Follow TV Tropes


Series / Brady Bunch Spin Offs

Go To
"And the family changed, as all American Families do...children grow up, get married, host variety shows and turn into cartoons."
Narrator, Brady - An American Chronicle

Next to fellow Paramount production Star Trek, The Brady Bunch most likely holds the title for Most Attempted Spinoffs. Here then is (as TV Land once put it) ... The Wonder of Brady.


    open/close all folders 

    The Brady Kids 

     The Brady Bunch Hour 
The Brady Bunch Variety Hour (also known as The Brady Bunch Hour) was an ABC show from 1976-1977 that had the family move to New York and produce their own Variety Show. It might be the most infamous spin off. It lasted nine episodes.

The Brady Bunch Hour contains examples of:

  • Beware the Nice Ones: Ann B. Davis, when it came to having to work with Rip Taylor. In a later memoir by Susan Olsen, it was contended that Davis absolutely did not like Taylor (due to the very adult content of his stand-up comedy act) and refused to even so much as acknowledge him other than what was needed for the show. Taylor, who was a fan of Davis beforehand, was puzzled at her attitude toward him and for the rest of her life, Davis refused to talk about working on the show.
  • Canon Discontinuity: This series was never mentioned in later spin offs.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf: As a group. That said, Susan Olsen, Geri Reischl and Robert Reed had some semblance of musical talent, while Florence Henderson, Barry Williams and Maureen McCormick all had genuine singing talent, and even Ann B. Davis (in her few solos) did a laudable job. Mike Lookinland was both an excellent vocalist and instrumentalist, but had two left feet when it came to dancing, which was the main reason he didn't want to do this show. Chris Knight, however, did a laughably bad cover (with Collette, one of the Krofft puppets) of "Sing" (yes, the Sesame Street song that also was done by The Carpenters); by his own admission, he is not a singer.
  • Puppet Show: Of the Sid & Marty Krofft variety.
  • Rearrange the Song: By playing it with kazoos.
  • '70s Hair: See the page image for some late-70s hairstyles in all their, um, glory.

     The Brady Brides 
The series about what happened after Marcia and Jan became adults, which ran for 10 episodes. It began with a 1981 Made-for-TV Movie titled The Brady Girls Get Married. Jan falls in love with a college professor named Phillip Covington III, while Marcia falls for a toy salesman named Wally Logan. They decide to have a double wedding right in the Bradys' house. Hilarity Ensues since, among other issues, the two brides have extremely different ideas of what kind of wedding they want.

The Brady Girls Get Married contains examples of:

  • Five-Episode Pilot: The movie got divided up into the first three episodes of The Brady Brides.
  • Fourth Date Marriage: Marcia and Wally are acquainted for a very short time before getting engaged.
  • Parental Marriage Veto: Sort of, but not in the usual way. Mike and Carol are very pleased when Jan and longtime boyfriend Phillip announce their engagement, but they hesitate to encourage them to get married right away. Why? Because they think Marcia really ought to get married first, and she doesn't even have a boyfriend.
  • Reunion Show: The only project to successfully reunite the whole "Bunch".
  • Wedding Day: Naturally.

The sitcom The Brady Brides picked up where The Brady Girls Get Married left off. Marcia and Jan have married their respective boyfriends, and the four of them must now share a house. The husbands don't get along.

The Brady Brides contains examples of:

  • Expository Theme Tune: A rearranged version of the Brady Bunch theme song. "It's a new life for two girls named Brady/who have left the Bunch to make it on their own."
    • Also wedding bells sound with "That's the way they both became The Brady Brides."
  • Game Show Appearance: The Newlywed Game, naturally.
  • Modesty Apron: In one of the earliest episodes, Wally - who sleeps in the nude - goes down to the kitchen in the middle of the night for a glass of milk. When the rest of the household ends up joining him there, he dons one of these. It's pink, of course, for extra laughs.
  • Nosy Neighbor: The one thing that the husbands always had in common was their mutual dislike of their uptight neighbor. In the above-mentioned apron episode, Wally moons her.
  • Slobs vs. Snobs: A large amount of the show's conflict came from the very laid-back Wally trying to coexist with the incredibly tight-assed Philip, with Marcia and Jan each taking her respective husband's side. In one episode, their mom is trying to play peacemaker:
    Marcia: "Have you ever met a man... who rinses off the garbage before he throws it away?"
    Jan: "At least my husband throws it away. Yours keeps it around for old times sake!"
  • This Is My Side
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Wally and Marcia. Dear God, Wally and Marcia.

     A Very Brady Christmas 
The 1988 Made-for-TV Movie A Very Brady Christmas saw the now-adult Brady Kids reunite with their parents, and stands out as one of the most somber Brady Bunch works. There is a great deal of tension between the various branches. Jan and Phillip are having marital problems; Marcia's husband Wally has lost his job and doesn't want anyone to know; Greg's adored wife decides to spend Christmas with her own family instead of the Bradys; Bobby wants to quit his job and become a race car driver; Peter and his girlfriend are dancing around the possibility of engagement; and Cindy wanted to go on a skiing trip with her college roommate instead of coming home. Midway through the actual Christmas celebration, just as it seems like all the tension has finally been resolved, Mike gets a call to a building site, where the construction is threatening to collapse and kill another architect's workers. He gets trapped inside himself, leaving the family waiting for news.

