‘Mayor of Kingstown’: Why Do Critics Hate It but Audiences Love It? Is It Worth the Watch?

Are you wondering whether to watch Mayor of Kingstown on Paramount+ after seeing that awful critics rating? You are not alone. The critics call the crime thriller featuring Jeremy Renner “dreary” and “relentlessly grim.” However, your friends in real life and on social media told you it’s worth the 10-episode binge-watch. Who should you believe?

'Mayor of Kingstown' Jeremy Renner as Mike McLusky
‘Mayor of Kingstown’: Jeremy Renner | Emerson Miller/Paramount+ ©2021 CBS Interactive Inc.

Why do critics hate ‘Mayor of Kingstown’?

Mayor of Kingstown critics cite many of the same issues with the crime drama. They explained that it’s too dark, “bleak,” and “flavorless.” A few critics think that the action is the same thing viewers see in every crime thriller. Other reviewers did not enjoy the Big Sky twist in the first episode. A significant character unexpectedly dies, similar to Ryan Phillippe’s shocking death in Big Sky Season 1 on ABC. 

According to Rotten Tomatoes, critics rated Mayor of Kingstown at 32%, while audiences are at the other end of the spectrum — 89%. However, many critics specifically refer to the first two episodes, not the whole ten-episode drama. With the twist of episode 1, the Paramount+ crime thriller is slow to get started. It might be a bit hard to follow in the beginning, but audiences who watch the entire 10 episodes cannot stop raving about the Mayor of Kingstown.

Is ‘Mayor of Kingstown’ confusing?

Like any new drama with a plethora of cast members, Mayor of Kingstown is confusing initially, like critics mentioned. However, most audiences feel it has a great storyline that increases each episode’s intensity. It is full of violence, gangs, and police brutality; however, it feels accurate and true to life. 

“It’s got a great storyline, well written, great acting, and every episode leaves you wanting to watch the next one,” one audience reviewer wrote on Rotten Tomatoes. “Taylor Sheridan has created another winner.”

One aspect that audiences enjoyed was not knowing who to root for.

Mayor Of Kingstown is action-packed, and just when you think you have a grasp on how large this show can actually be, it elevates the bar even higher,” another audience reviewer wrote. “The politics in this show and watching Jeremy Renner trying to keep the peace are what kept me interested week to week, but I got to say, I’m really looking forward to a season 2! Don’t listen to critics; watch this as soon as possible!”

'Mayor of Kingstown' cast members Taylor Handley and Hugh Dillon portraying Kyle McLusky and Ian
‘Mayor of Kingstown’: Taylor Handley and Hugh Dillon | Emerson Miller/ ViacomCBS ©2021 Paramount+, Inc.

‘Mayor of Kingstown’ better than ‘Yellowstone’ Season 4

The co-creator of Yellowstone, Taylor Sheridan, co-wrote Mayor of Kingstown with Hugh Dillon. Many Paramount+ subscribers watched both shows and commented that the new crime thriller tops Yellowstone Season 4.

“This might be the best show to come out in years,” one fan wrote on Reddit. “Like after True Detective season one, this for me is setting new highs as far as TV shows go. The last episode was insane.”

Many fans believe that the Mayor of Kingstown is underrated by critics.

“It totally is [underrated],” one Redditor agreed with the original post. “This will be how Yellowstone was; it took a couple of seasons for it to catch on. Then all of a sudden, everyone catches on and begins losing their sh*t over it.”

Audiences believe that Mayor of Kingstown is worth the watch, so thankfully, all 10 episodes are now available for streaming on Paramount+.

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