Roseanne is an American sitcom that was broadcast on ABC from October 18, 1988, to May 20, 1997. Lauded for its realistic portrayal of the average American family, the series stars Roseanne Barr, and revolves around the Conners, an Illinois working-class family. The series reached #1 in the Nielsen ratings, fitting the most watched television show in the United States from 1989 to 1990. The show remained in the top four for six of its nine seasons, and in the top twenty for eight seasons.
In 1993, the episode "A Stash from the Past" was ranked #21 on TV Guide's 100 Greatest Episodes of All-Time. In 2002, Roseanne was ranked #35 on TV Guide's 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time. In 2013, it was ranked #32 on TV Guide's 60 Best Series of All Time.
Background and development
In coming up with ideas for new shows, Marcy Carsey and Tom Werner of Carsey-Werner Productions decided to look into the concept of the working mother as a central voice. Up until that point, there had been shows with working mothers, but only as an adjunct to the father in the family. Werner had suggested that they take a chance on Barr whom they had seen on The Tonight Show. This was because he saw the unique "in your face" voice that they were looking for, and he contacted her agent and offered her the role. Barr's act at the time was the persona of the "domestic goddess", but as Carsey and Werner explains, she had the distinctive voice and attitude for the character and she was able to transform her into the working class heroine they envisioned.
The show is centred on the Conners, an American working-class family struggling to get by on a limited household income in the fictional town of Lanford, Illinois. Lanford was nominally located in Fulton County, but additional on-air references over the years suggest the town is in the vicinity of Aurora, Elgin, and DeKalb, which are much closer to Chicago. The family consisted of outspoken Roseanne, married to husband Dan, and their 3 children, Becky, Darlene, and DJ. Later in the series, Roseanne becomes pregnant again and gives birth to a boy named Jerry Garcia Conner.
Many critics considered the show notable as one of the first sitcoms to realistically portray a blue-collar American family with two parents working outside the home, as well as lead characters who were noticeably overweight without their weight being the target of jokes. Roseanne was successful from its beginning, ranking #1 in the Nielsen ratings its second season, fitting the most watched television programme in the United States from 1989 to 1990, and spending its first six seasons among the Nielsen ratings' top five highest-rated shows; the finale attracted 16 million viewers.
Establishing shots were photographed in Evansville, Indiana, the hometown of first-season producer Matt Williams. Exterior shots of the Conner household were based on a real home located in Evansville, located at 619 Runnymede Ave, a few blocks from William's alma mater, University of Evansville.
Barr's real-life brother and sister are gay, which inspired her to push for introducing gay characters and issues into the show and was part of the reason for her fallout with former executive producer Matt Williams, who protested making the character Nancy a lesbian. "My show seeks to portray various slices of real life, and homosexuals are a reality," said Barr.
|Roseanne Barr||Roseanne Conner||1988–97||1–9||222|
|Laurie Metcalf||Jackie Harris||219|
|Michael Fishman||D.J. Conner||215|
|John Goodman||Dan Conner||211|
|Sara Gilbert||Darlene Conner-Healy||180|
|Lecy Goranson||Becky Conner-Healy||1988–92, 1995–96||1–5, 8||111|
|Johnny Galecki||David Healy||1992–97||4–9||92|
|Glenn Quinn||Mark Healy||1990–97||3–9||76|
|Estelle Parsons||Beverly Harris||1989–97||1–9||59|
|Natalie West||Crystal Anderson-Conner||1988–95||3–4 (starring), 1-2, 5–8 (recurring)||58|
|Martin Mull||Leon Carp||1991–97||3–9||46|
|Sandra Bernhard||Nancy Bartlett||1991–97||4–9||33|
Lecy Goranson appeared in only four episodes of the fifth season, and Sarah Chalke took over the role a third of the way through the sixth season until the end of the show, with both actresses sharing the role in Season 8. Both actresses appeared together in one episode.
Story arcs occasionally spanned across several episodes or an entire season.
