Christopher Knight did not want to do the Brady Bunch variety show
What were you like at 19? It's a time when most of us feel invincible; you're old enough to be an adult but young enough that maybe nothing terrible has happened to you yet. Our brains haven't fully developed by 19, but at the same time, it's the oldest we've ever been up to that point. You're either the oldest kid or the youngest adult when you're 19. It's a fun and tricky time, no matter what era it happened for you.
Christopher Knight, though, had an experience that most of the public cannot relate to. By 19, Knight had already wrapped production on The Brady Bunch, where he starred as middle son Peter Brady. If he wasn't a household name, he was close; the Bradys were nearly inescapable, having conquered the sitcom world and released some popular records. So, logically, Christopher Knight was a hot commodity. His face and voice were in high demand in 1977. He lent his voice acting skills to The Brady Kids, an animated followup to the show that made him famous. He was also part of the variety show born in the wake of The Brady Bunch. Knight reunited (reuKnighted?) with the rest of his television family (except, notably, for Eve Plumb). This time, the Bradys weren't just domestic dwellers. They'd abandoned their suburban domicile to host a variety program in Hollywood. The problem, though, was a lack of enthusiasm from the cast.
The Price, Utah Sun-Advocate caught up with Christopher Knight, 19, on vacation in Carbon and Emery Counties in August of 1977. Knight was taking a much-needed vacation from the tribulations of LA living. By then, he'd been acting professionally for over a decade, and the struggles were stacking up. He had, though, navigated through the social difficulties presented by his work. Knight was bullied for his job throughout elementary and middle school. "But in high school," said Knight, "the kids realized its a way of life since they needed to find a job, too."
But by now, in '77, Knight was through school. His problems, though, didn't end there. Instead, he found himself reflecting back on his role and his audience. The shift in scenery helped Knight shift his perspective and really think about how he'd like to spend his time. It was a crucial time for this kind of introspection. The week following this interview, the Brady actors reconvened to decide whether they wanted to continue filming The Brady Bunch Hour. They'd choose either to continue or, as Knight put it, "go their separate ways."
As for TV's Peter Brady, the vote was obvious.
"I really didn't want to do them," said Knight of the variety programs. Instead, with a clear mind and some fresh Carbon County air, Knight reflected on better ways he could spend his time. "I want to act," the actor said pointedly. For him, being free from being a Brady would open his schedule to comedy and action movies, where he really wanted to be.
He did not, however, regret his time as Peter Brady. "I'm growing up enough to know that [The Brady Bunch] was for a specific audience. It was the way a lot of people wished their family was. It appealed to middle America—those people in the South and Middle West. But it was too idealistic for people in big cities." Christopher Knight, it seems, was firmly in the "big cities" camp.
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