that that's done, the show should take right off. Better get a renewal! Expand
  6. Feb 18, 2015
    7
    I like the ensemble casts. I love the whole characters in the show. Its more interesting than Fargo because the idea of its computer war era,I like the ensemble casts. I love the whole characters in the show. Its more interesting than Fargo because the idea of its computer war era, its really fresh for me. But, the result of last episode was really hard for me to know what exactly the series wants from Joe to achieve.
    I'm really glad they renew the series because it will be so a big loss to let down this great character of Joe MacMillan, because we thought we knew what Joe wants from the beginning, but in the ending, I was amazed how it turns out. Like, "Not even close?" I wish I knew what this PC revolution was really about.
    I mean, the problem of this series for me is too many depressions. Which is kind of attractive, but to build a teamwork and great company with it? I was worried they will go to no where. I was worried if they put the same plot with the first series.
    I like Donna Clark's character, she's smart and her husband was so weird. I want to know her more. She needs to lead several episodes in the future.
    And, I want to know much more about computer on this series. Computer is not just about laptop.
    Expand
  7. Jul 8, 2014
    1
    Show was hanging by a thread in the first three episodes. The baffling events of episode 3 made me literally turn it off 3/4 of the way intoShow was hanging by a thread in the first three episodes. The baffling events of episode 3 made me literally turn it off 3/4 of the way into it. Boring, uninteresting characters with almost no resemblance to reality. A shame considering how much I really wanted to like this show. Expand

See all 25 User Reviews

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