top of page
  • Writer's pictureSarah Royal

[TRANSCRIPT] Episode 19: Plumbers, Private Jets & Misogyny (Episode 19, s1/e19)

Updated: Aug 27, 2020

In this one, uh, Lou,  Dorothy and Rose attempt to re-do their bathroom in the name of feminism, and Blanche contemplates marrying an old, rich man who uses racial slurs aboard his private jet. Plus, an homage to the late, great Rue la Rue cafe and an emphatic celebration of Sarah's husband's carpentry skills! 

Below is the Enough Wicker podcast transcript for Episode 19: Plumbers, Private Jets, & Misogyny, analyzing The Golden Girls Season 1 episode, Second Motherhood :


Hello, and welcome to Enough Wicker, a podcast where -- as we say in the plumbing game -- we intellectualize The Golden Girls. I'm Lauren.

Sarah 9s

And I'm Sarah.

Lauren 11s

And today we're on the 19th episode in the series, Second motherhood.

Sarah 15s

Oh yeah. The plumbing episode! I love it. Excuse me, Lou.

Lauren 22s

Uh, Lou.

Sarah 24s

This one is wonderful. It is yet again where Blanche is going to get married, but --

Lauren 31s

For the third time, I think, in 19 episodes.

Sarah 36s

It's amazing. Holy shit. Or one of them actually. Yeah. Cause well Rose is close. Oh my God. There's some many different things

Lauren 43s

And it's oddly, I mean, I think oddly, but the second time that we're seeing a plumbing storyline.

Sarah 50s

Correct, yes! Exactly. We pointed out how that was like the precedent before, where Sophia is also adamantly against it, which is fantastic. Also the first time, Lou, is great. You know, it's like such an unnecessarily patronizing line, but it's just really fucking hilarious. Isn't he also much later Mr. Haha? That actor?

Lauren 1m 11s

Yeah, wow. Maybe he is! He's definitely in the show a couple of times. They had a contract with him or something.

Sarah 1m 19s

Totally. I think he's Mr. Haha though. But anyway. The hot dog Hacienda! Anyway.

Lauren 1m 26s

Both Lou and Richard, who we'll get into more, are so awful. Lou, he's so gross. And he's --

Sarah 1m 37s

I mean, they're caricatures!

Lauren 1m 37s


Sarah 1m 37s

I mean, they're caricatures, but we also know real men like them. Yes,

Lauren 1m 40s

Exactly. Yeah. So he makes the comment of 'going into your feminist phase late in life' and it's just like, ugh, right away, he's just like so gross.

Sarah 1m 49s

Yeah, exactly. Yeah.

Lauren 1m 51s

But you know, so the whole thing is like Dorothy and Rose Rose, who is a plumbing savant. Like she knows all of these like technical terms. Like I love when they do that.

Sarah 1m 51s

Three dozen spud gaskets.

Lauren 1m 51s

They do that a lot with her where they're like, she just is randomly an expert on this one thing.

Sarah 2m 9s

Exactly. It's perfect. But also like hilariously like dates her and this episode in this weird way. And this is the same thing where they play with these, like, did you guys grow up in the 1800s or like the 1950s? Like, what is the deal? Cause she's talking about how they didn't get plumbing on the farm till she was 18, which I also think is like legit in the time period. But it also just feels bizarre to be watching the episode at least today, too, to just be, wait, what? Like you just had a pit toilet? It's really funny.

Lauren 2m 40s

And also like, so Dorothy and Rose are deciding if they can basically, you know, install, fix the bathroom themselves, which includes installing a toilet And we see them sort of lean into that. But also we see Sophia advocating, from the very beginning, for a real plumber. Like she does not want to mess around with that.

Sarah 2m 40s

And she's funny cause is such a self-made, self-capable woman, but she also is just like, I know what I don't know. And she, she is not fearing hiring misogynistic tool to do his expertise. Like at one point, what does she say? She's like, he might be an idiot, but he knows how to fix a toilet or like something like that. Like she totally cuts him down as he deserves, but she's just like, I'm not like above this. Like, whereas I feel like you or I, would absolutely be the Dorothy and the Rose.

