Why HGTV's Drew And Jonathan Scott Cringe At Their First Property Brothers Episode

It's hard to remember a time when Drew and Jonathan Scott weren't two of HGTV's biggest stars. In addition to "Property Brothers," and all its related spin-off shows, the siblings increased their already steady output in 2024 by creating new content with "Backed by the Bros" and "Don't Hate Your House with the Property Brothers."  During the process, the Scotts decided to rewatch their first "Property Brothers" episode, and they saw clear evidence of just how far they've come.

In a "Double Take" segment posted to their YouTube channel on April 26, 2024, the twins were immediately horrified at their circa-2011 hairstyles. In particular, Drew was unhappy with his voluminous, puffy 'do, which he blamed on one of the show's producers. "You don't want hair that's that bulbous. It looks like a wig," Drew complained, while both brothers joked about whether or not the style would doom his romantic prospects. Ironically, when Drew Scott met his wife, Linda Phan, in 2010, she was critiquing people's looks at Toronto Fashion Week. Luckily, Drew noted that Phan saw beyond superficial details from the beginning. 

As for Jonathan's look in the first episode, he had longer, bleached hair — a style that he was a fan of at the time. In January 2024, he even celebrated the look with throw-back photos on Instagram of himself and his fiancée, Zooey Deschanel, sporting lighter styles long before they met. However, Drew wasn't impressed. "You had so much blonde, you should have been in a boy band," he quipped.

Drew and Jonathan Scott thought their first episode was overly scripted

Over 185 episodes, "Property Brothers" had ample opportunity to hone its format. Beyond Drew and Jonathan Scott's questionable hairstyles, the twins also noted an early problem with scripting, as evidenced from a scene in their first episode. The brothers were asked to reiterate items from the clients' wish list and then say they couldn't have them. "I hate that," Drew emphasized during the rewatch. "I just like it when Jonathan and I can just let loose and banter."

On a more basic level, Drew Scott didn't love the name "Property Brothers," even though it was one of his ideas. He was conflicted about the title because he thought a more specific name would guarantee them job security. 

From the start, the twins lobbied to get rid of stilted dialogue in the script, particularly because the format of the show reflected their business strategy before they were TV stars. As a compromise, the production team agreed to experiment with scripted and improvised takes. "The network decided that they loved our way which was just natural, fun," Drew explained on "The Carlos Watson Show." He noted that HGTV made the brother's on-camera demeanor the model for other network programs, eliminating Drew's early fears about being swapped out for other on-screen talent. Jonathan added that he and his twin had a commitment to stay true to themselves from the earliest days of planning their show. The brothers were surprised, but gratified, by the show's success.

Drew and Jonathan Scott's off-beat looks were a selling point

While discussing the very first episode of "Property Brothers" that they film, the Scott brothers revealed that it actually aired halfway through Season 1. Drew Scott joked that they buried it in the middle of the season to avoid a bad first impression, but Jonathan thought their quirky looks were actually a selling point. "Maybe people were like, 'We gotta watch this because these dudes look so weird!'" he joked during the 2024 re-watch of the episode.

Even though HGTV wasn't interested the first time the Scotts approached them around 2008, Women's Network in Canada saw the show's potential. After "Property Brothers" became that outlet's number one show, HGTV decided to take a second look. The Scotts' first episode immediately hooked one key decision maker. "I watched about 30 seconds of the pilot," Kathleen Finch, a top executive for HGTV's parent company, informed Fast Company. "I stopped it and said, 'I want them.'" In 2014, the Scotts began their successful partnership with the network.

As they gained more experience, the brothers made another crucial change to the their show by switching to a block-shooting schedule. The method allows them to shoot material for various episodes at one time. "It doesn't make any sense to shoot each episode in sequence," Jonathan informed Variety. "It makes it 10 times harder for construction." Like the shift from scripted to unscripted content, the strategy caught on across HGTV. However, despite all the changes that have occurred since their inaugural episode, the Scotts haven't let fame go to their heads. "We maintain our core values: quality, respect, families," Jonathan asserted.