ABC at TCA: Will ‘Roseanne’ Revival Also Ignore Its Series Finale?

Roseanne - Michael Fishman as DJ Conner, Sara Gilbert as Darlene Conner, Roseanne Barr as Roseanne Conner, Alicia Goranson as Becky Conner, John Goodman as Dan Conner, and Laurie Metcalf as Jackie Harris
ABC/Dan Watson
ABC’s "Roseanne" stars Michael Fishman as DJ Conner, Sara Gilbert as Darlene Conner, Roseanne Barr as Roseanne Conner, Alicia Goranson as Becky Conner, John Goodman as Dan Conner and Laurie Metcalf as Jackie Harris.

The Television Critics Association summer press tour doesn’t take weekends off and Sunday was a packed day of new and returning series this fall on ABC being paneled for critics.

During the executive session with Channing Dungey, President, ABC Entertainment, promised that Monday night’s finale of The Bachelorette is “this is can’t miss, appointment television” and also announced game show renewals for $100,000 Pyramid and Celebrity Family Feud. And, while it has not been renewed yet, Dungey teased that the August 14th episode of The Gong Show would include guest celebrity judges executive producer Will Arnett, Jack Black and Jennifer Aniston.

On the upcoming revival of American Idol, when asked about whether it was too soon to bring it back when it left the air in April of 2016 on Fox, Dungey said, “We certainly want the show to be recognizable to the fans of the show. In terms of it being something that’s coming back to soon, if you look at the social media on American Idol, the fans have been clamoring for it to come back since the day that it went away.”

As for how the show will look when it returns, she added, “This is going to be ABC’s version of American Idol and we’re really  looking forward to being able to put our special stamp and influence on that.” She also said that besides previously announced judge Katy Perry and returning host Ryan Seacrest, other names on the panel will be announced soon.

The network announced during its May upfront the eight-episode return of iconic sitcom Roseanne. Will the Roseanne Barr sitcom, like NBC’s revival of Will & Grace, ignore events from its series finale where, in this case, Dan Connor (John Goodman) died? “I wouldn’t say that it’s ignoring the events in the finale, but I can confirm that Dan is definitely alive,” Dungey said.

As for Johnny Galecki returning as David when he’s busy on the eleventh season of CBS’s The Big Bang Theory, Dungey only said, “Those conversations are still in progress.”

How much of the real life Washington chaos will we see seeping into ABC’s programming that is set in the political arena? “This is the world we live in so it can’t help but be informed by real events that are happening around us,” Dungey said. “The universe of Scandal [and] the universe of Designated Survivor, they’re very specific and very true to the creator’s vision…I wouldn’t say that there’s anything that’s happening in a day to day way that is influencing how those stories are being told. The writers are in the room and they have ideas of how things are going to spin out and I think especially going back to Scandal, Shonda was really clear that she has a roadmap for season 7 that she’s going to stick to regardless of what happens in the outside world.”

As for the scandal that shut down production recently on Bachelor in Paradise, Dugney explained, “While there were allegations there was a very detailed investigation with Warner Brothers that resulted in the understanding that there was no wrong doing that occurred.” She also said moving forward, “it certainly has brought to light some safety issues that we want to make sure that we are more on top of moving forward to make sure our contestants are safe and protected at all times.”