Watch Maude

This television comedy follows the life of the title character and her family and friends. Maude is a liberal woman who has had four husbands. Now in middle age, she and her fourth husband live in an upper-middle class neighborhood in New York. The show is provocative in the social and political issues it examines.

Maude is the main character and is an independent woman, representative of the women's liberation movement of the 1970s. Her husband is Walter, who usually loses many of the arguments between the two. Maude's daughter, Carol, and her son, Phillip, also live with the couple in their suburban home in New York. Carol is divorced, and the feminist theme of the show is also displayed through her character, who freely dates several men at once.

While the show tackles many social and political issues such as alcoholism and abortion, it also pokes gentle fun at the main character, who vocally claims to be a political liberal and champion of the poor even though she rarely witnesses their plight from the comfort of her middle-class existence. This theme often plays out in the interactions between Maude and her housekeepers.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
1 Season, 22 Episodes
September 5, 1972
Comedy
7.1/10
Cast: Bea Arthur, Bill Macy, Conrad Bain, Rue McClanahan
Ad
i
Watch Episodes

Maude Full Episode Guide

  • Maude and Walter return from a fun-filled vacation with two of their best friends, Chuck and Vivian, only to learn that their friends' twenty-one-year marriage is breaking up. Maude needles a sleepy Walter into analyzing their own marriage -- which isn't too good an idea at one o'clock on Monday morning with only a few hours before Walter has to go back to work.

  • Maude is looking forward to a smart dinner party but Walter gets home late, takes a nap, and wakes up grumpy and ready to battle. All Maude wants from Walter is a little friendly enthusiasm, advice as to which dress she should wear and, above all, reassurance that she will be the most beautiful woman at the party. Walter's cooperation stops considerably short of Maude's goals.

  • Maude and Florida discover that male chauvinistic pigs come in all colors when Florida's husband demands she stop working for white people. When Florida's husband, Henry, insists she quit her job with the Findlay's, Maude sides with Florida and Walter sides with Henry, bringing on a double domestic argument that wipes out all race, color, and creed barriers and boils down to wives versus husbands.

  • When fire damages his house, Arthur moves in temporarily with Maude and Walter, a move which wreaks havoc on the already battle-scarred Findlay household. Moving into the Findlay's den, Arthur monopolizes the family bathroom, the family newspaper and even the family husband as Walter and Arthur begin to re-live their bachelor days.

  • When Maude takes on the medical profession, the battle is destined to be one-sided -- in other words, the medical profession doesn't have a chance of winning. Maude and Walter are within hours of leaving for a second honeymoon in Italy when Maude develops a rash. Arthur suggests it is a reaction to a tetanus shot but sends her to a Dr. Tasko for confirmation of the diagnosis. The new doctor's treatment stops the rash but marks the beginning of a malpractice suit.

  • Walter's 50th birthday is near and everyone except Walter is excited, so Maude plans a surprise birthday party for him. As the happy day arrives Walter goes into a deep depression and even Maude's special surprise gift fails to achieve the desired effect.

  • Maude accompanies Walter to an out-of-town business convention where they find themselves trapped in a shoddy, run-down motel room. The crummy motel roam triggers a squabble over why Walter had never invited Maude to go to conventions with him before. Maude decides she is a prototype of all wives who are forced by society into a second-class-citizen situation.

  • Thanks to an investment made by their accountant, Maude and Walter unwittingly became part owners of a ghetto tenement. When they realize what has been done, they desperately try to get out of the deal only to find themselves faced by a possible loss of several thousand dollars -- and a picket marching in front of their house.

  • When one of the teenagers on the block is busted by the police for marijuana possession, Maude, the people's defender, heads a group to keep the youth out of jail. Maude frantically tries to buy some marijuana which she plans to distribute among the ladies of her vigilante group and then insist they all be arrested.

  • Guest star Barbara Rush appears as Phyllis Nash, Maude's best friend in high school who pays her a surprise visit some twenty-five years later. Maude is eagerly awaiting the arrival of her old school chum, hoping to be able to gloat a bit since she knows Phyllis has never married. Expecting her to be an embittered old spinster, Maude gets the surprise of her life.

  • Maude's unexpected pregnancy wreaks havoc in the lives of Maude and Walter while they try to decide what to do about it, in the conclusion of a two-part story. Along with morning sickness and a sudden urge for pickles, Maude gets advice about her problem from Carol and Florida while Walter commiserates with Arthur in a nearby bar.

  • Maude comes home from a routine visit to her doctor with the unexpected news that she is pregnant, which brings strangely divergent reactions from both her daughter and her husband.

  • Arthur is watching the national election results on television with Maude and Walter and reminds them of their stormy courtship days. In a flashback sequence, guest star Van Johnson appears as Henry, one of Maude's suitors. Maude was as worked up over the previous election as she is now, and Walter's refusal to see her point of view caused Maude to start dating other men. One of them was Henry (Johnson).

  • The news that Carol is remarrying is taken in stride by Walter, but Maude considers it a disastrous affront to her position as her daughter's best friend and confidante. When Carol announces that she plans to marry George Snyder (guest star Frank Aletter), an old friend whom she's been dating for two years, Maude accuses Carol of marrying for convenience instead of love. Carol "politely" informs Maude that her own four marriages hardly make her an expert on true love, and Walter, as usual, is left to restore peace and tranquility to the home scene.

  • Guess who's coming to Maude's fund-raising party for a black militant? Well, it's almost time for the guests to arrive and even Maude doesn't know who is coming and who isn't. When the black guests Maude has invited call to cancel and the guest of honor is late, Maude panics and insists Florida change clothes and act the role.

  • Carol learns all about the "wrath of a woman scorned" when she starts dating a man who jilted her mother before she married Walter. Refusing to admit she is still suffering the pangs of a ten-year-old rejection, Maude pulls out all the stops to ruin the romance. Walter feels a few pans of rejection himself, as Maude recalls the intimate details of her previous affair.

  • Maude hires a black housekeeper to prove her liberalism and insists that they become close personal friends. Esther Rolle is introduced as Florida Evans, a conscientious housekeeper who wants to be left alone to do her work. But Maude, determined to prove their equality, insists on "helping" Florida and treating her like one of the family regardless of comfort, convenience, or choice.

  • When Maude's grandson and Arthur's granddaughter are discovered playing "doctor" behind the garage, war is declared between Maude and Arthur over what punishment -- if any -- the boy should be given.

  • Maude, a woman who believes in fighting city hall -- or anything else in her path -- tangles with a psychiatrist who is treating her daughter. When Maude learns that Carol is being psychoanalyzed, she feels this is direct attack on her image as a model mother. Getting no help from Walter, Maude pays an unexpected call on the psychiatrist, determined to put an end to the analysis sessions.

Watch Maude Online - Watch online anytime anywhere: Buy, Rent

Maude is currently available to watch and stream on Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. You can also buy, rent Maude on demand at Amazon, iTunes online.