The Golden Girls

Season 1 Episode 9

Blanche and the Younger Man

Aired Unknown Nov 16, 1985 on NBC

Episode Recap

The episode opens with Sophia sneaking out of the kitchen with some snacks. Dorothy comes around the corner, and asks her why she has all of the snacks. Sophia tells her that she's stashing it away from Rose's mother because she's on a special diet. She claims that every time one of Rose's family members visit, their food ends up gone and on their diet. Dorothy tells her to knock it off since she's never met Rose's mother. Sophia notes that all old people are the same: demanding, cranky, and always repeating themselves. Dorothy asks why she thinks she's old because she'd be the same age as her. Sophia says that Rose sent her a wheelchair, ordered a special meal, and put an oxygen tank in the garage. Dorothy jokes she may be a disabled welder on a diet. She tells Sophia that she'd better be nice to her, and adds that maybe she could show her the city. They hear the door open, but find out that it's just Blanche and her aerobics instructor, Dirk. Blanche thanks him for bringing her home, and says she'll see him next week. Dirk says that he would like to take her out to dinner. Blanche can't believe her young gymnastics instructor is asking her out on a date. Sophia jokes she heard it on this side of the room. Dirk suggests dinner this Saturday. Blanche tells him she'll check her calendar and let him know. Dirk agrees, and tells her that he'll call her tomorrow. After Dirk leaves, Blanche admits that she doesn't know what to think, and admits that he's a little bit younger than she is. Before anyone can say anything, Rose and her mother, Alma Linstrom, come into the house. Rose introduces the group to her with a loud voice, and Dorothy asks in a loud voice how her trip was. Alma says was good then asks Rose which one of them is hard at hearing. Rose says that nobody is hard at hearing. She says that she didn't want her to have to strain to hear the rest of them. Alma says there's nothing wrong with her hearing. Rose tells her to have a seat, and she'll get her a snack. Blanche asks Alma how long she's staying with them. Rose answers for her, and tells Blanche she's only going to be there for a week then visiting her brother in Houston. Blanche offers to give her a tour of the house, but Rose tells Blanche she doesn't think it's a good idea because she's probably exhausted from the flight. Dorothy jokes that they can skip the east wing of the house. Rose tells her mother that she can go take a nap while Rose fixes her that snack. Alma tells Rose that she's not a child, and she doesn't need a nap. Rose tells her that it's okay to take naps, and tells her that Bob Hope takes naps. Sophia adds that unless Bob Hope is in their bedroom, Alma probably wants to stay out in the living room with them. Rose tells Sophia that she knows what's best for her mother, and takes her to the back bedroom. Dorothy says that Rose's mother seems like a nice lady, and Sophia adds they could find out more if Rose would get off her back.

Blanche tells the group that she thinks she's going to go on the date with Dirk tomorrow. Dorothy asks if there was ever a moment of doubt. Blanche says that there was for a moment, but she says that Dirk's only about five years younger than her. Dorothy asks if she means in dog years. Blanche says she's willing to overlook the age because she believes that what's between her and Dirk is special and isn't like anything she's ever had before. She admits the only other time she felt like this was when she was 17 and working at a drugstore stocking shelves. She says that a booming voice asked her where the cuticle scissors were. She goes on, but Dorothy says that Sidney Sheldon tells shorter stories. Blanche admits that if she had acted on those feelings, she would have been Mrs. Andy Griffith. She says that she's not going to make the same mistake with Dirk that she made with Andy. Dorothy asks if Blanche told that story before. Sophia says yes, and all of the names were different then.

