In today’s Sunday Special, we take a look at the roles the stars of the Brady Bunch took on after the show’s initial run ended. Excluded from this review are those roles where the actors continued playing their Brady Bunch roles in another incarnation of the show or appeared in some sort of parody or spoof of their signature role. This review notes only the things I have seen myself and is not all inclusive. If you remember any cast member in a post Brady role and would like to share your thoughts, please do so! Either share your memories in the comments section for this blog or on the original post in the Facebook group Here’s The Story: Every Episode of the Brady Bunch Reviewed.
Robert Reed – We might as well start with the actor who found the most work onscreen in his post-Brady years, Robert Reed. He was the ideal choice to play the father of a diseased John Travolta in “The Boy In The Plastic Bubble”. He seemed really out of place in the epic 1970s mini-series “Roots”. It’s hard to imagine Mike Brady as a slave owner, but that’s the role he played in Roots. He continued working through the 1980s and per IMDB.com has a television credit the year he passed away. The last thing I remember seeing him in was a commercial where he was endorsing some product. He even had to deliver the line, “On the Brady Bunch, we had all our problems solved in half an hour.” Despite years of work after the series ended, he would always be Mike Brady to the masses.
Florence Henderson – I swear this woman ages at half the speed of the rest of the population. Every time I see her in a guest appearance of some sort, she looks fantastic. In my own viewing experience though, I’ve never seen her in another acting role post-Brady Bunch. I recall her appearing as herself on The Weakest Link (along with all the other surviving Bradys) and on Dancing With the Stars. There was also a time in the 1980s when she appeared in commercials for Wesson Cooking Oil. She’s stayed active and young the past 40 years, but not acted in anything that I found worth remembering.
Ann B. Davis – Apparently, her busy career was pre-Brady Bunch. She was a regular on a 1950s television program titled “The Bob Cummings Show”. Her post Brady Bunch acting career appears to have been mostly playing “Alice” in spinoffs and spoofs. She passed away in 2014.
Barry Williams – The post-Brady years have seen Barry Williams’ write a book about his time on the Brady Bunch and play Greg Brady again many times. His most memorable post Brady role for me is when he played, well, Barry Williams. In a half acting/half appearing as himself role, he returned to his singing roots on Full House. Jesse had been booted from his own band and it became Barry and The Rippers. The band finally found success with their new front man. I can’t recall if there were any Brady references on this episode. It would be fitting as it was the original Full House Reviewed blog that helped inspire the current Brady Bunch blog you are reading today!
Maureen McCormick– Maureen has also written a book about her experiences during her Brady Bunch career and post Brady life. She’s also had at least one country music album post-Brady Bunch. The only thing I remember seeing her in was an episode of “Insight” where she was smoking pot in a van. She also had a short hairdo that looked nice on her. “Insight” was a show that espoused Catholic values. I know very little about it. Per IMDB, Ann B. Davis appeared in an episode. Readers, if you know more about “Insight”, please share some details with us!
Christopher Knight – All I have here is an episode of “CHiPs”. He was John Baker’s never before seen or never seen again nephew. Apparently, despite having an uncle in law enforcement, Chris’s character still found himself heading down the wrong path. Per IMDB, he’s done plenty of other non-Brady things, but I can’t recall seeing any of them.
Eve Plumb – While winning praise and critical acclaim for her role in Dawn: Portrait of a Teenage Runaway, which I’ve never seen, this did not set her on a new path to stardom. Readers, if any of you have seen this, please share your thoughts. The only post Brady appearances I am familiar with are her appearance as Fudge’s mom on the series “Fudge”. The Fudge series by Judy Blume was a favorite as a kid, but by the time this show was on, I’d outgrown my interest in them. Her other appearance I am familiar with is the only one on this entire list that was a feature film. She played the wife of a black revolutionary in the 1980s comedy “I’m Gonna Get You Sucka”. The entire movie is very funny, her scenes included. In a backdoor reference to her past, her scene in the movie has an off screen television playing The Brady Bunch theme.
Mike Lookinland – I got nothing here. I’ve only seen him as Bobby Brady on the small screen.
Susan Olsen – She has suffered the same fate as Mike Lookinland. I never saw her in another show, movie or even a commercial, unless it was as Cindy Brady.
Allan Melvin – I never saw him exclusively as Sam the Butcher. He’d appeared on The Andy Griffith Show in a variety of different roles. He was a regular on Gomer Pyle, USMC as Sargent Hacker. In his post Brady life, he was a semi-regular on All In The Family and Archie Bunker’s Place. He died in 2008.
Robbie Rist – You will find when we reach those last five episodes, that unlike so many of my fellow fans, I don’t hate Cousin Oliver. I am not necessarily a fan of him, but I don’t loathe the episodes that include him. I remember seeing him in the years that followed as a kid auditioning for a role on What’s Happening! Like fellow Brady Bunch alumni, Christopher Knight, he was on an episode of “CHiPs”. Actually, he was on three of them. The one I remember seeing him on involved him having a pet snake. Of all the Brady Bunch alumni, he is the only one who had a role on a series I watched regularly after the Brady Bunch ended. He was Wizz on the 1980s cartoon “Kidd Video”. While not very memorable itself, I do remember watching it. I thought his double guitar was really cool.
Well friends, fans and readers, this concludes my own post-Brady viewing history. Please share with us some roles you remember our beloved Bradys and their cohorts taking on after the show ended.