[[quoteright:236:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/DesWo.JPG]]
[[caption-width-right:236:Southern-Fried Golden Girls]]

A {{Work Com}} by Linda Bloodworth-Thomason about four Southern women who operate an interior design company in [[{{Atlanta}} Atlanta, Georgia]]. The cast included:
* [[MamaBear Julia Sugarbaker]] (Dixie Carter): The head of ''Sugarbaker Designs'' (which operates out of her living room) and [[WriterOnBoard an unapologetically feminist Democrat]] whose frequent tirades are a trademark of the series.
* [[UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist Suzanne Sugarbaker]] (Delta Burke): Julia's younger sister, [[SouthernBelle a former beauty queen]] who supports herself through alimony payments from her many ex-husbands and is the main financial backer of the company.
* Mary Jo Shively (Annie Potts): A single divorced mother who performs unspecified duties (actually, she's a designer, and frequently speaks of things like sketches and clients) at ''Sugarbaker's''. She spends much of her time [[OneHourWorkWeek sitting around the office/living room]] [[DeadpanSnarker tossing out one-liners]].
* [[CountryMouse Charlene Frazier]] (Jean Smart): The office receptionist whose [[DumbBlonde rural background and na´vetÚ]] are frequent sources of humor.

The cast was rounded out by [[MiscarriageOfJustice ex-con Anthony Bouvier]] (Meshach Taylor) and [[CloudCuckoolander Bernice Clifton]] (Alice Ghostley) and a steady parade of children, boyfriends, ex-husbands and assorted oddballs. After half the cast left in 1991, some [[SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute new characters appeared]] to replace them, but they were not as well-received. The series ran on CBS from September 29 ,1986 until May 24, 1993 and spawned an unsuccessful spin-off (''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_of_the_House Women Of The House]]'').
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!!This show contains examples of:
* AccidentalMarriage: Julia and Reese go through a whopper of one in "I Do, I Don't." When she embarrassingly mistakes his anniversary gift for an engagement ring, they decide on the (... drunken) spur of the moment to get married anyway. It lasts about 24 hours.
* AddedAlliterativeAppeal: Mary Jo once caused the company to lose a lucrative client when she suggested to the woman that maybe the chairs she picked out would be better suited for someone with about 50 pounds less bulk. When she's trying to justify this to Julia, she says the chairs the woman picked out were dainty little things made with peacock feathers and when the client picked them out, all she could picture was the newspaper headline: "'''F'''at '''F'''eathered '''F'''anny '''F'''alls Through '''F'''loor."
* AnAesop: Frequently, and many delivered Julia, who often [[AuthorFilibuster served as something of a mouthpiece]] for show creator Linda Bloodworth-Thomason. Her fiery rants touched on all kinds of issues, from sex education and sweatshop exploitation to inane magazine editorials.
** Mary Jo and Charlene got to handle a few of their own as well. An [[VerySpecialEpisode especially poignant plot]] involves Charlene deciding to leave her church, all while teaching the audience about gender equality in the clergy.
* ArchEnemy: It was pretty much Allison vs. Everyone during her brief tenure on the show.
* AwLookTheyReallyDoLoveEachOther: [[TheGloriousWarOfSisterlyRivalry Julia and Suzanne]] rarely saw eye-to-eye on ''anything'' and argued frequently, but [[http://www.designingwomenonline.com/Episodes/Summaries/002.php one of the show's most memorable moments]] proved just how much Julia loved her baby sister. Video of the speech [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wV86kehwkc0 here.]]
* BadSanta: In one episode, Suzanne hires a mall Santa to slip into Mary Jo's house and make her son believe that Santa is real. Santa proceeds to rob Mary Jo blind.
* BattleOfTheSexes: One of Julia's most memorable [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHW1GS8ZxS8&feature=related rants]] is on this very subject.
* BitchAlert: Allison Sugarbaker. As Anthony put it, Leona Helmsley in Tinkerbell's body.
* BitchInSheepsClothing: Heather [=McFall=], a one-off character who appears in [[ShoutOut "All About Odes to Atlanta."]] When she shows up at Sugarbaker's to help the ladies win a singing contest, she is as sweet and shy and helpful as can be. It doesn't last.
* BigFancyHouse: Julia's stately home, which doubled as the company's office, and was once even listed on the Atlanta Register of Historic Homes, right up until the tourists snapped the last of Julia's straws.
** Suzanne's home was pretty big and fancy itself.
* BlondeBrunetteRedhead: Charlene, Allison, and BJ were blondes, Suzanne, Julia, and Carlene were brunettes, and Mary Jo was the redhead, all though every few episodes or so her hair would look almost dark enough to be brown and later on every once in a while would almost look blonde!
