“Mom, Dad. I’ve quit graduate school to become a racecar driver”. Or, A Very Brady Christmas

I was crazy for the Brady’s growing up, and only in a partially ironic way. I don’t know why, but the Brady Bunch brought a lot of comfort to me, even when I knew the show was ridiculous and trite. It had been off the air for several years by the time I was born, but I do vaguely remember watching The Brady Brides.  But in 1988, the year I was eleven, I very clearly remember watching A Very Brady Christmas. It was a big night in our family. I probably watched it a couple of times after that initial airing, but it’s probably been a good fifteen to twenty years since I have seen it.

This year, it was on ABC Family and I DVR’ed it. I watched it with my sister and I can honestly say it was one of the best times I’ve ever had watching a crappy made-for-TV movie.

The Brady’s have been updated for the 1980’s you guys! The funny thing is, when I used to watch the TV show, I remember laughing at the ridiculous early-70’s fashions. But we can say for certain now, that the 80’s were way uglier than the 70’s. Here’s proof.

This:

a-very-brady-christmas-1988-dvd-6075is far worse than this:

brady-bunchJust like in the TV Series, A Very Brady Christmas relies hard on the hilarity of miscommunication. See, because if people just talked things over, these wacky antics would never have happened! We start with Carol calling all the now-adult kids in turn to say she’s going to surprise Mike with a Christmas trip to Greece. Then Mike calls all the kids to say he’s going to surprise Carol with a Christmas trip to Japan. They hilariously meet up at the travel agency then have a huge laugh because – how crazy!

Instead of deciding on either Japan or Greece, they use their savings to send each kid a plane ticket to come home for Christmas. And wouldn’t you know it? Something is going on in each of their lives that they hesitate to talk to Mom and Dad Brady about.  Well, each of them except Greg.

Greg – has a hideous mustache and is an Ob-Gyn married to an obstetrical nurse. They have a son named Kevin. Also, despite Greg being an OB, he has a model of a heart in his office. I guess a model of the uterus didn’t get by censors?

Marcia- married to Wally (from the Brady Brides!) who is a toy salesman and they have two kids, Mickey, the red-headed bastard of the milkman (I assume) who is obnoxious to the point of near sociopathy, and Jessica the darling who complains about Mickey. The big secret is that Wally just lost his job.

Peter – He’s quite the hottie hot hot now! And he’s banging his boss, Nora. It makes him feel funny that she makes more money than he does. So he is hesitating about asking her to marry him.

Jan – Still married to Philip (of the Brady Brides!), for now. They fight all the time and are getting separated. Mostly because Jan seems like an uptight icy cunt. She doesn’t want to tell mom & dad though, so Philip comes miserably along on the trip.

Bobby – gets the most awesome and hilarious secret. He dropped out of grad school to become a racecar driver.  Heeee!

Cindy – in her last year of college and still feels like a baby. She wanted to go on a ski trip with her awesomely-dressed roommate, Belinda, but she felt bad saying no to the trip home. Then she complains to Belinda that her parents treat her like a baby.  Also, Susan Olsen didn’t play Cindy in this movie. The chick who did play her only remembered to lisp on every 5th or 6th S.

And Alice – Sam left her for a younger woman. Then Sherwood Schwartz gave her lines that made her seem like a developmentally challenged ten year old.

Of course, this is Brady-land so antics ensue. But at the end, Jan and Philip decide they love each other again, Wally gets a job from the Brady’s neighbor (NOT Mr. Dittmeyer to my dismay), Peter and Nora propose simultaneously, they promise Cindy they’ll treat her like a grownup, Bobby tells the family that he’s becoming a racecar driver, and Sam comes dressed as Santa to take Alice back. Oh, also Greg still has his mustache.

