Ann B. Davis-shaped hole in our hearts

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Ann B. Davis in 2000. Photo by Bev Sykes via Wikimedia Commons (

Photo by Bev Sykes via Wikimedia Commons

Ann B. Davis in 2000. Photo by Bev Sykes via Wikimedia Commons (

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Ann B. Davis, most famous for playing Alice on "The Brady Bunch," died on Sunday at the age of 88. She spent the last thirty-eight years of her life living and working with the Episcopal Church.

  • Larry

    Ann B. Davis will be missed.

    On a sillier note, 2 things that always bothered me about The Brady Bunch:

    1. Carol didn’t work, why did they need a live-in maid? What was she doing???

    2. Aside from a quick reference in the pilot, what happened to Mike and Carol’s previous spouses? [They were both widows]

  • Atheist Max

    I fail to see any connection between the Alice character of the Brady Bunch
    and Christianity except as a competition for banalities.

    “you didn’t have to be related to relate…made Davis’s Alice the kind of person that every viewer wanted in their life, and in that way, she was very much a Christian character.”

    CHRISTIAN?! Really?


    The absurdity continues:

    “No one, even the kids’ most annoying friends, was outside of Alice’s care. She never took herself too seriously, but did her job with humor and humility.”

    Well what is particularly Christian about this? I want to know!
    I know many Atheists, Jews, Agnostics, Muslims – even Satanists! – who would be just as awesome, loving, humble and friendly.

    My complaint is that Christians attribute the positive traits of the Alice Character as positive “Christian characteristics” when they are simply witnessing humanistic, common decency.

    And I do not see Alice preaching Hell, recommending slavery or surrendering to an obedient god and burning a few heathens every once in a while.
    So she can’t be very ‘Christian’ at all, can she?

    You should correct this nonsense of a ‘Christian character’ which you have foisted onto Alice. That is a hollow, solipsistic, silly claim.

  • Atheist Max

    Sorry that sounded harsh but the Brady Bunch was deliberately banal
    to be unoffensive and banal for a wide audience.

    Decency and kindness are not ‘Christian characteristics.’
    They are humanitarian characteristics which directly oppose Christianity in any number of ways.

  • Atheist Max


    Sounds like you are on to something:

    1. Nobody on the show seems to feel anything at all for the dead relatives.
    2. The dead spouses are not ever brought up in any episodes.
    3. On a show where the trauma of a ‘boyfriend’s nasty looks’ seem to garner the fuel of an entire episode it is peculiar that there is nothing about the lost parents at any point.
    4. Divorce was a taboo subject in the 70s but it was okay to kill off spouses instead.

    You’ve opened up a can of worms.

    What did Carol do anyway?

  • Yes I agree lots of people have wonderful characteristics that does not make them a Christian accepting Christ as lord and savior and accepting the work of the cross does and if thirs no god how did we get here

  • larry

    The whole divorce taboo/kill off a spouse thing is the reason why Mary Tyler Moore Show was so noteworthy at the time. She was a not-young adult, single woman and not widowed through some contrivance.

    Killing off spouses never to be heard of after the pilot is a long sitcom tradition.

    I am thinking Mike and Carol bumped off their former spouses so they could marry each other. They only needed one income because they both got big life insurance payouts.

  • V.E.G.

    May her memory be eternal!

  • Beautifully done, Laura.

  • Carol

    It was never said that Carol Brady was a widow. I seem to remember reading an article about Sherwood Schwartz talking about the Brady Bunch, saying he wanted Carol Brady to be a divorcee, but in those times the networks frowned on that. So he purposely left it vague as to what happened to Carol’s first hubby, Mr. Martin.

  • Larry

    Confirmed, but evidently TV Guide assumed otherwise

    1969 “Fall Preview” issue of TV Guide:

    “This season’s widows-and-widowers epidemic reaches an inevitable climax in The Brady Bunch. Widow (Florence Henderson) marries widower (Robert Reed, late of The Defenders), and they live happily — if frenetically — ever after.”

  • George Vreeland Hill

    All of us who have watched the Brady Bunch, which is just about everyone, wished that Alice was our housekeeper too.
    Ann B. Davis is an American icon in her own right.
    We loved her work as an actress and fell in love with her smile.
    We will miss Ann, but she will always be in our hearts.

    George Vreeland Hill

  • Atheist Max

    Silly as it is to pursue this….

    The culture shift against male dominated society certainly did happen.
    Women’s liberation has been the continuing shake up.
    The manic republicans are correct that there is a culture war going on
    And women’s emancipation is winning it.

    Carol Brady would no longer have to fake being a widow.

    As long as women keep rejecting traditional roles and insist on birth control options male-run institutions will continue to die.

    Religion is a male-dominatrix paradigm. Religion is the last true men’s club.
    May it be snuffed in its rat hole!

  • Atheist Max

    Who, again?

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  • So ATHEIST MAX, if you are an atheist like you say, why on Gods Earth are you looking up christian articles?

    And those characteristics are first and foremost christian and they are also in many, many other religions, etc…..

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