“Roseanne” Does Huge Numbers.

Robert Massimi.

It is no secret even though Hollywood doesn’t  get it. “Roseanne” opened up with very strong numbers bringing in strong results from blue collar workers, the Midwest, young and old.  There numbers were stronger even when the show was a huge hit back in the 90’s. The reason?  Protagonist Roseanne is a Trump supporter and during the first episode makes the case why she supports him. It’s the economy stupid. With the new creation of jobs, most blue collar people can identify with this show and the struggles that come with closing factories.

What Hollywood has not realized yet is 50% of the country is Republican, so why not more shows like this? It appeals to the masses more then the liberal shows as the ratings indicate. With more Christian movies coming out and they indicate early success, why not more conservative T.V.? If it appeals to the masses would that not be smart? Most American people are sick of the Trump bashing, it has been a big flop on Broadway and off, so why not give the viewers both sides with good debate?

It appears that Hollywood right now has not saw the light yet and will continue down it’s same road. The left only wants you to see there side regardless  of what the viewers want. It would be smart, however, to include everyone in sitcoms as it gives something for everyone.

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‘Roseanne’ Revival’s Huge Debut Stuns Hollywood, Prompts Soul-Searching

Roseanne made a triumphant return Tuesday night, blowing past projections with a 5.2 adults 18-49 rating and 18.2 million total viewers for the debut of its revival, which drew 10% more viewers than the original series finale 21 years ago.

While nostalgia was expected to bring in eyeballs, no one predicted such a huge turnout on premiere night for the blue-collar family sitcom with a Donald Trump-supporting protagonist, especially among the younger demographic. But then, few predicted that Trump would become the Republican nominee and would win the presidential election when he first announced his candidacy.


Both Trump and Roseanne were able to tap into the often overlooked and underserved working-class audience. Not surprisingly, the top TV markets where Roseanne delivered its highest ratings were in states handily carried by Trump in the election. No. 1 was Tulsa in Oklahoma, which Trump won with 65.3% of the vote. It was followed by Cincinnati, Ohio and Kansas City, Missouri. The only marquee city from a blue state in the Top 10 was Chicago at No. 5 — the area where the series is set. ABC focused some of its marketing efforts in the region with a preview of the revival at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival.

The top market of the country, New York, was not in the Top 20; No.2 Los Angeles was not in the Top 30. And yet, Roseanne delivered the highest demo rating for any comedy telecast in 3 1/2 years, since the fall 2014 season premiere of TV’s biggest comedy series of the past five years, The Big Bang Theory.

There no doubt was an element of nostalgia and curiosity about how the characters from the original series have changed and about the new generation of the Conners. But Roseanne went beyond that. Its youngest 18-49 viewers when the series originally aired on ABC from 1988-97 are now at the very top or outside of that ad-friendly demographic range, in which last night’s premiere posted a staggering 5.2 Live+same day rating with no lead-in. It came largely from new viewers who were children or not even born during Roseanne‘s initial run.

Somehow Roseanne transcended age, recruiting droves of young viewers for a show whose two leads, Roseanne Barr and John Goodman, are both 65, well outside of the 18-49 demo. It tapped into the zeitgeist of Middle America, tackling its economic problems — and political leanings — head-on. There was curiosity how Roseanne would address Trump, which the show did in the first episode. In an encouraging sign, the novelty did not wear off, with the second episode rating even higher than the opener.

ABC did a major marketing campaign for Roseanne, including a three-day stunt during SXSW in Austin that drew huge crowds, and a tie-in with NASCAR, which is hugely popular in the flyover states.


And then there was Barr. Always a firebrand, she did not shy away from controversy, flipping off Jimmy Kimmel and talking candidly about her political views while promoting the show, generating a slew of provocative headlines in the process.

That could’ve gone either way, possibly alienating viewers. But it worked, leaving many TV insiders shellshocked today by the magnitude of the revival’s ratings success that revealed the untapped potential of comedies that provide realistic portrayal of blue-collar America. What’s more, Roseanne did that while also making a social commentary, something rarely seen since All in the Family, Norman Lear’s 1970s classic that has long been rumored to get a reboot.

The TV business always has been reactionary, so when something works, others immediately look for ways to replicate it. ABC, NBC and CBS all have classic sitcom revivals featuring the original casts on deck with Roseanne, Will & Grace and CBS’ upcoming Murphy Brown.

Fox, which was on the revival forefront with dramas 24: Live Another Day, Prison Break and The X-Files, is the only major network without a sitcom re-do, so its executives likely will take a look at the library. Like Roseanne, Fox has a popular blue-collar sitcom in Married… with Children, but its two stars, Ed O’Neill and Katey Sagal, are on other comedy series, ABC’s Modern Family and CBS’ Superior Donuts, respectively. Also hard to pull off would be That ’70s Show or Malcolm in the Middle revivals with the original stars.

