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'The Conners' Season 3 Episode 1 Review: Realistic pandemic premiere sees Roseanne nostalgia with George Clooney

The episode, sprinkled with flashbacks from the original show, still managed to address the current ongoing tragedy in a post-Covid-19 world

Tonight marked the return of the OG 'Roseanne' spin of 'The Conners' on ABC and by the looks of it, fans have already been bowled and won over. The episode, sprinkled with flashbacks from the original show, still managed to address the current ongoing tragedy in a post-Covid-19 world. With Darlene and Becky worried about jobs and making ends meet, and talks of homeless starvation making the cut, everything was all too real when it came to the hilarious witty titular family. With a special nod to when Hollywood A-listers like George Clooney were part of the show, this Season 3 premiere was full of nostalgia and hard-hitting current world realism.

Although a comedy, both 'Roseanne' and 'The Conners' have always tried to incorporate real-world issues into their stories. The premiere of Episode 1 aka the season premiere was a blast from the past itself. Family patriarch Dan announces that Wellman Plastics - where both Roseanne firs and her sister Jackie used to work - have entered a Covid-hiring spree fresh from suffering loss in their baked goods items, Darlene and Becky decide it would be a good idea to explore the world of the corporate.

Soon poured in all the chatter about the harrowing times we are living in and it's clear that when showrunner Bruce Helford had teased about having a conversation like others aren't quite still addressing on TV, he wasn't kidding! The despair and woes in the tones of the people marred by the pandemic - especially small business - is made clear by Darlene. Difficult topics like starvation from losing jobs and being homeless, while millions of people are dying from a deadly virus around you is the kind of fear that most of 2020 has been laden with. And the best part about Gilbert is of course her no-nonsense portrayal of Darlene, who manages to keep this real and absolutely unexaggerated.

Comic relief was brought in by Jackie fondly reminiscing her older beau/supervisor Booker - played by Clooney - as the reels took considerable time to bring back some much needed adorable cameo from the 80s. We got to see Jackie and Booker's bowling date right before gears shift to present-day and Jackie claims, "I should've hit it till it broke it." Sentimental and hilarious in equal parts, this was one of the rare occasions where 'The Conners' actively brought things back from its parent Roseanne Bar-led original after the comedian's infamous racist tweets got her sacked from the series. We can't help but wonder if we're getting more of Clooney on television though as that would make the already solid start more worth looking forward to.

'The Conners' premiered on Wednesday, October 21, and will air on Wednesdays at 9pm only on ABC.