“Empty Nests” (May 16, 1987)

Happy summer! This is an episode of Backdoor Pilots, our summer Patreon series looking into the times famous sitcoms attempted to use a backdoor pilot to launch a spinoff. This particular example is one of the most interesting, since what aired on Golden Girls ended up being very different from the spinoff that made it to air, Empty Nest.

Here is the full list of Backdoor Pilots episodes, with links to the ones that are currently live on Patreon. More to come!

• Golden Girls, “Empty Nests”

Married With Children, “Top of the Heap”

Who’s the Boss?, “Mona”

Diff’rent Strokes, “The Girls School”

• Gimme a Break, “Nell and the Kid”

• Married With Children, “Radio Free Trumaine”

• 227, “The Audit”

• The Cosby Show, “Mr. Quiet”

• The Nanny, “Chatterbox”

• Who’s the Boss?, “Living Dolls”

Support us on Patreon at the $5-a-month level or higher to get every new episode of Backdoor Pilots in your feed as they go live.

Is there maybe some bad blood between Golden Girls creator Susan Harris and Rita Moreno, who almost starred in the spinoff? We talk about it in the episode, but I also made a video detailing this weird bit of TV history in case you’d like to explore it with visual aids.

The theme song to this series was composed and performed by Meika Grimm. The art for the series was designed by Ian O’Phelan.