Roseanne (Roseanne Barr) is a line worker at Wellman Plastics, along with her sister Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) and friend Crystal (Natalie West). Jackie has a brief relationship with Booker (George Clooney), the foreman at Wellman. Dan (John Goodman) finds sporadic work as a construction contractor and faces a strained relationship with his irresponsible and womanising father (Ned Beatty). Roseanne's parents, Beverly (Estelle Parsons) and Al (John Randolph), consider moving to Lanford, but eventually decide against it. Tomboy Darlene (Sara Gilbert) struggles with her femininity as she enters puberty and gets her first period. Becky (Lecy Goranson) faces dating problems with her first boyfriend Chip (Jared Rushton), who's introduced in the "Lover's Lane" episode. Season one additionally finds the Conners experiencing, and surviving, a tornado. In the "Death and Stuff" episode a door-to-door salesman dies in the Conners' kitchen, and in the season finale, Roseanne stands up to a new foreman (Fred Thompson), when she leads Jackie, Crystal, and additional coworkers as they quit Wellman Plastics. DJ is played by Sal Barone in the pilot episode and by Michael Fishman for the remainder of the series. There is a running gag in this season where they use the word "corn" in every episode.
Other notable guest stars throughout the season include Bill Sadler as Dwight, Dan's friend, Robert Harper as Chip's father, Andrea Walters as Chip's mother, and Tony Crane as "The Tongue Bandit", Becky's additional boyfriend. Bill Pentland, Roseanne's first husband, made a cameo as one of Dan's friends in the "Saturday" episode.
Now that they've quit Wellman Plastics, Roseanne and Jackie must find new jobs. Jackie decides to become a police officer. Roseanne cycles through a variety of menial jobs including telemarketer, secretary for Dan's boss, bartender, cashier at a fast-food restaurant, and, finally, sweeping floors at a beauty parlor. At home, Dan's poker buddy Arnie (Tom Arnold) makes a startling debut when he plants a passionate kiss on Roseanne. The Conners celebrate an outrageous Halloween that becomes an annual feature of the series. Roseanne wants 10 minutes to herself in the bathroom; this turns into a bizarre dream sequence which has the entire cast singing parodies of songs from musical comedies. Later, at Thanksgiving dinner, Dan takes wary notice of a growing romance between his father and Crystal. Jackie gets serious with new boyfriend Gary (Brian Kerwin). Becky repeatedly rebels against Roseanne and Dan's parental authority such as staying out late and breaking into the drinks cupboard with her friend Dana and getting drunk when Dan and Roseanne are out of town for the day. The reappearance of old biker buddy Ziggy (Jay O. Sanders) reminds Roseanne and Dan of their own rebellious past. Darlene first proves her talent for writing when she wins recognition for her poetry. Roseanne's own writing talents are given a boost when her family fixes up a basement room to serve as a writer's den. This is the first season where we hear Roseanne thinking out loud.
Other notable guest stars throughout the season include Stephen Dorff as Becky's boyfriend Jimmy, Jenny Lewis as Becky's friend Diane, Stephen Root as Roseanne's solicitor Peter, and Bert Parks as a judge. Ann Wedgeworth played Dan Conner's mother in the Thanksgiving episode.
The season opens with the Conner women confronting the issue of pregnancy: Roseanne takes a pregnancy test that turns up negative. Roseanne takes on a job as waitress in the restaurant at Rodbell's Department Store, where she meets Leon (Martin Mull) and Bonnie (Bonnie Sheridan). Jackie gets injured on the job, which results in her breaking up with her boyfriend Gary. Becky begins dating Mark Healy (Glenn Quinn); when her parents forbid her to see him, she temporarily moves in with Jackie. Dan is floored to learn his father Ed and Crystal plan to marry; Crystal is pregnant with Ed's baby. Roseanne locks horns with snooty new neighbour Kathy (Meagen Fay). Nana Mary (Shelley Winters) makes her first appearance at a family barbecue. In the season finale, Ziggy reappears, proposing to open a motorcycle repair shop with Dan and Roseanne. While they're in the process of getting the business off the ground, Ziggy decides to leave because he doesn't want to feel responsible if the business fails. Notwithstanding he leaves enough money for Dan to open it by himself. We never hear about him again.
Other notable guest stars throughout the season include Dann Florek as Principal Hiller, Leonardo DiCaprio as Darlene's classmate, Brad Garrett as Doug, Judy Gold as Amy, Alyson Hannigan as Becky's friend Jan, and Tobey Maguire as Jeff.
