The Greg Brady Project

Welcome to the official Barry Williams' blog

My friends call me Barry. From time to time I also hear the name Greg. Yeah, as in Greg Brady. The Brady Bunch represents a fun time in my life. But it’s only part of the story. There’s more to say and that’s what The Greg Brady Project is all about – a place to say it. So, I’ve invited some friends to join me and share their perspectives on the Brady’s, the 70′s and just about everything else. Now, I’m inviting you…

29 Mar
Bob Hunt

Blast From the Past

written by Bob Hunt in Blog | 12 comments

Dynamite Magazine
The magazine that was bold enough to put Variety Hour Bradys on its cover.

Years before personal computers gave everyone the tools to become amateur graphic artists, my adolescent bedroom was adorned with an eye-catching movie poster.  A man and two children were painted in the foreground, running  toward the viewer while glancing behind them, as if being pursued.  Towering over them on the horizon stood massive stone letters spelling out the title of the film: BLOCKBUSTER.  Breathless testimonies (…the movie of the year! …the star of the century!) were accompanied by explosions in the sky and a jet soaring overhead.  Above the legend Together Again As You’ve Never Seen Them Before!  screamed red marquee lettering that proclaimed the stars of this cinematic event: ROBERT REDFORD and…well, and BOB HUNT!  Or whatever your name happened to be, if you were a fan of Dynamite magazine and took a few minutes to ferret out the correct letters, lick the gummed backing, and carefully affix them to that month’s bonus poster.

Yes, Dynamite, the short-on-pages (36, including the card stock covers) long-on-content (no ads!) periodical that once competed with other Scholastic titles in those colorful Arrow Book Club fliers you might have brought home from school.  So faithfully did I check its little box each month that my mother eventually decided that a subscription made more sense, and soon Dynamite was making its regular appearance among the scant mail I received.  I looked forward to every issue, and what kid wouldn’t?  With its bonus posters and punch-outs, magic tricks and tips for transforming your dull room into a cool place, Dynamite understood juvenile interests and unfailingly delivered.

In the late 70′s, that meant interpreting pop culture through the eyes of someone who hadn’t yet been born when Ed Sullivan introduced America to four lads from Liverpool.  Cover stories focused on the stars of TV hits like Welcome Back Kotter, Happy Days, The Love Boat, CHiPs, and Mork and Mindy.  Icons of the era that would soon disappear (like the mime duo Shields and Yarnell, or Steve Martin in his white suit, arrow-through-the-head standup days) were given their due.  One cover offered the preposterous debate: Beatles vs. Bee Gees – Who’s the greatest?  Never mind the tie-in with starring roles by the Brothers Gibb in the notorious Sgt. Pepper movie, even my 10-year-old artistic sensibility was offended by that one.

Aesthetic arguments aside, I loved Dynamite.  I loved the optical illusions on the puzzle pages and the Mad-like features that satirized advertising and school life.  I loved the articles about the TV shows and pop acts I cared about.  I loved the 3-D posters that I’d separated from a special Dynamite poster book and tacked to my ceiling.  I knew in my heart that I’d always read Dynamite, always.

Until one day when my subscription ran out, and it didn’t seem like too big a deal.  Had the magazine changed, or was I changing?  Months later I received a letter from Dynamite exclaiming “Just look at what you’re missing!”  Enclosed was the cover of the latest issue.  I flattened out the tri-folded card stock to find the cherubic face of Gary Coleman staring back at me.  Perhaps it was I who was changing.

Thanks, Dynamite.  Like a lot of other kids, I moved on.  But for a while, we had a blast.

Now Search & Win for Great Brady Prizes!



    on Mar. 29th, 2009

    That’s not the original Jan in that picture, is it? Did she decide not to be on the variety show?

    on Mar. 29th, 2009

    Thanks for the happy memory of the Arrow Book Club fliers. That was always such an exciting day in school back then! I remember one particularly thrilling cover where JJ from Good TImes was on the cover saying DynOmite.

    Allen Kephart
    on Mar. 30th, 2009

    I remember the cover with the Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman arm wrestling. I also think there was an issue with Fonzie and Pinky on the cover. Dynomite knew what was popular back then. And a lot of those old shows are still good to watch today. The Six Million Dollar Man, Bionic Woman, Wonder Woman and Incredible Hulk were all great 70s superhero shows. And soon after that Christopher Reeve flew across movie screens as Superman. We have some great sci-fi and superhero shows today. Smallville is a teriffic show. I like how they have brought other DC superheroes and Superman villians that have not been portrayed in any live action movie or TV show. Heroes is great as well. And the superhero revolution that has been happening at the movie theater is unbelieveable. If Dynamite were still in operation today, it would not have enough pages to cover everything..

    on Mar. 30th, 2009

    I actually won a Dynamite contest, or at least was an honorable mention. My name appeared in the November 1982 issue (Dark Crystal cover), which I still have a treasured copy of today.

    on Mar. 31st, 2009

    The Bunch also appeared on another cover of Dynamite in August 1980 as “TV’s Top Reruns.”

    Bob Hunt
    on Mar. 31st, 2009

    Mike – Your eyes do not deceive you; that is Fake Jan on the cover. Eve Plumb elected not to participate in the variety show and was replaced by Geri Reischel.
    Charlene – That was a great cover, especially because Jimmie “JJ” Walker is holding an issue of Dynamite featuring JJ holding an issue of Dyanamite, and so on into infinity.
    Bradypalooza – Your name in Dynamite! How cool is that!

    on Apr. 1st, 2009

    I loved Dynamite…in fact, I remember this exact cover! Probably because I am a die-hard Brady fan.

    Bob Hunt
    on Apr. 1st, 2009

    Allen – Great point about what Dynamite would face if it were published today. There was no 24/7 entertainment coverage then, and of course the niche interests websites of today were far off in the future.
    Erika – Right you are. Must have been a Brady fan on the Dynamite staff.
    Kellie – Though I was a Brady fan then as well, I somehow missed that issue! (Oh, the horror!) Must have been sick the day the book club fliers were passed out.

    on Apr. 2nd, 2009

    Also, for anyone who is interested you can read the full text of the Variety Hour Dynamite article at Thanks, Bradyhour!

    Monique Manna
    on Apr. 6th, 2009

    Hmm…let’s try this one more time!

    I wrote earlier…Talk about a blast from the past. I am not sure if I like all this digital and high tech stuff. We need to bring back vinyl recors & atari with imagination. I am not sure if I am ready for the age of the “Jetsons” Thanks Bob!

    Tony Yuse
    on Jul. 1st, 2009


    Great thoughts. I can recall putting on the wafer thin 3D specs and squinting a lot at the posters.I remember seeing only blurred lines but hey,that was high tech gear back then. Tony

    on Dec. 30th, 2010

    Love Dynamite magazine. I had that “Blockbuster” poster on my wall for years. Awesome stuff.

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