Like in film circles, there’s a certain amount of elitism and prejudice when it comes to television these days. With production values on shows now closer to that of cinema, and with shows moving more towards shorter and tighter runs of episodes, some who rarely dabbled in television are now enamored with it.
As they do so though, they bring their dismissiveness with them and demands that all shows boast richer filmmaking style. This means almost all network TV is ignored altogether, and even a bunch of cable shows simply aren’t up to snuff.
For this crowd, HBO is their pin-up model – the network that started the golden age of television has earned the loyalty of a whole generation and is still seen by many as the pinnacle and home of cinematic long-form storytelling. In recent years though there’s been a serious challenge from Netflix whose original programming has not just become event television but often dominates critical top ten lists.
But is it truly the successor to HBO? Cut Cable Today did a recent study of various cable networks and streaming services, comparing the Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic scores of their various major series that had at least one season under their belt. They averaged each show, then compiled them into a percentage score out of 100 for whole networks.
The surprising result is that Netflix came in fourth it would seem. The results are: HBO: 82.3, Showtime: 75.1, FX: 74, Netflix: 73.6, AMC: 73.5, Amazon: 71.8, Starz: 71.6, USA: 65.2.
Though it has had a bevy of strong shows, Netflix’s score was reportedly undermined by some notable flops in recent years like “Hemlock Grove,” “Grace and Frankie,” “Between” and “Marco Polo”. Indeed a network like FX has surged in the past five or so years thanks to the likes of acclaimed shows like “Fargo,” “Justified,” “The Americans,” “Louie,” “Archer,” “You’re the Worst”.
Of the individual shows, the highest were: “Master of None” (96); “The Sopranos” (95); “Fargo,” “The Wire” & “Transparent” (94); “Justified” (93); Game of Thrones” (92); “Breaking Bad” & “Getting On” (91); “The Americans,” “Mad Men,” “The Missing” & “Treme” (90).
Source: Cut Cable Today