In the living room, Blanche does another aerobics exercise while Dorothy relaxes on the couch. Dorothy admits that the only time she gets in that position is when she gives birth. Blanche gets up and complains about her back, but she admits that it's worth it for Dirk. Blanche then starts taking some pills that are filled with protein, and Dorothy jokes that when they unfreeze Walt Disney he'll have someone to date. Blanche says that she can make fun of her, but that the treatments are working. Dorothy asks her what kind of a relationship it will be if Blanche has to go through all of these physical tasks. Blanche says it'll be a youthful one which is one that she wants. Blanche tells Dorothy that Dirk is the youngest man she's ever dated, and if she wants to keep him, she has to stay in shape. Rose comes in the door just as Blanche runs outside for a jog. Rose comments that Blanche looks terrible. Dorothy comments that Blanche looks terrible because all she's eaten lately is bee pollen. Rose says it's ironic that the bees look so good. Dorothy asks Rose why she's home so early. Rose tells her she wanted to spend some time with her mother. Dorothy tells her that Sophia took her out to town. Rose asked why she would let her leave the house. Dorothy jokes that she didn't, and that her mother tunneled out with a dessert spoon. Rose is worried because it's almost dark, but Dorothy tells her everything will be fine because she's with Sophia. Rose says that Sophia is different than her mother, and adds that her mother led a quiet life. Dorothy tells her to relax because her mother's only betting on the horses, not rounding them up. Just then, Sophia and Alma arrive home. Rose asks if everything's okay. Sophia says her mother's fine, but she lost $50. Dorothy congratulates her, and tells Sophia that she'll be in the living room waiting for an explanation about how Sophia got the $50 she lost. Alma asks Sophia if she wants to go to the mall, and offers to buy her some bikini underwear. Sophia declines, saying that they ride up on her. Rose tells her that she had enough for one day, and tells her to sit down and she'll get her a cup of tea. Alma scolds Rose, and tells her that she doesn't want a cup of tea. She says she wants to go out and have fun. Rose says she knows how she gets when she gets really tired. Rose says that she's worried that she's going to get unsteady and fall and break her hip again. Alma reminds Rose that she broke her hip because she fell while ice-skating. Rose asks if she wants to go back to the hospital, and adds it wasn't so fun last time. Alma tells her that she had more fun in the hospital than being here with her. Rose doesn't understand, but Alma tells her stop because she's starting to make her regret coming to Miami.

Later on, Rose waits for her mother to come home after going out to shop. Dorothy assures her that everything will be fine. Rose says that she heard that 1,400 people were hurt in a food fight in the area. Sophia comes home, but Alma is not with her. Rose asks where she is, and Sophia tells her that Alma went to High Lie. Dorothy asks why she wasn't playing. Sophia claims she's too short to play High Lie. Rose is angry that Sophia left Alma alone in a city she's not familiar with. Sophia tells her that she has a bus pass, $400, and a Spanish-English dictionary so she should be fine. Rose is worried about her, and wonders if she's going to get mugged. Dorothy tells her that her mother is not a little child, and that she is a woman that is capable of taking care of herself. Suddenly, the phone rings, and Rose answers it. After hanging up, Rose informs everyone that her mother's at the police station. She says that the police told her that she was lost and disoriented. Rose rushes over to the police station. Dorothy hopes everything is okay, but Sophia is convinced Alma is a tough woman.

Blanche comes out of the bedroom, and claims that she's dropped 10 years of age. Dorothy tells her that no matter what a person does to themselves, they are still their actual age. Sophia says that's true because she used to be a tall, beautiful blonde girl with a nice rear end. Blanche says that Dirk doesn't see her as an old woman, but a young, vibrant woman. Dorothy tells her that she hasn't even been out with him yet, but Blanche is convinced that her instincts are right about Dirk. As the doorbell rings, Blanche remarks that Dirk could make her feel younger for another 20 years. Sophia adds it could also kill her. When she opens the door, Dirk says that she looks very nice. Blanche asks if he can wait in the vehicle, and when he leaves, Blanche tells Sophia and Dorothy that she knew that her instincts were right.

In the kitchen, Dorothy and Sophia work on the pipes below the sink. Sophia asks if she's almost done, but Dorothy claims she doesn't want to come out. She says that this is the first time in two days she's had any peace and quiet since Blanche thinks she's Peter Pan, and Rose being strict on her mother. Sophia adds that she's becoming Josephine the Plumber. Dorothy adds that she saved $50, and Sophia is relieved because that's how much she lost at the track. Suddenly, Rose and Alma arrive back home. Alma insists that the officer had no right to take her in. She had just stopped him for directions, and he dragged her off to the police station. Rose says that the officer was only doing what he thought was right. Alma is angry that Rose scolded her in front of everyone at the station. Rose tells her that she's probably tired, and tells her that she can get some sleep and they'll talk about it in the morning. Alma tells her that she's not going to be here in the morning. Alma says that she's leaving for Houston in the morning, and that she will have a better time there. Sophia goes to help her pack, and to see if she can win some of that money Alma won. Dorothy tells Rose that Alma was only angry, and didn't mean what she said. Rose doesn't understand why she acted like that because she's only trying to take care of her. Dorothy tells her to go back to her teenage years, and asks what was the one thing she wanted the most from her mother. Rose guesses a training bra. Dorothy insists that what she wanted was to be treated like an adult. She says that when mothers grow older, they start treating them like little girls. She tells Rose that the only thing Alma wants is for her to be treated like an adult. Rose realizes what she needs to do, and goes to her mother's bedroom.

