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Alvin Newcastle is a major one-off character in the 1985 NBC sitcom The Golden Girls. He is the widower of Edna Newcastle and the father of Sandra.

Alvin appeared in the Season 3 premiere "Old Friends". He was portrayed by veteran actor, the late Joe Seneca.

Personality and Traits[]

Alvin is a generally-amicable man, but his condition causes him to have bouts of forgetfulness and even anger, making him lash out at people for seemingly no reason.


Early life[]

Alvin was born in 1907. He married a woman named Edna and they had at least one child, a daughter named Sandra.[1] He has at least one grandchild and a nephew who is a doctor.[1] Alvin worked as a security guard for much of his life before he retired prior to 1987.[1]

In Alvin's golden years, his wife Edna passed away and Alvin was later diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. As his behavior worsened, his daughter Sandra put him in the Ocean Mist Retirement Hotel, where he "worked" as a security guard. Alvin would routinely take the bus to the boardwalk, and Sandra began following him to make sure he didn't get lost or hurt due to his condition.[1]

Befriending Sophia[]

At the boardwalk one day, Alvin met Sophia Petrillo and discovered they have a common acquaintance, a Molly Feinstein, another Ocean Mist resident. The two immediately bond, but Alvin's behavior slowly becomes erratic as their friendship develops. When Sophia asks Alvin about his late wife, Alvin forgets who she's talking about and can't seem to remember anything about her.[1]

Alvin and Sophia

Alvin and Sophia bonding on the boardwalk

One day, Alvin arrives at the boardwalk an hour late than he usually does and blames it on "that dumbass bus driver". Instead of greeting Sophia, he is angry that she's sitting in his spot on the bench and starts shouting at her, calling her selfish and prompting her to leave. The next day, Sophia tries to be careful when talking to Alvin, but Alvin can't remember that he shouted at her. Sophia takes his lack of acknowledging the incident as Alvin's way of apologizing. Unknown to them, Dorothy and Sandra are watching them from nearby. Sandra confides in Dorothy that Alvin's condition makes it difficult for her to look after him, and she was forced to take a leave of absence from her job to look after him after he started wandering to the boardwalk. That evening, Dorothy informs Sophia learns that Alvin suffers from Alzheimer's disease, and that he will eventually be moving to New York to live with his nephew, who is a doctor and better equipped to take care of him.[1]

Presumably a few months later, Sophia waits all day at the boardwalk for Alvin, but he never shows up. When she realizes that Alvin is probably gone, she wonders if Alvin will still remember her name, let alone the time they spent together sitting on the boardwalk. Dorothy asks her if she wants to go see Alvin in New York to give him the scarf she made him, but Sophia refuses, saying she would rather mail him the scarf so she can remember him on the boardwalk rather than see his deteriorated mental state.[1]

Family tree[]



Sophia Petrillo[]

To be added.


To be added.


The Golden Girls (1985 - 1992)[]

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One-Off Characters in The Golden Girls
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Season 6 Abby WolfAndyAngela PetrilloArthur NivingstonBillBrother MartinCoach OdlivakDetective ParresDon the FoolDoug HollingsworthDr. BobDr. TessDr. WarrenErrolFather MonroeFather O’MaraFather SalernoFrank NannGladysHerbIrvingJackJason StillmanJimmyJohn NorettiKevin KellyLou NorganLouiseLucilleLyle WaggonerMarvin MitchelsonMel BushmanMickey MoranMother SuperiorMr. LewisMr. NinerviniMr. PercyMr. PorterMrs. ContiniMrs. TaylorMrs. WardMyraRex HuntingtonSarahSister AnneSister ClaireSmokeySonny BonoSusan DoddTamaraTed TannerTerryTony DelVecchioTrubyViola Watkins
Season 7 to be added.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 The Golden Girls, Season 3, Episode 1, “Old Friends”. Speer, Kathy and Grossman, Terry (writers) & Hughes, Terry (director) (September 19th, 1987)