Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Reviewed by: Matthew Gilbert
    Aug 17, 2011
    80
    It offers amusement and a tad of suspense, but little to ponder over the long run.
  2. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Aug 17, 2011
    83
    For those impatient for the return of "Mad Men," The Hour fills that void and then some.
  3. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Aug 16, 2011
    83
    A winning new drama set only a few years before Don Draper would get a new secretary named Peggy Olsen.
  4. Reviewed by: Robert Lloyd
    Aug 17, 2011
    80
    What makes it so engaging is not that the series finds anything new to twist, but that it works so well with and within the strictures of the well-thumbed genres it combines in equal parts: spy thriller, murder mystery, backstage drama, triangular romance.
  5. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Aug 17, 2011
    80
    No, The Hour is unlikely to remind anyone of "Mad Men." Except that it's superior period drama with a deliberate pace.
  6. Reviewed by: Rob Owen
    Aug 16, 2011
    70
    The Hour looks fantastic but it moves at a snail's pace that's sure to irk impatient viewers.
  7. Reviewed by: Renee Scolaro Mora
    Aug 17, 2011
    50
    Freddie's stereotypically hard-hitting reporter's persona is soon tiring and irksome. Still, Freddie isn't so tedious as the show's "villains."
  8. Reviewed by: Curt Wagner
    Aug 17, 2011
    88
    The smartly written series throws a lot of information, historical context, beautiful sets and costumes at viewers early on to create what eventually becomes a first-rate thriller.
  9. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Aug 17, 2011
    100
    The Hour stands perfectly well on its own merits. It's so good that other shows should start looking to it as something to emulate.
  10. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Aug 16, 2011
    70
    Perhaps it's best to consider The Hour as a kind of retro Broadcast News that is most alive when Freddie and Bel banter like Beatrice and Benedick and especially when getting inside of Hector's talking head.
  11. Reviewed by: Maureen Ryan
    Aug 17, 2011
    80
    Sure, it's not particularly deep and has some pacing issues, but it's a generally watchable, well-acted effort.
  12. Reviewed by: Alessandra Stanley
    Aug 16, 2011
    80
    The plot twists of The Hour can at times be puzzling, but the series is never dull.
  13. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Aug 17, 2011
    90
    The BBC's The Hour, the best new show this summer.
  14. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Aug 17, 2011
    90
    This is sleek, sexy, smart, densely written and deliberately paced adult entertainment.
  15. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Aug 15, 2011
    100
    Viewers craving a satisfying gourmet meal rather than another summertime "reality" Moon Pie are urged to make The Hour a Wednesday night ritual for the next six weeks.
  16. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Aug 15, 2011
    80
    This is the kind of meticulously handsome period piece one would expect to find via the BBC--mostly because it would surely struggle Stateside. Judged by the most bottom-line measurement of all, The Hour is an hour well spent.
  17. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Aug 16, 2011
    70
    An engaging yet taciturn new miniseries.
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 52 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 11
  2. Negative: 1 out of 11
  1. Aug 18, 2011
    9
    I've only seen the first episode, but I'm absolutely going to keep watching. The cast is excellent (Ben Winshaw & Dominic West in particular),I've only seen the first episode, but I'm absolutely going to keep watching. The cast is excellent (Ben Winshaw & Dominic West in particular), but it's the sense of impending danger that keeps thing especially intriguing. I'm fired up to see the rest. It's a perfect stopgap before the fall season begins. Full Review »
  2. Aug 29, 2011
    10
    Just watched the final episode of the first series and understand it has been commissioned for a second. Excellent work BBC. This isJust watched the final episode of the first series and understand it has been commissioned for a second. Excellent work BBC. This is storytelling at it's best; thoughtful, considered and well paced. People have compared it with the excellent Mad Men but the only comparison is the time frame - this is very different in geography, context and concept. Compare the two and you're missing the point. I can't comment directly on the feel of the BBC at the time (although I understand the BBC was trying to overthrow government control at the time) however overall if definitely captures the era with rising issues such as racism, nationalism and equality at the forefront. An intriguing, if slightly obvious plot towards the end, delivered through superb acting and excellent direction. Can't wait for series 2. Full Review »
  3. Aug 24, 2011
    10
    Is it like madmen, yes. Is it as good, probably not as erudite but certainly far and away more gripping. A brilliantly paced wondrouslyIs it like madmen, yes. Is it as good, probably not as erudite but certainly far and away more gripping. A brilliantly paced wondrously executed show that I would recommend to anyone interested in period dramas, or thrillers. Circling around the events of a nascent BBC program, the titular hour, the show quickly becomes embroiled in a wondrously written spy novel that will have you on the edge of your seat from end to end. Full Review »