Alan Powers is a third grade student in Mr. Ratburn's class at Lakewood Elementary School.
Brain is an anthropomorphic bear who wears a grey sweater with olive green pants (according to the promotional art on the cartoon's official website, he had on khakis instead) and brown loafers. In the books, he wears different-coloured shirts and sweaters, and blue jeans or sometimes khakis. He has clumps of hair which are brown in the books, although the cartoon depicted the hair in thin black lines in order to simplify the animation process. He wears sneakers when playing sports. His pyjamas consist of a yellow sleep shirt and orange and yellow striped pyjama bottoms, and is one of the few characters to wear detailed pyjamas in the animated series, while most other characters wore monochromatic pyjamas in order to simplify the animation process.
On formal occasions, Brain wears a charcoal or black tuxedo with two pockets on each side of the tuxedo jacket and a white tuxedo shirt with a black bow tie and matching trousers and black shoes. He also owns a grey single-breasted suit with two pockets on each side of the suit jacket. He wears a white collar shirt with a blue tie. He also wears matching grey trousers and light black shoes. He wears briefs.
He is mild-mannered and is one of the most polite characters in the series. He is an expert soccer player, despite Francine's jealousy that she was great in other sports. He is one of the few characters who are usually left-handed. His usual grade is an A that ranges between 100% and 90% as he is often considered the most intelligent student in Mr. Ratburn's class, and he often gets his work done faster than the other students.
Despite being quite well mannered, Brain sometimes has a tendency to fantasize negative and sometimes dangerous things to happen to those who have wronged him, as seen when he was defeated in a science fair by Muffy. He was formerly hydrophobic. He tends to be called upon a lot when his friends have technical difficulties but also is great fun to hang out with. In "The Wheel Deal", he suffered a leg injury and temporarily ended up in a wheelchair.
He is a big believer in the power of science and logic, but sometimes has trouble adjusting when things seemingly cannot be explained by either, or when his emotions get in the way of his logical side. After an increasing spate of bad luck, he tries to chart what's happening to him only to find that his "luck" only seems to be getting worse. Later, he is stunned when Hurricane Sadie wrecks the Ice Cream Shoppe despite his family's careful plans and preparations to prevent such an outcome. His father's words that sometimes things like this happen no matter what only make him more anxious, as he begins to fear that the worst really could happen at any time and becomes jittery at the slightest sound of wind. a therapist, as well as some more words of encouragement from his father, help him to see that he can overcome his emotions about this if he tries. His father called him the smartest, bravest and most determined person that he knows.