Monday, September 27, 2010

The Panda Meter Review System

Mr. Panda Says: "Your movie sucks"

It has occurred to me a few months back that I never gave specific guidelines for my grading system. While the Panda Meter seemed to be pretty self explanatory to me at least one person seemed confused by it and repeatedly questioned me about it. So, for future references, here’s how the grading works.

When grading I mainly focus on the writing, the dialogue, the characters, the acting (If applicable) and how overall entertaining the work was. As a secondary focus I may also look at overall production/technical value, artwork (If applicable), and specific details in the work that annoy or please me (For example having a Strong Female Lead Character is a big plus while having an overly ridiculous romantic plot could be grounds for rage). Ultimately the most important thing is the “Enjoyment Factor”; anything else can be ignored or forgiven if I had enough fun watching it. Also note that reviews are separated into several categories as noted in the “Tags” section at the bottom of the entries. The items being reviewed should only be compared to other works in their category because I don’t look at the details of a work the same way interchangeably. A movie isn’t a comic book (Talking to you, Zack Snyder) and anime is a foreign work that differs from its Western counterpart. For example Scott Pilgrim vs. The World suspiciously scores higher than its source material and despite Monsters vs. Aliens scoring the same as El Cazador de la Bruja I greatly prefer the former. The categories include, as of this writing, Anime, Movies, Comic Books, and Television.

1 out of 5 Adorable Pandas: Please Kill Me

This work is the worst of the worst, the lowest of the low. It’s so painful to watch that under no circumstance would I ever watch it or allow it to be watched around me again. I will often react violently over even the mention of this work. If you are a fan of this particular film/anime/whatever I will respect you less and never take you seriously when you suggest something for me to watch. You obviously have bad taste and will make me watch equally bad things given the chance.

2 out of 5 Adorable Pandas: Pretty Dang Bad

This work is either very bad or otherwise hard to watch. Perhaps it’s very dull and tedious or maybe the plot doesn’t make sense. Regardless it usually means I greatly disliked watching it. If in the review I specifically say something along the lines of “I can’t recommend this” assume it’s at the lower end of this grade, bordering 1 out of 5. Usually it’s bad but not bad enough to warrant a failing grade, but sometimes it’s a piece of work that is scored lower than average as punishment for having the potential to be great but ultimately dropping the ball hard. Major problems in several aspects without sufficient positives to balance it out usually result in this score.

3 out of 5 Adorable Pandas: Average

This work is average, though it may still warrants a look. Sometimes I may be indifferent (Though if it is indifference chances are I wouldn’t bother reviewing it) or otherwise it didn’t promote an emotional response from me but usually it’s a decent work that suffers from many problems that keep it from being considered quality entertainment. Sometimes I actually liked the work in question but felt that artistically speaking it couldn’t be considered anything special. With this score readers should feel encouraged to rent or otherwise borrow the work and try it for themselves as they could easily like it themselves. Usually recommended to fans of its genre.

4 out of 5 Adorable Pandas: Pretty Dang Good

This work is very entertaining or otherwise artistically relevant. It’s the lower tier of fiction that I strongly recommend, especially to fans of its genre. With this score the work is fun and/or satisfying to watch and can be watched more than once and still enjoyed (Unless stated otherwise). Sometimes an average show/film may sneak in simply because I enjoyed it very much, but normally this score implies a show that would have been considered among the best if not for one or more glaring problem that couldn’t be ignored despite my best efforts. Still very, very good stuff.

5 out of 5 Adorable Pandas: Awesome

This work is amazingly well done. While it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s perfect it does rank among my personal favorite examples if its genre, its category, or both. This score gets awarded to one of two types of works: ones that are artistically fantastic that I can appreciate (key word) or ones that for whatever reason left me feeling extremely enamored with it. These works will often have the best cast of characters, among the best writing, and have the most satisfying conclusions. If you hate anything awarded this score take that as a sure sign that you and I will never see eye to eye in life. If you hate something awarded this score and love something awarded 1 out of 5 please stop visiting my blog.


  1. I love your panda rating system.
    We've been using a panda scale system for tracking on our site, and we are rolling out a new service at using a Pandometer.
    Our scale uses sad panda to happy panda, but I really like the idea of building a "number of adorable pandas" scale. :)


  3. 5of5 awesomicals!:)