The Bright Sessions Wiki

Dr. Joan Katherine Bryant[2] is the main character in the podcast. She is a therapist for the strange and unusual who is calculative and kind. She usually goes by her codename Dr. Bright.


As a child and throughout her academic history, it was plain to see that Joan valued intelligence. While her classmates prioritized popularity, she prioritized learning and was bullied in middle school because of it. Thankfully, things were a bit better in high school, where she took all-honors classes and so only had honors classmates.

After graduating high school, Joan went on to college (likely pursuing a degree in psychology). She went on to graduate school, where she met Vanessa Turner, a telekinetic atypical. In graduate school, she was also contacted by the AM and eventually started to work for them as she pursued her PhD.

Little is known of her and brother Mark's parents. At some point in time, the parents witnessed their best friends' violent death by an atypical thus, causing their fear of the supernatural abilities. It is assumed that they left their children in the US and moved to Europe around when Joan was a teenager, they currently live in Canada, because of Mark's ability and there has been little to no contact between them and their children. The father is a military history enthusiast.

Dr. Bright's letter of acceptance into The AM. Some parts have been blacked-out due to confidentiality. [2]


Joan is not an atypical. However, she is very good at recognizing and assisting those with atypical powers and grew up with a very strong atypical sibling.

Joan is the only person mentioned who can (partially) resist Damien's influence without the help of an atypical ability or the AM's serum. She relies solely on willpower and her own intelligence to recognize and reject Damien's wants.

Joan also appears to be a calming presence to empaths, possibly due to her introversion, her levelheadedness, or her cold, analytical mind. Coincidentally, Chloe finds Joan's mind unpleasant to read due to its lack of warmth.


Joan is tied with Sam as the shortest character in the main cast of the original series[3] and she wears corrective lenses for reading.[4] She has at least one tattoo, though it is unknown what or where it is. Joan is described in The Infinite Noise as being "perfectly dressed" by Caleb.

Joan is canonically Asian American as of Some Faraway Place. Given that her voice actress is Japanese, that is typically how she is portrayed.


Mark Bryant[]

Mark Bryant is Joan Bryant's atypical brother. They have always been close siblings, even as children. They kept a secret notebook[5] where they would talk about anything and everything, and ask each other for advice. Entries usually ended with "love, Joanie" or "love, Mark." This notebook is still with Joan to this day.

Sam Barnes[]

Samantha Barnes is a patient and friend of Joan. She is a Class D-9/10 atypical with the ability to time travel corporeally. They have forged a tentative friendship, with Joan taking Sam to see Rogue One for her birthday, but Sam regularly lashes out at Joan.

Owen Green[]

Agent Owen Green is Joan's ex-boyfriend. Before the events of the series, they dated for three years while Joan was still working at the AM, Joan dumped him after learning about Mark's imprisonment on Tier 5, which Owen was aware of and involved with. Throughout the course of the main series, when Joan has her own practice, Owen is working as an administrator for the AM and meets with Joan regularly on the organization's behalf. It is clear that he still has feelings for her, despite her clear dislike for him.

In episode 55, Joan works with Owen, who is now challenging the systems in place at the AM, to dig up information on Wadsworth that could have her fired. When Owen is promoted to AM director, he asks Joan (along with Sam) to co-direct with him.

In The AM Archives, Joan and Owen are AM co-directors. Though Owen is still in love with her, Joan still has not forgiven him for his past work with the AM and the two frequently butt heads on how to run the facility.

In Homecoming, Joan tells Sam about what drew her to Owen in the first place, saying that he was a good listener who seemed to care about her problems. She tells a story in which Owen had a floral mural painted on the brick wall that her window looked out on after she expressed to him that she hated the view.

During Helen's break-out, Joan shows concern for Owen-- especially after he is injured-- treating him nicer than she had before (though, when he comments on this, she responds defensively). When Joan is kidnapped by Helen and used to lure Owen into a trap, Joan tries to warn him, but he comes running to save her anyways, and is stabbed by Helen. Joan tries to stop the bleeding, but is unable. As he dies, she tries to tell him that she forgives him. His last words are to tell her that he loves her and needs her to be happy.

In The College Tapes Joan makes references grieving Owen and is, apparently, counting the days since his death.

Ellie Wadsworth[]

Caleb Michaels[]

Caleb Michaels is Joan's Class A-7 patient with the ability to sense and feel other people's emotions. Chloe has commented that Caleb reminds Dr. Bright of Mark.

Chloe Turner[]

Chloe Turner is Joan's Class A-3 patient with the ability to hear other people's thoughts. She is the daughter of Joan's telekinetic friend, Vanessa Turner.


Robert Gorham (Damien) is a Class E-3 who can impose his want on others. He made Joan want to be his therapist so he could learn information about other atypical patients.

Jackson Crawford[]

Vanessa Turner[]



  • Joan is the second character conceptualized after Sam[6].
  • Joan was initially written as a villain, but Julia gave more nuance to the character when she acted it out[6].
  • In middle school, Joan disliked P.E. "because we have to wear shorts."[5]
  • Joan really disliked other kids copying off her tests, and had displayed minor violence against cheaters[5].
  • Joan got her driver's license while in high school. (But she didn't have a car to drive.)[5]
  • Joan considers religion "an interesting area of study". [7]
  • Joan's official Myers-Briggs personality type is ISTJ. [8]
  • Joan's favorite coffee drink is a nonfat vanilla latte, though she rarely indulges in it.
  • In grad school, Joan frequented a bar called "The Eagle and Crown."