Actress Bea Arthur poses in a light blue dressing gown with a feathered collar and cuffs against a darker blue backdrop.

Bea Arthur as Maude Findlay from the Norman Lear show Maude.

Photo credit: Courtesy Everett Collection

Bea Arthur’s title character was uncompromising, enterprising, anything but tranquilizing, just like the theme song promised.

By Marc Berman

Bea Arthur as Edith Bunker’s cousin Maude Findlay, an outspoken middle-aged liberal woman, the polar opposite of conservative Archie Bunker, was perfect for Lear’s next sitcom after All in the Family.

Originally appearing in the Season 2 All in the Family episode “Cousin Maude’s Visit” (December 11, 1971), Arthur made enough of an impact to return in a backdoor pilot in the season-ending episode on March 11, 1972, titled “Maude.”

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