Back in 1998 and 1999, in the days of my late childhood/early teens, when I still had the hope that TGIF could produce comedies I could enjoy and get, this series premiered on the fall lineup. I remember enjoying the show as a young person, tuning in (almost) every Friday when there was a new episode and being a little disappointed when it didn't get past one year. Recently, for whatever reason, I decided to look up something, anything, on this show, if only to find out of the actors I had remembered enjoying were getting any work these days. And that's how I discovered the entire series run on hulu.com. So, I decided to take a look, curious to see how it would hold up to my older and possibly more mature mind and tastes. Does is?
Well, yes and no. The shows many flaws are a bit more glaring now that I'm actually looking for them. The glut of superior sitcoms that have come since, whether they be the single camera, laugh track-less gems such as "Scrubs" and "Arrested Development" or the high quality multiple camera shows such as "How I Met Your Mother" (or as I'm told "Friends" and "Frasier", though I wouldn't know since I never watched them), make "Brother's Keeper" fall a little short. The concept is a bit formulaic, the characters clichéd, and some of the writing make it clear why critics welcomed the Scrubs, Developments, Offices, and Earls at the turn of the millennium. For all of its flaws, though, the show is still quite entertaining. William Ragdale's Porter is relatable if overbearing enough to side with Bobby (Sean O'Bryan) on some occasions. Bess Meyer's Dena, in spite of the occasional misstep, is as entertainingly snide as I remember and justifiably one of my early TV crushes (couldn't have been because of the miniskirts they always had her wearing). Bobby's overplayed sometimes, but often ends up having an intelligent and thought out point that makes me see his way. And Justin Cooper... well, there are better child actor performance out there, but he was satisfactory, being a driving part of the show without it ever really truly being about him. No, it never reaches the comedy levels of "Two and a Half Men", but it's enjoyable enough and has a good heart that'll pop up every now and again. All in all, I wouldn't have minded seeing the show continue for another few years beyond its initial run.