The opening credits of Season 4 change from Season 3 in that the show now stars "Roseanne Arnold" instead of "Roseanne Barr".
The season starts with Becky surprising Roseanne by asking for birth-control pills. Dan and Roseanne begin their new motorcycle repair shop business, Lanford Custom Cycle, while Roseanne continues to work at Rodbell's Department Store. Darlene meets David Healy, brother of Mark (Johnny Galecki) (in his first appearance, the character was known as Kevin). After a brief stint working at a perfume counter, Jackie decides to become a lorry driver. Nancy (Sandra Bernhard) is introduced as Arnie's fiancee. After a night of heavy drinking, Jackie discovers she slept with the newly engaged Arnie. Darlene undergoes a personality shift into a sullen goth teen. Booker makes a surprise appearance at a Halloween party. Roseanne's neighbour Kathy moves back to Chicago. Roseanne gets breast reduction surgery. Crystal gives birth to Dan's new half-brother, "Little Ed." Roseanne and Dan accompany Arnie and Nancy to their wedding in Las Vegas. At the end of the season, Lanford Custom Cycle fails, and Rodbell's Luncheonette closes. Nancy is left alone after Arnie is "abducted by aliens".
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Bob Hope as himself, Jena Malone as little girl on Santa's lap, Wayne Newton as himself, David Crosby as Duke, Bonnie Sheridan as Roseanne's coworker Bonnie, Neil Patrick Harris as Dr. Doogie Howser, and Rick Dees as Ken.
After the bike shop closes, Mark decides to move to Minnesota. Becky decides to go with him, and they elope. Jackie and Roseanne each get a cheque for $10,000 from their mother after she and their father divorce. They, along with Nancy, decide to open a diner but can only get the money they need after Bev agrees to become a partner as well. Nancy comes out as a lesbian. The Tildens, a single father and his two daughters around Becky and Darlene's ages (Wings Hauser, Mara Hobel, Danielle Harris), move in next door. Jackie dates Fisher (Matt Roth), a much younger man. When Roseanne discovers he's physically abusive, Dan confronts him, beats him up, and is arrested. Roseanne and Jackie's father dies, and Roseanne confronts his longtime secret mistress only to find her father blamed his daughters for his abuse towards them. Roseanne's rich, estranged cousin Ronnie (Joan Collins) visits and persuades Darlene to get her GED and apply to art school. David applies as well. Darlene asks her parents if David can move in, because his mother is moving away and they want to stay together. Roseanne and Dan initially refuse, but when Roseanne sees David's mother being verbally and emotionally abusive, she decides to let him stay because it reminded her of her own troubled childhood with her equally abusive father. Roger (Tim Curry) offers Dan a deal to renovate and sell a small fixer-upper house, then runs off before the deal is complete; Jackie decides to buy the house, saving Dan from financial ruin. David gets a rejection letter from art school, while Darlene gets an acceptance. At the end of the season, Roseanne fears Darlene will run away to school, although Darlene has already decided not to go. Realizing she was wrong, Roseanne persuades Darlene to not give up on her goals just to stay with David. During this season, there's a running gag in which each of the Conners (save Becky) appears in a different scene in the same long-sleeved, egg-printed shirt with a large chicken on the front.
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Wings Hauser as Ty Tilden, Danielle Harris as Molly Tilden, Mara Hobel as Charlotte Tilden, Loretta Lynn as herself, Morgan Fairchild as Nancy's girlfriend Marla, Bill Maher as Bob, Ed Begley, Jr. as Principal Alexander, Blake Clark as Vic, Red Buttons as Bev's lover Jake, Sally Kirkland as Mark and David's mother Barbara, Tim Curry as Nancy's lover Roger, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as DJ's friend George, Joan Collins as Roseanne and Jackie's cousin Ronnie, Matt Roth as Jackie's boyfriend Fisher, Steve Jones as a threatening diner patron, and in a quite brief cameo, Chris Farley as a customer trying on a too-small leather jacket.
