Nearly four decades after The Golden Girls first aired in 1985, the hit TV show still manages to maintain relevance in modern times. But what was it that made The Golden Girls such a special series?

Through 180 episodes and seven seasons, the series—starring Rue McClanahan, Betty White, Bea Arthur, and Estelle Getty—gently but powerfully confronted a myriad of difficult conversations that other shows feared to tread: everything from ageism, to being sexually active after 50, to the failing health care system, to the HIV/AIDS crisis, to LGBTQ+ issues, and more. But on The Golden Girls, that tough-to-swallow information was being delivered by women who reminded you of your favorite aunt, grandma, or neighbor. And the writers dared to portray older women as more than just people beyond their prime.

On top of that, there was love at the core of the series, a deep and unconditional love that can form between women. Blanche (McClanahan), Rose (White), Dorothy (Arthur), and Sophia (Getty) had a friendship that gave its fans, no matter the age, a little bit of hope that in some form or fashion, they could find true love because Golden Girls introduced the concept that love could come in all forms. It wasn't just romantic. It wasn't just between a man and a woman. It was something that could exist between any and everyone if you were willing to take a risk the way the four women at its center were.

To look back on the shining legacy The Golden Girls left behind, Stacker used IMDb data for all episodes to rank the top 25 episodes by their user rankings, with any ties broken by votes. Travel down with us (and back again) to get a crash course on some of the greatest episodes, see if your favorites made the cut, and get inspired to spend your weekend binging with the girls.

The Best ‘Golden Girls’ Episodes

Stacker gathered IMDb data for all episodes of The Golden Girls and ranked the top 25 by user rating.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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