• Network: ABC
  • Series Premiere Date: Feb 14, 2013
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
38

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 30
  2. Negative: 13 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Matthew Gilbert
    Feb 13, 2013
    10
    The acting is half-hearted, the characters are paper thin, and the dialogue and plot development are embarrassing. It’s as sophisticated as “Jonny Quest.”
  2. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Feb 14, 2013
    50
    This is “The Da Vinci Code” crossed with “Indiana Jones” with dialogue courtesy of a Magic 8 Ball.
  3. Reviewed by: Lori Rackl
    Feb 14, 2013
    38
    This overly ambitious series tries to do way too much and ends up doing nothing particularly well.
  4. Reviewed by: Joanne Ostrow
    Feb 8, 2013
    40
    Zero Hour wants to be as brilliant as "Lost" but, sorry to say, feels more akin to the misfire "FlashForward."
  5. Reviewed by: Jeff Jensen
    Feb 8, 2013
    67
    A serial that's unpretentious, geeky fun but actually needs much more if it wants to be a never-ending Da Vinci Code. [15 Feb 2013, p.61]
  6. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Feb 13, 2013
    50
    The problem is that Zero Hour is either unwilling or unable to be that crazy all the time.
  7. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Feb 13, 2013
    30
    Zero Hour, while initially tantalizing (priests, Nazis, Anthony Edwards, an unholy birth, a secret map--I'm in! I'm in!), is more than a little disappointing (flat-footed dialogue, absurd plot machinations, cardboard main characters, ludicrous historical leaps--I'm out! I'm out!).
  8. Reviewed by: Glenn Garvin
    Feb 14, 2013
    40
    It does have a lot of characters and a hopelessly confusing plot.... But the show is not without its strengths, particularly the scenes in which the magazine editor (Anthony Edwards, ER) argues with young staffers disappointed by his refusal to run a story about werewolves running amok in Romania.
  9. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Feb 13, 2013
    60
    It takes a while for Hank and his assistants Rachel (Addison Timlin) and Arron (Scott Michael Foster) to grasp all this, even with the unwanted help of FBI agent Beck Riley (Carmen Ejogo). Once they have, and we have, the setup is solid.
  10. 20
    Without Anthony Edwards's unpretentious intelligence anchoring Zero Hour, I doubt I could have gotten through ten minutes of the pilot without gnashing my teeth in annoyance.
  11. Reviewed by: Linda Stasi
    Feb 14, 2013
    75
    Think the (hint! hint!) demon love child of “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” and “Rosemary’s Baby,” meets “National Treasure.” The series seems inspired by all of them, mostly successfully.
  12. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Feb 13, 2013
    67
    Ambitious and intermittently entertaining, Zero Hour--and its celebrated lead--don't quite hit all their marks. But at least the mystery's a hoot.
  13. Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Feb 8, 2013
    25
    It hyperventilates when it means to be breathless. [18 Feb 2013, p.44]
  14. 30
    Zero Hour is a terrible show. But for viewers who long to mock or hate-watch and for "Da Vinci Code" fans who like to be dragged along on a crazy ride to Crazytown, Zero Hour is a hoot.
  15. Reviewed by: J.C. Macek III
    Feb 14, 2013
    60
    Zero Hour‘s first episode ends on one hell of a promising cliffhanger, including a shock that comes out of nowhere but still makes sense. If director Pierre Morel can ask for a few more takes (occasional scenes feel like actors are still rehearsing) and if the script turns as strange as that episode-ending shock suggests it might, Zero Hour may actually be more new than recycled.
  16. Reviewed by: Willa Paskin
    Feb 14, 2013
    0
    Hapless, feckless, goofy, dumb: take your pick of adjectives, that is Zero Hour.
  17. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Feb 12, 2013
    50
    Even within the fantasy context of the show, there are a few elements that don't ring completely true, but it's easy to overlook them, if only because you're not given much time to think about things before Scheuring hurls another engaging plot twist in your direction.
