• Network: ABC
  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 24, 2013
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
52

Mixed or average reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 26
  2. Negative: 5 out of 26
  1. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Sep 24, 2013
    67
    Garlin and McLendon-­Covey are believable as variations of “That ’70s Show’s” parents, and Gentile’s Jan Brady-style meltdowns are amusing. But Adam’s obsession with female breasts, encouraged by his grandfather “Pops” (George Segal), is creepy, considering the actor looks about 9.
  2. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Sep 24, 2013
    50
    The characters are all broad types, the '80s references (Gobots, Sam Goody, an REO Speedwagon singalong) mostly feel shoehorned in rather than creating the feeling of the era, and the hostility of the family doesn't turn out to be great fodder for humor.
  3. Reviewed by: Brian Tallerico
    Sep 26, 2013
    60
    The comedy on The Goldbergs is loud, aggressive, and somewhat abrasive.
  4. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Sep 24, 2013
    40
    For all that it springs from original material--a coda to the pilot shows some of the actual home movies, which are indeed hilarious--The Goldbergs--is all style and no substance.
  5. Reviewed by: Glenn Garvin
    Sep 23, 2013
    20
    The Goldbergs runs the gamut from stale to sour.
  6. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Sep 24, 2013
    20
    It’s not just that they’re caricatures, or that even the most prominent piece of ’80s music used in the pilot makes you wince. It’s the way every move and sentence feels like the easiest path to predictable gags.
  7. 40
    There are a few lively moments--Barry flipping out when he thinks his mom gave him car keys for his birthday when it's really a locket with her picture in it; a montage that collects dad's malapropisms, the better to teach viewers "How to speak Murray"--but it's all too strained, too obviously written, and too dependent on the sort of easy-laughs memory-lane-tripping that VH1 did to death about fifteen years ago.
  8. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Sep 23, 2013
    75
    Noisy, silly, occasionally obnoxious, sporadically funny and ultimately sweet.
  9. Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Sep 19, 2013
    50
    It is nice but overly familiar in its reliance on pop-culture signposts and snuggly sentimentality. [30 Sep 2013, p.53]
  10. Reviewed by: Ellen Gray
    Sep 24, 2013
    70
    The adult cast is superb... but it feels as if the young actor playing Adam (Sean Giambrone) might have been kidnapped from a more conventional TV family.
  11. Reviewed by: David Hiltbrand
    Sep 24, 2013
    40
    There are some sharp jokes here, but they get lost in the bile. The Goldbergs is like The Wonder Years infected by Married... With Children. It's a half hour of annoying people yelling at one another.
  12. Reviewed by: Rob Owen
    Sep 23, 2013
    70
    The show has its amusing moments, though not from an abundance of 1980s nostalgia clips (“The Karate Kid,” “Knight Rider,” “ALF,” “Different Strokes” and “Back to the Future” all whiz by on screen) and music cues. The humor comes from the characters and their relationships.
  13. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Sep 23, 2013
    75
    The Goldbergs is funnier because the jokes are better but also because it is more credible [than "Mom"].
  14. Reviewed by: Luis Sanchez
    Sep 18, 2013
    50
    The Goldbergs's ostensibly endearing premise is sadly also its biggest flaw. Goldberg's on-screen representation as prepubescent Adam (Sean Giambrone) fails to complement the voiceover narration and meaningful asides of adult Adam (Patton Oswalt) in any substantial way.
  15. Reviewed by: Molly Eichel
    Sep 23, 2013
    67
    The Goldbergs is far from terrible—it just needs to learn how to mix the quirky dysfunction with the heartwarming moments in the style of shows like Malcolm In The Middle or Raising Hope.
  16. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Sep 24, 2013
    80
    One of the new offerings that stands out from the pack is ABC's coming-of-age series, The Goldbergs, which is fueled partly by nostalgia, partly by the great Jeff Garlin's constant yelling and partly out of some outstanding writing. A strong cast doesn't hurt, either.
  17. Reviewed by: Maureen Ryan
    Sep 19, 2013
    30
    The Goldbergs has a solid adult cast, but the whole thing leans heavily on broad humor and cartoonish moments--and did I mention that it's LOUD.
  18. Reviewed by: Alessandra Stanley
    Sep 24, 2013
    30
    The characters and mishaps on The Goldbergs are predicable, and the writing isn’t clever enough to overcome clichés.
  19. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Sep 24, 2013
    50
    What it needs to make it a lasting family comedy and not a VH1 special is heart and a sense of its characters as individuals. It shows signs of the former, but the latter gets lost in the deafeningly loud pilot and the pop-culture-reference humor.
  20. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Sep 24, 2013
    50
    So far so generic, and I'll decide later once my ears stop ringing.
  21. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Sep 20, 2013
    67
    The Goldbergs is amusing in fits and spurts before ending on several sweet notes--including REO Speedwagon’s “Can’t Fight This Feeling.”
  22. Reviewed by: Cody Ray Shafer
    Sep 26, 2013
    50
    The Goldbergs banks on nostalgia for its charm, but needs to build on something more for us to really care about this family.
  23. Reviewed by: Robert Bianco
    Sep 23, 2013
    75
    When The Goldbergs sticks to its loud, abrasive but loving family, it's fine. It's when it switches its focus to the '80s, complete with a voice-over designed to point out every difference between that decade and our own, that it gets into trouble.
  24. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Sep 17, 2013
    40
    As fertile as the mid-1980s are for comedy, however, the pilot is too often grating--with a little of Garlin, in particular, going a long way.
  25. Reviewed by: Dorothy Rabinowitz
    Oct 3, 2013
    50
    It has its strengths--most of them derived from the skilled cast--but none related to any capacity for originality.
  26. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Sep 15, 2013
    33
    It rapidly turns into a prolonged, nearly laughless sketch about domestic life in the Pac-Man era.
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 98 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 37
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 37
  3. Negative: 5 out of 37
  1. Oct 10, 2013
    10
    As a kid of the 80s...was born in 74....I really appreciate this show a great deal and "get it". I love going down memory lane and this show is hysterical and fits the 80s decade to a T. I hope ABC lets it grow and stay on the air and doesn't make the enormous mistake that NBC made with Freaks and Geeks and canceling that show so fast. This has the potential to be a HUGE show. Let it grow. Full Review »
  2. Oct 3, 2013
    10
    The Goldbergs is a very funny show. Most good comedies get me to laugh at least once in a show, but this show had me laughing out loud several times in the first two episodes. The young kid is a real gem and I think he will have a very bright future. Full Review »
  3. Sep 26, 2013
    9
    I really liked this show, in fact it made me laugh out loud several times I don't usually do that. I think once it gets its legs it will be a better show. It is a corny show but in a good way. It is over acted but I love that it is based on the producers real experience. Nice to see an 80s show that did its homework on the era. Full Review »