Brooke Nicholson | Assistant A&E Editor
America’s favorite family from the ‘90s, Roseanne, has been revived to fit the modern persona of American families living in the 21st century.
It’s been 21 years since the finale of the sitcom ended, but the show still had a huge presence on modern television with its many reruns playing on networks like Lifetime anytime of the day. “Roseanne” was always ahead of its time – with most of its episodes centered around controversial topics that most TV shows back in the day refused to address, such as racism, gay/bisexual relationships, the working-class family and more.
Fans were surprised when the show would be brought back from the grave to appear for another, modernized, run on ABC Family. “Roseanne” debuted once again on March 27 with stunning ratings that shocked even executives of the show and a massive 18.2 viewers tuning in Wednesday night.
At the start of the hour-long episode, the familiar cackle of Roseanne herself was heard around the world, and after, quickly informing fans that the series was going to, in fact, ignore one huge fundamental part of the last season in the 90’s, that Dan (played by John Goodman) never died. While audiences knew that Dan would be revived for the new season (producers knew it wouldn’t be a “Roseanne” show without him), the show laughs it off as a joke and something that never happened.
Once the quick introduction was over and we learn that Roseanne’s daughter Darlene is moving back in with them due to financial struggles, we learn that Roseanne and her sister Jackie have been fueling an ongoing feud that we find out has been going on for about a year and a half. We quickly realize what the disagreement is about when Jackie shows up to the house wearing a ‘Nasty Woman’ shirt, and we learn that Roseanne is a Trump supporter and Jackie a Hillary Clinton supporter.
While not surprising that Roseanne would pick up the controversial topic of the 2016 presidential election, it is weirder than not seeing characters, essentially, from the ‘90s talking about more modern things. After bantering back and forth and making jokes about the different ideas the two candidates are all about, the episode eventually ends with the two sisters learning to live with their disagreements. This episode highlights a lot of the struggles American families, in particular, are going through today.
“Roseanne,” while cracking up jokes and making light of the family disagreements going on in the household, at times deemed the topic of the feud between the two awkwardly over-political at times that didn’t quite hold well with viewers. The episode seemed to harp on the person who came out on top with the best insult/joke rather than portraying playful banter about the situation.
Overall, fans were delighted and pleased with the new episodes, and although ABC has not confirmed a season two, the cast has signed on to 13 episodes to finish the season.