The Brady Bunch

Season 5 Episode 14

Kelly's Kids

Aired Unknown Jan 04, 1974 on ABC
out of 10
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85 votes

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Episode Summary

The Brady's friends, the Kellys are in the middle of adopting one little boy and soon find themselves adopting a total of three boys all of different ethnic backgrounds and they soon find themselves dealing with racist neighbors.

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  • An Attempted Spinoff

    The biggest problem of The Brady Bunch was that it was outdated in contrast to Mary Tyler Moore, All In The Family and M*A*S*H. By creating a husband and wife adopting multiracial boys was Sherwood Schwartz attempt that he was up to the times but failed. I believe the problem lies with Ken Kelly and his wife. They were carbon copies of Mike and Carol. Plus the next door neighbor was a bigot who unlike Archie Bunker was a totally hateful character. This might have been an attempt by Sherwood Schwartz to see if The Brady Bunch was renewed for a six season to replace Robert Reed with Ken Berry as Mike Brady since there was outright hatred between them by now.moreless
  • A different kind of episode, almost another show!

    When the Bradys got too old for little kid adventures, a new set of kids were brought in for this story plot. Ultra-modern parents, and neighbors of the Bradys, Ken and Cathy Kelly- seem to have everything that could make them happy-except a kid of their own to love. So thye have decided to adopt-a little blonde hair boy who could pass for Bobby\'s brother (-and he did!-he was Todd Lookinland, Mike\'s real brother). Matt-the new son of the Kellys-sees his new bedroom and loves all his new toys and crayons and racecars-and even his own connecting bathroom! But he informs his mom...he can brush his teeth himself! Soon after the \"new arrival\", nosy neighbor Mrs. Payne (aptly named) comes over to give her two-cents. Seems she\'s not pleased with a little boy-even one of her own race-in what she was hoping was a \"Peace and Quiet Neighborhood\". She would rather have a neat flower bed than the supposed noise and mess that kids bring.

    It\'s time to tuck him in, and Matt says a bedtime prayer for all his friends back at the Home.-(except for Margaret-she bit me once!) But he\'s not having the sweet dreams that the new parents expected-seems he\'s crying because he misses his two best buds-Dwayne and Stevie- from the orphanage so much.

    The parents return to the orphanage, and the head director shows them a \"paperweight\" that Matt made-a boulder big enough to keep her paperwork from flying even in a tornado! But the reason they\'re back is to inquire about Matt\'s buddies-and thru what seems a VERY fast adoption-they bring his two friends home- and one is black and one is oriental. But a little racial distinction doesn\'t mean anything to boys their age-and they are thrilled to be brothers! The 3 boys enjoy a spaghetti dinner and lots of laughter with their new parents.

    Come bedtime,Ken (a nightclub owner), proud of his new fatherly role-engages the boys in a little bedroom softshoe routine-complete with canes and hats-and then a big pillow fight! And proud mom Cathy says that she doesn\'t have 3 little boys-she has 4 little boys! But Mrs Payne has come over AGAIN-and she\'s not a bit pleased. She has noticed \"The Kelly Rainbow\", and she doesn\'t like it. But mind you-she\'s not a bigot (hmm...) and she and hubby have even managed to be civil to the Jewish family down the street-to which Mr. Kelly sarcastically offers her the \"Neighbor of the Year Award\". She considers that remark uncalled for,but \"If nobody calls for it in 30 days, it\'s all yours, baby!\".

    Dwayne and Steve come to the kitchen for some late-night milk, but the hide when they overhear their parents discussing Mrs. Payne\'s attitude. She could give Archie Bunker a run for the crown-and hopes to gets the Kelly parents thrown out of their community involvement. The boys are feeling very out of place and in the way, so \"The 3 Muskateers\" decide to run away from home.

    Greg returns home from what is probably a late-night date, only to find the Kelly boys curled up in lounge chairs and blankets on the patio. He brings them into the house, and Alice (who always seems to be up in the middle of the night anyway) offers the boys cookies and milk, and also a phone call to their worried sick parents-who are just glad to find them in the middle of the night. The boys might run away to out west (\"We ARE out west!\") to avoid conflict with Mrs Payne. But being the hipsters that they are , the parents don\'t care what Mrs. Payne thinks,and she won\'t stop them from raising a happy family. In the end, the boys have sealed their family togetherness by taking a picture from a 3 Musketeers book-and coloring the faces to match their own.

    *This story line has always interested me-and i would have hoped Sherwood would have continued this concept as a spin-off as planned-but it was to never be.

  • Possably A Spin-Off For Another Series That Didn't Make It.

    Well, it was closing to the end of the last season, and I think everybody was trying to keep the show alive, the focus wsnt on The Bradys but on Ken Berry and Crew as the Kelly Family, a friend of the Bradys, he and wife adopted a boy who had 2 friends (one black the other Asian) and the other 2 boys ran away from the orphanege to see their friend, eventally Mr. Kelly will adopt the other 2 boys. A semmily nice episode that might have made a series.moreless

Featured Episode Clip

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Look closely at 4:30 into the episode. (Ken and Kathy are turning down Matt's bed) On the floor behind Ken sits the album The Soft Parade by The Doors.

    • You might notice a resemblance between Matt and Bobby Brady. That's because they were actually brothers in real life. In the scenes that feature the Brady's and the Kelly's together, you'll also notice how they're always seen together.

  • QUOTES (1)

    • Mrs. Payne: My husband and I have even managed to be cordial to the Shapiros down the street.
      Ken: Well, congratulations, you've just received the "Neighbor of the Year" award.
      Mrs. Payne: I consider that remark uncalled for!
      Ken: If nobody calls for it in 30 days, it's all yours, baby!

  • NOTES (9)

    • Ken Berry is better known as Sam Jones on the final season of The Andy Griffith Show and Mayberry RFD. He also went on to star on the '80s sitcom Mama's Family that ran from 1983-1990.

    • Actress Jackie Joseph (Mrs. Phillips) was the real-life wife of Ken Berry (Mr. Kelly).

    • Keen-eyed viewers will notice that the Kelly boys and the Brady boys have almost identical bedrooms, right down to the layout of furniture and the position of the doors and hallway. Hmmm...

      No, the single bed and bunk beds were in opposite sides of the room. The single bed is where the Peter and Bobby's bunk bed were.

    • When the newly-adopted Matt Kelly is praying aloud for all the kids back at the orphanage, his dad asks him, "Is that all?" Matt replies no, he left out Carol Martin because, "she bit me once". Carol Martin is Mrs. Brady's name in the pilot episode.

    • Actress Brooke Bundy went on to play Diana Taylor on "General Hospital" in the late '70's, at the height of GH's popularity.

    • This is about the only episode since the first season the Brady Family's coming together as non-related siblings wasn't just a passing joke..."How long have you two been married...? Three years?! Six kids?!" etc..

    • Ken Kelly was originally to be called Jim Kelly

    • If one of Mr. & Mrs. Kelly's adoptive kids looks familar, it's because he is Mike Lookinland's real-life younger brother, Todd.

    • This episode was a pilot for a proposed series.


    • At one point, Mrs.Kelly claims that their racist neighbors make Archie Bunker sound like a liberal.

      Archie Bunker was on a show called All in the Family, & Archie Bunker's Place that always talks about bigotry and racism. The show ran from 1971-1983.

    • This is the first time you see a toilet in the series. The toilet is a Kohler Trylon. Although partially blocked by Matt Kelly, you can see it behind him while he is brushing his teeth. When Matt told his new mother, Kathy, that he could use the bathroom by himself, she even looked at the toilet as she was getting the hint to leave.