Sarah 3m 11s

Like I am not going to like deign to this guy's nonsense, right? I'm going to fucking fuck myself over before I actually let him do anything, you know?

Lauren 2m 40s

If anybody ever said 'you gotta be a man' to me, like I would -- I would just live without whatever that was that they were there to fix.

Sarah 2m 40s

Exactly. I would just shit in the backyard.

Lauren 2m 40s

Or I would call Denis!

Sarah 3m 50s

I'd use the Texaco station across the street. Oh yeah. Let's, let's talk about that! So this, this episode really came into play where you, you and Michelle moved into a new apartment. Right. And you were trying to figure out how to mount your television on the wall, which is not a very 1980s scenario.

Lauren 4m 18s

But 'trying to figure out' is generous. I think we bought it and we were like, uh, who are we going to call?

Sarah 4m 23s

Oh, nice. I love it. That's true. But yeah, so my husband Denis is actually a handyman, which is hilarious. So we like came over and like, oh, he can do it, no problem. So we came over and of course, Lauren and I are dying because all we can think of is, 'you gotta be a man for godsakes.' It was just perfect.

Lauren 4m 45s

There's so many lines that we were using.

Sarah 4m 49s

Oh my God. It was absolutely perfect. And we pulled up that episode, to make him watch that scene. It was great. I was talking about that. Well, actually, when I was watching this episode for scholarly pursuits, he's like, Hey, I know this one!

Lauren 4m 49s

Yeah, you did it, you lived this one!

Sarah 4m 49s

Exactly, you lived it! And back on the plumbing, like the solution right here is to have them do it themselves. Like, aren't they still paying tenants? What is the arrangement here? Like, I'm sorry, Blanche, I believe this is your responsibility. Are they getting a rent break? Like, there's a lot of those, those questions that hilariously, like, if they never touched the whole like tenant and ownership thing -- If they just announced in the beginning and then we all just forgot about it. But of course it comes into play later with the selling the house and where will people live, and like Rose moves out in that weird episode where she has a swingin' lifestyle.

Sarah 5m 29s

There's just a lot of things where that issue comes up. So I do think it's really funny that they're just like, Oh yeah, like my tenants are just fixing the plumbing so I can save a couple thousand dollars.

Lauren 5m 55s

Yeah. And she's like, not even in on the conversation, at all. It's so bizarre. Well, she's very wrapped up.

Sarah 6m 4s

Correct. She is wrapped up. So yeah. So let's talk about Richard. Richard is fucking old. He's really old. It's really weird.

Lauren 6m 12s

So old. And he's such a douche. Like he's so -- first of all, he's so rich that he has a private jet, which is like,, beyond just like normal, wealthy.

Sarah 6m 23s

That reads like really poorly these days, too, like extra poorly. It read poorly in the eighties, too. But nowadays.

Lauren 6m 30s

And he's like every cliche, like he has champagne and caviar. And then he talks about like how he built his own -- he built himself up from shipping?

Sarah 6m 41s

He started in the shipping department. And then 10 years later, he owns the company?

Lauren 6m 49s

10 years! That's what I said. I was like, yeah -- in a Reagan economy? Yeah, right.

Sarah 6m 54s

Yeah. Yeah. Get the fuck outta here, Mr. Bootstraps, what a dumb ass. Like it's just like, that's such a weird conservative line. And I guess it did happen yes. Back in the day. But give me a break. Like, you're not flying with champagne and caviar and Gresham on the coast, you know, 10 years ago. Also you started in the shipping department when you were, what, 70?

Lauren 6m 54s

Was that like a career change?

Sarah 6m 54s

You're 80, man.

Lauren 7m 28s

And he's got two little kids!

Sarah 7m 28s

Very little kids, which is what, seven and nine or something?

Lauren 7m 28s

Little Richard!

Sarah 7m 28s

Oh my God. He was there? No, but the other thing, too, is with his business and the champagne stuff, there's a lot of focus on this whole, like him needing champagne to make Blanche tipsy for him to make his move. And it's just really gross. And you're like, guys, don't let this slip in. Like, come on. Add it to the list -- the very, very small list -- of some of the pieces I do not like in the show and that probably are of their time.

