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"The Critic"
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"The Critic" More at IMDbPro »

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35 out of 36 people found the following review useful:

Well, like most of America's cultural elite, I worship Pan, goat god.

Author: Andy (film-critic) from Bookseller of the Blue Ridge
1 October 2004

Like most Simpsons watching fanatics that are also latched tightly to the Family Guy, I couldn't help but walk (never run) to buy this series when it came out. Jay Sherman is my inspiration for my excessive amounts of film reviews. He was never afraid to speak his mind about the garbage distributed by Hollywood ever week. His classic line, 'It stinks' inspired me to find those horrible films and make sure I warned others before it was too late. He is a God among Gods in my book!

Created by the same team that did The Simpsons, Sherman great to life through not only the witty banter that leapt from his mouth, but also his surrounding characters. Parodying some of cinema's finest, you cannot help but laugh at this obese critic that wants nothing more than to have respect and eat his Charleston Chew. Duke Phillips is one of the funniest characters created and provides some of the funniest social commentary on the extremely wealthy in our country. Sherman, in my eyes, represents the little man. While making $270,000 a year, he doesn't rise above anyone else. He reminds all of us of who we are, whether it would be running a marathon or trying to clean-up his hometown of New York, Sherman represents our desires and wants. One of our biggest desires is to see good cinema. We pay top dollar to see good movies, why does Hollywood continually fill our plate with all the bread we can eat before giving us the main course? Suddenly, we are too full to enjoy it.

I would like to applaud Jay Sherman for his fight against a repetitive and uncreative Hollywood. As an avid film-goer it is nice to see the battle being fought in the animated world. Sadly, I only wish this series could have lasted long enough to endure some of the garbage released today. We need a new Jay Sherman to help us wade through and poke fun of today's Hollywood.

I HIGHLY recommend this series to anyone that is as upset with Hollywood as I. This series will make you laugh at a large man that loves food and life.

He is our, and especially my, hero!

Grade: ***** out of *****

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24 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

Takin' down before its time

Author: newkidontheblock from Nowheresville
29 June 2004

I love the Critc. This is a prime example of how unfairly show biz treats its good shows. The basic premise of the show is that a middle aged film critic by the name of Jay Sherman leads an miserable existence. We see him at the work place ripping bad movies a new one everytime he has to review one (plus for the people of the Crtic for having the guts to comment about this era of horrible movies made by Hollywood). We also see him in his private life as a man who's love life is in shambles, has a weird waspy (and adopted) family, and a man who just needs a break now and then. I very much enjoyed the critic, and shame on ABC and FOX executives for taking it down in its prime. And a half a shame to comedy central for not putting it on as often and at a better time. So in short, maybe ABC or Fox or some other network will wise up and bring back this cult classic from the dead.

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18 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Short lived masterpiece

Author: joe-bohnenkamp from United States
18 September 2005

This show was hilarious. I loved Jon Lovitz and all the other voice actors. Jay Sherman is such a comically brilliant character. As a film buff, I thought the movie parodies in the show "Coming Attractions" were amazing. I also liked the shows send up on the entertainment industry and films and actors in general I think Al Jean and Mike Reiss did an excellent job with this series. Sadly, most Simpsons personnel don't get as lucky with their own projects, even Groening had problems keeping Futurama on the air, which I also loved. I still can't believe it only lasted two seasons. I think it would be awesome if someday they would come out with more episodes or even a feature film.

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20 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

Only one more season

Author: jaywolfenstien from USA
29 September 2004

I'm both disappointed and somewhat content with the fate of this ill-received TV show. On one hand, I feel the Critic far outclasses anything on television today and thus deserved more than it received; on the other hand, I'm glad it was concluded before it could suffer the fate of the Simpsons which has grasped at straws for years (and in my opinion just needs to be put out of its misery). I think the Critic could've gone strong for one more season before the ideas started thinning.

Anyway, due to its premature cancellation, the Critic has a concise feel and no degradation in quality. I feel the Critic was cancelled at the height of its potential when its comedic timing was dead on and the most of the jokes made me at least chuckle (well, other than the final episode . . . which was disappointing because it was a reprise of all the faux film clips and little original material.)

As for the Webisodes, I really didn't care much for them due to their lack of the rest of the cast - Alice, Dorris, Duke, Vlada, Jeremy, Martin, Penny, and Jay's family. Even though I like Jay Sherman, the Critic was never a solo act, and the webisodes brings to light how important the supporting cast are – who is Jay supposed to bounce jokes off of, and who's going to make fun of the poor guy? Without the rest of the gang, Jay is just a punch line with no build up.

I really liked this quirky cast of misfits, the individual roles they play, and how jokes gain momentum through their personalities and even their art styles. Too many comedies want to depend on quick punch lines and catch phrases. Sure, Coming Attractions was funny as part of a normal TV episode, but it alone was not the episode. No one character was the episode. I think that's why the Webisodes lack the edge its full episode brethren have.

