Harold & Mauding on The Golden Girls: 4.07
First off, if the title of this post made you go "Huh?" then, here's the reference. Second, we all know how much I enjoy Harold & Mauding. Third, if you grew up in the 1980s like I did, perhaps one of your favorite pastimes was watching "Golden Girls" with your grandmother. And finally, development execs take note: in syndication, "The Golden Girls" has been drawing a surprisingly young demographic-- especially compared to other 80s staples like "The Cosby Show". It's proof that you don't necessarily need young characters to draw young audiences.
Surprisingly, The Golden Girls was an influential television show: from inspiring Sex and the City to helping launch Desperate Housewives impresario Marc Cherry's career. While I'm on the subject, Sex and the City's characters are essentially The Golden Girls. There's the slutty one (Rue McClanahan & Kim Cattrall), the sweet one (Betty White & Kristin Davis), the world-weary strong-willed one (Estelle Getty & Cynthia Nixon) and the appropriately-sympathetic leader (Bea Arthur & Sarah Jessica Parker). Ultimately, the G Girls worked, just as Sex and the City later would, because it had interesting, well-drawn characters with strong relationships. Each Golden Girl made me love her in an unique way. Allow me to share...
Dorothy (Bea Arthur): I don't care what anyone says, Bea Arthur is regal.
Rose (Betty White): My favorite part of any GG episode? The part where Rose shares a story about St. Olaf. Every. Single. Time.
Blanche (Rue McClanahan): Was my favorite part about Blanche's character her honeyed accent, her super-sluttiness, or her propensity to wear vibrantly-colored muu-muus? Answer: all of the above.
Sophia (Estelle Getty): The only one who could take Bea Arthur down a peg, Sophia always got the funniest, snarkiest jokes. Which were made extra funny by the diminutive old woman saying them.
Need more reasons to like the G Girls? Some obscure trivia perhaps? How about the fact that Don Cheadle was in the spinoff? Did you even know it had a spinoff? Yep, it was called "The Golden Palace" and had Cheadle and Cheech Marin(!)-- with Marc Cherry as the supervising producer. Now, I know Marc and I have had our differences but the man can write groups of white women well.
The Golden Girls runs in syndication on Lifetime, Television for Barren Women.