If we are entering a new Golden Age of television, it is for the most part passing the legacy TV networks by.
So, Roseanne Barr to the rescue!
The reboot of ABC’s Roseanne — a hit situation comedy of the late 1980s and much of the 1990s — should put the network and the art form back in the spotlight.
But though it is very popular, the show is not without . . . its political controversy. You see, funny-woman Roseanne plays Roseanne Conner, and she . . . (drum roll) . . . voted for Trump.*
Predictably, our modal mainstream media cultural mavens are not on board. Roxanne Gay, in the New York Times, complains that Roseanne’s views are “muddled and incoherent.”
Roseanne to Roxanne, hello-o-o: the character is fictional. Who said characters in a comedy should have coherent views? One would think the point of comedy would require the opposite.
Jezebel provides another fine example of this. In “What’s Up, Deplorable; Roseanne Is Back,” Rich Juzwiak opines that “[n]ever discussed was the laundry list of hateful, stupid, and wrong things Trump said, nor their even more nefarious implications.” On Twitter, Professor Jared Yates Sexton calls the character’s perspective “a cleaned-up lie,” and amounts to a turning a “blind eye to Trump’s many, many bigoted statements.”
Neither Juzwiak nor Sexton mentions any problem with the main alternative to the president in the last election — something Roseanne does in the show itself.
It’s almost as if what these (and many similar) critics want is a tidy propaganda piece for their opinions; it’s almost as if their objection is to the show’s realism.
Now that’s comedy.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.
* In the season opener, Roseanne defends the president from her dippy Democrat sister, whom she had not been speaking with since the election. Her sister, Jackie (played hilariously by Laurie Metcalf), enters the tenth season wearing a red pro-Hillary t-shirt and one of those grab-em-by-the-x pink hats. Their reconciliation is a hoot.