A popular NBC series from 1985-1992, "The Golden Girls" chronicled the ups-and-downs of life for four retired women living together - Dorothy (Bea Arthur), goofy Rose (Betty White), Sophia (Estelle Getty), and flirty Blanche (Rue McClanahan). After not watching the series for a good ten years, I was surprised to find that it still plays about as well as it did back then, which I've found is not always the case with shows from the era. The chemistry between the four leads was excellent and the writing and direction were certainly solid in this final season.
The season continues to offer highlights as the show's writing staff keeps things fresh and funny, with episodes like: "The Case of the Libertine Belle" (the girls take part in a pretend murder mystery, and while Dorothy is enjoying herself, Blanche is stunned when she's accused for real), "Dateline: Miami" (the girls chat about some of their worst dates; written by "Desperate Housewives" creator Marc Cherry, who was a writer on "Girls"), "The Monkey Show" (a hurricane is coming and Dorothy finds out that Stan is moving on with his life), "Questions and Answers" (Dorothy is thrilled to find that "Jeopardy" is having auditions nearby and decides to try for a spot) and the 2-part finale, "One Flew Out of the Cuckoo's Nest".
"Golden Girls" was one of those rare shows that really remained at a consistent level of quality throughout its run. The seventh season ends the series on a high note, with some very touching episodes, as well as some very amusing ones. While most of the show's one-liners are hilarious, some are pretty ordinary. Still, these actresses knock even the ones that aren't that funny in theory out of the park each time. The show's success is really a combination of great writing, terrific performances and superb direction. Looking back at the series years later, I actually appreciate it more than I did when it was first on. It's a great show about friendship that still works remarkably well.
155. 7- 1 21 Sep 91 Hey, Look Me Over
156. 7- 2 28 Sep 91 The Case of the Libertine Belle
157. 7- 3 5 Oct 91 Beauty and the Beast
158. 7- 4 12 Oct 91 That's For Me to Know
159. 7- 5 19 Oct 91 Where's Charlie?
160. 7- 6 26 Oct 91 Mother Load
161. 7- 7 2 Nov 91 Dateline: Miami
162. 7- 8 9 Nov 91 The Monkey Show (1)
163. 7- 9 9 Nov 91 The Monkey Show (2)
164. 7-10 16 Nov 91 Ro$e Love$ Mile$
165. 7-11 23 Nov 91 Room 7
166. 7-12 7 Dec 91 From Here to the Pharmacy
167. 7-13 14 Dec 91 The Pope's Ring
168. 7-14 4 Jan 92 Old Boyfriends
169. 7-15 11 Jan 92 Goodbye, Mr. Gordon
170. 7-16 25 Jan 92 The Commitments
171. 7-17 8 Feb 92 Questions and Answers
172. 7-18 15 Feb 92 Ebbtide VI: The Wrath of Stan
173. 7-19 22 Feb 92 Journey to the Center of Attention
174. 7-20 29 Feb 92 A Midwinter Night's Dream (1)
175. 7-21 29 Feb 92 A Midwinter Night's Dream (2)
176. 7-22 7 Mar 92 Rose: Portrait of a Woman
177. 7-23 25 Apr 92 Home Again, Rose (1)
178. 7-24 2 May 92 Home Again, Rose (2)
179. 7-25 9 May 92 One Flew Out of the Cuckoo's Nest (1)
180. 7-26 9 May 92 One Flew Out of the Cuckoo's Nest (2)
VIDEO: "Golden Girls" is presented by Buena Vista in 1.33:1 full-frame here, the show's original aspect ratio. While the opening credits look a little faded and worn, the episodes themselves actually look rather good. Sharpness and detail were not entirely consistent throughout, but the presentation did often look quite crisp and well-defined.
Some minor shimmering was occasionally spotted, as were a couple of slight instances of artifacts, but otherwise, the picture looked crisp and clean. No moments of wear and tear were spotted, either. Colors remained bright and vivid, with no smearing or other issues.
SOUND: "Golden Girls" is presented in stereo and sounds fine, with clear dialogue and music.
EXTRAS: "Thank You For Being a Friend", a retrospective documentary on the series that's 15 minutes and offers new interviews.
Final Thoughts: "Golden Girls" offers up another set of solid episodes in its final run, continuing to put the characters into some entertaining situations that mix comedy and drama quite well. The DVD set offers fine audio/video quality and one nice extra. Recommended.