Why are the kids from the Brady Bunch dressed up like characters from the Wizard of Oz and singing the classic 1976 song, Car Wash?
Look, your guess is probably as good as mine but I’m going to assume that cocaine played a role in all of this. I mean, let’s consider the facts. This is from 1977. Everyone in Hollywood was using cocaine by 1977. This was also filmed for the infamous Brady Bunch Hour, which was a show that probably only existed due to cocaine. Well, cocaine and a love for the good wholesome values that were epitomized by The Brady Bunch.
This is from the second episode of The Brady Bunch Hour. It originally aired on January 23rd, 1977. All of the episodes are on YouTube. I watched the first episode last year and I meant to get right on to watching the second episode but …. eh. There’s only so much of the Bradys that you can take. In the show, Mike Brady decided to quit his job and move the family to Los Angeles so that they could star on a musical variety program. That was a decision that I’m sure a lot of families were forced to make in the 70s. Carol and the kids were okay with it and, of course, Alice came along because she apparently belonged to the Bradys or something. According to Wikipedia, the second episode featured The Bradys getting used to their new home with the help of special guest stars Farrah Fawcett and her then-husband, Lee Majors. I’m not how exactly this would lead to Ann B. Davis dressing up like the Wicked Witch of the West and then watching the Brady kids perform Car Wash in a crystal ball. Maybe I should watch the episode and find out. If I do, I’m demanding hazard pay.
Technically, this song is only being performed by half of the Brady Bunch. Maureen McCormick, Barry Williams, and Christopher Knight are there but Fake Jan, Mike Lookinland, and Susan Olsen are nowhere to be seen. That’s a shame, as Fake Jan had the best singing voice of the entire cast. Incidentally, when he was first approached to appear on the show, Barry was promised that he would be the center of most of the performances. According to an interview I saw with him, he was really looking forward to becoming a musical sensation until he actually watched the first episode of the series. Give the Brady kids some credit — they eventually understood the mess they had gotten themselves into.
As for this performance of Car Wash, it might not be good but it’s also kind of brilliant in its badness. You’ll never forget it after you watch it and there’s something to be said for that. The Brady kids are trying so hard that it’s difficult not to kind of hope that they’ll manage to succeed. The audiences sounds like they’re enjoying it so there’s always that.
Car Wash itself is a good song — just try to not get it stuck in your head after listening. It, of course, was written and recorded for the 1976 film, Car Wash. It was originally performed by Rose Royce. Christina Aguilera and Missy Elliott covered the song in 2004 and it was something of a minor hit. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of the Brady Bunch version.
Still …. enjoy! And work! But mostly, enjoy.