Hello again readers, family and friends! Today we review another fun installment of The Brady Bunch. “Getting Greg’s Goat” is just a fun story with some crazy antics. I recall not thinking much of this episode when I was younger, but watching it again for this review, I found I enjoyed it. I found it interesting that Robert Reed directed this episode. I thought by Season 5, he and the Schwartz family were at such odds that such a privilege would not have been granted. There is no moral lesson or over the top dramatics in the story. It is just a crazy situation with the Brady family. Let’s get started reviewing “Getting Greg’s Goat”!
The story begins well past the rest of the family’s bedtime. The establishing shot of the house looks to be a static picture instead of filmed footage of the Brady house at night. Greg is sneaking in the house and speaking to someone (or something) off camera. Upon determining the coast is clear, he ushers a goat named Racquel into the house. She is sporting a Coolidge High sash. Greg takes the animal all the way up to his room. Greg has taken part in the stealing of Coolidge High’s mascot!
Okay friends and readers, what kind of mascot is a goat? Was the football team for Coolidge High known as the Coolidge High Goats? Nannies? A Google search for this episode shared that goats are part of the goat-antelope subfamily Caprinae. Coolidge High Caprinae? I doubt it. Also, did any of you attend a high school that had a live animal as the mascot? Or know somebody who did? I never experienced such in my own high school days. I’ve only seen high schools with live animal mascots on television.
The next morning, Greg awakens to find Racquel dining on his history paper and tennis shoe. Greg goes downstairs to fetch the critter a more suitable breakfast. I find it hard to believe he would leave the goat completely alone and unhindered in his bedroom. It could have come down the stairs and started bucking at the attic/bedroom door. At the breakfast table, a funny exchange occurs. After stacking up his plate with too much food, Greg claims nerves about the game later that night have him up early. Mike and Carol discuss how the newspaper shared the mascot thievery taking place between Westdale High and Coolidge High. Mike recalls his own mascot stealing antics and Greg defends his father’s actions to Carol who finds the entire thing foolish. Here we learn that Westdale has a bear cub as the mascot. In the previous episode, , we learned that the Westdale team is The Bears. Did Westdale High keep a baby bear around for a few months each year until it was too big to use as the mascot any longer?
The hilarity continues as Bobby finds himself in need of a towel. He enters the linen closet where towels abound. From here, through an air vent, he hears the goings on up in Greg’s room. With this scene in the linen closet, we have seen the last room of the Brady abode we will see in the original series. Perhaps this is where Great Grandma Hutchins-Brady slept when she visited. Peter joins Bobby in listening in on Greg and Racquel. In a funny line, Peter says Bobby’s listening in is an invasion of privacy. He adds that doesn’t mean they can’t listen in, just that it is an invasion of privacy. Naturally, the boys think that Racquel is a female human and not a female goat. While they snoop on Greg, Jan and Cindy both venture to the linen closet in search of a washcloth. To rid the girls of their presence, Peter lies and says his snake from a science project is in the linen closet. As clear as the boys can hear Greg up in his room, it is surprising Greg can’t hear the boys down in the linen closet.
The true nature of Greg’s female guest is made known to Marcia. She knocks on Greg’s door to see if he has anything that needs to go to the cleaners. Mike must have made a really good salary to be able to afford dry cleaning for the kids! Greg brings Marcia upstairs and reveals the presence of the goat. It is a good thing he does too. As Marcia goes downstairs, she encounters Alice. Alice shares she is bound for Greg’s room to do a linen swap and straighten up. Marcia discourages such and Alice agrees to wait.
When Alice enters the linen closet, she too hears the actions up in Greg’s room. It sounds like Greg is saying “Alice, you be a good girl or else”. Readers, please confirm if I heard this correctly. Why Greg would suddenly call Racquel Alice is not clear. Maybe he was finishing a sentence saying, “We don’t want to upset Alice, you be a good girl or else.” Mike then enters the linen closet as he thought he heard Alice speaking to him. Boy, this linen closet sure is a high traffic storage space! Mike also hears the events taking place in Greg’s room and decides immediate action is needed. He summons Greg down to his den.
Another funny exchange takes place in the den. Mike is lecturing Greg about hiding Racquel in his room. Mike is talking about Greg having a young lady up there and Greg thinks he knows about the goat. Mike is aghast to find that Racquel was in Greg’s room all night. In a peculiar turn of the conversation, Greg refers to Racquel as a beast. The line would have been just as funny if Greg said goat. Here is where it is made clear there is a communication gap and Racquel’s true nature is made known. As I watched this scene, it occurred to me this entire episode could have been based on Mike and Carol’s misunderstood belief that Racquel was a female classmate. I am really glad it was not as the simple plot of a stolen mascot made for a funnier story. In a nice touch to the episode, while Mike can’t condone Greg’s action and states they are not running a goat motel, he does seem kind of proud of Greg’s stealing Coolidge High’s mascot.
Soon, we learn that Carol is en route to an emergency PTA meeting. The mascot stealing has gotten out of hand! The boys’ vice-principle, Mr. Binkley, has gone as far as attending the PTA meeting on a Saturday! As Carol leaves for the meeting she shares her relief that the Brady boys are not caught up in such hooliganry. With this Mike takes immediate action. He suggests a truce and a mutual exchange of mascots between Westdale and Coolidge. To both he and Greg’s relief, the exchange is agreed to.
