Best-Reviewed New TV Shows 2017

The dominance of the streaming services is front and center in the New Show category — eight out of 10 series topping our shortlist are streaming titles. Netflix claims four slots, Amazon has two, while Hulu and CBS All Access each hold one.

The order of the rank below reflects the Adjusted Score as of December 31, 2017. Scores might change over time.

#1
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Biting social commentary and Sarah Gadon's hypnotic performance make Alias Grace a worthy addition to the Margaret Atwood adaptation catalog.
Directed By: Mary Harron

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Timely, provocative, and sharply written, Dear White People is an entertaining blend of social commentary and incisive humor.

#3
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: An auspicious beginning for CBS All Access, The Good Fight solidly follows its predecessor while allowing for new storytelling styles, a wider narrative scope, and a chance for its lead to explore new territory with a relatable human struggle.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Haunting and vivid, The Handmaid's Tale is an endlessly engrossing adaptation of Margaret Atwood's dystopian novel that's anchored by a terrific central performance from Elisabeth Moss.

#5
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Suspenseful, smart, and terrifically cast, Sneaky Pete is part dramedy, part crime caper, and all in all entertaining.

GLOW: Season 1 (2017)
94%

#6
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: With spot-on 1980s period detail, knockout writing, and a killer cast, GLOW shines brightly.

#7
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Mindhunter distinguishes itself in a crowded genre with ambitiously cinematic visuals and a meticulous attention to character development.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Defiant Ones is a compelling, comprehensive portrait of two visionaries that illuminates both their colorful pasts and their historic influence on the music industry.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Vietnam War revisits a dark chapter in American history with patience, grace, and a refreshing -- and sobering -- perspective informed by those who fought.
Starring: Peter Coyote
Directed By: Ken Burns, Lynn Novick

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is an upbeat addition to Amazon's original offerings, propelled by a playful yet poignant performance by Rachel Brosnahan.


Best-Reviewed TV Movies/Miniseries 2017

It’s been Canadian writer Margaret Atwood’s year between the Netflix adaptation of her novel Alias Grace, which tops both this category and Best New TV Show, and Hulu’s Emmy-winning The Handmaid’s Tale, which turns up in the top five of both the New Shows and Drama categories and is based on another of the celebrated author’s works.

The order of the rank below reflects the Adjusted Score as of December 31, 2017. Scores might change over time.

« Previous Category Next Category »

#1
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Biting social commentary and Sarah Gadon's hypnotic performance make Alias Grace a worthy addition to the Margaret Atwood adaptation catalog.
Directed By: Mary Harron

#2
Adjusted Score: 103466%
Critics Consensus: Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds is a touching, bittersweet, and ultimately charming love story that serves as a poignantly effective tribute to the strangely complicated, uniquely resilient mother/daughter duo.
Synopsis: A portrait of Hollywood royalty Carrie Fisher and her mother, Debbie Reynolds.... [More]

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Planet Earth II offers a spectacular, moving, unprecedented account of the natural world.
Directed By: Mike Gunton

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Defiant Ones is a compelling, comprehensive portrait of two visionaries that illuminates both their colorful pasts and their historic influence on the music industry.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Vietnam War revisits a dark chapter in American history with patience, grace, and a refreshing -- and sobering -- perspective informed by those who fought.
Starring: Peter Coyote
Directed By: Ken Burns, Lynn Novick

« Previous Category Next Category »

Stranger Things, Star Trek: Discovery, The Walking Dead (Netflix; CBS All Access; AMC)

Fall TV 2017 is done, and The Good Place has triumphed — at least, by straight Tomatometer score. We’ve updated our fall TV by Tomatometer scorecard each week all season, registering every new season and TV movie (starting September 1) that got at least 10 critic reviews.

The Good Place took the top spot with a 100% Tomatometer score on 28 reviews. It’s worth noting, however, that Alias Grace, the Margaret Atwood adaptation from Netflix, has a 99% score on 69 reviews — significantly more reviews than the 13-review average of the 20 series boasting a 100% final score for the season.

So while The Good Place is perched atop the list by straight Tomatometer score, it comes in fourth after Alias Grace, Mudbound, and Stranger Things by adjusted Tomatometer score, which takes into account the number of reviews that make up the final score. Season 1 of Mindhunter rounds out the top 5, proving Netflix’s dominance over fall TV by adjusted Tomatometer.

Just added (12/27): The Last PostBright, Peaky Blinders, Doctor Who: Twice Upon a Christmas, Gunpowder, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Great News, Exorcist, The Halcyon, Nathan for You, and No Activity

Inhumans: Season 1 (2017)
11%

#107
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Marvel's Inhumans sets a new low standard for the MCU with an unimaginative narrative, dull design work, weak characters, and disengaging soapy melodrama.

9JKL: Season 1 (2017)
19%

#106
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Irritatingly uninspired, 9jkl leaves its talented cast out in the cold.

#105
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: An odd jumble of campiness and sincerity, homage and satire, The Orville never quite achieves liftoff.

Valor: Season 1 (2017)
21%

#104
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Valor's attempt to highlight an often overlooked segment of the armed services is undercut by a badly judged blend of military action and melodrama.

#103

Bright (2017)
27%

#103
Adjusted Score: 34849%
Critics Consensus: Bright tries to blend fantasy, hard-hitting cop drama, and social commentary -- and ends up falling painfully short of the mark on all three fronts.
Synopsis: In an alternate present day, humans, orcs, elves and fairies have been coexisting since the beginning of time. Two police... [More]
Directed By: David Ayer

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Wisdom of the Crowd wastes a talented cast on a formulaic procedural crime drama that wavers between modest returns and unintentional laughs.