A Very Brady Christmas contains examples of:

  • Babies Ever After: Greg and Marcia both have children, who attend the festivities.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Peter and his girlfriend are having this issue regarding proposing. They finally resolve it by each saying "Will you marry me?" to the other at the same time.
  • Cerebus Syndrome
  • Christmas Songs: During the dramatic climax, while the Bradys are waiting to find out if Mike will be recovered alive from the collapsing building, Cindy randomly recalls the Christmas Episode in which she asked Santa Claus to restore Carol's voice in time for her to sing in church on Christmas. This leads to a group sing-along of "O Come All Ye Faithful." Mike hears them and is able to follow the sound to an escape route.
  • Christmas Special
  • Easily Forgiven: Jan and Phillip and their marital woes (they simply stopped communicating). Also, Alice, when Sam walks out on her after having met a younger woman (at a trade convention), and then shows up (dressed as Santa) at the Bradys during Christmas dinner, admitting to Alice he made a mistake and would she take him back ... to which Alice (of course) says yes.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: Cindy's plot point is that she can't make her parents acknowledge that she's an adult just like her brothers and sisters. Despite being a college student, they tell her to come home (instead of asking like they did for everyone else) and even seat her at the kids' table with her niece and nephews.
  • Shout-Out: The concluding remarks by the reporter who is covering the scene at the construction site.
    Reporter: I just happened to notice the street sign. Looks like this was another miracle on 34th Street!
  • Sleeping with the Boss: Peter is in a relationship with his boss, which makes him feel like less of a man.

     The Bradys 
Capitalizing on the success of A Very Brady Christmas, the characters received another TV series, The Bradys, in 1990. It also stands out as one of their most somber works. It lasted nine episodes.

The Bradys contains examples of:

  • The Alcoholic: Marcia.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: The original show was a sitcom, this was a full-out melodrama.
  • Rearrange the Song: "Here's the story of the family Brady/A man and wife whose kids are all now grown."
    • Even with only nine episodes, the show managed to produce two versions of the theme... one instrumental, the other sung by Florence Henderson.

    Brady: An American Chronicle 
To help promote the 1995 movie, cable channel TV Land created this special in the style of Ken Burns Baseball and Civil War documentaries, complete with grainy black and white photos, white letter on black background title cards, and experts in the social importance of all things Brady. Featured cameos of Davy Jones and Susan Olsen in character.

Brady: An American Chronicle contains examples of:

  • Abraham Lincoln: At one point, Lincoln's "A house divided" speech is contrasted with a similar speech by Mike.
  • Affectionate Parody: Of Ken Burns "Civil War" miniseries.
    Narrator: "Tonight, TV Land presents this 18 part miniseries... each chapter condensed into the following half hour presentation."
  • Book-Ends: Quotes by Abraham Lincoln begin and end the special.
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry: The segment Jan Verses Marcia allows everyone to explain why they prefer Marcia or Jan. Well... everyone except Slash from Guns 'n Roses.
    Slash: Cindy... young Cindy. I wish she was that age now... (Laughs)
  • In Memoriam: The last credit is a picture of Robert Reed with the caption "Dedicated to The Man Named Brady"
  • Narrator
  • Rearrange the Song: With a slow and reverent instrumental version.
  • Shout-Out: References to earlier spin offs.
    Narrator: "And the family changed, as all American families do... children grow up, get married, host variety shows and turn into cartoons."
  • Significant Reference Date: Brady events are documented as happening on their original broadcast dates.
  • This Is My Side: A show example is contrasted with the Mason/Dixon Line.

    The Brady Bunch Movies 

     Growing Up Brady 
The Made-for-TV Movie Growing Up Brady aired on NBC in 2000, and depicts some backstage dramas experienced by the original cast and crew of The Brady Bunch.

Growing Up Brady contains examples of:

  • As Himself:
    • Barry Williams and Brady Bunch creator/producer Sherwood Schwartz in the film's bookend sequences.
    • 1970s publicity stills of Williams are used In-Universe, which can be jarring given that the actor playing teen Williams doesn't really look like the real life Williams.
  • Based on a True Story: Barry Williams' book about the production of The Brady Bunch.
  • Oddball in the Series: This movie's inclusion in a DVD collection containing The Brady Bunch Movie and its sequels can make it seem like this.
  • Real-Life Relative: Mike Lookinland (Bobby) himself participated on the making of the film, albeit on the other side of the camera. In the movie, he was played by his son Scott.
  • Remake Cameo: Mike Lookinland (Bobby) as a cameraman. Truth in Television as he did indeed work behind the camera after the show ended.

Alternative Title(s): The Brady Bunch Hour, The Bradys, The Brady Bunch Variety Hour


Example of: