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The Golden Girls on DVD: Season 1 Season 2 Season 3 Season 4 Season 5 Season 6 Season 7

"The Golden Girls" The Complete Seventh and Final Season DVD Review

Buy The Golden Girls: The Complete Seventh and Final Season from Amazon.com The Golden Girls: Season Seven (1991-92)
Show & DVD Details

Regular Director: Lex Passaris, Peter D. Beyt

Regular Cast: Beatrice Arthur (Dorothy Zbornak), Betty White (Rose Nylund), Rue McClanahan (Blanche Devereaux), Estelle Getty (Sophia Petrillo)

Recurring Characters: Herb Edelman (Stan Zbornak), Harold Gould (Miles Webber), Bill Dana (Uncle Angelo)

Notable Guest Stars: Edie McClurg (Nurse DeFarge), Barbara Alyn Woods (Woman), Alisan Porter (Melissa), Sid Melton (Salvador Petrillo), Richard Tanner (Young Stan), Lyn Greene (Young Dorothy), Dena Dietrich (Gloria Petrillo), Steve Landesberg (Dr. Halperin), Bryan Norcross (Himself), Bruce Kirby (Bill), Steve Gilborn (Priest), Gene Greytalk (The Pope), Ken Berry (Thor Anderson), Betty Garrett (Sarah), Louis Guss (Marvin), James Callahan (Mr. Gordon), Ken Howard (Jerry), Terry Kiser (Don), Alex Trebek (Himself), Merv Griffin (Himself), David Leisure (Charlie Dietz), Derek McGrath (Coordinator), Lane Davies (Peterson), Dinah Manoff (Carol Weston), Kristy McNichol (Barbara Weston), Jessica Lundy (Janet), Lee Garlington (Kirsten), Leslie Nielsen (Lucas Hollingsworth)

Running Time: 625 Minutes (26 episodes) / Rating: TV-PG
1.33:1 Fullscreen (Original Broadcast Ratio) / Dolby Digital Stereo 2.0 (English)
Subtitles: English for Hearing Impaired; Closed Captioned
DVD Release Date: February 13, 2007
Season 7 Airdates: September 21, 1991 - May 5, 1992
Three single-sided, dual-layered discs (DVD-9); Suggested Retail Price: $39.99
Six-sided fold-out Digipak with cardboard slipcover

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Page 1: Show Discussion, Disc 1, and Disc 2
Page 2: Disc 3, Video/Audio, Bonus Features, Menus & Packaging, and Closing Thoughts

By Aaron Wallace

The old saying goes that "all that glitters is gold," but "The Golden Girls" didn't just glitter -- it glowed. For seven successful seasons, viewers were welcomed into the Miami home of four elderly women, who soon felt like old friends and won the world's affection. Cheesecake was sliced, stories were told, feuds unfolded and were later resolved. Plenty of jokes were made at one another's expense, but a warmth purveyed through it all.
In other words, "The Golden Girls" felt a lot like true friendship, for both its characters and its viewers. Such connections are strong and long-lasting, which explains why the series was granted a consistent top spot in the ratings, 65 Emmy nominations, four Golden Globe awards, and a popular eternity in syndication.

Of course, another old saying has it that "all good things must come to an end." "The Golden Girls", which ended its run with the conclusion of its seventh season in 1992, was no exception. It's no secret that the show ended at Bea Arthur's behest. NBC shifted its time slot by one hour on Saturday nights and its ratings rank slipped from #10 to #30 as a result. Arthur aside, though, the cast, crew, network, and fans weren't ready to let go. Knowing that "The Golden Girls" couldn't continue without Arthur in the mix, NBC developed a spin-off -- "The Golden Palace" -- for the next year. Diehard fans appreciated the extra time that they were granted with their favorite characters, but the spin-off just wasn't the same. 1992 marked the end of an era in television and widespread fondness for the show continues to this day. Fortunately, the advent of DVD allows longtime fans and new generations alike to experience classic television in its original sequence anytime they like. To that end, The Complete Seventh and Final Season of "The Golden Girls" has at long last been issued to DVD.

Sophia arbitrates a dispute as only Sophia can -- she makes it worse. No one can escape the mental acuity of one Rose Nylund.

It's often said that the series "jumped the shark" in its last year and those that notice weaknesses in Season 7 are astute viewers indeed. Hearty laughter is evoked less often than it once was, as a number of jokes are dead on arrival. Occasionally, the punch-lines feel forced and dialogue doesn't ring true, a serious problem for a sitcom specializing in character humor. And while the ending is poignant, the fate of Dorothy (Bea Arthur's character) doesn't feel satisfying.

Despite all that, though, the series hardly "jumped the shark." Application of that term denies the seventh season of all that goes right in it. Every episode still packs a punch in the hilarity department and the number of good jokes far exceeds the bad. Dramatically, the show is in top form, surpassing even the dramatic strength of the sixth season. Several of the very best "Golden Girls" episodes are found in the seventh season and the series retained enough comic capital to justify not only a spin-off, but even an eighth season had Arthur been on board.

The writing and acting in "The Golden Girls" is among the strongest that television has ever seen. Bea Arthur, Betty White, Rue McClanahan, and Estelle Getty are each scene-stealers in their own right, meaning that the four of them together comprise an incomparably brilliant ensemble. This is the kind of series that you just can't get enough of and the final season thankfully delivers a fun farewell ride.

A star () denotes my ten favorite episodes from the season. (It was very difficult to choose just ten).

Rose sorts through her and Charlie's belongings in "Hey, Look Me Over." Oh no! Dorothy's gone crazy! Edie McClurg is Sophia's new live-in nurse.

Disc 1

1. Hey, Look Me Over (23:44) (Originally aired September 21, 1991)
Rose's development of an old roll of film reveals that her late husband, Charlie, once had an affair with Blanche.

2. The Case of the Libertine Belle (23:26) (Originally aired September 28, 1991)
All four girls attend a murder mystery weekend at a hotel while Blanche tries to impress her boss, a fellow guest at the party. Of course, it isn't long before an actual murder occurs and all the evidence points towards Blanche.

3. Beauty and the Beast (23:46) (Originally aired October 5, 1991)
Blanche tries to bond with her niece by entering her into a beauty pageant while Sophia bonds with a new live-in nurse and makes Dorothy jealous.

4. That's For Me to Know (23:29) (Originally aired October 12, 1991)
Dorothy discovers that Sophia's marriage to her father had not been her first. Meanwhile, Blanche learns that her home is not up to code and one of the roommates has to leave.

Nobody molds a man like Blanche Deveraux. Sophia comes to therapy prepared. Sophia prepares for Miami's incoming hurricane in "The Monkey Show."

5. Where's Charlie (23:44) (Originally aired October 19, 1991)
Feeling guilty about her relationship with Miles, Rose believes that Charlie is trying to contact her from the afterlife. Meanwhile, Blanche dates and trains a professional baseball player.

6. Mother Load (23:45) (Originally aired October 26, 1991)
Everybody's got momma drama -- Blanche's new beau has an overprotective mother and Dorothy learns that Stan is fixated on Sophia.

7. Dateline Miami (23:44) (Originally aired November 2, 1991)
In a flashback episode (not to be confused with a clip show, which is surprisingly absent altogether this season), the girls share memories of their worst dates.

8 & 9. The Monkey Show (Parts I & II) (45:22) (Originally aired November 9, 1991)
Dorothy's rival sister visits Miami and following her is a hurricane and -- even worse -- Stan. It was originally aired as an hour-long episode and is presented as such here.

Sophia journeys back to Sicily in "Rose Loves Miles." In "Room Seven", the girls defend Blanche's childhood home from the demolition team. Rose gets Roy's Mickey Mouse Club sweater for her birthday.

Disc 2

10. Rose Loves Miles (23:39) (Originally aired November 16, 1991)
When the cat's away, the mice will play, and when Dorothy leaves town, Sophia leaves for Sicily. Meanwhile, Rose tries to coax more lavish spending habits out of Miles by going on a date with another man.

11. Room Seven (23:43) (Originally aired November 23, 1991)
The group travels to Atlanta, where Blanche's family home is about to be demolished.

12. From Here to the Pharmacy (23:29) (Originally aired December 7, 1991)
A Gulf War soldier returns to Miami to rekindle the romance with Blanche that he left behind. The only problem is that Blanche has no recollection of the romance whatsoever.

13. The Pope's Ring (23:31) (Originally aired December 14, 1991)
When the Pope visits Miami, Sophia manages to steal his ring and use it force his blessing on her sick friend. To make sure Miles isn't cheating on Rose, Blanche hires a detective as a birthday present.

It's a "Mama's Family" reunion! Roses and a kiss from your teacher: creepy until you're both over fifty. Dorothy and Rose engage in a "Jeopardy!" battle of wits in "Questions and Answers."

14. Old Boyfriends (23:46) (Originally aired January 4, 1992)
Sophia finds a new boyfriend but is annoyed when his sister accompanies them on every date. Rose, on the other hand, can't remember a high school sweetheart from St. Olaf.
This episode is notable for guest appearances by former stars of shows like "Maude" and "Mama's Family", both of which also starred members of "The Golden Girls" cast.

15. Goodbye, Mr. Gordon (23:42) (Originally aired January 11, 1992)
The apprentice becomes the master when Dorothy's favorite teacher from high school seeks out her help -- and her company. Also troubling Dorothy is an upcoming appearance that she and Blanche will be making on Rose's newly developed talk show.

16. The Commitments (23:45) (Originally aired January 25, 1992)
Dorothy dates a Beatles impersonator while Blanche can't get her new boyfriend to lay a finger on her.

17. Questions and Answers (23:39) (Originally aired February 8, 1992)
Dorothy dreams that she's a contestant on "Jeopardy!" and her competition is no other than Rose Nylund.

18. Ebbtide IV: The Wrath of Stan (23:44) (Originally aired February 15, 1992)
Rose's interview with Uncle Angelo accidentally results in criminal charges against his landlords: Dorothy and Stan.

Dorothy flusters the ever-scheming Sophia. The physical contrast between Dorothy and her mother, Sophia, provides some of the series' funniest moments.

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The Golden Girls on DVD: Season 1 Season 2 Season 3 Season 4 Season 5 Season 6 Season 7

Page 1: Show Discussion, Disc 1, and Disc 2
Page 2: Disc 3, Video/Audio, Bonus Features, Menus & Packaging, and Closing Thoughts

Reviewed February 15, 2007.