The funniest aspect of the Critic, which is also noted on one of the DVD commentaries, is that not only does Jay wind up criticizing movie-parodies on Coming Attractions, but Jay's life is a series of movie parodies. Everywhere you look is a film reference in some shape or form. From plots that parody famous films of that era, to classics to little known trivia facts featuring Maurice LaMarche impersonating Orson Welles doing a commercial for peas and fish sticks. And of course, a show about a movie critic would eventually involve a plot around Siskel & Ebert, which is perhaps one of the more entertaining episodes.

So, as a fan of films, I found the Critic to be pretty sharp and a pretty fun ride. It was a nice comedic counterpoint to the serious films being released at the time, and some of the trends in filmmaker's art and even in their lives. Part of me is disappointed that it didn't last, but then again, part of me is also glad it stopped before it could go to hell like other shows out there.

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17 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

How could they take this off the air?

Author: chthon2 from Orlando, Florida
24 January 2003

I can't believe this only lasted a few years. This was, hands down, one of the best animated shows I have ever seen. The comedy was somewhat remniscent of "Sienfeld", the only differences being that "The Critic" is not painfully boring and actually has a plot to it.

The entire cast is given good lines, much kudos to the writers. And I love the cameos by Orson Welles. Especially the fishsticks thing.

"They're even better raw!"

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19 out of 27 people found the following review useful:

A shame to be off when "Friends" has lasted all this time

Author: robdrums from USA
6 June 2003

I guess in the day of "Thinking Man's" humor has long gone.

"Children of a Lesser Godzilla" nuff said.

This was a sharply written, well acted (Voice of course) show. Levitz is as funny as any cartoon voice over there is.

Any time I can find the Critc, I'll watch, without even (GASP) changing the channel during commercials.

A shame that Will and Grace is still on, and the Critic is relagated to the cable crawl space.

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12 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Worthy of the Simpsons

Author: Op_Prime from Ardmore, PA
17 June 1999

The only way I can describe The Critic is hilarious. The movie spoofs were funny, Jay Sherman and the other characters were hysterical, and the stories were great. Truly worthy of it's predecessor, The Simpsons.

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9 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Good show, GREAT voice acting

Author: The 14th Warrior from Atlanta, GA
18 August 2003

Though it never really becomes more than the sum of its parts (hindered by quite a few rather generic plot lines and unimaginative film parodies) `The Critic' does contain more than its share of memorable laugh-out-loud moments, generally due to the brilliant voice acting of Maurice LaMarche, who performs most of the celebrity voice impersonations. His Orson Welles impression (`Rosebud... yes, Rosebud frozen peas'), one of the show's standout moments, has to be heard to be believed – it's no wonder Tim Burton hired him to overdub D'Onofrio's voice in `Ed Wood'.

Other highlights include the many cameo appearances by film critics Roger Ebert, Gene Siskel, Gene Shalit and Rex Reed. Seeing Siskel and Jay re-enact the `wig' scene from Hitchcock's `Vertigo' is heartwarming, and though I could never stand Rex Reed's reviews, he is a fabulous voice actor. His delivery of the Savvy Indian Chewing Tobacco commercial jingle still makes me laugh out loud any time I hear it.

Not a knockout show, but definitely worth watching. It's a bloody shame this was cancelled.

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9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A bit dated,but a fun show that deserved a better treatment

Author: S.R. Dipaling from Topeka, Kansas, USA
14 February 2006

WAtching this show in reruns,I was able to enjoy this offering from many of the creators of the Simpsons,but since the movie reviews were stuck in the period that spanned 1994-95 and before,the series will always retain a sense of being stuck in time and that never fails to make me a bit sad whenever I'd watch it.

Otherwise,this series,based around the eponymous Jay Sherman(voiced brilliantly by rumpled comic actor Jon Lovitz,whose talents endure) is a great nose-thumbing at Hollywood culture and the movies that sometimes get cranked out from it. His relationships with his boss,the megalomaniac Ted Turner clone Duke Phillips,his son JAy,his girlfriend(I forget her name) and her daughter, his rich,WASPy parents and his stepsister are the main focus of most of the shows. The send-ups,however,were the real stars to me. "Speed Reader","D.T.,the drunken terrestrial","Rabbi P.I."(starring Arnold Schwarzenegger,of course) and "Honey,I Ate the Kids" were a few of my faves.

I think I'd buy this on DVD,and since there are only two(barely)seasons and it retained cult status,I could PROBABLY buy this cheap. Probably. But no matter,it's still one of the cleverest shows to hit the boob tube of the last decade or so.

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10 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

"You can download the whole series on kazaa, but you shouldn't"

Author: changingshades ( from St Petersburg Florida
20 March 2004

What a great series. Too dirty for ABC, not dirty enough for Fox, this show was too good for this world. I got the DVD box set and am quite happy with it. My summary line is from the commentary. From a Jewish Arnold films to a sequel to Jurassic Park Films that appears to be better written than any of the sequels, this show was awesome and the fact it was canceled is just wrong. Its a shame it didn't suck, because if it did you could take any number of quotes from it to describe it. Of course, it would be nice if you could rate TV series like you could rate movies on imdb, unfortunately that is not the case, you will just have to read reviews like mine to see whether or not you want to watch it. It's a great cartoon that falls only behind the Simpsons on my list of all time great cartoons. 9 out of 10

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