‘Greg Brady’ brings humor to Spring Jam celebration

by Nichol Nelson

Maybe it was his thick black hair, or the confident way he sauntered across his high school campus clad in powder blue bell-bottom jeans.
Whatever the reason, Greg Brady had girls transfixed. Barry Williams, the actor who played Greg on “The Brady Bunch” television series from 1969 to 1974, turned on a little charm of his own in front of about 100 people Thursday night at Willey Hall as a part of Spring Jam 1999.
The veteran actor, who said he has been known as Greg Brady for more than half of his life, began his presentation with a montage of “The Brady Bunch” clips depicting each of the show’s stars in the roles that made them famous.
The crowd roared with laughter when Jan uttered her trademark, “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!” complaint and whooped at Greg’s groovy 70s wardrobe.
Williams took the laughter in stride, lightheartedly mocking the show’s syrupy content.
“No matter what the problem, at the end of 26 minutes, it would be solved,” he said about the challenges faced by the family each week.
The audience was comprised of a variety of fans, from a 4-year-old girl who claimed to like Greg’s hair straight to speech students studying the art of Williams’ presentation.
Williams addressed rumors surrounding the show, specifically his romantic involvements with his on-screen mom and sister.
University senior Mary O’Neill said she was familiar with the rumors surrounding the cast of the series.
“I heard there was sexual tension between (Greg) and the mom. That’s what I think of when I see the show,” she said
Williams acknowledged he did have a date with Florence Henderson, the actress who played his mother for five years, but said the outing was more a gesture of kindness on Henderson’s part than a romantic encounter.
“She didn’t make fun of me and I thought that was very cool,” Williams said.
Although the date with Henderson was platonic, Williams said he moved from his television mom to his on-screen stepsister, Maureen McCormick. McCormick played Marcia on the series.
Williams spent more than five minutes telling the crowd about the couple’s first kiss. The audience roared with laughter when Williams said the encounter happened during the taping of the show’s Hawaiian vacation episode.
Students’ memories of Greg varied. Some declared him the cutest of the brothers, while others said he tried too hard to be cool.
“He looked too much like the father,” said Jessie Wile, a member of the Spring Jam council.