Sarah 8m 1s

But also they would have, they probably have that story line today, too. It's kind of like Arnie's pinching a few bottoms.

Lauren 7m 28s


Sarah 7m 28s

Yeah, pat! I'm sorry, he didn't pinch, he pat. Oh my God. So yet another distasteful moment of Richard is he just goes, 'perhaps you'd rather visit the Orient.' And you're like, dude, you fucking fossil, get outta here.

Lauren 8m 36s

Yeah. I don't even think people were talking like that at the time. I feel like that was like so bizarre. So Blanche is very wrapped up in dating this, like, super, super rich guy. But it's funny because she isn't like super, I mean, she's excited, but the real giddiness is coming from, from Dorothy and Rose. And when Lou comes back with the toilet and he knocks on the door and Dorothy's like, could I see some identification? It's like such a giddy joke. She's so happy.

Sarah 9m 9s

She's so happy. It's so great. Oh gosh. And also the gag in terms of like toilet delivery where Rose is like, I'll think of something, and where, again, the beats of the lines -- Like I think just before that, where, you know, Rose is like, 'you know, the Egyptians built the pyramids' and Dorothy just goes, 'fine, get me 20,000 Hebrews and I'll have it done in no time.' It is genius response. When people say stupid shit like that, where you're just like, yeah, fine, like, let's level with it right here. But also again, like three seconds later, you know, Rose is sitting going, I'll think of something, and Blanche goes, 'I'd love for you to meet my roommates' and literally skids on the ground and then pulls the door back.

Sarah 9m 52s

It is like, you know, just that pop in, like a Kramer entrance before its time. And she just doubles back and closes it. And it's perfect. 'But they're not home right now.'

Lauren 10m 1s

It's so good. It's another like physical comedy from them -- it's great. That whole scene where -- from the 20,000 Hebrews joke, which is the thing that I laugh at before, but even going back further, when I think Sophia is like, 'was that a plumber?' And Dorothy's like, 'no, it was a little girl selling girl scout toilets.' It's like one, two, three, four, five. And then it ends on the Blanche thing. It's so funny.

Sarah 10m 30s

And again, like the, like the blocking or whatever you want to call it. Like Bea Arthur, like standing and just going 'a little girl selling girl scout toilets.' It's like, she's also disaffected. She's not even looking at Sophia, 'cause she's so frustrated by the situation. She just can't help, but like deliver the snarky line. It's perfect.

Lauren 10m 47s

Funny. So they're dealing with Lou, who's like this like douchey plumber, who's very stubborn about everything.

Sarah 10m 47s

Why does he keep coming back? Why does he care?

Lauren 10m 60s

He's so hung up on, like, that they can't do it. No woman can be a plumber.

Sarah 11m 4s

As we, as we say in the plumbing game, I have nothing better to do with my time.

Lauren 11m 9s

I mean, honestly, like they can't be plumbers as it turns out, but we have to cover that later.

Sarah 11m 15s

Also, yeah. Hahahaha, ugh.

Lauren 11m 15s

And then it's so -- like, going back to Richard, so we've talked about how he says 'visit the Orient' and he's so --

Sarah 11m 28s

I can't not just die at that, it's so stupid.

Lauren 11m 31s

The writing on him as a businessman, too, is like, so shallow. When Blanche says they have a problem, and he puts the champagne down and he kind of turns towards her and he's like, well, let's look at it.

Sarah 11m 43s

No, I know. Right. You're just like this not --

Lauren 11m 45s

We're not talking about like an expense report guy. So weird.

Sarah 11m 51s

That's the entire storyline, too, though, is he's approaching as a business transaction, I need a mother to my fucking kids. Like get out of here, you know.

Lauren 11m 51s

Get a nanny!

Sarah 11m 51s

Yeah. You can afford it. You worked your way up 10 years ago. And stop flying to fucking Georgia for dinner, asshole.