Neo Yokio: Season 1 (2017)
52%

#101
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Lacking an interesting plot or stimulating social commentary, Neo Yokio is a missed opportunity bound to bore or befuddle casual viewers and frustrate hardcore anime fans.

The Brave: Season 1 (2017)
42%

#100
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Formulaic to a fault, The Brave fails to bring anything new to the genre -- though high production values and a capable cast may be diverting enough for some.

S.W.A.T.: Season 1 (2017)
48%

#99
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Despite a commanding, charming performance from Shemar Moore, S.W.A.T. remains a simple procedural overrun with clichés.

Dynasty: Season 1 (2017)
49%

#98
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Dynasty's revival retains enough of its predecessor's over-the-top allure to offer a glamorous guilty pleasure in its first season, even if it never quite recaptures the magic of the original.

#97
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: South Park delivers an uncharacteristically stilted season that feels timid in its satire and unsure of who or what it's lampooning.

Damnation: Season 1 (2017)
64%

#96
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Damnation's complex character driven mystery is intriguing, though it occasionally feels like homework.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Ten Days in the Valley's instantly tense delivery of familiar material leads to an intriguing character study and engrossing mystery despite naggingly untapped potential.

#94
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Jay Pharoah proves he's leading man material even if White Famous' satirical indictments of Hollywood -- though at times irreverent -- often feel outdated.

#93
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: The Good Doctor's heavy-handed bedside manner undermines a solid lead performance, but under all the emotionally manipulative gimmickry, there's still plenty of room to improve.

#92
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Though perhaps a little uninspired, The Halcyon exercises well-worn period tropes with style, and its solid cast makes for watchable company.

#91
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Knightfall will appeal to fans of medieval stories who prefer historical drama and palace intrigue to soapy, melodramatic twists.

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: A rocky start can't keep The Punisher from pushing the boundaries of Marvel's TV universe with a fresh take on the comics-derived action thriller.
Directed By: Jim Chory, Jeph Loeb

Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Breezily entertaining, Kevin (Probably) Saves the World relies on its likable lead to carry its still-sketchy premise, hinting at deeper potential that's yet to develop.

We’ve got two of the biggest winners of the summer on DVD this week, namely the big-screen arrival of an iconic DC superhero and a critically acclaimed romantic comedy based on true events. Then, we’ve also got some great TV, a few underseen gems, and one classic re-release. Read on for the full list.


The Vietnam War: Miniseries (2017) 96%

Ken Burns’ latest documentary series for PBS is an expectedly thorough look at the titular conflict, offering insights and personal stories from various angles. The full series set comes with a making-of doc and deleted scenes.

Get it Here


Arrow: Season 5 (2016) 88%

Stephen Amell stars in the CW’s DC Comics adaptation about a shipwrecked billionaire who returns to civilization after five years stranded on an island and becomes a vigilante crimefighter. The season 5 set comes with deleted scenes, a gag reel, the show’s 2016 Comic-Con panel, and looks at the new characters, the villain, and the crossover storyline.

Get it HereStream it Here


Bates Motel: Season 5 (2017) 100%

Freddie Highmore and Vera Farmiga star in this prequel series centered on Psycho-in-training Norman Bates and his dysfunctional relationship with his enabling mother. Also available in a complete series set, the show’s fifth and final season package comes with a gag reel and a pair of featurettes.

Get it HereStream it Here


The Big Sick (2017) 98%

Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan star in this romantic comedy based on the true story of Nanjiani’s unusual and precarious courtship with his wife, Emily. Special features include a commentary track with Nanjiani, his wife Emily V. Gordon, and director Michael Showalter; interviews with Nanjiani and Gordon; the film’s 2017 SXSW panel; deleted scenes, and more.

Get it Here, Stream it Here


Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) 94%

Re-released in theaters earlier this month, the newly restored 40th anniversary edition of Steven Spielberg’s monumental sci-fi film is available in a new Anniversary Edition (and a new 4K transfer), which comes with the original theatrical version of the film, the 1980 special edition, and the 1997 director’s cut; a new featurette; a new interview with Spielberg, J.J. Abrams, Denis Villeneuve, and more; new behind-the-scenes footage, and much more.

Get it Here


Certain Women (2016) 92%

In one of its infrequent contemporary releases, the Criterion Collection is offering this Kelly Reichardt film starring Michelle Williams, Laura Dern, and Kristen Stewart in three intertwined stories by Maile Meloy set in the American West. It comes with interviews with Meloy, Reichardt, and executive producer Todd Haynes, as well as an essay by film critic Ella Taylor.

Get it Here


Wonder Woman (2017) 93%

Gal Gadot and Chris Pine star in this DC superhero origin story, which follows the titular Amazonian warrior as she leaves her isolated island home to join the Allied forces in World War I. Also available in 4K and in 3D, it comes with multiple featurettes, a look at the Amazon army of Themyscira, a profile of director Patty Jenkins, extended scenes, a blooper reel, and more.

Get it HereStream it Here


The Little Hours (2017) 78%

Aubre Plaza, Alison Brie, and Kate Micucci star in this comed about three repressed nuns who are overcome by the sudden arrival of a handsome male servant at their convent. Information on special features is currently unavailable. It will be available on Friday, September 22.

Get it Here


The Hero (2017) 77%

Sam Elliott and Laura Prepon star in this drama about an aging actor diagnosed with cancer who strikes up a relationship with a younger woman and attempts to reconnect with his daughter. Extras include a commentary track with Elliott and director Brett Haley and a photo gallery.

Get it HereStream it Here

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