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Old 03-10-2012, 03:13 PM   #1
Meade
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Default The Earlier Seasons were better, IMO....

When the show started, Blanche wasn't a "slut", Rose wasn't a "simpleton". Dorothy was the same throughout the show, but Sophia got almost ridiculously unbelieveable towards the end.

I like the earlier shows because the characters were more believeable and it wasn't as over the top. Its as if they made them over the top for ratings purposes. But the last few Seasons were not very enjoyable to me.

Anyone else feel this way?
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Old 03-10-2012, 05:31 PM   #2
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Personally I found Sophia more rude than funny in the early seasons, her character became more enjoyable as the seasons progressed.

Over all though the characters didn't seem to change much through out the series, that was one of the unique things about the show, the first season isn't that much different from the last season.

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Old 03-12-2012, 10:33 PM   #3
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I would have to agree on the fact that the characters were less over the top in the beginning, though what I found so enjoyable was the things they would get up to! I found it more enjoyable, I felt like the show got stronger as it progressed. I also feel like Sophia got a lot more witty in the later episodes, I like Dorothy's humour in the later seasons as well, since I was born in 1990 I don't understand some of the references she makes from the 1980's.

Blanche is my favourite character so I've always loved her stories and the way she always gets so hot and flustered when she talks about some guy staring at her or admiring her, she's so funny!

One thing I didn't like about the later seasons is that I feel like they made Rose really stupid where as in the earlier seasons she was just naive. Some of the things she would say would bother me because they made her seem dumb, when I don't think she was dumb she was just naive.
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Old 03-15-2012, 05:50 PM   #4
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For me, the first three seasons are unbeatable; season 4 was pretty good, too. The Dorothy character calmed down some starting with season 5 (getting a little hyper again later on, but she didn't have those sarcastic lines she had in the past- new writers for ya). And the change in Sophia was very evident starting with the sixth season (but that may have had to do with Estelle Getty's health- not sure).

The jokes in the sixth and seventh seasons were very predictable and not as creative as the early seasons. There were some good shows in there, but I'd definitely watch the first few seasons over the last few.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:57 PM   #5
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A little late, but I have to totally agree with this 101%. I've been watching the last season on Hallmark and never really realized how bad the last season was in comparison to the first. I REALLY didn't care for what happened to the Sophia character in the last couple of seasons. Not a fan of the lines they gave her...too childish and annoying. She came off as much more realistic in the first seasons. Yes, blunt, but realistic. It wasn't just her delivery, but it was also her lines. One of the most over the top scenes I remember is the "Mr. Gordon" episode when Dorothy is out on the lanai with the teacher and Sophia keeps going on about "goofy pictures." Borderline annoying. Not a fan of the 2-part episodes in the last season....the hurricane, men-only party, etc.

There are a few good S7 episodes, but I think the show was ready to end at S6.
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Old 02-03-2013, 11:40 AM   #6
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Default Be Arthur...

knew by the end that the show wasn't as clever or as great as it once was.

The writers who came on later definitely were not up to par with the original writing team.

I can watch seasons 1-3 over and over and over again- not so much for the later seasons.
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Old 02-03-2013, 03:32 PM   #7
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The first few episodes of the series, like all shows, differ in quality but that is because the actresses and the creative team were learning and developing the characters. By the time the guy died in Rose's bed through in the first season until the episode where President Bush visits the show was really solid with maybe 1 or 2 clinkers in the mix, but I stress maybe. Then from the episode where Bush visits to the end of the series it seems to be a mixed bag. The Presidential visit is when, in my opinion, the series jumped the shark.

Season 6 and on ... some really good episodes, but the stuff about the Cheeseman? Over the top and silly. Dorothy and Stan wanting to remarry? How can a character spend 6 years sharing what a loser he is to want to return to him? On the other hand the episode from the 7th season that really highlights Bea Arthur when she sings "What'll I Do" in the bar is a series highlight.