* BrainlessBeauty: Suzanne Sugarbaker
* BrainyBrunette: Julia Sugarbaker
* TheCameo: The show had a smattering of celebrity appearances over the years, although possibly the most memorable is DollyParton as Charlene's "guardian movie star" when she's in the hospital to give birth.
* CantHoldHisLiquor: Mary Jo, in spades. One beer and she gets extremely loud, aggressive, and obnoxious.
** This characteristic yields particularly disastrous consequences in "Nightmare from Hee Haw," when her yelling attracts the attention of four hillbillies spoiling for a fight ...
* TheCastShowoff: In exchange for performing Julia's decidedly left-wing rants, Dixie Carter (a Republican) requested that the character be allowed to sing in a number of episodes.
** Jean Smart also sang on the show. Pretty much everybody performed at one point or other, [[CrossingTheLineTwice once even in blackface (Suzanne)]].
* CharacterFilibuster: When Julia begins her "Terminator" rants, the show stops so ''everyone'' can listen.
* ChristmasCake: This was a rare show showcasing single women over 30 [[TheGoldenGirls but below 65]].
* CloudCuckoolander: While [[TheDitz the Frazier sisters]] had their moments, Bernice Clifton takes the prize here. The only thing keeping her from being truly dim are her [[HiddenDepths rare profound moments]].
* CoincidenceMagnet: Charlene and Anthony tended to have all kinds of weirdness happen to them.
* CoolPet: Noel, the Pig.
* DeepSouth: The Frazier sisters hailed from Poplar Bluff, Missouri. This is a case of WriteWhatYouKnow , as Linda Bloodworth-Thomason is also from Poplar Bluff. And the ''Sugarbaker's'' staff have several ''Deliverance''-like encounters with the hillbilly Jones clan. Stereotypes of Southerners are frequently discussed and examined on the show.
* DropInCharacter: Bernice did not work at Sugarbaker's nor did she have a financial stake in the company, yet she spent much of her time there (much to the annoyance of the others, particularly Anthony).
** Lampshaded, in that Perky, Julia and Suzanne's mother, asks them to keep an eye on Bernice, since Perky herself is [[WalkingTheEarth always out of the country]].
* EightiesHair: Thankfully toned down by the end of the series.
* [[FiveManBand Five Woman Band]]: For the first five seasons...
** [[TheHero The Heroine]]: Julia
** TheLancer: Suzanne
** [[TheSmartGuy The Smart Girl]]: Mary Jo
** [[TheBigGuy The Big Girl]]: Charlene
** TheOneGuy[=/=]SixthRanger: Anthony
* FurAndLoathing: Spoofed in an episode when unapologetic fur-wearer Suzanne sports a mink coat in a fashion show, runs afoul of protesters, and gets her arm broken. She has to spend a week in the coat and never wants to see a mink again.
* GayAesop: Combined with AIDS to boot, and Julia chewing out a client.
* GrandmaWhatMassiveHotnessYouHave: The episode in which Julia's son gets married, she's feeling her age. In response, she gets drunk and sings a very sexy "Sweet Georgia Brown" [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=crv1pgHF2Ns as seen here.]] Then she wakes up with his college roommate.
* HideYourPregnancy: Averted with Jean Smart (see RealLifeWritesThePlot below) but played straight with Annie Potts later on.
* HorribleJudgeOfCharacter: Charlene was naive to a fault, and so was the target of quite a few sleazes, including the con man who tried to sell the firm stolen furniture, and the "promoter" who was going to make her a country star. She had terrible taste in men too, until she met her husband.
* HumblePie: Julia occasionally had to eat a slice or two. For instance, the time she [[WardrobeMalfunction strutted down a fashion show runway with the back of her dress tucked into her pantyhose.]]
** And then there was the time she got her head stuck in a banister at the governor's mansion.
* IronyAsSheIsCast: As mentioned above, the very conservative Dixie Carter played the very Liberal Julia Sugarbaker.
* JerkassHasAPoint: Allison was so obnoxious that everyone hated to give her the satisfaction of agreeing with her, but her no-nonsense New York cynicism was occasionally right.
* MiscarriageOfJustice: Naturally, Anthony was completely innocent of the crime that caused his [[CatchPhrase "unfortunate incarceration"]]. He spent the entire run of the series getting his life back in order (earning his GED, going to college, becoming a partner in ''Sugarbaker's'', etc.) and trying to put his past behind him. This fact did not stop Suzanne from constantly [[CrossingTheLineTwice expressing her displeasure with having a black ex-con around the office]], and generally using any excuse to bring up the fact that Anthony served time in prison. She did get better about it as the series progressed and [[PlatonicLifePartners and she and Anthony developed a more meaningful relationship]].
