The Golden Girls

The Engagement (a.k.a.) The Pilot

Season 1, Ep 1, Aired 9/14/85
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  • Episode Description
  • In the series pilot, Blanche announces that her latest boyfriend, Harry, has proposed marriage. Hearing this, Rose worries over where she will live and later, worries that there is something off about Harry. Meanwhile, Dorothy is more than exuberant over Blanche's plans, but must also contend with her mother, Sophia, who arrives after her retirement home, Shady Pines, burns down.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Betty White

    Rose Nylund

  • Rue McClanahan

    Blanche Devereaux

  • Estelle Getty

    Sophia Petrillo

  • Bea Arthur

    Dorothy Zbornak

  • Susan Harris

  • Fan Reviews (12)
  • Not bad for a pilot show. A great introduction to the girls and their lives.

    By grewupwatching, Mar 31, 2010

  • blanche gets engaged and sophia moves in

    By damanray, Apr 08, 2009

  • Not bad, considering it's a pilot.

    By readysetgo88, Aug 22, 2008

  • The very first episode!

    By sweet_jane, Apr 11, 2008

  • And we're off....

    By blizair09, Jun 13, 2007

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (21)

    • Sophia: Hello. Dorothy: Ma, what are you doing here? Sophia: Everything's fine, nobody died, the home burned down.

    • Dorothy: Let's go out and celebrate. Sophia: What, that she came out of her room!

    • Blanche: Dorothy, can I borrow your mink stole? Dorothy: It's Miami in June - only cat's are wearing fur! Rose: Are you going out? Dorothy: No, she's going to sit here where its 112 degrees and eat enchiladas.

    • Blanche: We're going to New York for the honeymoon. I just hope I don't get murdered.

    • Dorothy: I taught a class today, the finest school in Dade County, two girls had shaved heads, and three boys had green hair. Coco: They're expressing themselves! Dorothy: Well, I expressed myself. I told them they had to leave, they were too ugly to look at. Now the parents are upset, a father in a three piece suit came in and defended Tiffany, a bald girl with a nose ring.

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    Notes (19)

    • Guest Meshach Taylor would later work with Estelle Getty in the movie Mannequin.

    • This episode was videotaped on April 22, 1985.

    • Viewed by 25 million viewers and ranked #1 for the week, pushing The Cosby Show to #2.

    • Rue McClanahan and Betty White both starred together on Mama's Family.

    • Beatrice Arthur and Rue McClanahan both played on Maude together.

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    Trivia (10)

    • According to Betty White, she was nervous about switching the roles because she understood Blanche, but did not get who Rose was. She said Susan Harris gave her the character in a nutshell, and from then on, she is enternally grateful to Jay Sandrich whose idea it was to switch the roles.

    • In Bea Arthur's one woman show, she confirms that Sophia's line in the pilot regarding Harry being a "scuzball" was originally written to say "The man is a douchebag," and that this was the only line the censors would not allow.

    • On the front door of Blanche's home, there is an exclamation point type looking engravement, which remains there for the rest of the series.

    • Meshach Taylor, who plays the policeman in this pilot episode, is better known for his long-term role as Anthony Bouvier on Designing Women which ran on CBS from 1986-1993.

    • Sophia looks different in the pilot episode (as well as much of Season 1) than she does in the rest of the series. She looks much older than she does in the other seasons of the show.

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    Allusions (5)

    • Rose: "Mrs. Gandhi would be alive today if she had taken my call."
      This is a reference to the assassination of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi who was killed in 1984, the year before this episode aired.

    • Dorothy: "She has more colors than Benjamin Moore paints."
      Dorothy was talking about Blanche's make-up collection. The reference is to the well-known paint store chain.

    • Blanche: "We went to Joe's."
      Blanche tells the ladies that she had dinner at "Joe's" and ate stone crabs. This is a reference to Joe's Stone Crabs which is one of the most famous restaurants in Miami Beach.

    • Dorothy: "I can't get through to New Jersey with MCI."
      Reference to MCI, one of the major phone companies during the 1980's.

    • Dorothy: "She wouldn't even budge for Julio Iglesias."
      Dorothy talks about getting tickets for Julio Iglesias to cheer Blanche up. Iglesias was one of the most popular singers of the 1980's and even made a cameo on the fourth season episode called "Valentine's Day".

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