Kareem Abdul-JabbarLatest News and Opinion
Posted Wednesday 5/30/18 at 9:55PM EDT
Continuing Roseanne without Roseanne Barr is "a long shot" -- "possible but not probable"
Executive producer Tom Werner is expected to meet with showrunner Bruce Helford and Sara Gilbert in a few days after cooling off from the Tuesday's abrupt cancelation "to kick around possible ideas for continuing the show without Barr," according to Deadline. It makes sense for Carsey-Werner Television, which owns and produces Roseanne, to want to keep the series going since the stars are already under contract for next season and they love working together. "Still, there are a lot of hurdles, from coming up with a concept that will live up to the high creative bar set by the original series to changing the name of the show," reports Deadline's Nellie Andreeva, pointing out that ABC is not involved in any discussions to continue the series without Barr. She adds: "An informed source close to the situation said pulling off an offshoot series with the rest of the Roseanne cast is 'possible but not probable.' Another source called it 'a long shot.' If it comes together, Roseanne 2.0 would likely not be ready for fall. if it doesn’t, the focus will shift to who will get paid for the aborted Season 11. I hear there have been no conversations yet with the Roseanne cast, writers or crew about compensation but such talks should be forthcoming if the Hail Mary pass to salvage the show does not work." There is also the issue of Barr and her Twitter account. She's already attacked co-stars Michael Fishman and Gilbert. If Roseanne carries on without Barr, says Andreeva, her "shadow will be looming large in the background."
- ABC/Disney could be on the hook for "tens of millions of dollars" since Roseanne stars should get their full Season 2 paycheck -- but it's unclear if the writers will be paid
- Roseanne writer Bruce Rasmussen says "it was just brutal" being connected with the show: "It was hard for us once we started airing and we started to see some of the stuff that came out. It was just brutal: ‘How dare they give her a show? How dare they write for her?’ It was a certain amount of pressure. You’re the No. 1 show, and people are coming after you on the web and you’re getting attacked by 50 percent of the press.”
- A writer's assistant says Roseanne Barr was unlike her Twitter persona in the writers' room: pleasant and considerate
- Why Roseanne without Roseanne Barr won't work: "There’s a reason why the Roseanne reboot was so popular, for better or worse: Roseanne Barr," says Joel Keller. "Her unique stamp on her original show built up millions of fans over the nine years it was on the air the first time around, and the 25 years it was on in syndication." Plus, he adds, "without Barr, they’d likely see The Connor Family as just a bunch of 'snowflakes' complaining about not having healthcare. Given Roseanne‘s ratings decline from its premiere as the show went on, losing almost half of the premiere’s audience, ABC likely would have seen a further decline as people checked out the re-reboot and decided to switch to something else."
- Tom Arnold says Roseanne Barr "wanted" the cancelation to happen: "If it hadn’t happened yesterday, this season would have been so awful for everyone every day because she would have felt like she was (being) taken advantage (of), just like when I left the show."
- Jimmy Kimmel was criticized for defending Roseanne on Twitter: "What @TheRealRoseanne said is indefensible, but angrily attacking a woman who is obviously not well does no good for anyone," he tweeted. "Please take a breath and remember that mental health issues are real. The Roseanne I know could probably use some compassion and help right now."
- Why Sara Gilbert and Emma Kenney were "delusional," displaying "phony smarm," with their response to Roseanne's tweets
- Lecy Goranson tweets she's "devastated" by cancelation, "but more devastating are the effects of hate speech and racism on individuals and society"
- Former Trump campaign aide wants to hire Roseanne Barr for his new online streaming platform
- A TV critic regrets not taking Roseanne Barr's past tweets seriously enough in her positive reviews of the Roseanne revival
- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says "The Bad-Taste Joke defense just doesn’t work in this case": "You can’t have read a book or newspaper, watched a movie or a television show, or just lived in America for the past 200 years without knowing that any reference to an African-American and an ape is textbook racism. Also, her odd, inaccurate and deliberately inflammatory reference to the Muslim Brotherhood to her average Twitter follower will seem like a slam to all Muslims."
- TV Guide magazine's 1989 cover featuring Roseanne Barr and Bill Cosby goes viral
Posted Thursday 5/17/18 at 10:42PM EDT
Bravo's Southern Charm and Vanderpump Rules are the anti-romance reality shows, says Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
The NBA legend/pop-culture columnist/Dancing with the Stars competitor explains: "While The Bachelor franchise peddles rose-colored romantic fantasies of happily ever after, Bravo’s Vanderpump Rules and Southern Charm deliver the down-and-dirty daily lives of the messy quest for love, lust and shabby fame; in other words: what really happens in millennial relationships after the meet-cute fades. What they reveal about their attitudes about romantic relationships may be the most honest, heartfelt and horrifying of any of the reality shows."
