When ABC fired Roseanne Barr from her eponymous hit sitcom because she tweeted something stupid about Valerie Jarrett, I was ambivalent. Yes, ABC overreacted. They set a huge pile of money on fire because they didn’t want Woke Nation to yell at them. But they also knew the sort of person Roseanne is when they brought back her show. She’s been doing and saying crazy stuff for decades. It’s probably only a coincidence that it didn’t catch up with her until the crazy stuff she said was in defense of Donald Trump. Right? Mocking people of color is just plain wrong, unless they’re named Kanye. Right?
Roseanne said what she said, and the people who were paying her tons of money stopped paying her tons of money. Nobody has invented an emoji that’s shruggy enough to capture my feelings about it.
But I have to admit, it’s funny to hear about the panic at ABC as the new Roseanne-less Roseanne is set to debut next week. Karen Ruiz, Daily Mail:
Top ABC brass may have acted too swiftly by pulling the plug on Roseanne – and they now fear the show’s replacement spin-off will flop without its star.
Two senior executives at the network have told DailyMailTV that firing the actress was a ‘knee-jerk’ reaction by ABC’s president and admitted that temporarily suspending Barr may have been a wiser decision…
The network fears they have upset viewers by firing Barr and that fans will not watch The Conners out of loyalty to the actress.
This is hardly the first time a hit show has moved on after losing a major cast member. In 1987, Valerie Harper left the sitcom Valerie without a Valerie, so it then became The Hogan Family.* In 2011, ambulatory meth lab Charlie Sheen (blood type: Tiger) got fired from Two and a Half Men. The writers were so glad to see him gone that they killed off his character twice, first by hitting him with a train and then by hitting him with a piano dropped from a helicopter. (SPOILER: Neither one was funny.)
It’s TV, so ABC will end up doing whatever makes the most money. If the ratings on this new show are lower than Tom Arnold’s IQ, maybe they’ll bring back Roseanne. Hell, they brought back Dan Conner, and he was dead for 20 years. It’s a dumb sitcom. Who cares about continuity?
Or maybe it’ll be a big hit. Maybe America can’t wait for the further adventures of Dan and… um… the grouchy, sarcastic daughter who’s probably not gay? And the other daughter who has blonde hair but is also dumb? And I think they have a son too? Oh, and Roseanne’s sister who used to be a cop and is now a #PussyHat-wearing feminist? Yeah, those people. We can’t wait to find out what’s next for those people.
Either way, the roaming outrage mob will move on to another target. Will you be next? Do you think it’s impossible that you’ll be next?
In happier Bad Celebrity Tweeter news, this week Warner Brothers announced that James Gunn is writing Suicide Squad 2. Which makes sense, since that other comic-book franchise he used to work on is basically “Suicide Squad in Space.” I’m sure we can look forward to Will Smith and Margot Robbie making oblique references to talking trees and bad tweets about taboo subjects. Maybe Dave Bautista can play King Shark or Catman or one of those other losers.** With the right talent, you can make pretty much any dumb idea worth watching.
*I always thought it should’ve been called Not Valerie, but that’s why I don’t work in Hollywood.
**Yeah, yeah, I know. I know. I’m not exactly proud of my knowledge of comic-book trivia. But hey, all that crap is big money now, right?