‘The Brady Bunch’ Actor Opened Up on the ‘Very Difficult’ Times That Negatively Affected Show

by John Jamison

As long as there have been television shows, there have been creative differences. And as wholesome as it was, “The Brady Bunch” was no exception. To create a finished product, those differences need to be resolved, one way or another. Florence Henderson, the actor behind Carol Brady, remembered how difficult those moments could be between Robert Reed and the show’s creator, Sherwood Schwartz.

Robert Reed was the actor who played “The Brady Bunch” father, Mike Brady. From 1969-1974, the actor portrayed the character. And during that time, he got into plenty of disputes with Sherwood Schwartz.

In an interview with the Archive of American Television in 1999, Florence Henderson talked about how negatively her on-screen husband’s and Schwartz’s differences impacted the show. And in her opinion, it was the only negative thing about “The Brady Bunch.”

“Anger, you know, frightens me. I think it has a very negative effect on, you know, the people that are around this. Especially when it’s done in front of them. And with children on a set, you know, I didn’t want that to become what the show was about. And because Bob felt so strongly about certain things, and Sherwood felt so strongly about certain things, it became very difficult at times,” Henderson said.

In some regards, that passion was a good thing. It meant that both Reed and Schwartz had strong feelings about the show. But at a certain point, you have to be aware of how your behavior is affecting the rest of the team. And clearly, Florence Henderson wasn’t tolerating it.

‘The Brady Bunch’ Was Partly Held Together by Florence Henderson

Florence Henderson wasn’t just Carol Brady on “The Brady Bunch.” In a way, she was also a motherly figure on the set. At least, she was in the sense that she helped resolve the differences between her frustrated colleagues.

“I would either talk Bob down or Sherwood, you know. And try to find a way to make it work so that everybody could keep their jobs and keep the show on the air and make it somewhat acceptable to the public,” Henderson continued in the 1999 interview.

And it wasn’t just Reed and Schwartz. Henderson also mentions serious disagreements between Reed and Schwartz’s son Lloyd, among others. She took it upon herself to help keep their fights from spilling over and hurting the show as a whole. Though, as she admits, she wasn’t always successful.