Posted Thursday 4/26/18 at 5:09PM EDT
Mirai Nagasu: Tonya Harding had no idea who I was
“Clearly she didn’t watch the Olympics,” Nagasu joked of her fellow former Winter Olympics figure skater and Dancing with the Stars: Athletes competitor. She added with a smile: "She didn’t know who I was. But I know who she is.” ALSO: How seven-foot-two Kareem Abdul-Jabbar plans to handle his height difference with his Dancing partner.
Posted Monday 4/09/18 at 11:33PM EDT
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Bill Cosby was a huge influence on me, but "I can no longer watch I Spy without anger, guilt and shame"
The NBA Hall of Famer was 18 in 1965 when Cosby became an important role model simply by being a black person with a starring role on network TV. Cosby later became a friend and mentor. Yet, in the wake of the many sexual misconduct allegations against Cosby, Abdul-Jabbar says Cosby's work has been exiled to "a cultural Phantom Zone where we are in the process of sentencing the artworks of offenders deemed unworthy." He adds: "I can no longer watch I Spy without anger, guilt and shame. There are other shows, movies, books, artworks, comedians and musicians I can no longer enjoy. In addition to the horrendous devastation to the individual women, we as a culture are severely damaged, afraid to embrace any art or artist lest they eventually be tainted by bad behavior. We are all trapped in this necessary but exhausting j'accuse cycle of condemnation and punishment, denouncing and renouncing."
Posted Tuesday 4/03/18 at 1:44PM EDT
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar calls Roseanne "TV's Most Anti-Trump Show"
"Don't be fooled," says the NBA legend, who's now a pop-culture critic. He says Roseanne's "uncompromising criticism of Trump is easy to miss," but make no mistake Roseanne Conner is a lot like Archie Bunker -- you are not supposed to take her character seriously. Abdul-Jabbar adds: "While Will & Grace, another revival successfully reinvented for current political times, openly pontificates its anti-Trump bias, Roseanne is more subversive in its presentation of class struggles, health care, gender identity, and other issues that reflect the failures of the Trump administration. And it does so with searing wit, satirical commentary, and profound insight. Beyond the politics, it’s just very, very funny in a way that never panders, and touching in a way that is never schmaltzy. Roseanne joins The Good Place, Black-ish, and Will & Grace as one of the best sitcoms on network television."
Posted Tuesday 3/13/18 at 10:17PM EDT
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: The Bachelor's unedited breakup "crossed a line that shredded the fantasy we were all willing to agree to"
The NBA legend and pop-culture critic says of Arie Luyendyk Jr.'s uneidted, split-screen Bachelor breakup with Becca K.: "This may not be sexual harassment, but it definitely appears to be emotional harassment encouraged by the producers. Go means, Go! Worse was Chris Harrison’s campaign of damage control as the host tried to justify the show’s bad behavior. He didn’t seem to understand that what they did crossed a line that shredded the fantasy we were all willing to agree to — against our rational thinking — that the show’s ultimate goal was to give love a chance. But those scenes, and Chris Harrison’s unbridled glee in declaring this was 'reality television history,' revealed a malevolence and disregard that shocked and embarrassed us. Instead of being on a romantic journey together, we had tossed one of our own into the gladiatorial arena to be devoured for our amusement. But we were not amused."
Posted Monday 1/22/18 at 1:40PM EST
This Bachelor season seems like a “serious misstep” in the #MeToo era, says Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
The NBA Hall of Famer and Hollywood Reporter pop-culture columnist writes that Arie Luyendyk Jr., with his “vapid, out-of-date masculinity,” is a disappointing follow-up to Rachel Lindsay — and even Nick Viall. “Yes, it’s a game show more than a reality show. Dozens of women compete for the attention of one man, which is to real romance what being trapped in a crowded elevator for two days using an empty Starbucks cup as the only toilet is to an elegant cocktail party,” writes Abdul-Jabbar. “It’s crock-pot romance, with the women constantly stewing on high heat. That’s what makes it so addictively entertaining. However, with today’s heightened awareness through the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements, the entertainment media has a clear responsibility not to perpetuate stereotypes or behavior that negatively influences how we see people and therefore how we treat them. The higher the ratings, the greater the responsibility.” ALSO: SNL had the perfect Bachelor parody.
Posted Thursday 12/21/17 at 2:06PM EST
Ozark and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel are Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s top two new TV shows of 2017
Godless, Mindhunter, Sneaky Pete, Legion and Big Little Lies also made the Top 10 list from the NBA Hall of famer-turned-pop culture columnist.