How Is Fall TV?


Suddenly, my DVR seems very full. That means some decisions need to be made. Now that the new fall shows have had a chance to hit their strides, it’s time to evaluate whether or not they deserve that all-season TiVo pass.

So, what are the season’s biggest winners and losers? I looked to Metacritic, that all-important aggregator of critical opinion, to see what the best and worst reviewed new series of the season are.

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Modern Family
Metascore: 86/100
What It Is: This comedy takes the ever-popular, talk-to-the-camera mockumentary format and looks at different types of families living today.
What They’re Saying: “Like the best sitcoms, Modern Family also varies its comic approach. There are moments of wry observational humor any family will recognize…but there are also outsized moments that are laugh-out-loud funny without violating the laws of possibility.” —Robert Bianco, USA Today

Metascore: 77/100
What It Is: Hearkening back to every high school underdog story ever, the scrappy glee club at a local public school vies to return to its championship form (without being, like, total losers). Musical numbers are featured in every episode.
What They’re Saying: “In a fall lineup heavy on remakes, safe formulas, and well-worn conceits, Glee is a strange mixture of earnest sweetness and slashing irony. And there’s singing too! That combination would be unusual at any time, but it’s an especially welcome confection in an otherwise safe TV season.” —Maureen Ryan, The Chicago Tribune

The Good Wife
Metascore: 76/100
What It Is: This drama focuses on a type of person we’ve seen a lot lately: the wife of a politician involved in a sex scandal. In this case, said wife, played by Julianna Margulies, picks up and tries to get her law career going again.
What They’re Saying: “Even without lesser competition, CBS would have had a real contender in The Good Wife, a smartly conceived and well executed legal drama with a strong star at its core and, even better, a terrifically timely hook.” —Matt Roush, TV Guide


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Metascore: 37/100
What It Is: Kelsey Grammer’s new venture sees him as a businessman who lost his company, forcing him to move his family back to his hometown.
What They’re Saying: “Hank is a multi-camera sitcom shot on a cheap-looking set with a forgettable supporting cast speaking rarely funny dialogue.”—Katherine Stevens, Slant Magazine

Metascore: 41/100
What It Is: What else? A hospital drama—one of the new crop that focuses on nurses.
What They’re Saying: “Ultimately, despite an attempt to raw up the scene with topical war references, Mercy ends up being just another hospital soap opera that audiences have seen, and seen done better.” —Randee Dawn, The Hollywood Reporter

The Forgotten
Metascore: 45/100
What It Is: Christian Slater leads a team of amateur investigators who try and figure out the identities of crime victims after police have given up.
What They’re Saying: “This has to be the silliest show Jerry Bruckheimer has ever put his name on.”—Verne Gay, Newsday

Do you have any favorite new fall shows? Let me know in the comments.

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