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Highlights of the 26 episodes include "Ladies of the Evening," featuring a cameo from Burt Reynolds, just a few years prior to his own network sitcom, Evening Shade. As Blanche exclaims, "Mr. Burt Reynolds is one of our finest living actors...I mean, you put Sir Laurence Olivier in Cannonball Run--see what he can do." Then there's "Isn't It Romantic?" with Lois Nettleton (In the Heat of the Night) as Dorothy's lesbian friend, Jean, who falls for an unsuspecting Rose (Betty White). As was often the case, a sensitive subject is handled with taste and humor and resulted in an Emmy nomination for Nettleton's performance.
Further highlights include a white-wigged Nancy Walker (The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Rhoda) as Sophia's long-lost sister, Angela, in "The Sisters" and "Long Day's Journey Into Marinara," and a pompadoured George Clooney (ER) in "To Catch a Neighbor." The final episode of The Golden Girls second season, "Empty Nest," features David Leisure and Oscar winner-Rita Moreno (West Side Story) and sets the scene for creator Susan Harris's 1988 spin-off, Empty Nest (although only Leisure would segue to the new show, while Soap's Richard Mulligan would take over for Moreno). --Kathleen C. Fennessy