Point/Counterpoint with Emily and Rashi
It’s an election year, so naturally the hotbutton issue in the Rooftop office today was the Golden Girls. Specifically: comparing GG to Sex and the City.
It was easy to reach consensus on the parallels between the hussies Blanche and Samantha, as well as the naïve romantics Rose and Charlotte. However, disagreement arose and tensions flared when trying to decide which Golden Girl was Carrie — Sophia or Dorothy? Here now with a point/counterpoint discussion are Rooftop’s own Emily and Rashi.
Okay, first of all: billing. SJP got top billing in Sex and the City, and Bea Arthur got top billing in Golden Girls. That makes them both the main character, right?
Plus, Dorothy is the glue that holds the group together, and so is Carrie. Miranda can’t really stand either Charlotte or Samantha on their own (Charlotte’s too naive; Samantha’s too unfeeling; they’re both too antifeminist). Carrie is Miranda’s connection to the other women. Similarly, Dorothy is the only Golden Girl who seems truly central, as she is peers with Blanche and Rose and blood related to Sophia. Sophia wouldn’t hang with Rose and Blanche if it wasn’t for Dorothy.
Even though she’s not career-driven like Miranda, Sophia still has that ‘I’ve been around the block and I know better than you, young one’ air about her that Miranda does. They’re both the biggest complainers in their respective groups, too, and why not? They get less action than most of their friends, too.
Listen, just cause Bea Arthur looks like a man and is hell of mean and sarcastic does NOT necessarily make her Miranda. That’s just how Carrie’s gonna be when she turns 55 and moves to Florida.
Let’s push aside the obvious comparisons—Charlotte and Rose are no doubt the naïve, sheltered-belle archetypes; Samantha and Blanche, the sexually empowered, alpha females. The trickier task is placing Carrie and Miranda in the context of the Golden Girls. Who is Dorothy and who is Sophia?
Some of the funniest jokes on the Golden Girls were the ones that admitted that, quite frankly, Dorothy was a man. Her husky voice, popped collar and never-ending pant suits didn’t help her status as the least desirable of the Florida retirees. Now, compare Dorothy to SATC’s Miranda—the no-nonsense lawyer who, in one episode, confessed her own insecurity about being the least attractive of the women. Her complex was triggered by a brunch-time conversation that ultimately revealed that if the girls were lesbians, they wouldn’t sleep with Miranda. Sexually rejected by even their lady friends? Ouch!
Dorothy wasn’t necessarily the glue in The Golden Girls, either. Quips between her and Rose were a major source of the show’s humor, and in one episode, Rose (after a night of little sleep) even snapped that she could be just as big of a bitch as Dorothy. Let’s be honest, Carrie would never talk to Charlotte, or any of the girls, like that. Carrie was the glue among the girls in SATC for the simple fact that she almost always played the neutral sounding board for all the women’s woes. Miranda, on the other hand, would often battle it out with feminist rants so hostile that she sometimes left their brunches early in exasperation. Dorothy lost her patience regularly with everyone on her show. Her temperament as the street-wise, opinionated realist ties her closer to Miranda than Carrie.
Now, we’re left with a default connection between Sophia and Carrie. It’s definitely not a perfect fit, but they both do share a knack for having the most clever (and annoying) lines of their respective crews. They also are the ones, out of all their pals, who seem to have the most amount of time on their hands. Perhaps this is why Carrie and Big’s saga lasted so long—she needed the drama. Sophia often slipped in her own drama-filled stories of escapades involving the mafia, and she even married a man with whom she’d had a long-running conflict. They eventually divorced on friendly terms. Who knows what the ultimate fate of Carrie and Big will be. After all, Sophia does have about 30 years on Carrie.