ABC’s Roseanne revival is bringing back original series cast members, and big fan favorites, Estelle Parsons and Sandra Bernhard. The new Roseanne will run for nine episodes after ABC ordered an extra episode on top of the original order of eight. ABC has yet to announce a premiere date.
Back in 1988, the original Roseanne debuted and went on to become a ratings powerhouse. The series revolved around the Conners, a typical working-class family from Illinois. Inspired by the stand-up of Roseanne Barr, the show presented a grounded yet still hilarious depiction of middle-America. The revival revisits the original characters while adding a whole new generation of young Conners. Recent photos from a script read-through showed the main Roseanne cast back together.
TVLine reports that Roseanne has now added two more old favorites to the revival cast. 90-year-old Estelle Parsons will return for two episodes in the role of Beverly Harris, Roseanne’s mom. Sandra Bernhard will return for one episode as Roseanne and Jackie’s (Laurie Metcalf) friend Nancy Bartlett.
Oscar winner Parsons was a scene-stealer in the old series, playing Roseanne’s over-sexed mom, who in the rest home gained the nickname “Craftmatic Adjustable Bev.” Late in life, Beverly realized she was a lesbian. Bernhard’s character Nancy was herself a lesbian, though she was introduced as the fiance of Dan’s buddy Arnie, played by Roseanne Barr’s then-husband Tom Arnold.
News of these new cast additions comes after reports that Johnny Galecki will also return. Early cast announcements did not include Galecki, leading to worry that his character David would not be back. David and Darlene’s (Sara Gilbert) son Mark – named after David’s bad-boy brother – will be played on the revival by newcomer Ames McNamara. The actor who played the original Mark, Glenn Quinn, passed away in 2002. Sarah Chalke aka Becky 2 will appear in a new role, while Lecy Goranson returns to play the “real” Becky.
The old band is coming back together nicely for Roseanne. Still absent from the cast list is Martin Mull, who played Roseanne’s gay boss Leon, another fan favorite character. Absent also is Tom Arnold, though this omission likely won’t get many complaints from fans (or Roseanne Barr). His character Dan may have died of a heart attack in the original series’ unfortunate last season, but John Goodman is nonetheless back for the revival. The new series will need to ignore many plot lines from that final season, which went off the rails after Roseanne Barr took over creative control.
The Roseanne revival is expected to premiere in 2018.
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