Under pressure from Roseanne to leave the Lanford Lunch Box, Bev sells her share in the restaurant to Leon to get back at them. David proposes marriage to Darlene, but she refuses. Dan and Roseanne discover an old stash of marijuana and smoke it in their bathroom. Roseanne's past as an abuse victim arises when she reacts violently to DJ after he joyrides and wrecks her car, leading her to worry she might be continuing the cycle. Becky (now played by Sarah Chalke) and Mark return home and move into the Conners' house. Mark goes to trade school but drops out. Jackie gets pregnant as a result of a one-night stand and later develops a relationship with the baby's father, Fred (Michael O'Keefe). Roseanne and Dan discover David secretly moved in with Darlene at school and throw him out, but take him back soon after. Roseanne visits a gay bar with Nancy, where she receives a surprise kiss from Nancy's girlfriend. Jackie gives birth to a son, Andy. Dan confronts his mother's history of mental illness. The season concludes with Fred and Jackie's wedding.
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Michael O'Keefe as Fred, the father of Jackie's baby; Sandra Bernhard as Nancy, Roseanne and Jackie's co-worker; Mariel Hemingway as Sharon, Nancy's girlfriend; Vicki Lawrence as Phyllis, Dan's old flame; Florence Henderson as Flo, a woman with whom Roseanne networks at a women's business club meeting; Genie Francis and Anthony Geary as General Hospital's Luke and Laura Spencer; Ahmet Zappa as Roy, Mark's roommate; and Fabio as himself.
The opening credits of Season 7 change from previous seasons in that the show now stars "Roseanne" instead of "Roseanne Arnold". On the September 21, 1994 Season 7 premier; In celebrating Roseanne's divorce and dropping her last name... All credits (Opening and closing) only included the cast and crew's first names only. This was the only time this ever occurred in an episode throughout its run.
Season seven begins with Roseanne's unexpected pregnancy and goes on to tackle such issues as abortion, alcoholism, drug abuse, sexual dysfunction, and racial prejudice. Darlene and David break up after briefly maintaining an open relationship, leading to a few awkwardness for Roseanne and Dan as they try to deal living with their daughter's ex-boyfriend. David and Darlene both date additional people, but eventually, they reunite. Due to tension in the household, Mark and Becky move into a trailer. DJ plays a bigger role this season, most notably in an episode wherein he refuses to kiss a black girl in his school play. Episode 19 is a special 45-minute show that recounts all the previous seasons with Roseanne being "welcomed" by additional sitcom moms.
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Sharon Stone as a trailer-park resident, Ellen DeGeneres as Jackie and Fred's psychologist, Danny Masterson as Darlene's boyfriend Jimmy, and Traci Lords as Lanford Lunch Box busperson Stacy. In the season finale, a tribute is made to Sherwood Schwartz. Uncredited appearances at the end of the episode have Gilligan's Island cast members playing Roseanne characters. These include Dawn Wells, Bob Denver, Tina Louise, and Russell Johnson, as well as Sherwood Schwartz. Also, Isabel Sanford, Alley Mills, Barbara Billingsley, June Lockhart, and Pat Crowley star as themselves.
Season eight addresses Roseanne's baby shower and the subsequent arrival of her son, Jerry Garcia Conner. (In a continuity error, the baby had been revealed to be a girl in season seven. Roseanne, in an after-credits out of character scene, explains that after she fell pregnant she wished the Connors baby to be the same gender as hers). The season starts when Dan decides to leave the security of his city job to help build the new prison being constructed outside of Lanford. With the pension, final check, and retirement money he receives for leaving his job he decides to give his family the holiday they never had and takes everyone, including Mark, David, and Roseanne's mother, along to Walt Disney World. It is later revealed that one of the nights the clan was at Disney was additionally the night Darlene got pregnant. Darlene quickly decides she and David want to have the baby and the two get engaged. The season climaxes with a quite rushed wedding for Darlene. Immediately after the ceremony, realising how much has been changing, Dan suffers a heart attack. In the next episode it is revealed that he survives, as DJ saved his life. The season concludes with Dan and Roseanne having a bitter fight after Dan refuses to stick to his diet and exercise plan, rehashing a large number of of the buried personality clashes of the entire series. They end up wrecking their living room in the process. The credits fade as Roseanne walks out on Dan. Other subjects are DJ's Thanksgiving pageant, Darlene's wedding, and Dan's heart attack.
