For 103 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 45% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 50% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Ed Cumming's Scores

Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 His Dark Materials: Season 1
Lowest review score: 20 Emily in Paris: Season 1
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 43 out of 103
  2. Negative: 3 out of 103
103 tv reviews
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The premise is promising, and the cast – Miller, Naomi and de La Tour especially – give it a good shot. But there’s something disjointed about the way it all hangs together. To emphasise the sense of loneliness, the direction often frames speakers in conversation one at a time. It comes at the expense of camaraderie.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    Netflix has assembled a compelling film, but they have no excuse not to. ... The interviewees offer little in the way of clipped stoicism, and lot of Gothic lyricism. Sophie had a macabre streak, we learn, and was visited by premonitions of her death.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    There is a more interesting, angrier, sadder programme half-visible beneath the surface of Motherland, about the sacrifices women are forced to make, hour by hour, in a world where they might not be able to have it all but are expected to anyway.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The Beast Must Die is tightly written, with a measured pace and that Nordic-noir style of direction that makes every long shot look like an advert for an expensive car. ... We’ve seen it all so many times. This is a perfectly polished start, but Britbox will have to take more risks if it wants to show us something new.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 40 Ed Cumming
    Often, half an hour’s not long enough, but sometimes it’s too much.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The enthusiasm comes at the expense of developing any of the characters beyond their immediate impact. The dynamic between the two leads is promising. Despite their advantages, they must still put up with being young women in a male-dominated world. But the relationship is hardly given space to breathe amid all the plotting and exposition.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    James relaxes more into her role than she did on her last outing, as a lovestruck archaeologist in The Dig. Fox has a ball in a part he was born to play. ... This adaptation, for all its technical proficiency, crisp one-liners and confident performances, sometimes feels a little chilly.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    In Gough and Watson, it unites two intelligent and feeling actors over a twisting script that rakes over a full suite of middle-class anxieties: sex, class, parenting, race, fashion, even interior design gets it in the neck. At times, it’s more like a play than a TV series: sharp and involving, but occasionally somewhat static.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The tension of the “is he/isn’t he” question rests on the coherence of the universe. Whether Jodie is right or not, it’s more effective if she is living on our planet. This feels too much like TV land.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The desired tone, I think, is a kind of Ulster version of Deadwood, a creation parable for the problems of the 20th century, but there is a fine line between powerful and self-parodic. Without a novel’s finesse and complex sense of interiority, the characters fail to make us care.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    Overall, Shadow and Bone leaves you with the unusual impression that the weaknesses in the TV version might be more to do with the source material than the treatment. Between the silly names and mythology, this is a thorough, detailed production, with crisp special effects and likeable lead performances from a diverse bunch. We get glimpses of several interesting characters, but on the whole, they are relegated in favour of the main tale.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    Mare of Easttown is much easier to watch than I Know This Much Is True, Mark Ruffalo’s joyless HBO miniseries from last year, and much of that is down to its star. Mare’s undimmable despite the encompassing gloom. Thanks to her, Easttown feels surprisingly warm for a town full of dead teenagers.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Ed Cumming
    The question is whether the show’s any good. On the evidence of this frenetic, nerve-jangling opener: yes. After the more outlandish conspiratorial shenanigans of series five, the first episode of series six returns to what Line of Duty does best: dodgy coppers, tense action and characters who communicate almost exclusively in acronyms.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    It’s not quick. Even allowing for the need to introduce the characters and the timeframes, the pace is glacial, at odds with the rapid changes of time and location. ... It’s Herman’s storyline that’s the more interesting of the two. We know what the snake is going to do. The challenge is catching it.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    It’s a promising dynamic, but it’s not helped by the glacial pacing. When the BBC rattled through War & Peace in six hours, a single-narrative series has a lot to do to earn 10. Your Honor never spends a minute when it can spend two.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    The chemistry between Bhaskar and Walker is vital. He’s a deadpan humourist, trying to keep spirits up in the face of violent crime. She is a schoolmarmish professional, keeping it together under tremendous stress. Both actors are terrific. ... While it hangs on the leads, the supporting cast have grown into their roles, too, especially Jordan Long as Murray Boulting and Carolina Main as Fran Lingley.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    [Nesbitt] gives Brannick an anguished, unforced humanity, a decent man driven to distraction. ... After a slightly sluggish opening in which we meet Brannick’s daughter Izzy (Lola Petticrew), a medical student at Queen’s in Belfast, and her teacher Tori (Lisa Dwan), Bloodlands soon hits its stride.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Ed Cumming
    Despite its frantic pace and shiny surfaces, Devils lapses into dullness more often than it ought to.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    It’s a credit to the writing and performances that ZeroZeroZero doesn't collapse under its zeal for bombast. Instead, this is a dark, exuberant cocaine opera, bleak escapism for long February nights.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    As pure drama, it leans too heavily on its recreation of the period. We wait to discover if any of the characters, who err towards archetypes, will be capable of surprises. In the meantime, it’s enough to be reminded that a terrifying disease is all the more reason to find joy where you can.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    Despite this competent ensemble, the opening episode rests heavily on Bean’s arrival, and – quite aside from the typically fraught issue of whether his character will survive – it’s not entirely clear how Snowpiercer will maintain our interest without a descent into family soap.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    Superficially, The Investigation has all the usual ingredients of a true-crime drama. Grizzled male public servants, plucky sidekicks, angry parents. Yet between the cinematography, which makes even the winching of a submarine out of the water an artistic event, the excellent lead performances, and a script that works on the accumulation of small details rather than fireworks, it is elevated into something far more engaging.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    The Luminaries is luminous, at least when it’s visible. Not since Peter Jackson’s last elven ad campaign has there been so bewitching a screen vision of New Zealand.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 40 Ed Cumming
    It ought to be a slow burn, but instead it just feels slow. Dame Diana deserved a finer farewell. She’ll be missed.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 20 Ed Cumming
    Death to 2020 is a mess and you’ll be glad when it’s over. In that sense, at least, it’s appropriate to its subject.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    The problem is the dominance of the leads, who are so much more developed and interesting than the other characters that they warp everything around them, two stars surrounded by little planets. Grainger and Burke have grown elegantly into the roles.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    Nobody’s going to mistake Bridgerton for Austen, but it hardly matters. It looks great, rattles along, and doesn’t ask too much of the exhausted, depressed, locked-down Christmas viewer. A shiny little stocking filler.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Ed Cumming
    With six hour-long episodes to play with, The Trial of Christine Keeler has space to develop its characters beyond the headlines, and for Coe to tease out subtexts about racism, sexism, and nuclear anxiety alongside the central theme of powerful men abusing their positions.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Ed Cumming
    While it starts in a loosely comic tone, Adult Material never lapses into prurience, and over four episodes grows into something sinister, complex and sometimes hard to watch, as Jolene and Amy slide into crisis.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Ed Cumming
    The Good Lord Bird is an unusual thing: a smart, starry treatment of serious historical events that manages to retain a sense of humour without losing heart or gravitas.

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