Is Betty White a Charlotte or a Carrie? Which Golden Girl are you?
"Thank you for being a friend."
This may seem a little out there but The Golden Girls is the Ur-Sex And The City. Despite Sex And The City being based on Candace Bushnell's experiences in the big bad city, there are too many similarities between the 30s and 40s of the Manhattan and the 50s, 60s and 70s of Miami, Florida to not investigate further. Read: 5 Things To Blame On Sex And The City
"If you threw a party. Invited everyone you knew."
Though it would have been contrived for the Sex And The City girls to live together like The Golden Girls, their lunch, shopping and drinks interaction put them in contact as much as the ladies of Richmond Street. And, while the characters are a touch stock-y, it's pretty easy to see the analogue and precedence of each character (I'll forego pretending not to know the names of the SATC characters):
The Acidic Voice Of Reason: Sophia (Estelle Getty) is literally a mother figure to the GGs and is able to provide direction and sourpuss wisdom for the crew. Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) is also a tough, cynical cookie. She provides Carrie (and the other ladies, to a lesser extent) with a shoulder to lean on and is loath to admit it when she needs help. Miranda has a lot of years to live to be able to match Sophia's sharp tongue.
The Jovial Man-Eater: These fan favorites have quite a bit in common. Blanche (Rue McClanahan) didn't let little things like divorce, retirement and three judgmental best friends get in the way of her man-hunger. It's almost as if she used male affection to fill some emptiness. Samantha (Kim Cattrall), on the other hand, builds a tough façade and uses men to fill her needs but is secretly lonelier and gentler than she lets on. While Samantha claims she'll "try anything once," she's got decades before she can compare to Blanche Devereax's knowledge of the boudoir.
The Beautiful Innocent: Somehow, growing up in Connecticut provides one with the same sense of optimism as being raised in St. Olaf, Minnesota. Charlotte (Kristin Davis) and Rose (the incredible Betty White) provided the naïve entrée into the glamorous worlds of the New York City social scene and the south Florida semi-retirement scene, respectively. (Not to mention being the most attractive members of their respective casts.) Rose's naiveté and midwestern wisdom form a moral (and hilarious) bedrock by which much of the rest of the show's action is compared. Rose's health problems drive much of the show's plot late in the series. Charlotte, by (not) contrast, has somewhat WASP-y / prudish values and is often shocked at the outrageous behavior and predicaments of her best friends. She has reproductive problems late in the series but ends up having a daughter in the film… named Rose. Nothing in common there...
The Lovelorn Center Of Attention: The sarcastic main characters keep the action of each show trucking along (and the actresses who portray them are said to be the reason for their cancelations). Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) loves attention (she may be responsible for the admit-everything sensation of personal blogging) and has had an epic, on-and-off relationship with a singular man (Mr. Big) who touches almost ever aspect of her life (much to the consternation of her friends). Dorothy (the inimitable Bea Arthur) has a few self-esteem issues that cause her to seek the spotlight on occasion (singing and standup comedy with a very personal bent). And, for some reason, her ex-husband Stan just keeps turning up (to the chagrin of her mother). Dorothy and Carrie are the glue that holds their "families" together and their respective relationship woes provide the basis for their shows' drama. Sure, Carrie gets Chris Noth's Mr. Big in the long run, but Dorothy ends up with Leslie Nielsen's Lucas Hollingsworth.
"You would see the biggest gift would be from me."
So, while you're sitting around, waiting for the Sex And The City sequel to hit theaters, do yourself a favor and at least NetFlix The Golden Girls. I have a feeling that a night curled up with those sassy broads will make you forget all about the ladies of the big city. If not, a little prologue really can't hurt and you can't beat that theme song.
"Thank you for being a friend!"
Photos via Bauer-Griffin