They have some great times together over five seasons, but there are a few things about the Brady Bunch that still don’t make sense.
The Brady Bunch is a classic 1970s sitcom filled with flower power and old-fashioned family fun. The show was one of the first to feature a second marriage and a blended family. America has grown accustomed to images of the six Brady kids: Greg, Marcia, Peter, Jan, Bobby, and Cindy.
With Mike and Carol Brady and cheerful housekeeper Alice, those kids are in good hands. They have some great times together over five seasons, but there are a few things about the Brady family that still don’t make sense.
The Brady parents each come from previous marriages, but no one ever talks about it. Mike is a widow, but no one explains whether Carol got divorced or lost her husband. The kids seem to adjust rather quickly to living with strangers, and they never mention their other parents.
After the first season, it feels like Mike and Carol have been together all along and actually had all those kids together.
The Brady kids are often made fun of for their optimism. The kids might not get along perfectly at all times, but they’re generally perky and like to work together. The children all become upset at different points, but their happiness outshines any troubles. The extra cheer might be an escape for viewers, but it’s not realistic.
Alice is the Brady family’s faithful housekeeper, and Carol clearly can’t manage without her. Alice is up for any challenge and does far more for this family than cook and clean the kitchen. She is sometimes underappreciated, but she rarely lets it get to her. Alice’s ability to keep her cool with all those kids is unbelievable.
The fact that The Brady Bunch lasted as long as it did is a miracle, and there is a big reason for that. His name is Mike Brady, played by Robert Reed. The Brady patriarch is a loving dad who tries to treat all the children fairly and help them with their problems. The sad truth is that Robert Reed was profoundly unhappy in the role. He hid his homosexuality and felt uncomfortable in romantic scenes with Florence Henderson, who played Carol Brady.
The Direction Of The Series
Each season of The Brady Bunch has its merits, but the later days of the show start to take a strange turn. The fifth season features a less than favorable character, Cousin Oliver. The little boy is a cute kid, but it doesn’t make sense for him to live with the Bradys after all this time. Another weird occurrence is the back-door pilot for a new series that didn’t make it off the ground. The episode in question is called “Kelly’s Kids,” and it poorly handles a storyline on racism.
The Show’s Ending
By the fifth season, the tension between Robert Reed and creator Sherwood Schwartz had mounted. Reed was furious with a storyline in which Greg Brady accidentally dyes his hair orange before his high school graduation. As a result, Reed did not appear in the episode, and it was the final episode of the series. It’s a melancholy tale, and a better final episode would have made sense.
The Musical Connection
Music is an important part of the legacy of the Brady kids. A couple of their hits endure, like “Time to Change” and “It’s a Sunshine Day.” Those kids are a breath of fresh air, even if their music isn’t exactly soothing. They get an unexpected amount of exposure as their characters in the recording studio and on stage. It doesn’t totally fit with the rest of the show–perhaps the writers were just trying to compete with The Partridge Family.
How could any Brady fan forget when Greg was Johnny Bravo? The get-up was Greg’s attempt at making it big in the music industry, apart from his younger siblings.
He definitely gets a big head during this time, which reflected the real-life attitude of actor Barry Williams as the show drew to a close. The name, the look, and the tunes of Johnny Bravo just don’t make much sense.
The Kids’ Immaturity
All the Brady kids have their woes. Peter is trying to become a man, Greg thinks he’s “the man,” Jan has middle child syndrome, and Marcia is dramatic. As for the youngest Bradys, they just stay very young. Bobby is the youngest boy in age, and Cindy is the youngest girl. Instead of letting Bobby and Cindy grow up a little, the show seems to purposefully keep them looking as young as possible.
All Those Spin-offs
Even a devoted Brady fan might not be able to name every single spin-off that came of the series. It started with a brief animated series called The Brady Kids which ran concurrently with the live-action series. Then The Brady Bunch Hour came about shortly after the first series ended. Believe it or not, there were even more series (including an attempt at a drama) and a slew of theatrical and TV movies. The spin-offs and sequels are a fun part of Brady history, but one might wonder how the cast agreed to do it all so many times.