• Network: FOX
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 20, 2010
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    90
    This fall's best and most original drama taps a gusher of intrigue and twisty romance, with star-is-born James Wolk the most irresistible con man since Lost's Sawyer.
  2. 88
    It firmly establishes its intriguing main character's brains, skills, and skewed-but-real moral code.
  3. 80
    As it poses existential questions, the show benefits from the casting choice of newcomer Wolk and a supple, low-key naturalism in both performances and direction.
  4. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    80
    Lone Star works as well as it does in large part by keeping an audience on edge regarding these questions [Could he possibly go legit, actually running the company, becoming a tycoon and settling down? And how long can he maintain the charade?]--and because Wolk manages to make Bob so appealing. As distasteful as his game is, you're half rooting for him to get away with it.
  5. 80
    What I like about Lone Star, what could make it the strongest TV newcomer of the season, is the ways in which it differs from classic nighttime melodramas. The show is as much a bittersweet character study of con man Bob Allen as it is a new spin on the Ewings.
  6. Less cheesy than "Dallas" or "Dynasty," Lone Star is a prime-time soap for a post-Madoff, post-Enron era and an audience that might root for a charming liar who'd like nothing more than to make everyone happy.
  7. Reviewed by: Andrew Wallenstein
    80
    Wolk pulls off a tricky role with the help of some strong writing, providing some emotional grounding for this enigmatic character.
  8. Lone Star offers an amusing and novel television conceit, but in an age of Enron and Bernard Madoff, it takes a very persuasive actor to keep viewers rooting for a swindler. Mr. Wolk is well cast.
  9. 80
    There's exactly one hour left for a fall TV show that tells its tale in a deliberate, well-written and subtly acted way. That one hour belongs to Fox's Lone Star.
  10. Both our and their [James Wolk's character's women's] affection is bound to star James Wolk, who takes what would be a relatively engaging series and turns it into something much more exciting with the charm he injects into every scene--regardless of which persona he's playing.
  11. Lone Star has enormous potential to be a complicated, tightrope-walking tale of two lives. Or it could just implode. Like "The Event," it's worth your investment, but you'll have to record one or the other.
  12. 75
    This is Dallas with out all the barbecue sauce, a soap about dynastic Texans that feels closer to Friday Night Lights in its understated leanness. [27 Sep 2010, p.54]
  13. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    70
    There are so many lies in so many places, so many people on the verge of finding out and/or being hurt, that it feels like Lone Star might become very frustrating and repetitive by episode 3 or 4. I would watch a movie version of Lone Star, and I will stick with the series hoping it proves me wrong, but it doesn't feel like this premise has legs.
  14. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    70
    Rather than titillate you with how dangerous Bob's life and position are, the show focuses on how sad, and oddly romantic, his torn-between-two-lovers situation is. And in the pilot, at least, it doers a very good job.
  15. Lone Star doesn't have quite the same sense of place as 'FNL,' and it's far more of a traditional soap than the NBC/DirecTV drama. Still, Voight and especially Keith, who projects palpable charisma, give terrific performances as the strong, stubborn men trying to bend Bob to their wills. This is no 'Dallas' but a sincere look at one man's attempt to go straight without alienating everyone he loves.
  16. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    67
    Let's say Lone Star has its work cut out for it, and so does Wolk. His portrayal is too nice--too romantic, too good-hearted, too bland--to make Allen interesting, or at least convincing.
  17. 60
    Despite the disappearance of his top lip when smiling, newcomer Wolk employs the same conman charm on the viewer. Rooting for both the wife and the girlfriend--maybe a little bit more for the latter, Lone Star has the makings for a sudsy tune-in.
  18. Creator Kyle Killen and executive producers Amy Lippman and Christopher Keyser (the latter two best known for "Party of Five") are betting that the callow charm of their leading man, shored up by tailor-made roles for Keith and Jon Voight, who plays gimlet-eyed oil tycoon Clint Thatcher, will overcome the ridiculousness of the setup.
  19. 60
    Fox's beguiling but unconventional drama Lone Star will have a similar problem [programmers with quick trigger fingers] if viewers demand a quick payoff.
  20. Lone Star, created and written by Kyle Killen, centers on a con man who lives a double life--with two beautiful women--and is so full of plot holes you could drive a motorcade through it with a parade of elephants behind.
  21. So where "Dallas" was happy if we were appalled at almost every character, Lone Star depends on us coming to like most of them, including Bob. The problem is that he's not a guy who got drunk one night and wrecked someone's car on a joyride. He has spent his life stealing from people who thought he was their friend.
User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 34 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Sep 30, 2010
    2
    Boring. I watch the pilot because I thought it was an interesting premise based on the promos, but I was bored. There's just not enough toBoring. I watch the pilot because I thought it was an interesting premise based on the promos, but I was bored. There's just not enough to is. It's like they thought of the premise and then has no idea where to go from there. Thanks for cancelling it! Full Review »
  2. Sep 26, 2010
    10
    I wanted to watch the pilot, but missed it on Monday, caught it when it played again on Saturday. I think that it could be a really goodI wanted to watch the pilot, but missed it on Monday, caught it when it played again on Saturday. I think that it could be a really good show. I think that many people are put off by the con man angle, and it troubles me a lot as well, but I still found the premise to be a bit fascinating. Definitely a lot better than other junk shows that make it for years. Maybe Fox doesn't have it in the right time slot. I hope that it makes it, I'll watch the second episode. Full Review »
  3. Sep 23, 2010
    5
    This is a very brave show to make on network TV. But how do you get us to relate to a character who is so morally ambiguous and difficult toThis is a very brave show to make on network TV. But how do you get us to relate to a character who is so morally ambiguous and difficult to relate to? Yes - the drama here should be compelling, but somehow it falls flat for me. I just don't particularly "like" any of the characters, and the ones that I do like - I pity. Perhaps this would have been better suited for cable, and been a little edgier. Full Review »