You know the saying, “This is why we can’t have nice things?” That must be what the cast of ABC’s revived Roseanne are thinking of right now.
ABC has, in a swift act, cancelled the revived Roseanne!
The move by the network is the result of a rapidly escalating situation caused by a racist twitter rant by star Roseanne Barr (which we will not embed here), directed toward a former advisor to President Barack Obama, Valerie Jarrett, that evoked references to Planet of the Apes and the Muslim Brotherhood (that’s as far as we’ll go in the description). As ABC explains of the cancellation in a statement:
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show.”
While Barr issued an apology about five minutes after the monumentally distasteful message, the damage had been done. The collapse began when comedian Wanda Sykes, who had been working as a consulting producer on the rebooted sitcom, immediately resigned from the show. At that point, ABC made the quick decision to cancel the show, despite its impressive ratings.
ABC’s revived Roseanne (technically Season 10 of the series,) ran a 9-episode season from March 27 to May 22.
Even as the shine wore off and the ratings slowly declined, Roseanne was the most successful season of a revival show of this most recent wave. That ratings boon made it all the more likely that Roseanne season 2 (really it would be season 11) would happen. ABC confirmed a second revival season, with potentially a larger episode order.
There is some precedent here in recent years. Fox revived The X-Files to strong ratings in 2016, leading to a renewal and larger episode order. NBC was so confident in Will & Grace that the network renewed it for a second revival season before it premiered in the fall, also to fairly impressive ratings.
In the revival, the blue-collar Roseanne (Barr) was to return as a Trump-supporting grandma. Trump, whose platform revolved around good ratings, called to congratulate Barr on the show’s success. Well, even the best-laid plans can collapse with an ill-conceived social media post. Welcome to 2018!