Also, Carol sold some land to a developer named Ted Roberts, and Mike was his architecht. Mike wanted to go above and beyond safety regulations, so Ted Roberts fired his ass. Then there was a cave-in because this is what happens when you don’t listen to Mike Brady. So Mike goes in to save some trapped security guards and gets trapped himself. The Brady’s hold a vigil and sing “O Come All Ye Faithful” which inspires Mike to save himself, because there aren’t even any rescue workers trying to get him out.

The end.

  • I don’t know why I never noticed this before, but young Mike Brady was super hot! Mike-Brady-the-brady-bunch-5541361-304-285
  • I’m trying to decide who got the most trite story, and I have to go with Jan and Philip. Because they reconnected over the fact that Jan covered Philip with a blanket while he was sleeping in an office chair. This after the fact that Jan basically forced Philip to come on the trip to begin with AND THEN wouldn’t let him sleep in the same bed as her. And to top of the cuntlyness, when Philip was moving his things out of their house, she put her feet on the coffee table just to make it more difficult for him. See? Jan Brady became a frigid cunt. And to think I used to identify with Jan because I was a middle child too.
  • The whole racecar thing with Bobby is so bad it’s awesome. Too horribly awesome to be trite.
  • Before he gets caught in a job-site cave in, Mike Brady is having a very Mike Brady moment and giving a little speech to the family. This is, of course, what makes everyone admit to whatever secret it is they’ve been hiding. Except for Greg, who just sits there all mustachio’ed and what not.
  • There’s this whole weird thing in the beginning where Carol says to Mike, “I don’t have to go to business today. And you don’t have to go to business today….” And my sister and I were like, “What?” Does anyone say business like that instead of work? It was super awkward.
  • This movie spawned the short-lived series, The Bradys. Which, yes, I did watch every episode of. And it was crazy in its terribleness. Wally is now someone who can’t hold down a job, so that whole family moves in with Mike & Carol and Marcia becomes an alcoholic for like one episode. Then Bobby becomes paralyzed (because he’s a racecar driver, yo.) and moves in with Mike and Carol. Jan and Philip can’t conceive, so they adopt a Chinese girl, in like one episode. Presumably, Greg still has his mustache, but I honestly can’t remember him at all in this series, though IMDB assures me he was there.
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About nikkihb

Wife. Mother. Reader. Blogger.
This entry was posted in General nostalgia, movies, non-book review, TV. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to “Mom, Dad. I’ve quit graduate school to become a racecar driver”. Or, A Very Brady Christmas

  1. Karen says:

    I also love The Brady Bunch and this movie in particular. My brother and my cousins and I would watch the Brady marathons every year on the day after Thanksgiving (one year we got the treat of The Brady Girls Get Married followed by the entire short-lived Brady Brides series). I watch this every year because there’s nothing funnier than O Come All Ye Faithful influencing Mike Brady to safely get out of that collapsed building.

  2. Anna says:

    Number one, I love this movie. Number two, that first picture? I wanted a squiggle pin like the squiggle on Jan’s shirt. Number three, the whole go to business thing made me snort with laughter in a doctor’s waiting room.

  3. fatelephant says:

    “Jan Brady became a frigid cunt.” bahahahahahahahaha is that really a surprise? lol

  4. Sara says:

    Awww, I loved this movie. I didn’t love the later Brady spinoffs as much as I loved the original show or the cartoon, but this movie always made me smile. I remember being so disappointed that Peter didn’t end up marrying his boss (who was named Valerie, btw-Nora was Greg’s wife).

    Disagree about Jan, though. Of course, she’s one of my childhood favorites and I have a hard time hating on childhood favorites even when they’re being unreasonable. (see also: Topanga Lawrence)

  5. mike johnson says:

    I always thought Cindy (whether played by Susan Olsen or Jennifer Runyon) grew up to be so beautiful: if I somehow could have ended up in Brady Land, I would have asked her to marry me and given Gary Greenberg, that Jewish boss/boyfriend of hers in the series “The Bradys”, a good old Kentucky ass kickin’ for even looking at her!

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