The Golden Girls

Season 3 Episode 15

Dorothy's New Friend

1
Aired Unknown Jan 16, 1988 on NBC
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Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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8.6
out of 10
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68 votes
  • There's only room for four in this bunch.

    9.5
    "Dorothy's New Friend" is at the center of this terrific episode, the first written by Robert Bruce and Martin Weiss for this series. They would have several excellent follow-ups.

    This episode is inundated with great punch lines. When Blanche tries to convince Dorothy that there are many stimulating conversations in this household, Rose immediately appears and discusses the latest news in a less-than-reputable magazine. "Rose, you can't believe everything that's written in that rag." After Rose asks why Blanche has a subscription to it, Blanche replies, "Because it's the only one Elvis will talk to from beyond the grave!" When new friend Barbara tells Sophia that her daughter is a beautiful, brilliant woman, Sophia replies, "Boy, you guys never lose your imagination!" When Dorothy realizes that Barbara is just as selfish and pretentious as Blanche and Rose contend, Dorothy tells Rose that she would be happy to play the "horse's behind" in the upcoming social event that means so much to Rose.

    It's all in the delivery in this episode -- watch how brilliantly Bea Arthur delivers her lines in this episode. Her delivery marks the evolution of her character in this episode (friendly jabbing to pretentious jabbing to ashamed jabbing -- but always intelligent and dry). Watch how Blanche and Rose can't hide their personalities despite their best efforts after Barbara's first-run disapproval of them (imitating real life incredibly convincingly). Finally, watch the wonderfully predictable (and yet outlandishly funny) segues when one of the girls describes their thoughts on another character.

    "Dorothy's New Friend" succeeds where "Blanche's Little Girl" fails -- it makes an unlikable character funny and offsets the focus from the guest character and places it on the main cast. In this way, there is not a bitter taste of anger and hatred toward the unlikable character but instead focuses on the likable and empathisable characters from the main cast. Ultimately, this episode is much more watchable and (as a result) much funnier.

    With impressive skills in the delivery department, Arthur, White, McClanahan, and Getty give this episode the goods -- and supply a truly magnificent half hour of comedy.
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