Nicholas Brendon

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Nicholas Brendon
File:Nicholas Brendon 2011.jpg
Brendon in San Diego Comic-Con 2011.
Born Nicholas Brendon Schultz
(1971-04-12) April 12, 1971 (age 48)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Actor
Years active 1993–present
Spouse(s) Tressa di Figlia (m.2001-2007)
Moonda Tee (m. 2014-2015)

Nicholas Brendon (born Nicholas Brendon Schultz, April 12, 1971) is an American actor and writer. He is best known for playing Xander Harris in the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997–2003) and Kevin Lynch in Criminal Minds (2007–present). Since 2014 he has been writing on the Buffy Season 10 comic book.[1]

Early life

Nicholas Brendon was born Nicholas Brendon Schultz on April 12, 1971, in Los Angeles,[2] three minutes after his identical twin brother, Kelly Donovan.[3]

As a child, he aspired to become a professional baseball player, but he "lost the passion for it" at 20.[4] Instead, he decided to pursue acting in an attempt to overcome his stuttering problem,[5] which had first become apparent at age seven or eight, and had made him so fearful of speaking or interacting with strangers that he did not begin dating until 21 or 22. Brendon comments, "Every day I still have to remind myself to slow down and concentrate. Constant repetition of tongue-twisters was like lifting weights for me, but patience and persistence have paid off."[6][7][8]

He gave up acting after two years because he "couldn't stand the politics in Hollywood." Brendon returned to school to study medicine, which didn't work out; he also tried his hand at a variety of odd jobs, including plumber's assistant, veterinary janitor, day care counselor, waiter, and production assistant for the television show Dave's World.[9][10]


Brendon with Anthony Stewart Head at the 2004 Oakland Super SlayerCon.

At the age of 25, Brendon decided to return to acting. He signed with a manager and obtained the role of Xander Harris on Buffy the Vampire Slayer three months later.[11] He appeared in all but one of the 144 episodes in the series, and even shared the screen with his twin, Kelly Donovan, when his character was split in two in the fifth-season episode "The Replacement".[12]

After the series ended in 2003, Brendon joined the cast of the Fox television pilot The Pool at Maddy Breakers. The series was not picked up by the network. In 2004, he co-starred in his first ABC Family movie, Celeste in the City. The following year, he returned to Fox as part of the cast of Kitchen Confidential, based on the book by chef Anthony Bourdain. Thirteen episodes were made, but the series was canceled on December 9 of the same year after the fourth episode aired, due to low ratings.

In 2006, he voiced Huntsboy #89 for season 2 of the animated series American Dragon: Jake Long. That same year, he reunited with his former Buffy the Vampire Slayer co-star Charisma Carpenter in the ABC Family TV movie Relative Chaos.

From July 26 through August 30, 2006, Brendon co-starred with Noah Wyle in the play Lobster Alice at the Blank Theatre Company in Los Angeles. He subsequently appeared in the Blank Theatre's annual Young Playwrights Festival[13] and its productions of The SantaLand Diaries (November 20 – December 20, 2009),[14] and Why Torture Is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them.[15]

In 2007, Brendon began appearing on the TV series Criminal Minds in the recurring role of FBI technical analyst Kevin Lynch.[16] He has appeared in episodes in each season since, through the tenth season.[17][18]

On September 29, 2010, he premiered his web comic Very Bad Koalas, co-created with animation director/producer Steve Loter. The comic follows the journey of two sheltered and innocent koalas experiencing a variety of people and places while on the run from the law in a 1958 Cadillac El Dorado.[19]

On October 28, 2010, Brendon began a four-episode arc on ABC's Private Practice playing Lee McHenry, a mentally disturbed man who assaults Charlotte King.

In 2014, Brendon was part of a summit for writers of Buffy the Vampire Slayer comics, which included Joss Whedon, Jane Espenson, Drew Greenberg, Andrew Chambliss and the then-incoming Buffy writer Christos Gage. He is currently involved with the show's canonical comic book series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Ten, on stories centering on his character.[20]

It was announced on August 27, 2014, that Brendon will star in the new "Untitled Web Series About a Space Traveler Who Can Also Travel Through Time" feature film along with Sylvester McCoy, Robert Picardo, Mayim Bialik, Chase Masterson, Rosearik Rikki Simons, Travis Richey, Eric Loya, and Carrie Keranen.[21]

Charity work

Brendon has done work for the Stuttering Foundation of America, which approached him around 2001,[7] and made him its honorary chairperson for its National Stuttering Awareness Week in May 2001,[6] May 2002[22] and May 2003.[23]

Personal life

On October 5, 2014, Brendon married Moonda Tee in Las Vegas.[24] They announced their separation and intention to divorce on February 14, 2015.[25]

On April 25, 2004, at a Buffy fan convention in Cleveland, Ohio, he announced that he had voluntarily entered rehab for alcoholism.[26]


