Contra Costa Times

Rating Title | Year Quote Author
1 93%

Boardwalk Empire: Season 1 (TV, 2010)

" Considering its wealth of talent in front of and behind the camera -- and America's fascination with organized-crimes sagas -- Boardwalk Empire might have what it takes to be another mob hit. "

Posted Jul 21, 2014

Chuck Barney

2 69%

The Leftovers: Season 1 (TV, 2014)

" What we're left with in The Leftovers is a show that, at least early on, is nothing but chaos and dread and bleakness and chill, as it relentlessly delves into the most troubling aspects of human nature. "

Posted Jun 24, 2014

Chuck Barney

3 84%

24: Live Another Day (TV, 2014)

" It's the middle-to-late hours where 24 so often succumbs to lame twists and wild leaps of implausibility. That's why a 12-episode edition of 24, at this stage, seems enticing. "

Posted May 2, 2014

Chuck Barney

4 25%

Black Box: Season 1 (TV, 2014)

" [Kelly Reilly's] a fiery beauty who can convey empathy and a certain level of vulnerability. But that's not quite enough, and you come away doubting that Reilly has the charismatic firepower, or range, to carry the show. "

Posted Apr 22, 2014

Chuck Barney

5 ——

Devious Maids: Season 2 (TV, 2014)

" Bring on the heavy-duty detergent. There's lots of dirty laundry to deal with as this campy soap returns for a second season that promises even more twists and surprises. "

Posted Apr 18, 2014

Chuck Barney

6 98%

Fargo: Season 1 (TV, 2014)

" Is the series filled with dark humor and surprising twists? Darn tootin' it is! "

Posted Apr 11, 2014

Chuck Barney

7 98%

Game of Thrones: Season 4 (TV, 2014)

" Rejoice! Game of Thrones is back in all its epic, sprawling, bloody glory. And Sunday's briskly paced Season 4 opener, "Two Swords," did not disappoint. "

Posted Apr 7, 2014

Chuck Barney

8 52%

Resurrection: Season 1 (TV, 2014)

" Resurrection immediately sucks you in with the puzzling, suspenseful tale. "

Posted Mar 6, 2014

Chuck Barney

9 97%

Game of Thrones: Season 2 (TV, 2012)

" If you thought the world of Game of Thrones was incredibly vast and complex and festooned with a crazy multitude of characters, brace yourself for Season 2. "

Posted Feb 7, 2014

Chuck Barney

10 92%

Community: Season 5 (TV, 2013-2014)

" The Community opener feels a little flat and disjointed, and you might find yourself asking: Is there really a good reason for us to be following these characters through another year at Greendale Community College? "

Posted Jan 2, 2014

Chuck Barney

11 69%

Downton Abbey: Season 4 (TV, 2013)

" Viewers who look to Downton Abbey for loads of escapist splendor may want to temper their expectations when the wildly popular British drama returns for its fourth season. "

Posted Jan 2, 2014

Chuck Barney

12 65%

Mob City: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" Darabont is clearly a big fan of the genre, and it shows. This is a strikingly handsome production filled with luscious and hypnotic images. "

Posted Nov 27, 2013

Chuck Barney

13 80%

Betas: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" The problem with "Betas" is that it's an uneven endeavor that's just good enough to make you wish it were better. "

Posted Nov 22, 2013

Chuck Barney

14 72%

Alpha House: Season 1

" Judging from three episodes made available for review, the show isn't exactly laugh-out-loud funny, but it's smartly written and the cast jells from the start. "

Posted Nov 13, 2013

Chuck Barney

15 81%

American Horror Story: Coven (TV, 2013-2014)

" By now, fans of the American Horror Story franchise know to brace themselves for something weird and outrageous right out the gate. And the latest incarnation of the crazed scarefest doesn't disappoint. "

Posted Oct 9, 2013

Chuck Barney

16 88%

The Walking Dead: Season 4 (TV, 2013-2014)

" It's about the shivery thrills. "

Posted Oct 8, 2013

Chuck Barney

17 56%

The Originals: Season 1 (TV, 2013-2014)

" Yes, the pilot episode is somewhat bogged down by exposition as it gets everyone up to speed, but it's adequately mysterious and atmospheric and does a good job of sucking you in. "

Posted Oct 1, 2013

Chuck Barney

18 55%

The Crazy Ones: Season 1 (TV, 2013-2014)

" Williams remains a charismatic force who knows how to temper the hilarity with humanity, and you can see the makings of a warm, father-daughter chemistry with Gellar. "

Posted Sep 25, 2013

Chuck Barney

19 70%

The Michael J. Fox Show: Season 1 (TV, 2013-2014)

" The pilot just doesn't gently tap on the subject, it hammers it into submission. I counted at least a dozen references to Parkinson's over the half-hour. "

Posted Sep 25, 2013

Chuck Barney

20 65%

Vegas: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" It's a pleasure to watch two marvelous actors go at it. "

Posted Sep 9, 2013

Chuck Barney

21 69%

The Newsroom: Season 2 (TV, 2013)

" As for this critic, let's just say that I'd rather watch an energetic, well-acted, provocative show that aims high and sometimes falls short, than one that doesn't aim high at all. "

Posted Jul 11, 2013

Chuck Barney

22 90%

The Bridge (FX): Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" FX may have struck dramatic gold again. This series is mesmerizing. It sucks you in like a good book and has you yearning for more. "

Posted Jul 2, 2013

Chuck Barney

23 76%

Ray Donovan: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" It's a muscular, instantly riveting series that features sensational performances by Liev Schreiber and Jon Voight. "

