Celebrity Then And Now
Posted by Ryan Neal
Celebrity Then And Now
Publication: RidiculouslyExtraordinary. Posted by Ryan Neal
Roseanne, Stand-Up Comedy Career
Currently Known For:
Recent Cancellation of Roseanne Reboot
November 3, 1952
Roseanne, Stand-Up Comedy Career
She was part of one of the most successful sitcoms in history, then seemingly disappeared for a while, then came back with a vengeance only to have the spotlight removed once again. Roseanne Barr has always been a fascinating figure in the entertainment world, due to her outspoken views on a wide range of topics that also include politics. This has gotten her in trouble recently, and her big comeback was put to a halt before it could really get going. Then again, you wouldn’t expect much else from the polarizing comedienne.
Barr was born in Salt Lake City, Utah on November 3, 1952, and didn’t have the easiest upbringing. Health problems would set Barr back, and a car accident had caused a brain injury that landed her in a hospital for several months while she was pregnant as a teenager. Wanting a change of scenery from Utah, Barr moved to Colorado after turning 18 years old when she decided to dabble in the world of stand-up comedy.
After spending years on the local circuit as a stand-up comic, Barr finally started to get some widespread recognition during the mid 1980s. The big moment for Barr came when she was featured on “The Tonight Show” when Johnny Carson was the host, and it led to her making several late night appearances. Like many stand-up comics, acting was the natural next step, and she was offered the role of Peg on “Married...with Children”. Barr ultimately ended up turning down the role that would go to Katey Sagal, so that she could focus on her own show.
For this series, Barr teamed up with several producers and writers that had worked on The Cosby Show”, and Barr would become the title character in what would be called “Roseanne”, featuring the likes of John Goodman and future stars such as Sarah Chalke and Johnny Galecki. The show would prove to be an instant success, and was on the air for a decade, with nine seasons.
While “Roseanne” was dominating the ratings on TV, Barr also took to the big screen for a handful of roles. This included starring roles in “She-Devil” and “Look Who’s Talking Too”, with supporting roles in “Meet Wally Sparks” and “Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare”. Barr would also make plenty of guest appearances on other television shows that she was in competition with, such as “The Larry Sanders Show” and “3rd Rock from the Sun”. Needless to say, the 1990s were a very good time for Barr, though her show had to come to an end at some point, with more than 16 million viewers watching the season nine (and then series) finale on May 20, 1997.
Many were excited when it was learned in May 2017 that ABC had given the go-ahead for “Roseanne” to come back to the air, just a few days short of the 20th anniversary of the original series finale. The entire original cast was set to return for the reboot that would debut in March 2018, drawing in more than 18 million viewers for the series premiere. When those that watched the premiere on services such as Hulu in the subsequent days were added, it was more than 27 million that tuned in.
Things were going great in terms of ratings, and it looked like the new incantation of “Roseanne” was here to stay. Unfortunately, it wouldn’t last for long as even though the series had quickly been renewed for another season, it was put to an end. That’s because Barr took to Twitter, and made racially insensitive remarks that were directed at Valerie Jarrett, who worked for former President Barack Obama.
Because of her rant on social media, ABC cancelled “Roseanne” and left the rest of the cast in limbo, who had been signed on for another season. Wanting to give the cast a chance to continue their success, a new show was created that featured Barr’s fictional family, just without her being a part of it. The show was renamed “The Conners”, and debuted on October 16, 2018 with Barr’s character being killed off via an opioid overdose. Of course, this didn’t sit well with Barr herself.
During the show, Barr once again took to Twitter to tell fans “I ain’t dead b**ches!” while also releasing an official statement on the show moving on without her. “While we wish the very best for the cast and production crew of ‘The Conners’, all of whom are deeply dedicated to their craft and were Roseanne’s cherished colleagues, we regret that ABC chose to cancel ‘Roseanne’ by killing off the Roseanne Conner character,” the statement said. “That it was done through an opioid overdose lent an unnecessary grim and morbid dimension to an otherwise happy family show. This was a choice the network did not have to make.”
With the door closed on her return to ABC, it might seem like Barr’s career is over, especially with many not being too fond of her personal views. According to Barr herself, though, there are plenty of projects that are still available. “Inside every bad thing is a good thing waiting to happen and I feel very excited because I’ve already been offered so many things,” Barr said. “I’ve almost accepted one really good offer to go back on TV and I might do it.”
It’s not clear what Barr intends to do with the new offers, but there are many that are going to be watching with great interest. That includes both her fans and her critics, and there are plenty on both sides of that aisle.