What You Didn't Know About The Golden Girls' Kitchen

The kitchen from "The Golden Girls" never felt like part of a television set. It was more like a safe, comforting place where you could sit with your four best friends while gobbling down a slab of cheesecake and settling in for a good laugh. Whether Blanche was regaling you with stories celebrating her sexual prowess; Dorothy was complaining about the stupidity of Stan; or Sophia was asking you to "picture it. Sicily. 1943," you'd feel right at home. And the cherry on top would appear in the form of Rose telling you all about the ill-fated St. Olaf herring circus or another of her bizarre homegrown tales.

You may think you know this lovable foursome and their favorite room to gather in quite well. Its leafy gold wallpaper, collection of copper ornaments, and brightly patterned table cloths could be as familiar to you as the show's catchy theme song. There are, however, a few interesting facts about this inviting space that you may not be aware of — and which might come as a big surprise. 

The kitchen ruined the set's layout

Some fans of "The Golden Girls" may have noticed that Blanche's home had a really strange — one might even say "impossible" — layout. From both the kitchen and the living room, viewers could see where the house ended, but a hallway mysteriously led to a whole slew of bedrooms right down the middle of these two rooms. The "girls" seemed to sleep in an inexplicable abyss. So why was the set's design so illogical? 

It turns out that the Devereaux home was not originally supposed to feature a kitchen. Jim Colucci's "Golden Girls Forever" shares that the original model consisted solely of Blanche's boudoir, the living room, and the lanai (House Beautiful). Script changes led to the addition of a kitchen, a move that rendered the entire layout a spatial nightmare. These issues were supposed to be addressed after the pilot, but they never got around to it. Thankfully, it seems most viewers never noticed the odd set design.

The Girls originally had a personal chef

Fans may not remember, but the women originally had their own personal chef. Played by Charles Levin, "Coco" only lasted one episode. While Sophia referred to him as "the fancy man in the kitchen," it was clear the girls worked better as a quartet. The Atlantic shares that NBC decided the women were strong on their own, especially after the addition of Estelle Getty, whose character, Sophia, ended up saying many of the lines written for Coco.  

Southern Living adds that "the producers wanted the kitchen to be where much of the action took place and thought a chef would detract from that camaraderie." Another strike against Coco came when the pilot episode proved to be a whopping five minutes too long and a number of Coco's utterances were edited out (Showbiz Cheat Sheet). If Coco had made the cut, it's likely viewers would have been left wondering how the oftentimes cash-strapped buddies could have sprung for such a luxury. 

There were 3 chairs for 4 people

It always seemed strange that only three chairs were gathered around the kitchen table when there were four Golden Girls. It turns out that there was a very good reason for forcing one woman to stand or perch precariously on a nearby barstool. Any avid sitcom watcher knows that you'll never see a character sitting at a table with their back to the audience.

This makes sense. Who wants to stare at the back of someone's head? According to Looper, Jim Colucci's book goes on to say "they decided to always keep one of the women doing something else — if all four were in the scene — whether it be making tea or standing to the side." Hence, Sophia's love for cooking Italian food on the stovetop. Whether or not you were befuddled by the set's layout, were a big fan of Coco, or were greatly disturbed by one Golden Girl being left standing, one bold truth remains: There was nowhere else a Golden Girl devotee would rather be than gathered around this kitchen table with Rose, Dorothy, Blanche, and Sophia.