Posted Jun 25, 2013

Chuck Barney

24 81%

Under the Dome: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" We've seen plenty of these high-concept TV conceits start well and then sadly unravel. For now, though, there's no place like Dome. "

Posted Jun 19, 2013

Chuck Barney

25 67%

Devious Maids: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" It has enough kooky class warfare, sexual shenanigans and whodunit intrigue to make for some escapist summer fun. "

Posted Jun 18, 2013

Chuck Barney

26 78%

Arrested Development: Season 4 (TV, 2013)

" Plenty of fun is derived from seeing how certain scenes that occur in one episode will have a meaningful payoff in another. "

Posted May 28, 2013

Chuck Barney

27 47%

Phil Spector (2013)

"Pacino and Mirren make for a dynamic pair. "

Posted May 22, 2013

Chuck Barney

28 95%

Behind the Candelabra (2013)

"Odds are you won't be able to take your eyes off director Steven Soderbergh's luridly entertaining peek into the relationship between legendary pianist Liberace and his much younger lover, Scott Thorson."

Posted May 16, 2013

Chuck Barney

29 63%

Da Vinci's Demons: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" Described as a "historical fantasy," the new melodrama Da Vinci's Demons is more than slightly preposterous, but it also makes for plenty of rollicking escapist fun. "

Posted Apr 11, 2013

Chuck Barney

30 97%

Mad Men: Season 6 (TV, 2013)

" Season 6 jumps ahead in time and launches with a beautifully written, contemplative two-hour opener. "

Posted Apr 3, 2013

Chuck Barney

31 92%

Orphan Black: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" This one cries out for a DVR season pass. "

Posted Apr 2, 2013

Chuck Barney

32 68%

Hannibal: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" Viewers who can handle the "ick" factor will find a superbly crafted, tantalizingly creepy tale that defies the conventions of TV's follow-the-dots crime procedurals. "

Posted Apr 2, 2013

Chuck Barney

33 100%

Game of Thrones: Season 3 (TV, 2013)

" Those who make the investment are richly rewarded. "

Posted Mar 26, 2013

Chuck Barney

34 81%

Bates Motel: Season 1 (TV, 2013)

" It goes the more subtle route, conjuring up an eerie feeling of fear and dread. It's an approach that Hitchcock surely would have preferred. "

Posted Mar 14, 2013

Chuck Barney

35 76%

Community: Season 4 (TV, 2013)

" If Thursday's opener is any indication, it's as boldly absurd, trippy and adventurous as ever. "

Posted Feb 5, 2013

Chuck Barney

36 78%

Downton Abbey: Season 3 (TV, 2012)

" Season 3 gets off to a fine and frothy start, even if it arrives in the wake of unpleasant off-screen news regarding the departure of a key cast member (no spoilers here). "

Posted Jan 6, 2013

Chuck Barney

37 22%

Malibu Country: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" Malibu Country is so old school, in fact, that it feels like a leftover from ABC's TGIF days, complete with a studio audience,an irritating laugh track and a sitcomy march-time pace. "

Posted Nov 10, 2012

Chuck Barney

38 77%

American Horror Story: Asylum (TV, 2012-2013)

" For now, Asylum really is just holding me, instead of totally gripping me. "

Posted Oct 17, 2012

Chuck Barney

39 26%

Emily Owens, M.D.: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" We wanted to like this because we really like Gummer, but our DVR can only handle so much drivel. "

Posted Oct 16, 2012

Chuck Barney

40 93%

The Walking Dead: Season 3 (TV, 2012-2013)

" The show is at its best when the confrontational tension among the humans is palpable. "

Posted Oct 14, 2012

Chuck Barney

41 20%

Beauty and the Beast: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" The premise couldn't have been any sillier if it included a singing teapot. "

Posted Oct 11, 2012

Chuck Barney

42 92%

Nashville: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" An irresistible blend of soapy shenanigans, domestic tension, political intrigue and catchy tunes. "

Posted Oct 10, 2012

Chuck Barney

43 86%

Arrow: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" I came away not only impressed by the strapping, soulful Amell, but by the entire endeavor, which makes for enjoyable, high-octane viewing. "

Posted Oct 10, 2012

Chuck Barney

44 58%

666 Park Avenue: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" This potent mix of suds and scares does a good job of setting up several intriguing mysteries. I'm in for now. "

Posted Sep 30, 2012

Chuck Barney

45 97%

Homeland: Season 2 (TV, 2012)

" The show is usually better when it focuses on its character moments. "

Posted Sep 30, 2012

Chuck Barney

46 31%

Made in Jersey: Season 1 (TV, 2012)

" I liked this lightweight legal drama more than I expected to, and it's nice to see TV depictions of Garden State residents that aren't all Snooki-fied. "

Posted Sep 28, 2012

Chuck Barney

47 77%

Last Resort: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" As with Lost, there is nothing on TV like it. And as with Lost, it has the potential to be a remarkable ride. "

Posted Sep 27, 2012

Chuck Barney

48 83%

Elementary: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" Anyone who has seen the Brits' much more clever and funny Sherlock will surely come away thinking that this show needs to get a clue. "

Posted Sep 27, 2012

Chuck Barney

49 32%

The Neighbors: Season 1 (TV, 2012-2013)

" It's more weird than funny. Even Mork would be horrified. "

Posted Sep 26, 2012

Chuck Barney

Find us on:                     
Help | About | Jobs | Critics Submission | Press | API | Licensing | Mobile