With Greg out of the house, Bobby and Peter decide to snoop some more on Greg’s attic room dealings. As they listen at the vent, they hear all four of the goat’s feet hit the ground and surmise he has two ladies up there. With their curiosity peaked to the max, the pair venture upstairs. Since they did not close the door behind them, the goat escapes into the house! As they give chase, the goat passes all three girls on the stairs. It escapes outside the house, unnoticed by Alice.
In a most inconvenient turn of events, the PTA group meeting over stolen mascots arrives at the Brady home. The original meeting place, Mrs. Gould’s house, had to be changed. As the ladies all enter, Carol offers a tour of the house. Just before setting out for the tour, Mike and Greg arrive home. Greg asks that the ladies not tour his room as it is just a half finished attic that really should not be used as living space. Just kidding of course, he says the room is a mess and should not be seen by company. Just as the tour begins, the doorbell rings. Greg answers and finds his vice-principal at the door. This guy seems like the stuffiest of administrators. He calls Greg “Gregory” and seems none too happy in being at the Brady house. He just seems like one of those perpetually irritated and unhappy people.
Mr. Binkley was played by Orville Reddenbacher, the famous popcorn icon! Again, I am kidding. He was played by George D. Wallace. He had a long career in TV and film. He appeared on Gunsmoke 3 times, with each appearance in a different decade. He was a regular on Sons and Daughters. His final appearance on TV was a 2004 episode of Joan of Arcadia. George Wallace died in 2005.
As the group tours Mike’s den, the goat reenters the house. Greg gives chase. He has to dodge the most inconveniently placed hallway chairs. My annoyance with hallways chairs has been expressed in previous blogs. This episode saw it renewed once again! Maybe Alice moved the chairs out there as she prepared to sweep or vacuum the bedrooms.
The group heads upstairs and the only really questionable moment of the episode occurs. After chasing the goat through the boys’ and girls’ rooms Greg decides to hide with it in the linen closet. The door to his room was just as close by! He had all ready requested the tour not visit his bedroom, so going up there with the goat would have solved the problem. However, we’d have not gotten the funny conclusion we did had Greg taken a sensible course of action. A funny alternative that comes to my mind would be Greg trying to go to his room and the door knob coming off.
Carol looks to show off her pride and joy, a walk in linen closet. Upon opening the door, she sees Greg and Racquel inside and immediately halts the closet viewing. The group then goes to tour the master bedroom. Greg attempts his escape, but encounters Alice coming up the stairs. Somehow, Alice’s mop and bucket trip Greg and cause Racquel to escape to the master bedroom. More hilarity ensues as Greg chases the goat into the bedroom and gets caught up in a shower curtain. Then Greg finally traps the goat in the closet, without realizing Mrs. Gould had hidden in there to escape the beast. Mr. Binkley advises Greg that the poor woman is in there. He tells Greg he hopes he has a good explanation for this to which Greg replies he does too.
The PTA ladies were played by Sandra Gould, Margarita Cordova and Selma Archerd. Sandra Gould had a long career in Hollywood. She was a regular on I Married Joan and Bewitched. She appeared on many other classic TV shows. Her final appearance was in a 1999 episode of Boy Meets World. She died the same year. PTA Lady # 1 was played by Margarita Cordova. I was surprised at the acting resume she has. With so few lines, I figured she was some random extra used for this episode. She has been acting since 1958 and was a regular on Santa Barbara and Sunset Beach. Her last credited role on IMDB was in a 2006 episode of Criminal Minds. The second PTA lady, referred to by Carol as Selma, was played by Selma Archerd. This episode of The Brady Bunch was her first credited role. She has played many small parts through the years and was a regular on Melrose Place. Her last credited role was in a 2000 episode of Charmed.
All is well as the goat fiasco is concluded. The PTA ladies leave and laugh off the whole incident. Mr. Binkley doles out a 5,000 word essay on the ills of mascot stealing as Greg’s punishment. As the punishment is discussed, we learn that Mr. Binkley was suspended for a month when he stole a rival mascot in his own high school days. We finally see the man crack at smile at this memory.
The epilogue has Carol and Alice cleaning Greg’s room. One might think that cleaning up after the smelly animal would be part of Greg’s punishment for taking it. Maybe Carol and Alice wanted to make certain the job was done well. Greg reveals that Racquel munched on a pair of his pants.
Thank you for reviewing “Getting Greg’s Goat” with me! It is a fun episode without much to question or critique. Greg hiding in the closet and not hearing Bobby and Peter’s discussion while they were inside of it were the only things I really found questionable. Your own thoughts are most welcome! Next week, it is vacation time again. We will not be reviewing an episode. However, there will be two blogs posted next week. On Wednesday, there will be a brief discussion on the future of this blog. We are in season five and running out of episodes to review! On Friday, a review of The Brady Kids cartoon series will be posted for you to read. The episodes being reviewed are on YouTube if you care to watch them. They are “It’s All Greek To Me”, “17 Wings” and “You Took The Words Right Out Of My Tape”. I look forward to your thoughts on this blog and those being posted next week. See you in two weeks!