• Network: ABC
  • Series Premiere Date: Apr 16, 2006
  • Season #: 1 , 2
Metascore
41

Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 21
  2. Negative: 11 out of 21
  1. 75
    There's peril in traveling the well-worn path of unrequited love and adulterous wives. But what makes this beginning of "Brian" work is that the characters are nicely drawn archetypes, not stereotypes.
  2. Brian's writing, while witty, tends to be oversize. [21 Apr 2006, p.64]
  3. 75
    It's styled as a sort of laid-back Gen X updating of "thirtysomething," replacing that show's neuroses-fueled, East Coast edge with a more casual, lighthearted California vibe.
  4. 70
    Most of the actors make their characters zesty and likable, if on occasion too glib for their -- and our -- own good.
  5. 60
    "Brian" is easy, harmless viewing, sliding down the gullet as smoothly and reassuring as a glass of California merlot.
  6. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    60
    While "What About Brian" strikes some of the familiar chords about love, angst and the terror of young adulthood that have viewers swooning over "Grey's Anatomy," the show does so in a more laid-back tone, which should make its leap from a post-"Desperate Housewives" launch to its regular Monday moorings a commercial challenge.
  7. Ironically, the differences among the characters that make the show interesting and even, at times, compelling, also test its credibility.
  8. 50
    This is all nicely produced with mild offbeat tweaks along the way... But none of this is original either. [24 Apr 2006, p.39]
  9. There's not a lot wrong about "Brian.'' But there's not a lot right about it, either.
  10. "What About Brian" isn't a terrible show, it just doesn't offer enough unique reasons to make a weekly appointment with this gang of friends.
  11. It's not only unimpressive. Parts of it are uncomfortable.
  12. 38
    The dialogue ranges from ridiculous to tiresome.
  13. "What About Brian" is "Prison Break," except the prison is a man's feelings and escape involves eluding the warden of his doubts, and we're talking maximum-security misgivings.
  14. The series is sentimental in a sleek way, and there are surface glints of humor in the script, but mostly, "Brian" is a blander, less distinctive version of "Thirtysomething."
  15. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    30
    Like a sunnier version of thirtysomething, lacking only the inspired casting, the insightful writing and the wrenching realism.
  16. 20
    What About Brian traffics in flimsy liaisons, soapy squabbles and sophomoric sexuality.
  17. Beautiful people, perky and unrealistic dialogue and male characters who have all dropped their huevos in jars of vinegar.
  18. 20
    [It] looks like a TV commercial with plots. The people are pretty, their homes are pretty, their problems are pretty, and it's all pretty shallow.
  19. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    20
    "What About Brian"... wants to be "thirtysomething" for twentysomethings, but it is clichesomething.
  20. It [is] such a cloying, annoying mess you can barely expend the effort to hate it.
  21. 0
    [The] characters are so charmless, it's as if they were created on purpose to actually repel viewership - a TV first.

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