‘Roseanne’ Is Returning to Television — Without Its Star

'The Conners' will bring back the main cast, except for the show's lead — will fans tune in to this continuation?

ABC is apparently too good to work with Roseanne Barr these days, but the network is not too good to profit from the comedian’s ideas.

After her top-rated show was canceled by the network following a controversial tweet, ABC got to work on figuring out ways to continue the franchise without the baggage of Barr. It’s now announced that a spinoff is indeed on the way, and it will not involve Barr, who was the show’s original creator.

Cast members John Goodman, Laurie Metcalf, Sara Gilbert, Lecy Goranson and Michael Fishman are all set to reprise their roles on “The Conners,” a continuation of the series that will air this fall on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST. Barr will reportedly have no creative or financial involvement in the new series.

“We have received a tremendous amount of support from fans of our show, and it’s clear that these characters not only have a place in our hearts, but in the hearts and homes of our audience,” a public statement from the cast read. “We all came back last season because we wanted to tell stories about the challenges facing a working-class family today. We are so happy to have the opportunity to return with the cast and crew to continue to share those stories through love and laughter.”

Bringing “Roseanne” back without Roseanne Barr is a little like continuing the “Rocky” franchise without Sylvester Stallone or making a “Dirty Harry” sequel without Clint Eastwood.

Barr was not only the star of the program but was also the heart of the show, as she produced and wrote the series.

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One of the delights of the reboot was its even-handed nature in tackling political issues, and that was in large part due to Barr and her own unique politics. It’s doubtful this new iteration will have the same spark without Barr.

PopZette editor Zachary Leeman can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter.

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