  18. Reviewed by: Aaron Riccio
    Feb 4, 2013
    0
    The first 12 minutes are enough to bury it, though given the shoddy acting, overwrought dialogue, and poor production values, it's easy to imagine that 12 full episodes would in fact bring about the end of time itself.
  19. Reviewed by: Gail Pennington
    Feb 14, 2013
    50
    The first episode does explain the premise pretty clearly--if you pay close enough attention and aren't laughing too hard.
  20. Reviewed by: Jace Lacob
    May 30, 2013
    10
    Zero Hour, like many of its fallen drama brethren, does the opposite, building layer after layer of false mystery around cardboard characters.
  21. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Feb 13, 2013
    70
    Zero Hour has lots of twists and turns that could be worth following. It also has the DNA to be laughably bad.
  22. Reviewed by: Mike Hale
    Feb 13, 2013
    40
    Zero Hour is entirely dispensable, its silliness matched by its comic-book solemnity.
  23. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Feb 14, 2013
    10
    We’ve seen this over and over again: a series built around an elaborate concept, dressed up with a spooky mythology, then filled in with characters so poorly conceived, they may as well be called Kidnapped Wife Lady.
  24. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Feb 14, 2013
    0
    Even in a year that has given us clunkers like The Mob Doctor, Emily Owens, M.D. and Animal Practice, it's tempting to declare Zero Hour the worst or at least silliest show of this or any other recent season.
  25. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Feb 12, 2013
    16
    Preposterous, ridiculously earnest, poorly scripted and laughably acted, this is the series that Anthony Edwards chose to re-enter prime-time after a long tenure as one of ER's main men. He should've stayed in bed.
  26. Reviewed by: Robert Bianco
    Feb 14, 2013
    50
    For these stories to work, we have to invest in the everyman hero caught in the center, and while Edwards may be convincing as the "everyman" part of the equation, the "hero" eludes him.
  27. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Feb 12, 2013
    60
    Some viewers will no doubt find this intriguing, while others will be quick to dismiss it as overwrought poppycock. Fortunately, the show has Anthony Edwards at its center, bringing a much-needed Hitchcockian Everyman quality to his role as Hank Galliston.
  28. Reviewed by: Dorothy Rabinowitz
    Feb 8, 2013
    80
    It's a measure of the skill brought to this script by Paul Scheuring that a first episode so awash in multiplying complications manages to maintain its coherence and even a significant measure of suspense.
  29. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Feb 13, 2013
    0
    Zero Hour was rancid when it got here. The dialogue is stilted and almost entirely expository. The plot is like receiving a coloring book that’s already been colored.
  30. Reviewed by: Rick Porter
    Feb 14, 2013
    40
    Just know going in that you'll be far better served by acknowledging the towering silliness of the plot, because it's just about impossible to take it seriously.
User Score
5.8

Mixed or average reviews- based on 58 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 29
  2. Negative: 12 out of 29
  1. Feb 15, 2013
    10
    The Zero Hour is a cerebral thriller which requires background knowledge and an enjoyment of history. If you are under 50 then this will probably not be a story line that you can relate. The premier is a good warm up and I hope like a lot of shows that once the cast works together for awhile and the writers get comfortable with the story line that both will improve. I liked the cliff hanger ending of the first one and hope that each week it leave me wanting more. Full Review »
  2. Feb 14, 2013
    3
    While watching the pilot, I couldn't help but roll my eyes. It's a poor man's "Da Vinci Code" with a completely outlandish premise, cardboard and uninspired acting, and hackneyed writing. The writing of this is eerily reminiscent of the poor writing of the last 5 episodes of Last Resort. This is another in ABC's line of "shows" that would have been better served as a mini-series rather than a serialized drama. Full Review »
  3. Feb 19, 2013
    8
    I feel like this show is a mix between Davinci Code and National Treasure, which as stated below intrigues alot of us with complex minds for mystery and ancient concepts. Overall it seems as though the show will get cancelled since not many are giving it a chance but I think the concept of the show is amazing the casting and publicity may be at flaw but worth giving a few more episodes before negative judgement. Full Review »