ABC boss justifies Roseanne joke about Black and Asian families that viewers found offensive
Roseanne in the upcoming season will give politics a breather and try and focus on family and relationships.
The Roseanne reboot has attracted a lot of fans and viewers for ABC but the show found itself in the middle of controversy for certain episodes and dialogues that dealt with politics. The otherwise funny show seemed to be attracting mixed reactions from the viewers.
In a conference call, ABC entertainment president Channing Dungey was asked if she felt the show was slipping more towards politics than its original comedy genre. “I do think there’s a little bit of that, yes,” she said, according to EW. She also added that the next season of the show will be dealing less with politics as compared to what it did in the current season. “The show certainly did touch on some of that in the first episode in a very funny way, to look at the different political views between Roseanne and Jackie,” she said.
“That said, having touched on it in the first episode of the season, I think when you look on subsequent episodes of the run, the focus is not really on politics and much more on family and the everyday trials and tribulations that the family faces that still bring them together.”
The upcoming season will focus more on the family than anything else. “I think they’ll continue on the path they’re on toward the latter part of this season, which is away from politics and more focused on family,” she said. At the same time, Channing also defended the show when they joked about comedies like black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat. In one of the episodes, the character Roseanne can be heard saying, " We missed all the shows about Black and Asian families”, to which character Dan replies, " They’re just like us”.
She confessed that she did not expect people to react in the way they did for that line. “I was a little surprised, to be honest, by the reaction to that line,” she said. “We felt writers were looking to tip a hat to those shows. It certainly wasn’t meant to offend. I do stand by the Roseanne writers. I think they were expressing the point of view of the Connors, and what they would have actually said. We do similar things on our other shows. We’re very clear on black-ish about how many opinions are voiced by Dre Johnson.”
Recently, Roseanne Barr also defended the episode in which they dealt with Islamophobia. “That’s what I do,” she wrote. “Next season will be even more current events — I will challenge every sacred cow in the USA. Tonight’s show is about the impact of legal and illegal immigration on our family."