Quentin Tarantino once asked, via 'Pulp Fiction,' "Are you a Beatles or Elvis person?" (When I search deep into my soul, I must say: Elvis.) So it goes for the Brady Bunch or the Partridge Family. Though I once dreamt of becoming a member of the Brady Bunch (the seventh child), I know that I'm basically a Partridge Family person.
The passion! The weirdness! The sardonic manager, Reuben! They practiced in the garage of their suburban San Pueblo, CA home, and had the most laid-back stage mom in the history of show business. They were too polished to be real, or even to be a proper garage band (and why exactly was Bobby Sherman hiding out in the garage during one episode? The 70s were so boss!). But they rocked my Friday nights and looked fine in dark velvet and ruffled shirts.
Memorable incidents included Susan Dey's character, Laurie, receiving radio-transmitted broadcasts through her newly applied braces, causing her to play the wrong keyboard notes during rehearsal; Danny stealing everything his older, cuter, stupider brother Keith owned in order to sell the items to would-be groupies; Shirley Partridge's pixie haircut, which Shirley Jones has worn for the past 60 years (surely a record); and year-round red velour, vested, high-necked stage costumes.
I Can Feel Your Heartbeat - Direct quote by me, at age eight: Keeeeeeeeeith!!!!!!
I Think I Love You - The Partridge Family assert their manly domain over radical feminism. This is why the Equal Rights Ammendment couldn't pass.
Doesn't Somebody Want To Be Wanted - Not since Spanky McFarland of the "Our Gang" comedies had such a precocious kid dominated the small screen. Danny Bonaduce looks for a new family, to no avail. It's all uphill from here, kid.
Bandala - The Family celebrates diversity, but then blow it by replacing their 7-year-old brunette drummer, Chris, with a blond-haired, blue-eyed version the following season. Richard Pryor in the audience, enjoying the cowbell.
\Spike Lee's Crooklyn got 70s childhood right. One of my favorite scenes, featuring I Woke Up In Love This Morning and a box of Lemonheads candy:
The Cowsills - Anything Changes
The Cowsills were to be the Partridge Family but when Shirley Jones was hired over their mother, they refused to do the show. The show's producers said, "Hey, screw you, Cowsills. We'll do the show anyway, with kids who can't sing or play." And they did.
Disclosure: At age seven I owned a Cowsills drum kit and played the drummer in a Partridge Family lip-synch cover band that I formed with my friends. When I couldn't make the performance due to a cold, they told me it went all right anyway. I said, "Without the DRUMS?!"