CBS also has a classic, hugely popular blue-collar family comedy in its library, Everybody Loves Raymond, though several of the Emmy-winning series’ celebrated cast members are no longer alive.


Meanwhile, if Roseanne continues to be a ratings juggernaut, ABC, which is close to renewing the revival for a second season, should look into bringing back its other big blue-collar sitcom hit of the 1990s, Home Improvement, which starred another open Trump sympathizer, Tim Allen.

ABC was strongly criticized by the right in May when it canceled Allen’s long-running sitcom Last Man Standing despite its strong viewership. It was a rare broadcast comedy with a central character who is a political conservative and devout Christian adhering to traditional American values that appeals to viewers in the Heartland.

With The Middle going away, there is a vacuum in representing middle-class families on broadcast TV, and the success of Roseanne no doubt will help get more blue-color sitcoms on the air. We might see that happening as soon as next month when the broadcast networks pick their new series for next season out of the dozens of pilots currently in production.

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  1. 1111on Mar 28, 2018 6:24 pm

    Fox News has been pissing its pants like an excited dog over this, even though it’s not “pro-Trump” as much as it is tackling political divisions between family members in a satirical way. But of course, Fox Noise won’t ever pass up the opportunity to beat the drums and declare flyover-state conservatives the only “real” Americans.

    • Maximuson Mar 28, 2018 6:59 pm

      we need special prosecutors on all 100 Senators

      SUSPEND CALIFORNIA’S 55 ELECTORAL VOTES until they Cease being a Sanctuay for illegal aliens and agree to cooperate with ICE to remove All Illegal Aliens on Welfare … Also Any congressional district in California not free from Sanctuary to Illegal Aliens loses it’s house seat

    • Mikeon Mar 28, 2018 7:03 pm

      Sour grapes the Adam??

    • Bruce Johnsonon Mar 28, 2018 7:05 pm

      you are funny, must be a Harvard man to juxtapose noise over news, goddamn that’s clever, you wordslinger you. I gotta say I though nobody would top Faux News, but here I am, today, in the presence of brilliance with the intensity of a 100 million white hot suns.

    • Mikeon Mar 28, 2018 7:12 pm

      It’s not about the show being pro or anti-Trump, rather it shows that Trump supporters exist when the media and left-wingers keep saying any support for Trump must be phony or a Russian bot.

    • Markon Mar 28, 2018 7:30 pm

      So…you hate…real news right?

  2. Adam Lazaruson Mar 28, 2018 6:25 pm

    You are misinterpreting the message of ROSEANNE’s strong ratings last night. Yes, Roseanne is a trump supporter, but all the other characters are not… and the message of the second episode, about Darlene’s son, is a progressive one of tolerance and acceptance.

    • Adam Lazynesson Mar 28, 2018 7:00 pm

      The message of the second episode, about Darlene’s son, is totally liberal sick…

    • on Mar 28, 2018 7:47 pm

      Thank you… That’s exactly right. Roseanne’s ex-husband, who’s name escapes me at the moment, with whom she had a very hostile relationship, just gave a very good review of the show. Much of what he said he enjoyed was the “Jackie” character, played by Laurie Metcalf, who’s name I do remember, and who’s political position on the show is polar opposite to that of Roseanne’s.

      So, there’s a little something for everyone.

    • on Mar 28, 2018 8:39 pm

      Tolerance and acceptance means to tolerate and accept those who you disagree with in some way. Does the non stop bashing and mudslinging from the left seem in the slightest bit a example of ‘tolerance and acceptance’?!

  3. William Thomasonon Mar 28, 2018 6:25 pm

    Hollywood has no soul!

    • on Mar 28, 2018 7:46 pm


  4. James Robinsonon Mar 28, 2018 6:44 pm

    The reality that most of America despises the radical left and their incessant bullying through various media formats is now starting to sink in for the Hollywood elite.

    • Johnon Mar 28, 2018 7:07 pm

      “The reality that most of America despises the radical left and their incessant bullying”

      Otherwise known as a ‘truism’, and quite well said sir.

    • Manageron Mar 28, 2018 7:13 pm

      It’s the other way around you mean. We are tired of the networks pandering to middle America, when the majority of Americans don’t live there.

      • 2manyconcussionson Mar 28, 2018 7:30 pm

        All those programs about families that go to church on Sundays and focus on their faith and community must really be getting annoying. Oh that right, there aren’t any.

  5. on Mar 28, 2018 6:45 pm

    Wish I could have watched it!!!

    • wtdpon Mar 28, 2018 7:03 pm

      I believe it’s being replayed on Sunday.

  6. Holmes@mac.comon Mar 28, 2018 6:47 pm

    America is over forced Hollywood crap.

    • Linkon Mar 28, 2018 7:05 pm

      (But this is still more forced Hollywood crap.)

