• Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Jul 15, 2008
  • Season #: 1 , 2
The Cleaner Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 15 Critics What's this?

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 24 Ratings

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  • Summary: William Banks (Benjamin Bratt) is a former drug addict out to help those addicted in this drama based in part on the life of William Boyd.
  • Genre(s): Drama, Arts
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 15
  2. Negative: 7 out of 15
  1. Reviewed by: Misha Davenport
    Some may take issue with the cynical tone of both series [Saving grace and The Cleaner] or the fact that there is very little divine intervention in either.
  2. It's solid for what it is, despite the worrisome gimmick and sometimes obvious story.
  3. The Cleaner is the latest in a string of unremarkable basic cable dramas with a brand-name star playing the tough but damaged lead.
  4. 50
    This brings up the writing, which is strictly discount--and so are the plots, which don't tell us enough in the victims he saves.
  5. 37
    It's all meant to be exciting, but like everything else about The Cleaner, it comes across as almost profoundly silly.
  6. I'd describe it as ludicrous, but that might give the impression that it's remotely entertaining.
  7. 30
    If these dorky team-on-the-move scenes look like something out of "Charlie's Angels," the shiftless-druggie scenes in the show's premiere look like they were pulled straight from an "Afterschool Special" about the dangers of snorting heroin.

See all 15 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 17
  2. Negative: 7 out of 17
  1. ElinJ.
    Aug 3, 2008
    I love the show and find Will's trying to balance work and family a really dynamic thing to watch.
  2. Oct 10, 2010
    One of the most inspiring shows I've seen. Love it. I find it very realistic. The truth is that there are cleaners out there w ho are hired by families to help addicts get clean no matter what it takes. Bratt's portrayal of the ongoing struggle of recovery when you are knee deep in the mess you have made of your life, suffering the consequences, trying to help others, trying to live by the Steps and keep the faith--phenomenal. I think the typical television audience just wasn't ready for this trip. Collapse
  3. AK.
    Jul 16, 2008
    With the lack quality summer tv, I love that cable channels are taking a stand to produce drama shows. I loved the pilot, I'm going to hold out to rate the season but I thought the pilot was great. I can't believe some of the reviews I have read. Perhaps because I have dealt with addiction in my life this show hits home. My husband taught me that what makes a good show/movie is conflict. "The Cleaner" has internal and external conflict on many levels. By the end of the show I was crying. For me to feel that deeply after 45 mins, that's a good show in my book. Expand
  4. lsh
    Aug 2, 2008
    Surprised by all the negative reviews, I happen to love this show - Bratt's performance is edgy and the show gives a realistic view of the struggles families of drug addicts go through after recovery begins - it's not pretentious nor ridiculous that Bratt's character talks to God; it's reassuring that the writers actually understand that recovering addicts believe in a higher power and need to communicate with that higher power continually to maintain. Critics may not like it, but those of us who've been affected by the abuse of drugs by loved ones appreciate this true to life account of someone who is trying to make a difference. Expand
  5. RB.
    Jul 16, 2008
    You lost me in the first twenty minutes. No story line could be understood. Too much superfluous dialog. A real miss
  6. DaveW
    Aug 10, 2008
    Veers between stupid sentimentality and grotesque heroic posturing. Waste of time.
  7. BrandonS.
    Jul 24, 2008
    Bratt is such a bad actor. How could anyone watch this?

See all 17 User Reviews