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Fred Willard as Leon's husband Scott, Ed McMahon as himself, John Popper (with Blues Traveler) as an old friend of Dan's, Pat Harrington, Jr. as himself, Jenna Elfman as hitchhiker Garland, Shecky Greene as Bar Mitzvah guest Uncle Saul, Norm Crosby as Reverend Crosley, June Lockhart as Leon's mother, the cast of Stomp as Lanford Lunch Box patrons, Eric Dane as a Disney World bellhop, and Tony Curtis as ballroom-dance instructor Hal.
The opening credits of Season 9 still say the show stars "Roseanne", but the first episode said "Roseanne Barr Pentland Arnold Thomas".
The ninth and final season features a large number of changes. In previous seasons, the original theme song was played on saxophone, accompanied by drums and additional instruments. For this final season, the theme was re-recorded and performed by Blues Traveler with a distorted harmonica — one of the band's staples — playing in place of the saxophone. Lyrics were additionally added and sung into the theme by the band's lead vocalist John Popper. Episodes in this season exhibit a much more surreal style. Additionally, the 'daily struggle' theme of previous episodes is abandoned, and the season focuses primarily on bringing the characters full-circle emotionally.
The Conners win the state lottery jackpot of $108 million; Dan ponders the meaning of life, Jackie meets her prince, DJ finds love and Darlene, after a few trouble, gives birth. John Goodman is absent for most of the season as he was busy filming The Big Lebowski; in later episodes, Goodman resembles his "Lebowski" character Walter Sobchak.
In the season's final episode, Roseanne reveals the entire series itself is actually a storey written by Roseanne Conner about her life. To cope, Roseanne twisted major elements of her life for the story, which the audience doesn't discover until the final moments of the series. In reality, Dan's heart attack near the end of Season 8 was fatal and the Conner family didn't win the lottery. Also, Jackie is a lesbian and Beverly is straight. Scott is a probate solicitor that Roseanne befriended, and set up with Leon—who she claims isn't quite hip like she wrote him to be. An Additional difference is that Mark and Darlene were a couple all along, as were David and Becky, rather than the opposite (Becky with Mark and Darlene with David).
Notable guest stars throughout the season include Edward Asner as Lou Grant, Dann Florek as Doctor Rudmen, Jim Varney as Jackie's boyfriend Prince Carlos, Tammy Faye Bakker as Roseanne's makeup consultant, Dina Merrill as Doris, Joanna Lumley as Patsy Stone, and Jennifer Saunders as Edina Monsoon (reprising their roles from Absolutely Fabulous), Arianna Huffington as Estree, Marlo Thomas as Tina, James Brolin as Roseanne's business partner/love interest Edgar Wellman, Jr., and Ann Wedgeworth and Debbie Reynolds as Dan's mother Audrey, as well as Rainer Hahn, Hugh Hefner, Milton Berle, Robin Leach, Todd Oldham, Moon Unit and Ahmet Zappa, Tony Robbins, Kathleen Sullivan, Steven Seagal, and Jerry Springer as themselves.
During the show's final season, Barr was in negotiations with Carsey-Werner Productions and ABC executives to continue playing Roseanne Conner in a spinoff. Notwithstanding ABC withdrew from negotiations with Carsey-Werner and Barr after failed discussions with CBS and Fox. Barr and Carsey-Werner agreed to discontinue the negotiations.
In the fall of 2008, Barr commented on what the current whereabouts of the Conners would be. "I've always said now that if they were on TV, DJ would have been killed in Iraq and [the Conners] would have lost their house". When asked for more details on where the rest of the Conners (Dan, Jackie, Becky, Darlene, David, and Mark) would be, Barr responded: "Your question is intellectual property that might be developed later, so I don't want to get into that". She added, "No preview, absolutely not". On December 20, 2009, Barr posted an entry on her website regarding what a possible Roseanne reunion would be like, which includes: DJ's being published, Mark's dying in Iraq; David's leaving Darlene for a woman half his age, Darlene coming out of the closet and meeting a woman and having a test tube baby with her, Becky's working at Walmart, Roseanne and Jackie's opening the first medical marijuana dispensary in Lanford, Arnie's fitting the best friend of the Governor of Illinois and remarrying Nancy, Bev's selling a painting for $10,000, Jerry and the grandsons forming a music group similar to the Jonas Brothers, Dan's reappearing alive after faking his death, and Bonnie's being arrested for selling crack.
