‘The Golden Girls’ Should Have Moved to St. Olaf
Betty White’s death at 99 years old in December 2021 marked the end of an era. She was the last of the main cast members of The Golden Girls to die, and fans mourned the loss. While White’s death closed the book on the series, her legacy of her and the legacy of her cast mates, Bea Arthur, Estelle Getty, and Rue McClanahan, live on in perpetuity. We love watching The Golden Girls still. Still, we can’t help but wonder if there was a better story for the cast that was never written. while The Golden Girls spinoff, Golden Palace, offered an extension to Rose Nylund, Sophia Petrillo, and Blanche Devereaux’s story, it wasn’t the best one that could have been told. We would have loved to see the golden girls head to St. Olaf, Minnesota.
St. Olaf was Rose Nylund’s birthplace in ‘The Golden Girls’
The Golden Girls It was set in Miami, Florida, but none of the main characters were from the bustling metropolis. All four had moved to Miami from different parts of the country. Dorothy Zbornak and her mother, Sophia Petrillo, were transplants from New York City. Blanche Devereaux was raised in Georgia before moving slightly south of her home state.
Rose Nylund, the most naive of the housemates, hailed from St. Olaf, Minnesota. St. Olaf was a tiny farming village that was big on community but short on street smarts. Rose may have left St. Olaf after her husband’s death from her, but she brought plenty of memories and nonsensical stories to tell with her.
The town, which is not fictional at all, was mentioned repeatedly in ‘The Golden Girls’
Rose Nylund’s wacky stories about St. Olaf and its dim but happy-go-lucky residents weren’t true. That doesn’t mean the town was totally fictional, though. St. Olaf, Minnesota, exists, and Betty White paid the college in the tiny town a visit in 1992.
Since St. Olaf is a real place, we think a spinoff centered around the town, and perhaps the college in specific would have made a lot of sense. Sure, the real residents of the town aren’t like Cousin Sven, but there was a storyline there. Perhaps, Rose, Blanche, and Sophia could have moved to St. Olaf to serve as house mothers at a local, fictional college. Watching Sophia try to plan meals with nothing but Herring could have been comedy gold.
It would have made a more logical spinoff than ‘The Golden Palace’
Since the town of St. Olaf was mentioned multiple times during The Golden Girls’seven-season run, it was the most logical location for a spinoff series. The idea of Sophia and Blanche being plunked down in the middle of Minnesota, where Rose would have relaxed into familiarity, feels like a completely missed opportunity.
We like the idea better than Rose, Blanche, and Sophia trying to run a hotel, that’s for sure. At the very least, it seems like a more logical choice. After all, the town was so vividly described and mentioned so often. It actually feels like it was meant to be the setting of a series.
Of course, it never happened and obviously never will. Still, we like to think about what a show centered around such a wild town would have looked like. The idea makes us smile.