Metacritic rates it at 12 out of 100 with a collection of totally predictable piss-poor reviews.
David Cronke (The Mayor of Television) said that the ratings were the best for the hour and night, but that doesn't really amount to much:
Ratings guru Marc Berman calls “Cavemen’s” performance disappointing – given the hype, it should’ve done better, he argues – but I think the fact that 9 million ostensibly sentient humans tuned into a broadcast-network situation comedy based on a TV commercial that everyone and their dog was warning them was awful is not merely disappointing, but devastating.
Folks, there was a reason why ABC didn't release advanced copies of the show to critics before the show premiered. Any time a studio or a network does that, it's a huge red flag. They know that word of mouth can make or break a film or TV show. Its the reason why "The Assassination of Jesse James" is only playing in four theaters across the US and why everyone is talking about how good it is (including us). Unfortunately for ABC, word of mouth is a very sharp double-edged sword that can swing the wrong direction and really hurt you. We've been saying here at the morgue that this TV show was going to suck since we first heard word that they were doing a series based on the Geico commercials. And like the rest of the blogosphere (god I hate that word) we were right on the money.
My point is this: ABC KNEW their new show was going to suck, but they were stuck with it, and had to air it no matter what. They had been drumming up hype for months about this show, but all it ended up doing was calling attention to something everyone already agreed with without even viewing it: This is a 30 second commercial of marginally-amusing characters stretched into 22 minutes of un-funny, un-creative, neanderthal humor. And now that it's out there, it's only a matter of weeks before someone on the top floor realizes they have the Neilsen equivalent of a turd floating in the swimming pool.
Now word of mouth will help drive this piece of crap even further into the ratings toilet. And all ABC can do is watch their pride and joy swirl around in the bowl.