Lauren 11m 51s

Yeah, ruining the environment! But of course that is the thing, right? Like Richard has these two really little kids and it's odd because it's sort of presented as like the only thing standing in the way of Blanche marrying him -- which is a big thing, like I'm not downplaying that at all, but it seems like there would be other issues to address with Richard, I guess. Maybe like they, they just started dating and they're already going to get married?

Lauren 12m 24s

It's fine. But so he's got these two little kids. And he wants her to get to know them, and she does get to know them and she really likes them. And that's like, sort of the problem is like, she's reconciling with like, okay, they're really sweet kids, but you're not signing up to be a babysitter, right?

Lauren 12m 57s

Like you're signing up to be their stepmother, which is a big ask.

Sarah 13m 6s

For sure. For sure. And then also like what happened with your previous wife, who I assume was your previous wife, who had these children just 10 years ago? I guess when you became a businessman, you really fucked up being a father and a husband. But also so as they're talking, right, they're all sitting around, they're talking about the prospect of like, if Blanche were to marry him, you know, she basically has kids again kind of thing. And you know, everyone's sitting around saying like, oh my gosh, like, I'd love to chance to be a mother again, kind of thing.

Sarah 13m 37s

And then, you know, Rose is, like, really excited about it. And then Dorothy is not. And Dorothy's first, like, distasteful issue she cites about being a mother again is scrubbing socks. Which is just noted is, like, all of the things that you can list about being a woman in your sixties and the prospect of having little like seven or nine year olds again, I don't think 'scrubbing socks' is really going to be the thing that affects your life the most.

Sarah 14m 8s

And that same scene where Rose is talking about, you know, again -- again with Rose, like painting her idyllic childhood and never talking about like having any sort of strife, or a test in life whatsoever, Dorothy's like, 'and everyone would tickle each other until the whole family was throwing up together.' It's such a perfect cut down of just being like, come on, man. Like give me a break. Even if you did have plumbing til 18, you were not that happy.

Lauren 14m 39s

Rose is so oblivious to that. But also like, I think that in this episode we see her -- it's sort of similar to how she gets with sports, but she just is so invested in the plumbing thing.

Sarah 14m 54s

Yes. She's absorbed.

Lauren 14m 57s

Very late at night, she's like hammering on the wall, right? Which like, it's honestly a very three Stooges scene when they're in the bathroom and they're realizing that they don't actually know what they're doing, 'cause the shower's going off when they want the sink to be going off or whatever.

Sarah 15m 12s

Yeah. Which they also celebrate at the end of the episode for some reason, that's my favorite part with it. Like we did it! 'It's water, not oil.' But like, you didn't do it. I don't understand.

Lauren 15m 12s

Because they have to go after Lou, you know? Sophia's like, is that a plumber? Did you let him get away? She hunts them down and you know, like, it's nice and it's also pretty accurate. And I feel like, I think that there are sometimes things where you think you can do them -- and I'm obviously not endorsing employing a man like Lou, what for this, but --

Sarah 15m 12s

Be careful what you say.

Lauren 15m 52s

Yeah, it gets the best of you. Like you think you can do something, but you do actually need an expert, as it turns out.

Sarah 15m 59s

Exactly. And the idea of feminism is that it can be like, there can be things that men fail at, too, that are traditionally, you know, either feminine or masculine, either way. Like it's just like, we're all just people, but we get so caught up in it. Especially when it's thrown in your face with a shithead like Lou, saying you can't do it. Of course, that would make you want to challenge yourself all the more and you know, have scum gather on your elbow joint as you worry about tank sweat.

Lauren 15m 59s

This one is such a funny episode. There are so many of those.

Sarah 16m 30s

It really is. It's great. I love -- so the bathroom scenes are great. And I think this is also a good time to mention Rue la Rue, which was unfortunately a very short-lived Golden Girls cafe opened in, like, basically in Inwood, in Manhattan, a very, very far away spot, by Rue McClanahan's best friend. And they, you know, they went all out on the inside, which may have been some of the downfall, but the attention to detail was just fantastic.

