It’s been a big day in TVville – if not the news world itself, since this yarn crosses over into politics, lifestyle and social categories – with ABC deciding to axe “Roseanne” over star Roseanne Barr’s offensive tweets.
Staggeringly-good ratings and an apology weren’t enough for Barr to save her high-rating sitcom after the network decided to cancel it following some distasteful comments on social media in which she compared a black former Obama administration official to an ape.
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey said in a statement.
In the tweet (which has now been deleted), Barr compared former adviser to Barack Obama, Valerie Jarrett, to an ape.
The cast and crew of Barr’s series were just as appalled as the rest of the world by the comments, quick to denounce their support of the show matriarch. Wanda Sykes, who was a consulting producer on the series, announced her immediate resignation from the show.
Castmembers Michael Fishman, Sara Gilbert, and Emma Kenney, voiced their disgust – with the latter declaring that she had decided to quit the show before ABC pulled the plug.
This is incredibly sad and difficult for all of us, as we’ve created a show that we believe in, are proud of, and that audiences love— one that is separate and apart from the opinions and words of one cast member.
— sara gilbert (@THEsaragilbert) May 29, 2018
— Michael Fishman (@ReelMFishman) May 29, 2018
As I called my manager to quit working on Roseanne, I was told it was cancelled. I feel so empowered by @iamwandasykes , Channing Dungey and anyone at ABC standing up for morals and abuse of power. Bullies will NEVER win.
— Emma Kenney (@EmmaRoseKenney) May 29, 2018
Roseanne, who has also been dropped by her agent ICM, has since returned to Twitter to apologize to Jarrett and to the many folks who’ve lost their jobs as a result of her tweet.
I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste.
— Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) May 29, 2018
The “Roseanne” reboot was ABC’s biggest hit of the 2017-2018 season, drawing an average 18.7 million viewers, second only to CBS sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”. A second season, consisting of 13 episodes, was due to air in the fall.
In addition to being yanked from ABC, the show has been pulled from Hulu, Paramount Network, TV Land, CMT and overseas affiliates (including Australia’s Channel Ten).
ABC is now scrambling to find a fitting replacement for their fall schedule. Some online have suggested a spin-off series featuring John Goodman and Laurie Metcalf‘s characters, while “Pushing Daisies” creator Bryan Fuller has pitched a reboot of his series for the old “Roseanne” slot.
Don’t feel sorry for me, guys!!-I just want to apologize to the hundreds of people,and wonderful writers (all liberal) and talented actors who lost their jobs on my show due to my stupid tweet. I will be on Joe Rogan’s podcast friday.
— Roseanne Barr (@therealroseanne) May 30, 2018