The Conners premiered last night and as expected, they wasted no time in killing off Roseanne. Also as expected, the writers killed her off with an opioid overdose. Roseanne knew this day was coming, but she sure as hell isn’t happy about the way her character went out.
Last night’s episode opened with Roseanne’s death. Originally Dan, Aunt Jackie, and the rest thought she died from a heart attack, but it was revealed by a coroner friend of Jackie’s that her actual cause of death was from opioids. Becky then revealed that she found some pills in Roseanne’s closet, which were opioids prescribed to a woman named Marcy (played by Mary Steenburgen). Becky then joked, “Damn, that’s the only thing from mom’s closet that I wanted.” We also got a Roseanne-less opening.
— The Conners (@TheConnersABC) October 17, 2018
You’ll notice that spin around the table was missing Roseanne’s signature cackle at the end. Well, that cackle wasn’t happening at her house either. An hour and a half after The Conners premiered, Roseanne tweeted this:
I AIN’T DEAD, BITCHES!!!!
— Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) October 17, 2018
Roseanne then teamed up with her friend Rabbi Shmuley Boteach to release a following way-too-long statement about her displeasure. You can read the whole thing over at Vulture. In it, she blames ABC for firing her rather than using her situation as a teachable moment. Um, Roseanne? I’m pretty sure “Don’t be racist on Twitter” is a moment most of us have already been taught. She also thinks ABC and The Conners went way too morbid with her death.
“While we wish the very best for the cast and production crew of The Conners, all of whom are deeply dedicated to their craft and were Roseanne’s cherished colleagues, we regret that ABC chose to cancel Roseanne by killing off the Roseanne Conner character. That it was done through an opioid overdose lent an unnecessary grim and morbid dimension to an otherwise happy family show.
This was a choice the network did not have to make. Roseanne was the only show on television that directly addressed the deep divisions threatening the very fabric of our society. ..Through humor and a universally relatable main character, the show represented a weekly teaching moment for our nation. Yet it is often following an inexcusable – but not unforgivable – mistake that we can discover the most important lesson of all: Forgiveness. After repeated and heartfelt apologies, the network was unwilling to look past a regrettable mistake, thereby denying the twin American values of both repentance and forgiveness.”
What Roseanne seems to forget is that she’s tried the whole forgiveness thing before, and she kind of keeps screwing it up. I don’t blame ABC for saving everyone some time by sending in the Grim Reaper with a bottle of pills. I can’t even begin to imagine how many days and dollars would have been blown trying to get Roseanne through a censor-approved take without her character screaming, “I said I was sorry!”