The first two movies were surprisingly great but The Brady Bunch In The White House is a disappointing end to the trilogy. The Brady Bunch is a classic ABC sitcom about a blended family, with Mike Brady marrying Carol Martin, and the show charts how the duo and their combined children become a family unit. Another major character is their housekeeper, Alice.
While The Brady Bunch dealt with various family dramas like sibling rivalries and teenage romance, it was ultimately wholesome, innocent family entertainment. The original show came to an end in 1974 after five seasons, though the franchise would continue in the form of cartoons, reunion movies like The Brady Girls Get Married and short-lived 1990 sequel series The Bradys. Movies based on classic shows became a thread in the 1990s, such as The Flintstones starring John Goodman, The Beverly Hillbillies, and The Addams Family.
It was the Brady clan's turn in 1995, which marked the arrival of The Brady Bunch Movie. Rather than make a period adaptation the film took a meta, 21 Jump Street style approach, with the family's fashion and mentality stuck in the 1970s, which contrasted with the film's harsher 1990s setting. It was an inspired touch, resulting in a funny comedy with a great cast, which included Gary Cole (Veep) and Shelley Long. Somehow, the follow-up A Very Brady Sequel was even better, though it proved to be a financial disappointment compared to the original.
The Brady Bunch In The White House is a 2002 TV movie sequel that finds Mike Brady - through a series of inexplicable events - becoming the President of the United States. On paper, that sounds like it has potential, with Mike and his wholesome family clashing with the seedy politics of Washington. Yet the jokes never take off and the whole thing feels surprisingly toothless and cheap.
Gary Cole and Shelley Long are the only two actors from the previous movies to return, but the replacements for the Brady children lack the talent of the original cast. The Brady Bunch In The White House is ultimately a witless affair, and there's a sense everybody involved is just there for an easy payday. It's a shame because with a stronger script the idea could have worked, but the movie proved to be lackluster finish to the Brady Bunch's movie adventures. If The Brady Bunch In The White House is any indication of where future TV movies would have gone, there's probably for the best.