Sweet Divinity: Not Banned, But Certainly Barred

Sweet  Divinity: Not Banned, But Certainly Barred

divine graceWhen the “Will & Grace” ensemble and their producers got the bright idea to resurrect their show and squeeze some new laughs out of today’s increasingly bizarre source material, many folks over in the offices at ABC TV (and one unstable has-been smoking weed on her nut farm) sat up to take notice.

Roseanne, a titan of television and one of the medium’s most powerful influencers, has seen her light dim since her meteoric rise in the ’90s. Stars in Hollywood are actually no different than stars in the heavens: Both are enormous balls of gas that eventually burn out. Also, much like their celestial counterparts, the bigger they are the more fiercely they burn. Eventually, they burn off all of that gas, slowly fading, dimming and becoming more obscure. Then they buy a macadamia nut farm in Hawaii, get drunk and lose their minds.

Something America has given up a great deal of is creative originality, and nowhere is that more evident than in our popular culture. Everything brought to the plate nowadays is YET ANOTHER Batman, a Broadway musical constructed around a greatest hits album that your parents used to own back in the 1900s, or what is known as a reboot.

Reboots piss me off. There’s usually a good reason why we stopped watching in the first place.

“Roseanne” abandoned what it was that made the characters so lovable and relatable. The dynamic between Roseanne and Dan Conner was replaced by a more independent multi-million dollar lottery-winning dynamic between Roseanne and her sister Jackie. At first it seemed like a fresh move to take the ladies out of that filthy set, but it was a quick ride up and over the shark tank and directly into turd city. Roseanne then pulled another switcheroo, and the series finale (can we still even call it that?) found her a widow writing a book. Everything that didn’t work the last season was just a bad dream—If only.  It was a somber episode, but so back-peddling in its delivery that I fully expected Patrick Duffy to crawl out from under that hideous dingy Afghan throw on her couch wearing only a towel.

If you have managed to remember all of the new rules she set up in the “Roseanne” universe…forget them. That last episode never happened either. Why? Because Trump is president and Roseanne Barr can make America feel as weird as when she praises the Devil as our own mothers have since discovering FOX News, but she can’t do it alone. Lured to the dark side with commercials for supplemental insurance, affordable diabetes testing supplies and catheters that don’t scrape, our Mothers (both real and fictional apparently) have decided that the world they were architects to has flipped on its axis and that the GOP somehow now represents blue collar USA. I will remind everybody that it’s been 35 years since Barr laid eyes on a blue collar.

I am not surprised by this show. In fact, I venture to say—after this last election—nothing will ever truly surprise me again. ABC can use this show and Meghan McCain’s attempt to conjure th ghost of Elisabeth Hasselbeck, but I am no longer surprised by Roseanne.

What does surprise me is how stupid they think we are, and I mean the royal “they.” Just as this current administration continues to break laws and tell lies so blatantly and obviously sans shame with each press briefing, so it is at “Roseanne.” We are supposed to be grateful that there is a gender-fluid child in the Conner family. And, “My goodness, isn’t Roseanne so understanding?”  But all one has to look at is her history of transphobia and screenshots from her now scrubbed twitter account to know that Mrs. Conner’s grandchild isn’t welcome to use any toilet in her rickety house. Did you notice her black granddaughter? If you did, well then she served her purpose. She didn’t need any lines or point of view anyway. Why? Because both of these children are nothing more than placating bullshit acknowledgements that “Some of Roseanne’s best friends are ______. “

This show serves only to normalize Trump’s America, and we really shouldn’t. I know the last thing you need to hear is what’s “normal” from a grown man who spends his career wearing a corset and impersonating a Jewish septuagenarian mermaid in a wheelchair.

Those calling her a “hero” were once calling for her execution thanks to the mangling of an anthem. The hypocrisy is astounding. Where was all of this liberal understanding and “chance to talk about what separates” when you were behind the steering wheel of the bus running over Caitlyn Jenner’s wonky ass? There were no cries of “give this Trump supporter a chance! She has a gender-fluid character on her show!” in spite of Khloe Kardashian’s appearances.


The show has been picked up for another season. Tune in to see how Roseanne Conner copes with having her blowhard leader rendered politically impotent during the 2018 midterm elections before his inevitable impeachment. Ten bucks says this all gets written out as another bad dream, while the sad reality is trapped in history for the ages like a mosquito in amber.


The Divine Grace

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