Monday, May 27, 2024

On “The Conners,” Roseanne Becomes a Passing Reference, Opening Titles Are Same as Before, Just Without Her


On “The Conners” second episode, Roseanne– the character– becomes a passing reference. She is gone from the show. She’s also gone from the title sequence, but it’s the same– same music, same set up as the camera pans around the kitchen table. The only difference is that Darlene sits in Roseanne’s seat.

On the second episode, David (Johnny Galecki) returns, with his girlfriend played by Juliette Lewis. ABC made a big deal out of this and nothing about Justin Long making his first appearance as Darlene’s new boyfriend. Odd. Both newcomers have possibilities and they’re strong actors, not from sitcoms.

Overall “The Conners” is a well written, funny show, smarter than “Roseanne” but without any edge. Sara Gilbert has moved up to lead as Darlene, and she’s wry and knowing without being coarse — which Roseanne Conner certainly was. Lacy Goranson is either better or Becky is being written better, I’m not sure which. Laurie Metcalf– what can you say? She’s sublime.

There’s a set up now for Darlene and David’s daughter, 16 year old Harris, to be pregnant. Maybe, maybe not. I really liked the one scene with DJ’s wife, Gina. I hope she gets in there more.

Now, to the World Series. We’ll see in the morning if the Game affected “The Conners” ratings.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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