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Series / Brady Bunch Spin-Offs

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"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.

Spinoffs with their own pages:

Other spinoffs:

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     The Brady Bunch Hour 
The Brady Bunch Variety Hour (shortened to The Brady Bunch Hour after the pilot episode) was an ABC show from 1976-1977 that had the family move to New York and produce their own Variety Show. Yes, the cast hosted the show in-character as the Brady family. It might be the most infamous spin off, not just of The Brady Bunch but of any TV series. 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.
  • Every Episode Ending: Except the pilot, each show closed with the Bradys singing a Cover Version of "United We Stand", a 1970 hit by The Brotherhood of Man.
  • Framing Device: Officially, the concept of this show was that The Brady Bunch wasn't a sitcom, it was a Reality TV show, and the Bradys had become so famous from it that they decided to go into show business full-time. The show was also based around a Jack Benny-style Show Within a Show format.
  • Hollywood Tone-Deaf: As a group. That said, most of the cast had legitimate singing talent. Florence Henderson had been in many Broadway musicals. Barry Williams did musical theater after The Brady Bunch. Maureen McCormick had released a few solo singles alongside all the Brady Kids albums. Geri Reischl had been on tour as backing vocalist. Robert Reed (actor) had done a little musical theater pre-Brady Bunch, and Susan Olsen had some musical abilities. 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. Christopher 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. Ironically, the Brady kid with the most musical experience was Eve Plumb, whose father, Neely Plumb, was a saxophonist, Record Producer, and label executive.
  • No-Hoper Repeat: The March 28, 1977 episode aired on ABC the same night ABC was airing the Academy Awards Ceremonies. Instead of giving the show the lead-in slot to the Oscars, ABC scheduled it two hours before the Oscars in the Eastern and Central time zones, and pushed it to a late night, post-Oscars slot in the Mountain and Pacific zones. To make things worse, it was also airing opposite the NCAA basketball championship game on NBC, a highly anticipated game between traditional power North Carolina and Cinderella team Marquette. Perhaps it was just as well that no one was watching, since it was the infamous episode where Marcia was absent with no explanation for the first 15 minutes (because Maureen McCormick didn't show up for the first day of taping).
  • 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.
  • Short-Runners: Only ran for 9 episodes, with ABC choosing not to renew it. The final episode aired on May 25, 1977. A certain well-known film debuted in theaters that same day.
  • Through-the-Years Credits: The open has montages of old black-and-white stills of the cast members, before they're shown live, in color, as their current day selves. And they also invoke Flashback with the Other Darrin, as all of the "Jan" stills are of a younger Geri Reischl.
  • Variety Show: A totally bizarre mix of solo song performances, group medleys, comedy sketches, and performances by a group of synchronized swimmers.

     The Brady Brides 
The Sequel 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".

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:

  • Dolled-Up Installment: They were looking for something to do with the Brady girls and used a pitched concept for an original sitcom about two married couples that shared a house.
  • 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.
  • Naked 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 Versus 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!

     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 secretly dropped out of business school to 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:

  • Age Cut: The opening cuts from the original Brady Bunch grid, to the Very Brady Christmas title card, to a grid showing how the Bunch looked in 1988.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Happy Holidays Dress: Marcia's young daughter Jessica wears a red Christmas dress.
  • Have a Gay Old Time:
    • Marcia Brady-Logan: “Stop squirting your sister!” Mickey Logan: “I gotta make Jessica wet!”.
  • 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.
  • Vanilla Edition: First came to DVD on the last disc of 2007's The Brady Bunch: The Complete Series boxset, a disc that also contained the first episodes of The Bradys and The Brady Kids. When CBS started selling the disc by itself, in 2017, it lost those pilots, now available instead on those shows' own Complete Series DVDs.note 

     The Bradys 
Capitalizing on the success of A Very Brady Christmas, the characters received another Sequel Series, The Bradys, in 1990. It also stands out as one of their most somber works. It lasted six episodes, later compiled into three Compilation Movies.

The Bradys contains examples of:

  • Cerebus Syndrome: The original show was a sitcom, this was a full-out melodrama.
  • Rearrange the Song: Even with only six episodes, the show managed to produce three versions of the theme... two instrumental (the first uses a saxophone that is replaced with an electric guitar in the second), the third sung by Florence Henderson.
    "Here's the story of the family Brady/A mom and dad with all their children grown."

    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)
  • 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.

