So are you a Dorothy, Rose, Sophia or a Blanche? The ladies of The Golden Girls were basically the first version of the Sex and the City gals.
Picture it: America, 1985 (sorry, I had to do it.) The show debuted on NBC on September 14, 1985, and quickly became a top 10 hit, and this was before you could binge a number of shows on streaming services. There were only three major commercial networks fighting for your eyeballs every night, ABC, NBC and CBS. The show starred Beatrice Arthur as Dorothy, Betty White as Rose, Rue McClanahan as Blanche, and Estelle Getty as Sophia. Fun fact: Estelle Getty, who played Sophia, was a year younger than Bea Arthur, who played her daughter.
The premise of the show, according to Wikipedia states: “four older single women (three widows and one divorcée) sharing a house in Miami. The owner of the house is a widow named Blanche Devereaux (McClanahan), who was joined by fellow widow Rose Nylund (White) and divorcée Dorothy Zbornak (Arthur) after they both responded to an ad on the bulletin board of a local grocery store a year before the start of the series. In the pilot episode, the three are joined by Dorothy’s 80-year-old mother, Sophia Petrillo (Getty), after the retirement home where she has been living has burned down.”
Even though the show was set in Miami, the exterior home that we see in the series is actually located in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Brentwood. As of July 2020 it was listed for sale for $3 million – see inside.
The show also spawned a couple of spinoffs, including Empty Nest.
After 7 seasons Bea Authur decided to leave the show, and the series ended with a one-hour season finale in May 1992. It was watched by an estimated 27.2 million viewers.
Thanks to syndication the show remains on television and is still a fan favorite. Even though the show just celebrated it’s 35th anniversay, in 2020 you can find Halloween costumes available for each of the characters. T-shirts, pajamas action figures, board games greeting cards among other merchandise depicting the popular show is available online.