Florence Henderson ''had a lot of compassion'' for Robert Reed on set
Henderson had a very understanding view of the ongoing difficulties.
Here's the story behind the story of a man named Brady who was busy with three boys of his own. After all, despite its strengths, The Brady Bunch was just a glimpse at what a family could be. Not every problem can be tied up in a 30-minute episode. Even a 3-part vacation special isn't enough time to right some of the ways our family members are wronged.
Much has been speculated regarding Robert Reed's conduct on the set of The Brady Bunch. Because of the ways the show has grown since its time airing on ABC, the details of The Brady Bunch and its production have been heavily reported and critically examined. One of the key points that keeps reappearing is Reed's supposed explosive personality inside the wood-paneled Brady household.
Florence Henderson, Reed's on-air wife, Carol, provided some further context for all the rumors and innuendo. In a 2000 ABC News interview, Henderson spoke candidly of her experience while filming The Brady Bunch. She explained her feelings toward Reed and the way he acted on the set.
"Here he was, the perfect father of this wonderful little family, a perfect husband," said Henderson. "Off camera, he was an unhappy person — I think had Bob not been forced to live this double life, I think it would have dissipated a lot of that anger and frustration. I never asked him. I never challenged him. I had a lot of compassion for him because I knew how he was suffering with keeping this secret."
Reed, for his part, made sure the Brady kids didn't experience any of this friction while they were around. In her book The Way We All Became the Brady Bunch, expert and author Kimberly Potts explained that the kids, from Susan Olsen on up to Barry Williams, were shielded from any of these on set difficulties by Reed. In fact, she states that Reed had a close, father-like relationship with all the Brady kids.
"He took his responsibility as the TV dad seriously," Potts wrote. "He famously took the kids on a trip to England because he wanted to expose them to culture and Shakespeare. He also famously gave them Super 8 cameras for Christmas. he wanted to help them the same as a father would."