This is a transcript from VH1's "Where Are They Now: Kid Stars." With a name like that, why wasn't Kidd Video mentioned?
Oliver: "What a fantastic cover for an FBI agent! Nobody in the whole world would suspect a butcher!"
Bobby: "You did!"
He was never a full-fledged Brady, but for 6 classic episodes, Robbie Rist was Cousin Oliver, the tow-headed rascal brought in to boost ratings and save the whole bunch.
Oliver: "I only wish we had a push-button phone!"
TV's John Denver look-a-like spent the early 70's as the hardest working kid in commercials. But it was his 6 weeks as Bobby Brady's precocious sidekick that made Robbie famous.
Oliver: "You know why he wants us to forget it?"
Bobby: "No, why?"
Oliver: "Because it must be a secret FBI thing."
The tired sitcom came alive again as Oliver dropped some youthful science on the Bradys.
Oliver: "You just can't trust anyone over 12!"
In 1974, after Robbie's 6 episodes, the show was cancelled. Perhaps goofy Cousin Oliver was a jinx after all.
After the Brady Bunch, Robbie beefed up his resume with a reoccuring role on the Mary Tyler Moore show, bit parts on everything from CHiPs to the short-lived Satruday morning sitcom, Big John, Little John. In 1990, 26-year-old Robbie rode another pop-culture phenomenon. He was the voice of Michelangelo in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie. (Robbie's voice: "Cowabunga!") But his famous face remained hidden.
So where's Robbie Rist now?
Little Cousin Oliver is a fixture on the L.A. club scene.
Robbie: "Music's a full-time job. I play 3 or 4 nights a week. If I'm not playing, I'm recording somebody. What the hell else am I going to do? (laughs) I have a very low threshold for boredom."
Robbie's a man on demand, splitting time among a bunch of bands: The Andersons, Wonderboy and The Masticators.
Robbie: "I've been playing out since I was 12. So, you know...forever. For as long as I've been acting."
Between playing gigs, and producing bands in his home studio, Robbie is Mr. Entertainment (Robbie: "Yeah!"). Hey, it's a business he's know for 30 years...even if it hasn't made him rich.
Robbie: "There are months where I can pay all my bills...and then I make $100 the next month."
"After 30 years in the entertainment business, I give you the next step." (Robbie stands in front of mixme.com door.)
In 1998, Robbie decided it was time to earn an honest living. He put his talents to work on the music website, mixme.com. Nine to five is all new to this ex-kid-star.
Robbie: "It's my first real job...I've got to be there everyday. I realized since I started this, that I've never had any discipline in my life."
For legions of rabid Brady fans, Robbie is still little Cousin Oliver, even though he's not so little anymore.
Robbie: "I get it all the time! 'Man, you look the same!' And I've heard that when my head was shaved, when I had green hair...I had dyed platinum blond hair down to my elbows and people were going 'Brady Bunch!'"
Living in Cousin Olivers's kitschy shadow can be a bit of a drag.
Robbie: "You don't know what it's like going to the mall and have little kids run up to you yelling in Spanish...And then the only word you understand is Brady Bunch."
After two decades of not acting, Robbie made a comeback of sorts, in 1999's low-budget flick, Unseen.
Robbie in Unseen: "Chuck, you have got to stop dating these women you meet over the radio."
Chuck: "I was ambushed, goddammit!"
Since then, Robbie's been a man on a mission.
Robbie: "If you ever need an actor, you call me! I'll do it. I'll work so cheap! I'll work stupid cheap!"
In fact Robbie's got a message from one pop-icon to another.
Robbie: "Tarantino. Man, if you're out there!... (points to himself) Brady Bunch, Brady Bunch! Come on, the kitsch value alone!"
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