• Network: HBO
  • Series Premiere Date: Jan 19, 2020
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 28
  2. Negative: 2 out of 28

Where To Watch

Buy On

Critic Reviews

  1. Reviewed by: Sean O'Grady
    Jan 23, 2020
    100
    Avenue 5 is not just good – it’s galactically good.
  2. Reviewed by: Joel Keller
    Jan 22, 2020
    90
    The satire of Avenue 5 isn’t quite as sharp as some of Iannucci's other shows were right out of the gate, but there’s more than enough good stuff there to keep us curious as to where he’s going to take this story.
  3. Reviewed by: Bruce Miller
    Jan 21, 2020
    80
    The laughs aren’t as rapid-fire as they were in “Veep,” but they are plentiful. Gad perfects that smarmy billionaire; Suzy Nakamura is ideal as his common law assistant. ... Laurie is ideal at the helm – even when the story seems like it’s rudderless. He plays captain in a way you wouldn’t think and handles disaster like Jean-Luc Picard never would. Make it so? “Avenue 5” does.
  4. Reviewed by: Judy Berman
    Jan 16, 2020
    80
    Avenue 5 gets sharper with each of the four episodes sent to critics, which bodes well for what lies ahead, when the bulk of the world-building is done. It isn’t Veep, sure, but there are traces of Selina Meyer in Ryan; both are smug, two-faced charlatans entrusted with far more power than they deserve. The show also benefits from Iannucci’s dark, profane, literary sensibility.
  5. Reviewed by: Terry Terrones
    Jan 17, 2020
    75
    “Avenue 5” is a surefire hit and will bolster HBO’s reputation as the best place to go to view unique, well-thought-out comedies. Although there were some comedic inconsistencies in the first four episodes I watched, when the humor hits the mark, and it does quite frequently, “Avenue 5” is laugh out loud funny.
  6. Reviewed by: Kristen Baldwin
    Jan 9, 2020
    75
    Putting aside any expectations for another serving of Iannucci’s savage satire, Avenue 5 is still a sharply-written comedy with a strong cast and an enjoyable mix of highbrow punchlines, broad physical comedy, and silly sight gags, one involving a radiation shield of human excrement.
  7. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Jan 21, 2020
    70
    If the fact that this character literally is named Karen strikes you as either too clever or else somewhat dumb, then this is not the show for you. “Avenue 5” is distinguished by a high-low sensibility in which poop jokes are about waste and entropy and fatal pollution but also, foremost, about tons of poop, the sight of which lightens the mood.
  8. TV Guide Magazine
    Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Jan 21, 2020
    70
    A splendidly silly vehicle of knockabout farce among the stars. [20 Jan - 2 Feb 2020, p.9]
  9. Reviewed by: Robert Lloyd
    Jan 17, 2020
    70
    Their ambitions are relatively modest in a day when Greatness Is All. But greatness can be overrated, and both series [Avenue 5 and Medical Police] are expertly played, with more than a modicum of good jokes and enough plot to keep you going, made by intelligent people unafraid to look dumb.
  10. Reviewed by: Brian Tallerico
    Jan 14, 2020
    70
    Fans of Iannucci’s razor sharp wit may be let down by a show that doesn’t have the laughs per minute of his last HBO Emmy juggernaut, but be patient and you’ll find that “Avenue 5” develops into its own bizarre creation, a commentary with memorable characters on how disaster makes actors of us all. I’m not sure how this plays out over the run of a series, but it will certainly be entertaining to watch it unfold.
  11. Reviewed by: Tim Surette
    Jan 13, 2020
    70
    It wouldn't be wrong to say Iannucci is slightly better with what worked on Veep, but Avenue 5 is plenty funny if you can launch the Veep comparisons out of the airlock. (Besides, let's be fair here, can anything be as good as Veep?) With a strong cast and Iannucci's unpredictable sense of humor, there's real potential that Avenue 5 can go a long way.
  12. Reviewed by: Dan Fienberg
    Jan 3, 2020
    70
    Avenue 5, is perhaps best approached — as a comic Poseidon Adventure in space. Such a perspective might benefit the first couple episodes, which don't stumble so much as they unfold and reveal themselves in ways that aren't always quite as funny as they should be, though things become more amusing after chaos starts ensuing.
  13. Reviewed by: LaToya Ferguson
    Jan 16, 2020
    68
    A lot of Avenue 5’s issues do boil down to the growing pains of a high-concept comedy and how that hinders the rapid-fire joke machine one would expect from Iannucci. Even if you’re not familiar with his past work, this is still the case: The jokes aren’t king, the setup and the full story itself is.
  14. Reviewed by: Ben Travers
    Jan 16, 2020
    67
    The more the series embraces its own twisted instincts, the better it gets — scenes in the third and fourth episodes are more surprising, more engaging, and even smooth themselves out while Iannucci ratchets up the madness.
User Score
4.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 44
  2. Negative: 15 out of 44
  1. Feb 8, 2020
    9
    Took a while (the first two episodes) to get into it. While the first two were not much funny, the third one got me. Excellent cast, fantasticTook a while (the first two episodes) to get into it. While the first two were not much funny, the third one got me. Excellent cast, fantastic set. Don't give up too early and also do not expect to get a Veep II or copy of any previous show by Armando Iannucci.

    This is not Orville and does not want to be like it. The whole show is more like watching a social experiment or an ant farm going crazy. It is set in space but could be placed everywhere else with a bunch of wanna-bes and impostors on a collision course. Hilarious!
    Full Review »
  2. Jan 22, 2020
    3
    I gave it a shot solely because of Hugh Laurie, he didn’t carry me to the end, i just don’t get what the creators are trying here, its gotI gave it a shot solely because of Hugh Laurie, he didn’t carry me to the end, i just don’t get what the creators are trying here, its got some of the hallmarks of great British comedies but they have been bastardised as if they are aiming for an American audience, there is a Douglas Adams vibe in the setting, a big fake cruise so confident in its automation that all the crew are essentially just actors incapable of facing catastrophe, but the scope is too big, British comedy doesn't work with large ensembles, there is no identifiable straight man to tether the crazy too and the characters are too pigeon holed into roles, someone desperately needed to be on set to tell all the actors “never go full retard”

    Compare these characters to say Dave Lister, yes he is a slob and yes he is stupid and yes he’s thrown into wacky catastrophe in episode 1 but his reactions to this are believable and relatable and thats where the humour came from, Dave was never full retard slob, he was that roommate you had at Uni slob.

    Or to Hugh’s own prince/lieutenant George the mans a caricature of British upper class which made his isolated madness and general ignorance of reality a cross that the normal man personified as blackadder must bear. Even george wasn't full retard ignorant snob

    The engineer seems like shes set up to be the straight man, but making her responsible for a death in the first half robs her of that and she cant be everywhere at once to balance out the infuriating interactions between stock unfaithful couple with stock nihilist PR guy or stock busybody with stock rich moron.
    Full Review »
  3. Jan 21, 2020
    4
    Good production values & reasonable performances in service of dumb jokes and cruel snark passing for wit. Just not my taste.