In the bedroom, Sophia is losing money once again to Alma. Rose asks Sophia if she can have some alone time with Alma. Sophia agrees, but says that if she leaves now, she doesn't have to pay any money for losing. Rose asks her mother to tell her if she really is making her miserable. Alma says that she knows that Rose doesn't mean to, but she is making her miserable. Rose apologizes, and asks her to give her another chance. Alma says she doesn't know whether to or not. Rose tells her she only does it because she loves her so much. Rose says that her father and Charlie's deaths have been hard on her, and she didn't think she was going to get over them. She says that she thinks about them every day, and now that her mother is getting older, she's afraid she's going to lose her too. She says that's why she fusses so much. Alma says she understands, but reminds Rose that stopping her from living is not going to stop her from dying. Rose says that she can't stand to think about it, but Alma tells her not to think about it. They should enjoy the time they have together.

In the kitchen, Sophia sets the table, and Dorothy comments that the plates are the ones she got her for her wedding. Sophia remembers because she had to carry it all the way from Sicily. She admits she should have gotten something returnable like a donkey because she ended up getting a divorce. Dorothy says she's had a lot of great time with the plates. Sophia says that with Alma being there, she's been thinking a lot about the two of them. She admits that Dorothy never treats her like an old woman, and always treats her like a person. Sophia tells her that she appreciates it, and tells Dorothy that she's a good daughter. Dorothy says that she's overwhelmed and doesn't know what to say. Sophia suggests that she could say that she doesn't owe her $50. Dorothy says that she is a crazy lady, but she loves her.

On her date, Blanche originally orders several items off the menu while Dirk orders a salad. Embarrassed, Blanche quickly changes her order to match Dirk's. Blanche comments that she likes this restaurant a lot, and Dirk agrees with her. Dirk says he's into macrobiotics, and Blanche quickly puts in that she is too. Blanche asks what he did before he became an aerobics instructor. Dirk tells her that he worked in a museum. Blanche says that she did too, and adds that she loves art. Dirk adds he liked lifting it, and says that that's what he did for the museum. He credits lifting many of those statues helped him get his physique. Blanche asks if he's read any good books lately. Dirk tells her he read Pumping Iron, but feels that the movie didn't give the book the proper justice. Dirk says that he really likes being with her. He tells her that she reminds him of his mother, and that he hasn't seen her in several years, but being with Blanche makes it seem like she's there. Blanche gets a sour look on her face, and tells the waiter to bring her original order for her to eat.

Back home, Sophia and Alma play cards. Sophia begs Alma for one more hand, but Alma tells her that she's tired and wants to cash-in. They were using pretzel sticks to bet, and Alma notes she has about 30 pretzel sticks. Sophia crushes the pretzels, and comments that now there's pretzel dust. Dorothy tells Sophia not to be a sore loser, and tells her that she owes Alma $30. Sophia tells Dorothy to pay Alma the money. Rose wonders how Blanche's date is going, and notes that she's really concerned about Blanche dating a younger man. Dorothy says it's not that, but the fact that her expectations are so high. Rose can't believe that she approves. Dorothy asks what the terrible thing about it is. Rose can't believe that Dorothy dated a younger man. Dorothy says it was before she aged. Alma doesn't see anything wrong with dating a younger man. She notes that the three years she was with Ben were some of the best years. Rose is shocked, but Alma says that after her dad died, she knew she wasn't going to be able to keep the place afloat by herself. She says she hired a farmhand, and that she was a former convict. She says that they loved being with each other, and it was nice for her to talk with him. She says that she was happy to have Ben, but that when it was time for him to go, it was time for him to go. She says that she didn't think that she would have gotten through those years without Ben. Rose is shocked that she would have something with a drifter and a convict, but she changes her attitude and says that she understands. Alma says that she's ready for bed. Sophia asks if Ben taught her how to play cards. Alma tells her that Ben taught her how to play cards, and how to carve a gun out of soap. In the kitchen, Rose asks if their kids are going to want them when they get older. Dorothy notes that they don't want them now. Blanche comes into the kitchen, and says that she doesn't want to talk about it. Dorothy asks what happened. She says her date was a disaster, and that Dirk was looking for a mother not a lover. Rose thinks that is sweet. Blanche comments that only Rose would think that way. Blanche apologizes, and says that for the first time in her life, she feels over 40. Dorothy says the reason why is because she's actually over 50. Blanche says she's over 50, and over the hill. Dorothy tells Blanche that age is just a state of mind. Blanche tells Dorothy to tell that to her thighs. Blanche says that she feels awful and can't stand it. Dorothy tells her that she has good looks, health, money, and friends. She tells Blanche that she's not going to sit here and listen to her feel miserable. Dorothy and Rose leave the kitchen. Blanche sits in a chair for a moment, and after a little chuckle, realizes that Dorothy is right.

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