• Network: NBC
  • Series Premiere Date: Mar 15, 2009
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 27
  2. Negative: 4 out of 27

Where To Watch

Stream On

Critic Reviews

  1. The language on Kings is similarly stilted but lacks "Deadwood" writer/producer David Milch's passionate and intellectual punch. King Silas may not be as deliciously Machiavellian as Al Swearingen, but McShane does deliver--and he cleans up well.
  2. It's visually engrossing. Then it goes oddly flat in parts, only to kick-start itself with another clash of tones.
  3. Some scenes are brilliantly and subtly turned, some make you roll your eyes. Some are straight from the Soap Opera 101 playbook.
  4. 40
    NBC deserves points for trying something different, but the results are often pretentious and silly. The best moments belong to Egan, who handles his chores simply and directly.
  5. It's corny, ponderous, literary, ambitious, obvious and, at the beginning at least, as slow as molasses, but continually re-energized by Ian McShane as King Saul, or, as he's known here, King Silas Benjamin
  6. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    60
    Viewers will have to survive a rocky, at-times jarring first hour before the series begins coalescing into something interesting--flawed but unpredictable, with a characteristically intense Ian McShane at its core.
  7. The acting at times is overdone, and some of the pivotal plot moments come across as downright hokey.
  8. Despite a wonderful cast put to good use, a very well-designed parallel world and some marvelous turns of phrase, I can't help admiring Kings more than I actually liked it.
  9. The series itself seems divided: at times a supersize fable told with portentous, and even turgid, simplicity, while at others, a sophisticated spoof that uses ancient legend to send up modern politics. And when a series cannot be both, it ends up being neither.
  10. Sadly, as so often happens, the grandeur and surprise settle toward soapiness when the show moves into future episodes, as various high-level evildoers battle each other for power, money, and hot sex partners, while the good-hearted folk fret and risk their lives for more noble causes.
  11. Kings, which also serves up melodrama and mystical happenings, is far more ambitious [than Aaron Spellings' shows]. Yet it can have the effect of a real sleep potion.
  12. Sadly, the show is carved out of pure phony gravitas--like "The West Wing," only more sanctimonious.
User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 165 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 165
  1. H.Cole
    Jan 3, 2010
    10
    The reason for failure is because it is on NBC which is in severe decline. If NBC sold the rights to the FOX network (like '24') it The reason for failure is because it is on NBC which is in severe decline. If NBC sold the rights to the FOX network (like '24') it would go to the sky in ratings. 'Kings' is the only program we have viewed on NBC in years. I happened on it in the iTunes lineup and downloaded the season. Even our 15yr. old son and 13 yr. old daughter were locked in on the show. We are all hoping to see it again...soon! Full Review »
  2. Apr 17, 2018
    3
    Really, really, really bad. The pilot episode was still mediocre, but by the next episode, I felt like the show was written by a 4 year old,Really, really, really bad. The pilot episode was still mediocre, but by the next episode, I felt like the show was written by a 4 year old, who was trying his hand at writing a political drama. Don't let your toddlers write politics, people. Tell them to wait until they're in their 30s. In the meanwhile, I'm going to go have my memory erased. Full Review »
  3. Dec 21, 2013
    10
    I especially love when source material is so creatively re-imagined. Smart, sophisticated storytelling in a very believable alternate 21stI especially love when source material is so creatively re-imagined. Smart, sophisticated storytelling in a very believable alternate 21st century world. Full Review »