It was the episode we had all been waiting for: David’s one episode return to this season of Roseanne. Where we had hoped for an explosive reunion and the crowning gem of the reboot, it was too much like real life with the melodrama and sneakiness, and it’s almost like they cared so much about milking Johnny Galecki’s one episode of availability that the writing came second.
That isn’t to say the episode wasn’t enjoyable, but it caused an imbalance and bulldozed the other things we were excited to see that were better written, like Bev’s return. With Bev returning we didn’t just get our favourite antagonist back, but we got to see Jackie show more than being the family’s spastic punching bag. While we also could’ve lived without the image of Bev getting booted from the nursing home for sexually bouncing her way through the other residents it opened a dialpgue that kept giving (and giving).
With a second watch we appreciated the aelf-deprecation the writers inflicted on David, and the jokes landed better, but we can’t help but feel disjointed in how the entire situation was handled. In an episode of Harris’s birthday she got minimal screentime and Dan and Mark were basically mia. The Becky scene of Bloody Mary vs just a Mary (vodka and a celery stick) was hilarious, but it felt like the other characters had to elbow their way in for screentime and the flow isn’t as natural as it used to be or still can be (we’ve seen them succeed in balancing other episodes), but we think David’s return through everyone for a loop. Here’s hoping that next week is a stronger episode with a few more laughs.