Those of you who have been following my blog know I am a die-hard Brady Bunch fan. The Brady Bunch was a HUGE part of my childhood. I vaguely remember it as a young child on Friday nights. My main memories are from the reruns that have never seemed to end. I was sick a lot during high school and had to stay home a lot. The Brady Bunch was on from 10:00-11:00 every day on channel 12. That’s when I really became a fan. But this blog is about The Partridge Family. I actually remember The Partridge Family more as a young child than The Brady Bunch because The Partridge Family was about a band. I thought that was way cool. My parents tell me I started playing drums when I was two. The Partridge Family had a drummer. The Brady Bunch did not (well, except for the episode where Bobby tried to play them). I loved watching Chris Partridge fake play his drums. Anyway, to make a long paragraph short (I’m funny), I think The Partridge Family would have been just as near and dear to my heart as The Brady Bunch if the show had been in reruns more frequently. The show is still very dear to me and I’m going to now, for your pleasure, review the first Partridge Family episode.
This first episode had a different beginning. It shows the family taking a bow on stage. Tracy looks like she’s dropping a turd. I think she’s trying to curtsy. Funny.
The first scene opens with Shirley telling us that her husband had died suddenly six months earlier and how she was working at a bank. Middle son Danny talks to Shirley in her bedroom about investments. Shirley says he comes up with at least three get rich quick schemes every week. I love the way Shirley’s hair looks! It’s so cute. There are some very cute (and appear to be real) pictures of Danny and Chris on the nightstand.
Cut to the scene in the garage where I think the kids are really playing instruments. I know Keith (David Cassidy) is really playing guitar when Shirley walks in. Tracy is jamming a drumstick in her nose and does the Seinfeld smile when she says her line. Why does Tracy have to stand on a box? Will the mic not pick up her awesome tambourine skills if she’s on the ground? Laurie and Keith get into an argument with Danny in the middle. She puts her boobies close to his face. I wonder what Bonaduce was thinking at that young age. The kids convince mom to sing their cool new ultra-hip song. Shirley, of course, is awesome.
Danny starts trying to sell their new demo. Danny brings Tracy along because he’s babysitting, but I’m guessing it was for the cute factor. Suzanne Crough and Danny Bonaduce are just adorable together. Anyway, they go to Reuben’s five-star hotel (not) to try and get him to hear their song. Danny tells Reuben (portrayed by Dave Madden) that Tracy has perfect pitch. Uhh, yeah. Danny is very persistent when Reuben turns him down. After Reuben’s hotel room, Danny calls him on the phone and plays the recording for him over the phone, and then he follows him to the airport. How were these two young kids getting around? Danny finally gets Reuben by following him into the bathroom.
Cut to the newsstand where Shirley hears her song on the radio for the first time. The man holding the radio, which is bigger than my first apartment, is none other than Gordon Jump. He’s credited at the end of this episode as “Man”. He appeared in six other Partridge Family episodes.
I love the scene in the kitchen where they’re all gathered around eating strawberries. Families used to actually get together like that back in the 70’s. I saw Susan Dey eat a strawberry! Yay! Chris says “The family that plays together stays together.” He was with this family for exactly 24 more episodes. Oops. BTW, groovy wallpaper.
The family drives their groovy bus to Vegas. It was interesting to see the strip back then as opposed to now. It’s changed just a wee bit. I love the costumes the family is wearing for their Caesar’s Palace performance. I dressed like that for my 3rd grade picture. I didn’t know at the time I was dressing like a pimp.
The kids all freeze at the beginning of the concert. Why would Shirley start singing without the background music or any type of count off? “Let’s ride a dream.” And why did they start singing the lyrics at the very end of the song? What pills are Reuben popping? Danny is sure sliding up and down the neck of his bass a lot. Why didn’t anyone show him how to fake play? I was impressed that in the garage and on stage in Vegas that the count off matched the tempo of the song. Too many times the two aren’t even close to matching up. Anyway, the band sang one chorus of the song and the crowd went wild.
The show ends with Chris being jealous of kick ass drummer girl Debbie. He should be jealous. She was really playing and was VERY good. At least Jeremy knew how to hold the sticks properly. I’d love to know what happened to that drummer girl.
- The scene of the family eating strawberries has a different kitchen layout than in future episodes.
- The song Together was written by Shorty Rogers & Kelly Gordon.
- The song Let the Good Times In was written by Carole Bayer & Neil Sedaka.
- Shirley and Danny bought The Partridge Family bus at Al’s Used Cars.
- The license plate on the bus in the beginning of the episode was NLX 590 and had California plates. When they show the bus driving down the strip in Vegas, the plates are 41589 (I think) and are no longer California plates.
- The credits state: “The voices and music of the Partridge Family were augmented by other performers.” Augmented? I believe Shirley Jones was the only person to sing in the first episode. Nobody knew David Cassidy could sing at that point so they had someone else sing for him.
The Partridge Family was a great show and I wish it was shown more in reruns. I do have the episodes on DVD, so all is good. Please check back in a few weeks for another groovylicious review of episode number two. Click here to see my Partridge Family items for sale. See you soon!