I went through and looked at an episode list, and something I noticed was from about the episode in the 1st season mentioned above about the guy dying in Rose's bed and up to the end of the 5th season Terry Hughes, minus a few exceptions, was the primary director of the series. What was the first episode when he was no longer directing the series? The episode where President Bush comes to visit.
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:19 PM   #8
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Sorry, but I prefer the last two seasons over the earlier ones. I didn't like all the 'visiting relative' episodes from the early years. And I loved the over-the-top name calling they did in those later seasons--so catty and nasty. The later ones seemed more lively and fast-paced too with lots of zingers.
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:03 AM   #9
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Default The Zingers...

weren't very funny, though and they were more predictable than the sharp, clever writing from the earlier years. It's noteworthy that a new headwriter took over starting with season five, because that's when the show lost some of its overall magic. We saw a big change in both the writing and the characters, especially Sophia and Dorothy, who lost a lot of her sarcastic charm.

Seasons five-seven still were better than a number of other sitcoms, but the show set such a benchmark in those first several years, that that kind of quality was bound to decline some.
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:33 AM   #10
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As I watched them in syndication and now on DVD I have to say that I disagree with some of the original poster's insights. Blanche wasn't a complete slut, but you did get the idea early on that she dated alot. Rose WAS a simpleton/idiot/moron/intellectually deficient and you knew that in Season 1. She was also at times the funniest character as is evidenced by the Great Herring War story. Dorothy I agree never really changed, and Sophia after the first episode was toned down a bit and made more into a 'she doesn't know what she's saying/doing' stroke patient as opposed to the mean old lady type stroke patient she portrayed in the first episode.

I would also add that Season 4 is my favorite because it has more of my favorite episodes than any other season; i.e. Bob Hope episode, Days and Nights of Sophia Petrillo, Sophia getting conked on the head at the Dodgers game etc.
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Old 06-14-2016, 03:48 AM   #11
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You could definitely tell when the new writers came in. The characters started saying things that weren't true to their nature. They went for more "jokes". I definitely agree. I watched it when it originally aired and felt that as I was watching it. They were still funny but it started slipping.
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Old 06-14-2016, 07:17 AM   #12
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I too agree with the majority that the earlier seasons were better. In the later seasons the writers began sacrificing character truth for cheap jokes, and that just did not ring true (Rose being stupid, Blanche striving to be "the biggest slut", Sophia acting like a sideshow, etc.). They were much more realistic during the first seasons, and no, Rose was not an idiot/moron in the earlier seasons. She was, as Betty White has always said, "totally naive", not stupid. It is because of several reasons mentioned in this thread that I have not purchased seasons 5, 6, or 7. I will watch them on cable, but I personally only consider the first 4 seasons "canon".
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Old 06-15-2016, 12:00 PM   #13
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I thought Stan, Dorothy's ex, was in too many of the early episodes. I was glad when they moved beyond having him in the show. Not that he was a bad actor or anything like that. It just seemed the writers had the story of their failed marriage in the episodes to often.
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Old 06-16-2016, 04:59 PM   #14
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Well, actually some of my favorite episodes of all were during the last 3 seasons. "Sick and Tired" where Dorothy was diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. It featured Richard Mulligan, who I just love. And it was the episode with Blanche discovering Rose's "little balls of sunshine" on the kitchen island, and couldn't figure them out because she was sleep deprived.

I also loved the Henny Penny episode.

But I so agree about there being too much Stanley throughout. I thought Herb Edelman did a great job playing him, I just didn't like the character at all. And as much as she hated him, it just didn't make sense that she would suddenly soften her heart and fall back in love with him. I was so glad when they didn't actually remarry.
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Old 12-14-2016, 07:23 AM   #15
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The end of season six did give us Henny Penny, one of my favorites, because it was unique. The case of the Libertine Belle was a great later one also.

My earlier favorites? The Operation, where Blanche and Rose tap dance together. And "The Flu". Just very funny dialogue throughout.
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