  7. John Phillipson Mar 28, 2018 6:48 pm

    Maybe bring back Tim Allen?

    • on Mar 28, 2018 8:20 pm

      Maybe read the article, genius.

  8. tommyzaxon Mar 28, 2018 6:49 pm

    This review was terrible. It makes excuses for leftist failures while explaining away conservative viewership. What a load. The show itself was just fair, probably because just warming up.

    • Patrick Juveton Mar 28, 2018 6:54 pm

      This was not a review. It was a news story on the ratings results.

  9. on Mar 28, 2018 6:50 pm

    Shows that portray people’s real lives and are funny seem to get better ratings. Hopefully more shows will leave the politically correct left and just try to entertain us again.

  10. R Danielson Mar 28, 2018 6:50 pm

    I watched! And I haven’t watched a sitcom in 10 years!

    • Iben_Haddon Mar 28, 2018 7:13 pm

      Funny, I now watch Seinfeld, new to me, non-offensive.

  11. Christine Bazalaon Mar 28, 2018 6:51 pm

    Families can’t watch network tv anymore because of the commercials. Young kids in the room with scary movie ads and scary murder show ads just don’t mix. We tried to watch supergirl and that’s the last attempt we made. Good show. Streaming with no ads!

  12. Newshound24on Mar 28, 2018 6:52 pm

    “Liberals always claim they want to hear everyone’s point of view. And then are offended to learn there actually ARE other points of view.” – W.F. Buckley

  13. Lionel Mandrakeon Mar 28, 2018 7:02 pm

    Hope Hoolywood has a good set of glasses to find its soul.

  14. Shannonon Mar 28, 2018 7:05 pm

    Roseanne is the modern family that was and will continue to be. There’s no stopping what most of the American people have been living and heading toward for years…an open dialogue on different political views and ways of life is what makes America great, again.

  15. Whatsyourvictimstatuson Mar 28, 2018 7:07 pm

    This is a sitcom about a blue collar family…if the kids were bad they got punished..if money was tight they did without…they aren’t college educated.. but they are smart enough to know when a politician or a union is not really on there side…they understand that if they get a combined tax cut of $25 a week …someone else may call it crumbs…they call it $100 a month…it helps pay a bill they used to struggle to pay…to them MAGA is not just a slogan… it’s the answer to a prayer… ..Someting the East and West Coast elite could never understand as they buy their $750,000 starter homes.

  16. Iben_Haddon Mar 28, 2018 7:07 pm

    HWood does soul search.
    While they are out there maybe they can keep an eye out for Judge Crater and Emelia Earhart. The should be easier to find.

  17. Falsehopeon Mar 28, 2018 7:08 pm

    Hollywood is unfortunately on a one way ticket off a cliff…

  18. on Mar 28, 2018 7:10 pm

    Not surprised with the success she had. Trump is your daddy. And Roseanne is your mama!

  19. on Mar 28, 2018 7:11 pm

    Most people probably tuned in expecting The Middle, and were sorely disappointed with Roseanne, no comparison. I’m going to miss the Hecks!!!

  20. Mark Cruzon Mar 28, 2018 7:14 pm

    Outstanding…still hope for a Snowflake free TV show…

  21. on Mar 28, 2018 7:15 pm

    It has nothing to do with Trump, but everything to do with the fact that we are sick of the political agenda the media are shoving down our throats, the gay and lesbian agenda.

  22. on Mar 28, 2018 7:16 pm

    Hollywood is a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah. So is the mainstream media. Roseanne just might be a show for the rest of us.

  23. on Mar 28, 2018 7:17 pm

    I watched a few minutes of it before my wife changed over to theVoice
    Solid jokes, likable characters . Politics had little to do with it. All in the family was a show about the worst guy in America, huge ratings. People aren’t really shallow enough to choose entertainment that way, No one in Hollywood has any idea how to do their job, so they are always soul searching
    Solid jokes, likable characters,…… not that hard

  24. on Mar 28, 2018 7:20 pm

    Roseanne is not being strictly political as much as she is confronting what she sees as smug and wrong …all while staying loyal to her targets of sarcasm. She once wrote of her admiration for W.C. Fields. That’s what I see in this fine work..along with an all star gallery of writers and actors.

  25. Wiley Thrusteron Mar 28, 2018 7:27 pm

    Let’s see what happens next week.

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Author: nobullwithragingrobert

Was a drama critic at Manhattan College. Wrote professionally for Bergen News, Sun Bulletin . Alpha Sigma Lambda, Beta Theta. Has seen over 600 shows worldwide, has published both on Theater and Politics. Avid reader on many subjects and writers. Chief Drama critic for Metropolitan magazine. Writes for Jerrick media, American conservative, The City Journal and Reason magazine. Has produced shows both on and off Broadway.

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