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The process of evaluating a work, such as a film, TV show, book, video game, or other media in a public manner. May include a rating but it is not necessary. Reviews appear in traditional media including newspapers, TV, magazines, and academic journals, and, more recently, in web-based formats such as Review Blog and Video Review Show.

Reviewers are often called critics, and can come in many forms, from those seeking to evaluate a work for public benefit, to those who deliberately pick up on a bad work and insult it in the funniest way possible. Over the years this has made reviewing an important industry, especially with New Media. Whole companies and sites can depend on whether their works get a good review. This is most visible in the gaming and film industry. If a game or movie gets even a mediocre rating the makers can expect poor sales.

Sometimes caustic, snarky reviews are a bigger source of entertainment than the works being reviewed. This can lead to interesting twists. If a work gets a bad enough rating but the reviews attack it in a dramatic way ("The worst film/game ever made"), it can gain a ton more sales just because people think it's So Bad, It's Good. This can go for films, shows, comics, and games. Thus, reviews can be seen much like a forced advertisement that makers have to gamble on. Of course, unscrupulous advertisers have been known to Quote Mine and select just a few words that make it look like the reviewer loved it. ("It was ... very good at all!")

Reviews frequently give works a star rating, usually on a Four-Point Scale or On a Scale from One to Ten. This can result in people giving more weight to the rating than to the written content of the review — Roger Ebert has notably complained about this — leading to a situation where 8/10 might be considered a pan. Particularly good or bad works might warrant Rank Inflation or F--. If the reviewer can't figure out how to rate a given work in their system, it Broke the Rating Scale.

Given that reviews usually describe the work they're reviewing (of course), there's always some potential for Spoilers. Considerate reviewers will either find ways around mentioning sensitive plot points, or at least flag them with a Spoiler Warning. Inconsiderate reviewers... well, Spoil at Your Own Risk; in addition to outraging the fans, some people have even been sued for divulging information that the creators didn't want to be public just yet.

The Caustic Critic doesn't hesitate to express their disapproval of a work's flaws. Kinder souls may offer Constructive Criticism. On the other hand, the Compassionate Critic may accentuate the negative out of the belief that it's tough love.

When done poorly, a review might contain nothing more than Complaining About Shows You Don't Like or Gushing About Shows You Like. These crop up in good reviews too, but they tend to have more nuance and, crucially, reasoned arguments for why the critic thinks the work in question is good or bad.

Woe to the reviewer who gets caught Complaining About Shows They Don't Watch; that's considered very bad form, for obvious reasons.

Alert readers may spot Reviewer Stock Phrases and Reviewer Standard Comparisons, showing that the reviewer was pressed for time or wasn't inspired to go beyond journalistic cliches. Cleverer reviewers may invoke lines from the work to create a Review Ironic Echo.

Some readers adhere a little too closely to their favorite reviewer's opinions, leading to the belief that Reviews Are the Gospel. The opposite is He Panned It, Now He Sucks!. In between the two is Critical Backlash, where a work panned by reviewers turns out to be not as bad as you expected.

When a reviewer appears in fiction, they often get portrayed as a Straw Critic (an obnoxiously subjective critic), probably because some writers can't resist the chance to say Take That, Critics!. Go to Criticism Tropes to see other ways reviewers are depicted In-Universe and what tropes they employ.

Compare and contrast Fiction Science, which is when people examine fictional works under the light of Real Life science. Check Critics and Reviewers for an index of, well, those people who criticize and review.

Not to be confused with The Critic, a Nineties animated series about a film critic, Review, a Black Comedy about a life experience critic, or re:View, a Video Review Show created by RedLetterMedia.

By the way, you can post reviews on This Very Wiki; see the details at TV Tropes Reviews or see a list of them here.


Examples that don't fit the sub-tropes: