Interview: Roseanne 2018: Back on the Conner Couch & Still Telling It Like It Is

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In exclusive interviews in this weekend’s Parade, Roseanne Barr and John Goodman talk about their long friendship, the real-life roots of their iconic TV characters, Roseanne and Dan Conner, and the return of their hit series, which begins March 27 on ABC.
Family Reunion. In addition to Barr and Goodman, the new show will also feature the return of other original actors, including Lecy Goranson, Sara Gilbert, Michael Fishman, Laurie Metcalf, Sarah Chalke, Sandra Bernhard, Johnny Galecki and Estelle Parsons. Walking onto the new set felt like “we only took a week off,” says Goodman.
Groundbreaking Humor. The original Roseanne, which debuted in 1988, broke new ground for a TV sitcom, showing a family entrenched in blue-collar, working-class life, struggling to pay bills, with hardworking parents and moody kids. “The way I look at it,” says Barr, “I wasn’t insulting the intelligence of a working-class family or working-class people. We were poor but not stupid—a lot like everyone I grew up with. And the majority of Americans.”
The Real Roseanne. The inspiration for Roseanne’s character, and the show, came from her childhood and upbringing in Salt Lake City, Utah. “I had [these] kind of relationships with my brother and both of my sisters,” says Barr. “We used dark humor to diffuse difficult situations.”
TV Tastes. In their off time, both Goodman and Roseanne turn to the tube for their TV favorites. For Goodman, it’s loads of Law & Order. Barr particularly likes forensic murder series on the ID channel, but she admits the vast array of choices on cable, streaming services and other platforms overwhelms her. “Technology is so beyond me,” she says.
Kid Connection. Barr says she often hears from fans who says they didn’t “get” Roseanne until they became parents themselves. “People say to me, ‘I never saw myself as your kind of person until I had kids,’” she says. “When you have kids and you watch a show about raising kids, it’s very universal.”
For more about the Barr, Goodman and the new Roseanne, see Sunday’s Parade or go to

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