If there is anything more on-trend than reviving classic TV shows, it just might be reviving classic TV shows while ignoring their original finales. Will & Grace did it, and next year ABC’s Roseanne will do it as well. We know that for a fact, because guess what: Dan Conner is alive!
Most people have blocked season 9 of Roseanne from their memories, but in it the Conners become millionaires after winning the lotto, and hijinx ensues. Until the finale, when it’s revealed that the entire season, and hell — the entire SHOW — had been an exercise is escapist fiction, written by Roseanne as a way to deal with her grief over the death of her husband. Dan, played by John Goodman, didn’t survive his heart attack in season 8.
But as much as the show may be about Roseanne, both the real woman and the fictional one, it wouldn’t work without the family dynamic. And the heart of that dynamic is the love between Roseanne and Dan. He was the perfect TV dad because of his imperfections, which felt lived in and real, somehow. And also because he was played by John Fucking Goodman. So in bringing the show back from the television graveyard, they have decided to resurrect Dan as well — and crack jokes about it.
And here are a few more promos, just for funsies:
The whole cast is returning — even both Beckys! — but the real question is whether they can recapture that original magic. While I never thought I’d want more Roseanne, it might actually be the one show that could do some good today if it’s done properly. Struggling white working class family from middle America who aren’t racist, bigoted assholes? I’ll take it.
And if it sucks? Well, we’ll always have the return of ANOTHER TV dad if that Mad About You revival comes to fruition. I bet Paul Reiser turned out to be a wonderful father to little Mabel. And we’d get to see more of it, since the revival would — yup, you guessed it — ignore that series finale (which jumped ahead in time to reveal an adult Mabel) and show Reiser and Helen Hunt dealing with their daughter’s college acceptance.