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The Brady Bunch is an American sitcom created by Sherwood Schwartz that originally aired from September 26, 1969 to March 8, 1974 on ABC. The series revolves around a large blended family which includes six children.
The series aired for a total of five seasons and, after its cancellation in 1974, went into syndication in September 1975. While the series was never a critical or ratings success during its original run, it has since become a popular staple in syndication especially among children and teenage viewers.
Mike Brady (Robert Reed), a widowed architect with three sons, Greg (Barry Williams), Peter (Christopher Knight), and Bobby (Mike Lookinland), marries Carol Ann Martin (nee Tyler) (Florence Henderson), who herself has three daughters: Marcia (Maureen McCormick), Jan (Eve Plumb) and Cindy (Susan Olsen). The wife and daughters take the Brady surname. Included in the blended family are Mike's live-in housekeeper, Alice Nelson (Ann B. Davis), and the boys' dog, Tiger. The setting is a large, suburban, two-story house designed by Mike, in a Los Angeles, California suburb.
In the first season, awkward adjustments, accommodations, and resentments inherent in blended families dominate the stories. In an early episode, Carol tells Bobby that the only "steps" in their household lead to the second floor (in other words, that the family contains no "stepchildren," only "children"). Thereafter, the episodes focus on typical pre-teen and teenage adjustments such as sibling rivalry, puppy love, self-image, character building, and responsibility. From season two on, the new family seem to have jelled, the woes of blending soon fade, and the "step" factor only surfaces a handful of times.
Contemporary social issues were sometimes explored. Season two's "The Liberation of Marcia Brady" touched on the Women's Lib movement, as Marcia sets out to prove a girl can do anything a boy can. The boys (mainly Greg) challenge the idea and Greg and Bobby coerce Peter into joining Marcia's club, the Sunflower Girls, to make a point.