The Brady Bunch Reality Show and Other '70s Shows That Might As Well Be Reality Shows
Last week, the Houston Chronicle reported that CBS is in the works to develop a reality show based on the concept of The Brady Bunch. The show, tentatively titled "Modern Stepfamilies," will feature real-life merged families, akin to The Brady Bunch, sharing their "challenges" in front of millions of judging viewers, similar to what the Brady family had to endure.
Isn't there already a reality show about a "merged" family with three very annoying daughters who drive their stepfather crazy and their mother doesn't do any housework because she has the "help" do it? Yes, I think it's called Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
Thinking about a reality show based on The Brady Bunch got me thinking about all of the other adored television programs of the '70s that should be turned into reality shows, but then it got me thinking that many of these shows are already reality programs, and we just don't realize it.
Gilligan's Island = Survivor
There were two major components that kept viewers coming back every week to Gilligan's Island: 1. Will they get off the island? and 2. How hot will Ginger look?
Despite being a comedy, Gilligan's Island was very dramatic. The characters barely got along, and their tireless bickering got in the way of them ever accomplishing anything. For those that regularly watched the show, you couldn't help but wonder aloud (every week) how such incredibly moronic people could go on living this long, and, moreover, you often wished that some aboriginal island folk would eat them all alive.
This is exactly the same thing I think about Survivor.
Laverne and Shirley = The Simple Life
Laverne & Shirley was a show about two best friends who lived together and move through life with love and laughter. The two ladies always seemed to find themselves in ridiculous situations that were, at times, unbelievable. Eventually, due to behind-the-scenes feuds between the two women, their seemingly wonderful friendship proved to be nothing but a fallacy. Also, they hung out with some really skeevy-looking dudes.
The Simple Life was a reality show that followed besties Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie living a life where they had jobs, cleaned up after themselves and could not spend every night at Tao in Las Vegas. The show pretty much followed the same trajectory as Laverne & Shirley. Not all that interesting is that when the fake relationship between Laverne and Shirley ended, it was a lot more upsetting than when Hilton and Richie, who were real friends, called it quits.
All in the Family = The Osbournes
In the show The Osbournes, we've got a crazy dad who does nothing but mouth off about nonsense. Despite his insanity, he is hilarious; you almost feel bad laughing at/with him. Then there is the matriarch of the family, who also seems somewhat bonkers, and she has a funny accent. Rounding out this family is their bohemian daughter and her yo-yoing weight.
The Osbournes are a modern-day version of the Bunkers. Taking son Jack Osbourne out of the picture, there are so many parallels between the two shows, including the fact that both shows broke viewership records and made waves with the censors. I don't think Archie Bunker would ever urinate on the Alamo, though, but I could be wrong.
Eight Is Enough = Tom and Kate Plus Eight
They both have eight kids, need I say more. If only Tom and Kate had frequent cameos from Ralph Macchio and fewer cameos by Ed Hardy, their version might have been slightly tolerable.
Both shows had too many children,
Baretta = Steven Seagal: Lawman
Baretta is one of the coolest cops to ever grace the small screen. You did not want Baretta on your trail. He also wore a really styling hat. Seagal is one of the coolest cops to ever grace the small screen. You do not want Seagal on your trail. He wears a really styling police uniform.
Aside from both men being no-nonsense ass-kickers, the major commonality between the two is that neither one is a cop in real life.
Charlie's Angels = The Girls Next Door
Three hot ladies running around in bikinis taking orders from a rarely seen, demanding older man is the basic premise of both Charlie's Angels and The Girls Next Door. While you may argue that Charlie's Angels was more of a mystery-type show, I will counter that the series-long mystery in The Girls Next Door was whether or not these ladies actually slept with Hugh Hefner and, if so, why?
Mary Tyler Moore Show = Bethenny Doing Stuff
While it is almost a sin to compare Mary Tyler Moore's feminist-charged, lady of the town, career woman, television program to any of the reality-based programs that Bethenny Frankel has done, the comparisons are uncanny. Both women (the TV version of Mary and the TV version of Bethenny) are professional women, successful in their chosen vocations, pushing boundaries and at the same time looking for love and ways to stay slim. It is sad that Frankel is this generation's version of "I Am Woman Hear Me Roar," but it's true.
You're going to make it after all that publicity you've had!
And both women have had a lot of work done, which is really proto-feminist when you think about it.