     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.
  • Bleached Underpants: The content of the telefilm is considerably toned down from the book (which was criticized for its rather salacious focus on the romantic escapades of the Brady kids), which is not surprising given that it aired on network television and depicts characters (if not actors) who are underage:
    • Mike Lookinland and Susan Olsen, by Olsen's own admission, had repeated makeout sessions in Tiger's doghouse, and both participants were equally enthusiastic about this. In the movie (where Lookinland is played by his own son and Lookinland himself is involved behind the camera) this is changed into a (deliberately) awkward scene of some very chaste pecking, with Olsen shown to be very reluctant. However, when Lookinland got older, his interests shifted towards Eve Plumb.
    • Both Barry Williams and Christopher Knight have an entire chapter apiece in the book about attempting to score with Maureen McCormick and Eve Plumb respectively (both were unsuccessful). For obvious reasons these are completely omitted in the telefilm.
    • Ironically the gay subtext of several vignettes in the book, which were not made explicit as Robert Reed (actor) had not yet come out of the closet (and indeed was only outed after his death), are played up in the telefilm, including the awkwardness of Reed and Florence Henderson shooting "bedroom" scenes, and Reed's frustration with his circumstances stemming in part from his closeted homosexuality.
  • First Kiss: Between Barry and Maureen. Because of its limited budget, the venue in the telefilm (at a Who concert) is decidedly less picturesque and romantic than the one in real life (at Hawaii, when they were filming there).
  • Oddball in the Series: Paramount bundled the DVD together with The Brady Bunch Movie and its sequels, despite having a more serious tone, and treating the Brady Bunch as fictional characters.
  • Real-Person Cameo: Mike Lookinland (Bobby) as a cameraman. Truth in Television as he did indeed work behind the camera after the show ended.

     A Very Brady Renovation 
In 2018, the San Fernando Valley house that was used for exterior shots in the original series went up for sale. Initially, the sellers accepted an offer by Lance Bass of *NSYNC, but at literally the last minute, HGTV stepped in and bought the house for nearly twice the listing price. The network's plans for the house? Make it as exact a replica as possible of the house in the series — exterior and interior. With the help of many HGTV personalities. And the actors who played the six Brady children. A Very Brady Renovation, premiering on September 9, 2019 to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the original series, chronicles this project.

A Very Brady Renovation provides examples of:

  • Age Cut: The opening flips the Brady Kids' squares to reveal the actors as adults.note 
  • Aspect Ratio Switch: The opening plays in 4:3, until the addition of the renovators to the grid expands the picture to widescreen.
  • Christmas Special: A Very Brady Renovation: Holiday Edition.
  • Crossover:
  • Defictionalization: Invoked in the series' premise.
  • Expository Theme Tune: "That's the way we all remade the Brady House!"
  • Hidden Depths: The former Brady Kids use their own crafting skills to directly help out the renovators.
  • Home and Garden: As the show follows the renovation of a house and its yards, it falls into this genre.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: The commercial for the "shag carpet" premiere has a microphone fly in slow-motion towards Maureen McCormick's nose, previously "bruised" when the Brady boys' football infamously hit Marcia in the face. As Maureen gives a Slow "NO!", she ducks out of the microphone's way, resulting in a Property Brother's nose getting bruised instead.
  • Rearrange the Song: The Expository Theme Tune provides yet another update of the Brady Bunch theme. Holiday Edition adds bells and chimes to sound a little more like a Christmas carol.
  • Reunion Show:
    • The first production since 2004's Still Brady After All These Years to bring all of the former Brady Kids back together.
    • An episode of A Very Brady Renovation: Behind the Build reunites the actors who played the Brady Brides' husbands.
  • Serious Business: The renovators constantly boast that they have a duty to America to keep the house as authentic as they could.
  • Shown Their Work: At the Brady Command Center, the renovators closely study Brady Bunch pictures and episodes to get all the house's details as accurately as possible.
  • Spin-Off: Has its own in the form of A Very Brady Renovation: Behind the Build, including deleted scenes from the main show, DIY projects, and Special Guests visiting the Brady House.

     Dragging the Classics: The Brady Bunch 
In this 2021 Paramount+ special, cast members from RuPaul's Drag Race and the original Brady Bunch TV show teamed up to reenact the episode "Will the Real Jan Brady Please Stand Up?," in which Jan (now played by Kylie Sonique Love) purchases a brunette wig to help distinguish herself from her golden-haired sisters.

Dragging the Classics: The Brady Bunch provides examples of:

  • Casting Gag: In The Brady Bunch Movie, RuPaul portrayed guidance counselor Mrs. Cummings, who instigates a '90s update of "Will the Real Jan Brady Please Stand Up?" by suggesting that a makeover for Jan could help the teen cope with Middle Child Syndrome. In this special, he portrays the clerk who sells a new wig to Jan.
  • Chroma Key: The special has green-screened backgrounds, which actually disappear before the Curtain Call.
  • Cross-Cast Role: Not counting instances of trans women playing cis female characters:
    • Shea Couleé as Marcia Brady.
    • RuPaul as the Wig Attendant.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: Some play during and after the end credits.
  • Race Lift: African-American RuPaul takes a role originated by Caucasian Marcia Wallace.
  • Remake Cameo:

Alternative Title(s): The Brady Bunch Hour, The Bradys, The Brady Bunch Variety Hour, A Very Brady Renovation, Growing Up Brady, The Brady Girls Get Married, A Very Brady Christmas, The Brady Brides