Sarah 17m 5s

And going into the bathroom, this tiny little Manhattan bathroom in a cafe, it's exactly their bathroom tile. And I was just, I just remember it being like incredible. And it also like thought that, if I had money and an entire house, like, you know, actually -- like let's reveal, you know, two episodes back to talk about Ed from Miami Vice -- I would absolutely do a bathroom in my house with that tile as an homage, because it's just too good.

Lauren 17m 33s

Yeah. That cafe was, it was great because also, like, when you go in the bathroom, you don't always know if like you should be expecting the theme to continue, because it was obviously so well done on the outside, but it was another thing. And you know, it's so great because like whoever whichever of us went first, I'm sure came out and were like, 'Oh my God, you have to go to the bathroom right now. '

Sarah 17m 54s

Exactly. I wish they had flowers on the toilet seat cover, though, because this one with Blanche's bedroom is like. Sophia's like, 'I hate that bathroom. There's flowers on the toilet seat cover. I feel like I'm going in the woods.' Which, of course, like Blanche's bedroom is totally over the top with the foliage. Of course that's like the whole idea, but I would also do a bedroom in my house like that, too. If my husband would let me. You're Ed! I am Ed! It's gonna happen, oh my god. Good thing I don't fucking own a house or am nowhere close. Nowhere close to being able to control my own plumbing or anything.

Sarah 18m 30s

Also the bathroom scene, again when they're all talking and stuff and Sophia is like, 'I have to use the throne,' you know, and she, as always, is carrying her purse everywhere, she goes on carrying her purse in the bathroom. It just totally reminded me of how we just all carry our phones to the bathroom now. And just how bizarre that is.

Lauren 17m 54s

So strange.

Sarah 17m 54s

Very, very strange. But yeah, I just -- I really enjoy, like you said before, how giddy Rose and Dorothy are over this. And even if it doesn't work out or they can't do this and they have to deign to, you know, talk to Lou, because Sophia keeps bringing him in the house for some reason, he's just like hanging outside for some reason.

Sarah 18m 38s

I just, I love the fact that they get so excited about working something out themselves, even if they are paying tenants.

Lauren 19m 13s

Yeah. Because you do get so excited about projects when, you know, like whenever you have something. And just going back to Lou for one second, it definitely mimics Stanley, but there's kind of a running theme of dismissive men having the door slammed in their face in the show. And that happens to him and it's, you know, obviously like just casually watching, you might not take it away, but when you're looking at this in a scholarly fashion, it's a theme that I noticed and I feel like it just fits in very nicely with the overarching feminist message of the show.

Sarah 19m 48s

Absolutely. What an amazing metaphor. Right. And it's just so satisfying. And also, again, talking to that point, the satisfaction of the writers really picking up on that 'as we say in the plumbing game' and it's an extra -- like it's even more than the hi, it's me, Stan, slam in the face -- it's not even worth to hear what this fucking guy has to finish a sentence. Like it's so good. Because I don't care. I don't care what they say in the plumbing game. You don't deserve any more of this air time.

Sarah 20m 19s

It's great. It's great.

Lauren 19m 48s

It really is. And then, so obviously Blanche -- I guess we should just like resolve the Richard thing.

Sarah 19m 48s

Oh yeah! That's true.

Lauren 19m 48s

It's so, you know, ridiculous on so many levels that she's contemplating marrying this guy, but I like the conversation that you were referencing earlier about, you know, all the girls talking about whether or not they'd like to be a mother again. Because I think it really dispels this idea that women in general's main purpose is to be maternal, but also definitely older women. Which I feel like is always, even now, I think is -- really the only roles for them is like the mother or the grandmother. And like, that's your tie-in, but you don't always want to do that.

Lauren 20m 23s

Like, it makes a lot of sense that you wouldn't want to do that again in your sixties.

Lauren 21m 5s

So I love that.

Sarah 21m 14s

Yeah, exactly. That's perfect. A good way to cap it off, ay?

Lauren 21m 14s

Yeah, I got nothing else.

Sarah 21m 14s

All right. Sounds great. Well, join us next time where we discuss something about a little voice, a lucky number and a dime in a door handle, and then bim bam boom -- sexual harassment! Bye, everyone.


51 views0 comments


bottom of page