- 2 Seasons
Maude is a classic television sitcom that originally aired from 1972 to 1978, starring Bea Arthur as the titular character. The show was produced by Norman Lear, who also produced other iconic sitcoms such as All in the Family. Maude revolves around the life of Maude Findlay, a middle-aged, liberal woman living in suburban New York with her fourth husband, Walter. The show is a spin-off of All in the Family, where Maude is the cousin of Archie Bunker's wife, Edith. Maude is a progressive and outspoken character, as well as a feminist, often engaging in political and social activism. The show tackled many controversial topics of the time, such as abortion, women's rights, and gay rights. Bea Arthur delivers a fantastic performance as Maude, portraying her as a strong-willed and independent woman with a sharp tongue and a larger-than-life personality. Her husband, Walter Findlay, played by Bill Macy, is a bit of a pushover and often submits to Maude's strong will. The show also features an ensemble cast of supporting characters, including Adrienne Barbeau as Maude's daughter, Carol, who often clashes with her mother's liberal beliefs. Conrad Bain plays Arthur Harmon, a neighbor and close friend of Maude's, who is often at odds with her politically. Esther Rolle portrays Florida Evans, the Findlay family's housekeeper, who eventually left the show to star in her own spin-off, Good Times. Rue McClanahan plays Maude's best friend, Vivian, while J. Pat O'Malley portrays her conservative father. Hermione Baddeley joins the cast in later seasons as Maude's inebriated friend, Mrs. Naugatuck, while Marlene Warfield plays Maude's African-American friend, Mrs. Nell Naugatuck. Maude was groundbreaking for its time, due not only to its progressive political beliefs but also for its portrayal of a strong female lead. The show often tackled difficult subject matter, but never lost its sense of humor, making it a beloved comedy classic. Overall, Maude is a must-see for fans of classic sitcoms and those interested in the social and political climate of the 1970s. Its brilliant cast of characters and biting wit still hold up today, making it a timeless classic.