Broadcast history and Ratings
Roseanne consistently ranked in the Top 20 of the Nielsen for eight of its nine seasons. The series reached #1 in its second season, fitting the most watched television show in the United States, narrowly beating out The Cosby Show. The following table lists the ranking for each season.
|Season||Ep #||Time slot||Rank||Rating||Households|
|1) 1988–1989||23||Tuesday at 8:30-9:00 PM on ABC (October 18, 1988 - February 21, 1989)|
Tuesday at 9:00-9:30 PM on ABC (February 28 - May 2, 1989)
|2) 1989–1990||24||Tuesday at 9:00-9:30 PM on ABC||#1 (Tied with The Cosby Show)||23.3||21,275,100|
|7) 1994–1995||26||Wednesday at 9:00-9:30 PM on ABC (September 21, 1994—March 29, 1995)|
Wednesday at 8:00-8:30 PM on ABC (May 3 - 24, 1995)
|8) 1995–1996||25||Tuesday at 8:00-8:30 PM on ABC||#16||12.5||11,987,400|
Roseanne was put into off-network syndication beginning in September 1992.
TBS aired reruns of Roseanne from 1996 through 2004. Cable channel Nick at Nite aired reruns of the show from the fall of 2003 until 2009; it has after moved to TV Land's TV Land Prime schedule. Oxygen has aired reruns after 2005. The show returned to [email protected]'s lineup on October 5, 2009, replacing Family Matters and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in its late night timeslot. As of January 2010, Nick at Nite has once again taken Roseanne from its time slot. In Australia, the show is seen on the channel 111 Hits, and Eleven.
WE tv and CMT both began airing the series in September 2012. The show additionally airs on Logo TV. A collection of 50 episodes from seasons 6 and 7 are currently available through Netflix in the U.S.
Awards and nominations
In 1993, Roseanne Barr and Laurie Metcalf both won Emmy Awards for their performances in the series, Barr for Outstanding Lead Actress and Metcalf for Outstanding Supporting Actress. Metcalf additionally won in 1992 and 1994. In 1993, Roseanne Barr and John Goodman both won Golden Globe Awards, Barr for Best Actress and Goodman for Best Actor. The series won the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy.
The series won a Peabody Award in 1992 and a People's Choice Award for Favorite New Television Comedy Program in 1989. Barr won five additional People's Choice Awards for Favorite Female Performer in a New TV Program (1989), Favorite Female All Around Entertainer (1990), and Favorite Female TV Performer (1990, 1994, and 1995).
- 1992 Excellence in Television Broadcasting (won)
- 1989 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1990 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1991 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1992 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1992 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (Roseanne Barr)
- 1992 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Laurie Metcalf, won)
- 1993 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1993 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1993 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Sara Gilbert)
- 1993 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Laurie Metcalf, won)
- 1994 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1994 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (Roseanne Barr)
- 1994 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Sara Gilbert)
- 1994 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Laurie Metcalf, won)
- 1995 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1995 Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series (Roseanne Barr)
- 1995 Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (Laurie Metcalf)
The show additionally received several nominations in Editing, Art Direction, Music, Lighting Direction, Writing and Hairstyling.
