4 stars

The Gilded Age, Season One; Review by Robert Pruter

The Gilded Age, Season One; Review by Robert Pruter

Historical drama of the Gilded Age society of New York City by Julian Fellowes that captures the era with its sharp dialogue, compelling storytelling, and high production values, which make viewers feel they have been really transported back in time.

Black Sails, S02E05: XIII.; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Black Sails, S02E05: XIII.; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

A shocking revelation…

Black Sails, S02E02: X.; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Black Sails, S02E02: X.; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The themes of the instability of circumstances and of the importance of the perception of power connect thoughtful, complex, character-driven scenes and engrossing conflicts.

The Vampire Diaries, S02E01: The Return; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S02E01: The Return; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Shocking season premiere improves upon fantastic finale of previous season.

Twin Peaks, S01E01: Pilot; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Twin Peaks, S01E01: Pilot; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Moody, atmospheric cult favorite opens with one of the best episodes of television of all time.

The Vampire Diaries, S01E22: Founder’s Day; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S01E22: Founder’s Day; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

An exciting, engrossing end to the first season, “Founder’s Day” stands as a paragon of the serialized drama season finale.

The Vampire Diaries, S01E21: Isobel; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S01E21: Isobel; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Mia Kirshner takes center stage as Elena finally meets her birth mother, a woman so complicated that Elena would probably have needed years of therapy had Isobel not given her up for adoption as a baby.

The Vampire Diaries, S01E20: Blood Brothers; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S01E20: Blood Brothers; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Episode provides strong character development as it delves into the story of how the Salvatore brothers became vampires.

The Vampire Diaries, S01E19: Miss Mystic Falls; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S01E19: Miss Mystic Falls; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Quality execution lifts up an inauspicious premise, making this episode a winner, with good direction providing the crowning touch.

The Vampire Diaries, S01E14: Fool Me Once; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

The Vampire Diaries, S01E14: Fool Me Once; Review by Robin Franson Pruter

Excellent episode features complex plot and emotionally powerful events.