Sara GilbertLatest News and Opinion
Posted Tuesday 5/15/18 at 10:53PM EDT
ABC upfronts cemented that Roseanne Barr is the face of ABC -- "an imperfect face"
Roseanne Barr was lavished with praise at Tuesday's upfronts. The Roseanne revival, ABC executives said, is the network's first No. 1 show in the key 18-49 demo in 24 years. Yet the upfronts showed that Barr is an "imperfect face" for the network, says Daniel Holloway. He notes that minutes after Barr took the stage, ABC sister network Freeform showed a sizzle reel containing Parkland high school documentary footage of shooting survivor David Hogg, whom Barr once accused of giving the Nazi salute. "With numbers rare to broadcast, ABC can’t be expected to not make Roseanne its hood ornament," says Holloway. "But the content surrounding Roseanne at the upfront laid bare what an odd fit the show is for that role. ABC spent years overtly linking its brand to inclusion with shows like Modern Family, Black-ish, Speechless, Fresh Off the Boat, and How to Get Away With Murder. Roseanne over-indexes in Midwestern states where Donald Trump performed well in 2017 and broadcast TV has struggled to connect with mass audiences. The schedule ABC touted at upfronts was short on similarly designed programs. The only new series it appears to have positioned to play well with Roseanne is Nathan Fillion cop drama The Rookie."
- Darlene’s fate in the Roseanne revival is so tragic, especially for a character once seen as a ray of hope
- ABC says one in ten Americans watched the Roseanne revival premiere
- Roseanne succeeds because it's not overtly political -- it engages people based on who they are, not how they vote
- John Goodman will be the voice of ABC News' new "Straightforward" campaign
Posted Tuesday 4/17/18 at 7:01PM EDT
Sara Gilbert had a Roseanne backup plan in case Johnny Galecki couldn't return for the revival
Gilbert says she actually doesn't mind that Galecki has been mostly unavailable to work on the Roseanne revival due to his Big Bang Theory commitment. "I think if Johnny didn’t have an empire to run, he would’ve certainly been in more episodes," she tells TV Line, on the occasion of Galecki's return tonight. "But I still like the idea of an inconsistent parent. It’s such a great area to explore, regardless of his availability." Still, if Galecki wasn't available at all, Gilbert said she had a backup plan. "The backup plan was going to be (Darlene) dealing with the heartbreak of him being an absent father," she says. "Darlene would have plans for him to show up, he would say he was going to show up, and then he wouldn’t show up. I was still going to deal with the relationship, but it would not have been the same without him." ALSO: Gilbert texted Galecki to get his advice on naming their TV son, which became a tribute to Glenn Quinn.
Posted Thursday 4/12/18 at 6:48PM EDT
Sara Gilbert praises Roseanne daughter Emma Kenney for seeking treatment for her "battles"
The 18-year-old Kenney had stated she was "running with a really fast crowd” and “doing things I should not be doing because it was illegal.” On The Talk, Gilbert praised Kenney, saying "it takes a lot of courage to — we have a lot of demons — it takes a lot of courage to face them, particularly at 18. I envy you. If I could go back to being 18 to start doing things to better myself at the pace you’re doing, I would be at a better person today."
Posted Monday 4/02/18 at 9:51AM EDT
Sara Gilbert: Trump's name is never mentioned on Roseanne -- Roseanne Conner is the only Conner who supports him
"The Conners aren't Trump supporters," Gilbert said on Watch What Happens Live. "Roseanne's character is a Trump supporter — she's the only one — and we never say his name, actually, in the show." The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that President Trump's name never is mentioned in the first season.
Posted Thursday 3/29/18 at 8:36PM EDT
President Trump touts Roseanne's big ratings, which he learned about from Mark Burnett
“I got a call from Mark Burnett, he did The Apprentice, he’s a great guy," Trump said in a speech in Ohio. "He said, ‘Donald, I called just to say hello, and to tell you: did you see Roseanne’s ratings?’ I said, ‘Mark, how big were they?’ They were unbelievable! Over 18 million people! And it was about us! They haven’t figured it out! The fake news hasn’t quite figured it out yet…But they will, and when they do, they’ll become much less fake.”
Posted Wednesday 3/28/18 at 9:54PM EDT
Why it's wrong to attribute Roseanne's big ratings to politics
"As a TV show, Roseanne hasn't suddenly become a mouthpiece for the alt right and any interpretation of the premiere that pretends it's a validation of a need for conservative TV is absurd," says Daniel Fienberg, adding: "Or, put a different way, Roseanne, a show that was once of its moment, came back as a show of a new moment and just as there was an audience for the show when it was at its peak, there was clearly an audience waiting for the show now." Fienberg expects that the big takeaway from the Roseanne revival will be to create shows about Trump supporters, or shows "about bridging gaps between Trump supporters and their estranged Trump-hating families (or Hillary supporters and their Trump-loving families). You can already bet that somebody in ABC's halls of power is wishing they had a new season of Last Man Standing ready to premiere after Roseanne next week or, failing that, hoping that they might convince Jonathan Taylor Thomas that America is ready for more Home Improvement. But Roseanne is not a conservative show."
- Roseanne's huge ratings prompts "soul-searching" from TV insiders who think it "revealed the untapped potential of comedies that provide realistic portrayal of blue-collar America"
- Sara Gilbert was "in shock" by the ratings: "There are no words because the words all sound cliche"
- Roseanne's progressivism and Roseanne Barr's personal beliefs might've created passionate interest on both sides
- ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey attributes the big ratings to a combination of nostalgia and politics
- Dungey says she was taken aback, but “I’m not quite ready to pull that trigger at this moment" on a Season 2 renewal
- Fox News stars celebrate Roseanne's ratings: "The 'Proud Deplorable' SMASHES expectations," tweeted Sean Hannity
- Rush Limbaugh wonders if pro-Trump shows will become a network trend
- A market-by-market comparison reveals Roseanne beat Will & Grace even in big cities like New York and L.A.