In the early morning of March 17, 2010, Brendon was tasered and arrested by Los Angeles police, who confronted him in response to a call about an intoxicated individual. He allegedly swung his fists at the officers and attempted to run away, and after being subdued, was arrested for felony vandalism. He was initially held on $20,000 bail.[27][28][29] Brendon was later charged with four misdemeanors, including one count of resisting arrest, two counts of battery against a police officer, and one count of vandalism.[30]

In May 2010, he checked himself into the SOBA Recovery Center in Malibu to address his addiction to alcohol and sleeping pills.[31] On June 19, 2010, he pleaded no contest to all four charges and received a one-year suspended jail sentence, was placed on probation for 36 months, and was required to perform 10 days of community service.[32]

On October 17, 2014, Brendon, participating in the Tree City Comic Con, was arrested in a Boise, Idaho, hotel lobby, for misdemeanor charges of Malicious Injury To Property and Resisting or Obstructing Officers. According to authorities, he was booked in the Ada County Jail and released after posting bond.[33][34]

On February 16, 2015, Brendon was arrested on suspicion of grand theft by Fort Lauderdale police after he reportedly trashed his hotel room and refused to pay the bill.[35] He had been in Fort Lauderdale for a local comic convention. His spokesman released a statement shortly after the incident: "Nicholas is, unfortunately, battling a disease that many of us don't understand. ... He's sorry for his actions. ... We are aware that Nicholas' actions are of a much deeper origin - and we are working toward creating a healthy environment for him to thrive in. The past several months have been trying, and Nicholas' disease is damaging and consistently misunderstood. We are doing everything in our power at Camp Nick to assure his recovery."[36]

On March 13, 2015, Brendon was arrested again after destroying another hotel room after demanding an upgrade because he was a "TV star."[37] In an interview the next day, he said he has been struggling with depression since he was a kid and had stopped taking his medication recently, which was a mistake and culminated in his taking some sleeping pills and then going into a blackout. He said, "A lot of it has to do with my coming to terms with the stuff that I am having to deal with inside of my head which is not fun - and it's not funny, and people who make fun of it and make light of it, I wish that it doesn't happen to them." Brendon said he plans to go back to his doctor to get back on the right medication. Regarding the first day of the ALT*Con conference that he missed due to his arrest, he said, "I hate how I feel right now. I hate how I have come off. This isn't who I am." Regarding his plans to keep his commitment to appear on the second day of the ALT*Con convention in Tallahassee, Florida, he said, "These events kind of give me hope and I love meeting my fans. So, it's kind of like the refuge outside of my head."[38]

In August, 2015, Brendon appeared on the Dr. Phil Show to discuss his recent arrests and alcoholism. However, he walked off soon after the interview began. Writing on Facebook about the interview he wrote "When I was in that seat, I felt that Dr. Phil went for the jugular, talking about some of my recent mistakes, with no build up," Brendon wrote. "I felt that he wanted me to lay the darkest parts of myself on national TV right from the start, and I’m not willing to do that."[39]

On October 1, 2015, Brendon was arrested in Saratoga Springs, New York for attacking a woman in a hotel room. He was charged with felony third-degree robbery, criminal mischief and obstruction of breathing.[40][41]



Year Title Role Notes
1995 Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest Basketball Player One
2000 Psycho Beach Party Starcat
2002 Demon Island Kyle
2007 Unholy Lucas
2008 Blood on the Highway Chase Sinclair
2009 A Golden Christmas Michael
2009 My Neighbor's Secret Brent Keller
2010 The Portal Paul
2013 Big Gay Love Andy
2013 Coherence Mike
2014 Indigo Gary
2014 Attack of the Morningside Monster Mark Matthews


Year Title Role Notes
1993 Married… with Children Guy in Ray-Ray's Gang Episode: Hood 'n the Boyz
1995 Dave's World Episode: Do the Write Thing
1997–2003 Buffy the Vampire Slayer Xander Harris 143 episodes
2003 The Pool at Maddy Breaker's Movie
2004 Celeste in the City Dana Blodgett/Harrison
2005–2006 Kitchen Confidential Seth Richman 13 episodes
2006 Relative Chaos Gil Gilbert Movie
2006–2007 American Dragon: Jake Long Huntsboy No. 89 Voice
6 episodes
2007 Fire Serpent Jake Relm Movie
2007–present Criminal Minds Kevin Lynch Recurring character
2009 Without a Trace Edger Episode: Undertow
2010–2011 Private Practice Lee McHenry All in Season 4
Episode: All In The Family (Brief appearance)
Episode: Did you hear what happened to Charlotte King?
Episode: Can't Find My Way Back Home
Episode: Blind Love
2012 Hollywood Heights Dan Testa Episode: Loren and Kelly Clash
2014 Faking It Jackson Lee Recurring character

Video games

Year Title Voice role
2002 Buffy the Vampire Slayer Xander Harris
2003 Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds

Awards and nominations

  • 1998 Saturn Award for Best Genre TV Actor – Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Nominated
  • 1999 Saturn Award for Best Genre TV Actor – Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Nominated
  • 2000 Saturn Award for Best Genre TV Supporting Actor" - Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Nominated


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External links