* TheMistress: Spoofed in an episode aptly titled, "The Mistress." Sugarbaker's is hired to decorate both the home of a wealthy married man, and the condo where he keeps his mistress. The women are eventually so disgusted by the mistress that they tell her off in an attempt to defend the wife, but [[TwistEnding it turns out they have the situation entirely wrong]], and so HilarityEnsues.
** The way the truth unfolds [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBlvRMx9tvM is pretty masterfully done.]]
* NoBisexuals: In one episode, Suzanne mentions that she told some guy's parents that he was bisexual because, "I always tell the parents. And I'm not sorry. I don't believe in bisexuals. I figure the rest of us have to choose, so why shouldn't they?"
* OddCouple: For a time, Allison and Anthony reluctantly shared Suzanne's home after [[PutOnABus her departure]] and attempted to force each other out. [[HilarityEnsues Hilarity ensued.]]
* OddFriendship: Despite their many differences and occasional unpleasant encounters (including [[IJustShotMarvinInTheFace an accidental shooting]]), Suzanne and Anthony became very close friends during the series. So close in fact that Anthony once referred to himself, bewilderedly, as Suzanne's "best girl friend." They even had a reunion on the {{spinoff}}.
* TheOldConvict: T. Tommy Reed, legendary former cellmate of Anthony's during his "unfortunate incarceration." He was so menacing and had been around so long he exerted a weird kind of authority over the cell block, which he used to enforce strict etiquette rules and occasionally force the other inmates to partner him in ballroom dancing.
* PrepositionsAreNotToEndSentencesWith: If someone calls on you for this, correct the sentence with calling the GrammarNazi a fitting name.
* PrettyInMink: Except for the instance of the other trope, Suzanne wore furs with no comment. And, on rare occasions, so did the others.
* PutOnABus: Suzanne moved to Japan and Charlene moved with her husband to England at the start of season 6, due to Delta Burke being fired and Jean Smart deciding to leave the show. Suzanne's departure was only mentioned, while Charlene stuck around for just one more episode to unceremoniously drop the news of her leaving.
** Cousin Allison withdraws all her money from the business and runs off to buy a Victoria's Secret franchise in between seasons 6 and 7, and thereafter is never mentioned again.
* RavenHairIvorySkin: Suzanne.
* RealLifeRelative: Delta Burke's RealLife husband Gerald [=McRaney=] played one of Suzanne's ex-husbands; Dixie Carter's RealLife husband Hal Holbrook played Julia's longtime sweetheart, Reese Watson, until the character's death.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Jean Smart discovered she was pregnant the day that Charlene and Bill's wedding episode was filmed. [[HideYourPregnancy Rather than stick her in a bunch of baggy clothes]], Charlene was written to have gotten pregnant on the honeymoon, and baby Olivia was born the following New Year's.
* ShooOutTheNewGuy: Julia Duffy replaced Delta Burke at the start of the 6th season as the Sugarbaker's prissy cousin, Allison. The character was very poorly received and was gone by the 7th season premiere. Creator Susan Bloodworth-Thomason blamed herself and the writers for not creating a more multi-dimensional character for Duffy to play. Jan Hooks was more successful as Jean Smart's replacement and was kept around for the final season.
* SoapboxSadie: Julia Sugarbaker's soapbox tendencies continued well past her teenage years. Also subverted with [[{{Foil}} Suzanne's]] monologues about such things as beauty and proper Southern values.
* SouthernBelle: Suzanne Sugarbaker especially and in particular, but really, all of the female main characters fit the bill one way or another.
** The show puts a button on this in an episode spoofing "Gone With the Wind," when each lady imagines what she'd be like as Scarlett O'Hara.
* SpinOff: ''Women of the House'', in which Suzanne's latest husband -- a Congressman -- has died, and she moves to Washington to serve out the remainder of his term. It ran for one season in 1995.
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: Carlene Dobber for Charlene Frazier-Stillfield. Their similar first names are even lampshaded by Mary Jo in the season 6 premiere.
* ThemeTune: "Georgia", by Music/RayCharles, and done as an instrumental in some versions.
* UpperClassTwit: Tony and Cassandra Hall, or a Mary Jo likes to call them, "''The'' Most Repulsive Couple in Atlanta." They are nouveau-riche white trash imports from Beverly Hills, who frequently employ Sugarbaker's. If there's an especially tacky piece of decoration hanging around the office (say, a piano with the faces of the Beatles painted on it), you can bet it was ordered by Tony and Cassandra Hall.
* VacationEpisode: Quite a few, sometimes together with all the love interests to boot.
* WidowWoman: Julia Sugarbaker.
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