- Roseanne revival was good, but not because of Roseanne Barr
- John Goodman wasn't expecting massive viewership
- Becky's surrogacy storyline is problematic
- A warning: Reboots tend to fade after nostalgia factor wears off -- Will & Grace's demo audience has dropped substantially
Posted Tuesday 3/27/18 at 7:23PM EDT
Roseanne is the rare revival that works because it embraces how much has changed
The Roseanne revival is unlike the first season of The X-Files revival, which came back as if nothing had changed and as if its characters hadn't aged. As Alan Sepinwall notes, "great TV shows tend to be the product of a specific time in the lives of three groups: the characters on the show, the people making it, and the people watching it. When shows get brought back from the dead years later, one or more of those groups is different, yet too many shows in the recent flood of revivals try to go about business as usual, assuming the old material will work no matter the context, when instead the new episodes at best come across as pale imitations of what these shows used to be. The handful of revivals that have creatively justified their existence have tended to be the ones that acknowledge those changes." A Roseanne revival looked the most likely to be out of step because so much has changed in 21 years. "Wonderful as so much of ’80s and ’90s Roseanne was, few revivals have had higher potential for feeling wildly out of step in the current environment," says Sepinwall. "Instead, the three episodes ABC gave to critics ... smartly lean into everything that’s different from when we last left the Conners, much less from when we first met them. It’s the rare revival that not only justifies its existence, but draws most of its strength from how much time has passed and what’s happened in the interim."
- A Trump-supporting Roseanne allows the show to blissfully wander into one of "2018 pop culture’s demilitarized zones"
- Roseanne Barr's name is in the title, but she has stepped back and is no longer the driving force
- The sitcom voice is intact, but the zinger-based dialogue and rhythms can feel dated
- Roseanne is rough around the edges: The timing is a little off, the punchlines don't land
- Roseanne Barr is missing her character's famous charisma -- she is early on her reactions and slow with her delivery
- The jokes are dry and scrape the surface of meanness, while never lacking warmth
- Roseanne provides the catharsis needed in our toxic climate
- The reboot unfortunately simplifies politics into easy partisanship
- The writing lets the Conners be "woke" without proclaiming itself as such
- Season 9 of Roseanne was a mess: Can the reboot ignore it?
- It makes sense that Roseanne Conner would pick Trump over Hillary Clinton
- It doesn't ring true that Roseanne Conner would be a Trump voter
- Showrunner Bruce Helford: Why I returned 25 years after I was fired
- Darlene Conner was always Roseanne's secret ingredient and best hope
- Newcomer Emma Kenney says politics were taboo on set
- From Leonardo DiCaprio to Ellen DeGeneres: Here are Roseanne celebrity guest cameos
Posted Friday 3/23/18 at 9:54PM EDT
On the Roseanne reboot, it is Darlene who is the "emotional heart" of the story
Media attention on the Roseanne reboot has focused on Roseanne Conner being a Trump voter. But the new Roseanne isn't a forum for Roseanne Barr's ideologies because the three episodes sent to critics "decenter Roseanne in a slight but remarkable way, ceding the emotional heart of the story to Darlene: unemployed, single-parenting two kids, and trying to figure out how best to raise them in her parents’ house," says Anne Helen Peterson. That the focus would be on Darlene makes sense since it was Sara Gilbert who orchestrated the revival. "The camera still starts and stops on Roseanne in the iconic opening credit sequence, but she has effectively ceded the moral center of the show," says Peterson. "Darlene was always the most independent of the Conner children. But she was also the most like Roseanne: irreverent, acerbic, thrilled by her capacity to undercut others’ expectations of her, yet blessed with a seemingly innate ethical clarity. She wasn’t scared to wound others, and yet, like her mother, she was secretly sensitive. Roseanne used those qualities to school her children and prepare them to be better people in the world. And what makes the new Roseanne work — despite its star, and what’s become of her — is the show’s willingness to let Darlene use the same strategies on her own parents. Roseanne remains committed to a certain sort of realism. But this time, part of that realist project is allowing a feminist daughter to reject the cynicism of her mother and forge her own path forward."
Posted Thursday 12/21/17 at 2:06PM EST
Here’s the first look at Darlene and David’s kids from the Roseanne revival
Shameless’ Emma Kenney will play their 14-year-old daughter, while newcomer Ames McNamara will play “gender-fluid” son Mark. ALSO: How Becky No. 2 Sarah Chalke will be incorporated into the revival.
Posted Wednesday 12/13/17 at 2:42AM EST
Check out the first image from ABC’s Roseanne reboot
Not much seems to have changed in a photo EW shared of Roseanne Barr, John Goodman and Sara Gilbert reprising their famous roles.
Posted Wednesday 9/06/17 at 11:14PM EDT
Sara Gilbert: It was John Goodman’s appearance on The Talk that led to Roseanne reboot
I had been talking personally in my own life about, Is it possible? Oh, maybe it would just have to be a spin-off, probably everybody wouldn’t do it,” Gilbert tells EW. “Then John came on and said, ‘Hell yeah,’ or whatever he said, and then I had a moment where I thought, Oh wow, maybe everybody will do this.”