Twitter Reactions To The ‘Roseanne’ Spinoff Keep Bringing Up This Main Question
After the news broke that ABC will be moving forward with a Roseanne spinoff without Roseanne Barr, the internet was divided. But whether they think this new TV show will be successful or not, the one question that many people had was how will The Conners explain Barr's absence? As ABC stated in its press release about The Conners (the spinoff's current working title), Barr "will have no financial or creative involvement in the new series." Yet, Barr was an essential part of the series up until a racist tweet she wrote led to ABC canceling the show. Many fans on Twitter are happy for the rest of the cast and crew for not being punished for Barr's behavior. But the lingering question of how The Conners will write off the matriarch of the family remains.
ABC's announcement stated that The Conners will star John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson, and Michael Fishman as their Roseanne characters Dan, Jackie, Darlene, Becky, and D.J. in the new show. The statement also explained, "After a sudden turn of events, the Conners are forced to face the daily struggles of life in Lanford in a way they never have before." The "sudden turn of events" is the only possible explanation given for the former titular character's absence, which allowed fans' imaginations to run pretty wild on Twitter.
While some people are intrigued to see how The Conners will be without Roseanne, others don't believe a spinoff without Barr will work. But even though the show had her name, Barr didn't actually create Roseanne — Matt Williams did. As The Los Angeles Times reported in 1989, Williams left Roseanne after the first season because Barr reportedly said she would leave if he wasn't fired due to creative differences. Interestingly enough, an associate of the production company that made Roseanne, Carsey-Werner Co., said at the time, "I don't know that she's indispensable."
When The Conners premieres in fall 2018, people will see if Barr truly is "indispensable" to the show she helped build. Meanwhile, until ABC makes it clear how Roseanne will be written off, people on Twitter will theorize how it will be done. Here are some of the best Twitter theories about what will happen to Roseanne in The Conners.
1She'll Die — Possibly From Her Knee Surgery
The predominant theory is that the "sudden turn of events" mentioned in the ABC press release will be the death of the Roseanne character. And many people referred to the reboot storyline about Roseanne's knee surgery since the show could pretty seamlessly say she died from her surgery.
2Shonda Rhimes Should Write Her Exit
Any Grey's Anatomy fan knows that Shonda Rhimes is a pro at killing off major characters. And she's already part of the ABC family.
3Death By Politics
Many people took shots at Barr's political beliefs and the racist comment that got her fired to explain how she'll leave the show.
4A New Roseanne Death Each Episode
From there, fans got pretty creative about Roseanne's exit. Like this person's idea that The Conners will channel Six Feet Under.
Or, if Roseanne doesn't die, a new actor could portray Roseanne in each episode, creating a revolving door of Roseannes for the new audience.
6Death By 'Kevin Can Wait'
The executive editor of Indiewire and the editor-at-large of Variety, Michael Schneider, proposed a bizarre Kevin Can Wait crossover.
Maybe some time travel will be necessary to explain Roseanne's disappearance, so this fan suggested a Terminator mashup.
8Dan's A Zombie
Dan did die in the original series, so maybe now is the time to explain that. And, if Dan is a zombie, that could explain why Roseanne mysteriously disappears in The Conners — a zombie's got to eat, right?
9Roseanne & Dan Are Taking Turns In The Afterlife
Even if Dan isn't a zombie, it's kind of like the show will come full circle if Roseanne is the one to die now. The universe needs balance.
10The Conners Head For Divorce
Beyond death, this fan brought up how Roseanne could leave if she and Dan divorce.
11Dan & Jackie Could Get Together
Whether it's divorce or death, one fan is conducting a poll to see if fans would like to see Dan and Jackie together — the classic man becomes a widower and marries his sister-in-law trope.
12Tom Arnold Could Replace Her
Barr's ex-husband appeared on and wrote for the original show. He was pretty outspoken when Barr got fired, telling PEOPLE that he "wasn't surprised" by her tweet. So some fans now think Tom Arnold could return and possibly even take Roseanne's place.
It's likely that none of these fan predictions will ever come true, but at least Roseanne fans are trying to have some fun with the fate of the show. And hopefully how The Conners writes Roseanne off will end up being less controversial than Barr herself.