- 1989 Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy
- 1989 Best Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (John Goodman)
- 1989 Best Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Roseanne Barr)
- 1990 Best Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (John Goodman)
- 1991 Best Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (John Goodman)
- 1991 Best Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Roseanne Barr)
- 1992 Best Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Roseanne Barr)
- 1993 Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy (won)
- 1993 Best Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (John Goodman, won)
- 1993 Best Actress Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1993 Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (Laurie Metcalf)
- 1994 Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy
- 1994 Best Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy (Roseanne Barr)
- 1995 Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television (Laurie Metcalf)
- 1994 Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series (John Goodman)
- 1994 Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series (Roseanne Barr)
- 1989 Favorite New Television Comedy Program (won)
- 1989 Favorite Female Performer in a New TV Program (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1990 Favorite All-Around Female Entertainer (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1990 Favorite Female TV Performer (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1994 Favorite Female TV Performer (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1995 Favorite Female TV Performer (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 2008 Innovator Award (won)
- 1989 Funniest Male Leading Performer in a Television Series (John Goodman, won)
- 1989 Funniest Female Leading Performer in a Television Series (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1990 Funniest Male Leading Performer in a Television Series (John Goodman, won)
- 1993 Funniest Female Leading Performer in a Television Series (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1996 Funniest Female Leading Performer in a Television Series (Roseanne Barr)
- 1992 Favorite Television Actress (Roseanne Barr, won)
- 1995 Favorite Television Actress (Roseanne Barr)
- 1996 Favorite Television Actress (Roseanne Barr)
- 1997 Favorite Television Actress (Roseanne Barr)
Anchor Bay Entertainment (quietly named Starz Home Entertainment resulting in a few DVD packaging bearing this name) released all nine seasons on DVD in Region 1 (2005–2007) and Region 2. The first season was issued with shorter, syndicated versions of the episodes because Anchor Bay was unable to obtain permission to release the original broadcasts. In the company's eighth and ninth season DVDs, a few scenes have been altered to avoid disputes over music rights, including substituting a few closing credit scenes with a black screen. As of 2010, the Region 1 releases have been discontinued and are out of print.
On May 4, 2011, Mill Creek Entertainment announced that they had acquired the rights to re-release the series uncut on DVD in Region 1. They have subsequently re-released all nine seasons and a complete series set.
In Germany, Universum Film has released the entire series on DVD, and released a complete series box set on July 3, 2009. Unlike the Anchor Bay releases, these were fully unedited.
In Australia and New Zealand, Magna Pacific has released all nine seasons on DVD in Region 4. Unlike the Anchor Bay releases, Magna Pacific's first season DVDs include the full-length original broadcast episodes.
|Season||Ep#||Release Dates||Special features|
|Region 1||Region 2||Region 4|
|1||23||August 30, 2005|
September 13, 2011 (re-release)
|September 19, 2005||June 7, 2006||Roseanne-on-Roseanne candid interview, bloopers, Season One highlights, Interview: "John Goodman Takes a Look Back", "Wisdom from the Domestic Goddess".|
|2||24||December 6, 2005|
September 13, 2011 (re-release)
|February 6, 2006||October 4, 2006||John Goodman: "A Candid Interview", Best of Season Two, "Wacky Jackie", "Roseanne Untied: Season 1 Launch Party", John Goodman's audition.|
|3||25||March 21, 2006|
April 3, 2012 (re-release)
|May 15, 2006||February 7, 2007||Laurie Metcalf Interview: "The Sister that Never Leaves", Lecy Goranson Interview: "I Was a Teenage Becky", Best of Season Three.|
|4||25||June 27, 2006|
April 3, 2012 (re-release)
|March 17, 2007||June 6, 2007||Interview with Lecy Goranson and Michael Fishman, Roseanne Interview: "Life Imitating Art, Imitating Roseanne", audio commentary with Roseanne on select episodes.|
|5||25||September 12, 2006|
September 4, 2012 (re-release)
|September 9, 2009||November 7, 2007||Video commentaries with Roseanne, Roseanne answers eight fan questions, an exclusive interview with Roseanne.|
|6||25||December 5, 2006|
September 4, 2012 (re-release)
|September 9, 2009||March 18, 2008||No Special Features|
|7||26||April 3, 2007|
March 19, 2013 (re-release)
|October 12, 2009||July 9, 2008|
|8||25||August 7, 2007|
March 19, 2013 (re-release)
|October 12, 2009||January 13, 2010||Video commentaries with Roseanne, "Roseanne: Working-Class Actress" Interview|
|9||24||October 16, 2007|
May 14, 2013 (re-release)
|November 16, 2009||January 13, 2010||Two new exclusive interviews: "Legacy of Class" and "Breaking the Sitcom Mold". Video commentary with Roseanne & Michael Fishman|