When celebrities like Bea Arthur die it gives us pause to think about our own journey. The TV was on a lot when I was growing up, and it was the backdrop to every stupid decision I made. Sort of creepy that way.
I came of age in the 70's. People in my age group generally think TV was better in the 70's than the 80's. To me the 80's on TV was a horrible pit of narcissistic despair.
All in the Family was the first show I really remember that made me think about the world. Maude, who was originally Edith's cousin on AITF, was the first feminist I ever saw. They gave Bea Arthur the Maude show because she was too large a personality to co-exist with Archie. Apparently Carroll O'Connor had a fairly big ego.
Golden Girls had excellent writing, biting sarcasm, and chemistry that reminds me of Seinfeld. However, if I have to watch re-runs I'd watch Maude any day. The episode I remember the most was when Maude discovered she was pregnant and there were several episodes about abortion. Strangely enough, in some ways TV was more liberated back then.
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