In the pilot episode, the girls had a gay live-in cook. For one reason or another, depending on who you ask, the character was dropped. Yet, the series would not shy away from postive depictions of gay and lesbian characters.
This is the first episode in the series to deal with homophobia. Dorthy and her mom have no problem with the fact that Jean is a lesbian and is mourning the death of her wife.
However, they do not think that Blanche and Rose would be as accepting, especially when Jean develops a crush on Rose. Yet, both 'Golden Girls' handle the 'secret' well and, later on, Blanche will deal with her brother coming out and marrying his boyfriend.
Meanwhile, their is a secondary storyline about a new VCR and 'adult' movies that is incredibly funny and heartwarming to watch unfold.