I’ve been on a bit of a ‘Brady Bunch’ kick lately. I don’t know why I’m saying “lately,” I’ve been on a ‘Brady Bunch’ kick for probably 20-25 years now. I used to watch it back in the day when it aired on TBS. I remember when it moved to Nick at Nite back in 1998, I was so excited. Along with I Love Lucy and The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Brady Bunch became one of my “must-see” shows every evening.
I always thought that Greg Brady (and to some extent, Peter as well) was kind of cute which is why I selected him for this year’s “Reel Infatuation” Blogathon. The Greg and Marcia-centric episodes were always my favorite, mainly because as the oldest child, they’re the characters who I identified with the most. The episodes centered around Greg are some of the funniest ones in the series, especially one of my favorites, “Getting Greg’s Goat.”
Greg has always been my favorite Brady. He’s attractive (nice eyes!), a great singer, an athlete, a photographer and he “fits the suit.” He’s a bit of a ladies’ man (he isn’t called “The Casanova of Clinton Avenue” for nothing) even though he can be a bit blinded by the opposite sex. When he was the head of the committee to select the head cheerleader, contender Jennifer Nichols attempted to use “Greggy” for his vote. In this instance, Greg demonstrated that he had character by not being swayed by his hormones or by nepotism (sister Marcia was a contender as well). He selected Pat Conway, the contestant whom he felt did the best. In another demonstration of character, when he finds himself running against sister Marcia for Student Body President, Greg fires his campaign manager when he announces his intent to spread false rumors about Marcia.
I find Greg’s self-confidence attractive, such as when he thinks he’ll be the next Don Drysdale or when he thinks he’s written the next hit song (“We Can Make the World a Whole Lot Brighter”). He’s musically inclined and has performed on local television multiple times. His talent did not go unnoticed. While singing “You’ve Got to be in Love (to Love a Love Song),” Greg was discovered by music agent Tammy Cutler. She was planning to groom him into the next pop star, under the moniker “Johnny Bravo.” After hearing his sweetened up vocals, Greg demonstrated that he had pride when he declined the offer of a contract, as he did not want to be a sell-out. However, he showed a questionable understanding of the legalities of a contract, as merely ripping up a contract does NOT relieve you of legal obligation.
Greg also demonstrates a great sense of fashion. I loved his “man” outfit which consisted of a fringe vest, a blue shirt with a floral print, glasses with green-tinted lenses, headband, and striped pants. He also sports a great suede fringe jacket when they record “Time to Change” at Mr. Dimsdale’s record studio. I even loved his plaid pants in “Adios, Johnny Bravo.”
Greg did have some questionable hairstyles at times. As an 8th-9th grader, he wore his hair short on the sides and back, longer on top. Frankly, this is the style I prefer, but Greg was a bit young. As he matured, his hair took on a questionable look and texture. There is a period where he is decidedly older, his hair longer, but it is this weird straight-ish mop on his head. I read that Greg’s portrayer, Barry Williams, experimented with a chemical straightener and it did not go well. I’ll assume that this is the period of Greg’s awful hair. I don’t know what happened in Hawaii, but the Brady men’s hair did not fare well. The men went over to the Island State with straight hair and returned with permed hair. There was also a period where Greg seemed to be attempting to grow a ‘fro. I was not into this era either. By the end of the series, he’s got his hair under control and is rocking some great sideburns. This is the Greg I like the best.
Since nobody is infallible, Greg did have his faults. He seemed to regress into “men are superior than women” attitude on occasion. Such as when the Brady men took their new female family members on their first camping trip. The gang fails to catch fish for dinner. Greg and his brothers attribute the lack of fish to their sisters’ lack of fishing ability. Thankfully, the women thought ahead and packed fried chicken and cold cuts. Who can forget Greg’s immortal words, “That’s sissy food!” He also gets into a battle of the sexes when the boys and girls argue over the use of the trading stamps and the clubhouse. Then there was the time when Marcia wanted to be in Greg’s Frontier Scout troop. Despite his efforts to prove that men were superior in the wild than women, he failed. Finally, in a last ditch attempt to assert men’s dominance, he resorted to challenging Marcia in a driving contest. Perhaps he’ll reconsider his stance as he irons Marcia’s clothes for the next year.
Despite his bravado, I still find Greg to be pretty groovy. He sings, he plays guitar, he surfs, he plays football, baseball and basketball. I love that he sticks up for his siblings while also providing guidance and advice. Finally, Greg was able to escape from Vincent Price’s clutches while imprisoned. If that doesn’t make someone great, I don’t know what does!
If anyone doesn’t like Greg Brady or The Brady Bunch for that matter, all I can do is quote the great Greg Brady: “Kids. What do they know about life?”