After a rocky start to season 10, the Roseanne Reboot had finally found its footing in the last few episodes with strong themes and stronger delivery. Unfortunately, not every episode can be a 10 (or even a 9) and it just so happened that Roseanne’s lucky streak broke at one of the most important points: the finale.
We are going to just let the use of “illegals” slide, instead of analyzing how at minimum one of the characters should have corrected them to say, undocumented workers, though Roseanne did say “non-union” to Jackie. To ignore that and the uncomfortable portrayal of struggling blue-collar families, the side stories were quite enjoyable.
The best bits were Darlene at her new job [screaming into the bar towel was priceless] and Becky’s increasingly potent zingers. We especially loved when the family is all together going through the items from the basement and Roseanne pulls a Halloween classic on Harris, who says she hates all of them and Becky grabs her with a serious expression and deadpans the excellent line “that only makes them stronger.” We’ve loved the Conner Sisters’ dynamic all season with how natural it felt and the chemistry holding up, and hope they keep that going forward.
We get to see Roseanne and Jackie search the basement for items to sell in hopes of getting the money for Roseanne’s knee surgery, which leads to finding Bev’s creepy, Kestner doll. They take the nightmare-inducing doll to the antique mall, but unfortunately, it had been damaged and repaired and was only worth a hundred dollars. Then Dan calls them hone because the basement is flooding, followed by Dan having a decent meltdown scene that almost landed but lacked the guttural dedication of his classic scenes.
The issue of both Dan’s financial woes and how to pay for Roseanne’s surgery is corrected in one fell swoop after a low energy response to some mass flooding lead into the declaration of a state of emergency that will lead to FEMA money, that with Dan doing the repairs will leave excess for Roseanne’s surgery, and create enough jobs that Dan and Chuck can partner up and have enough repair work to keep their business afloat. A seemingly happy, deus ex machina ending. Hooray.
The entire thing had us wishing “Netflix and Pill” had been the finale, as the storyline with Roseanne’s pill addiction feels swept away with her knees magically fixed. That’s not to say that the issue won’t arise within season 11, but the time delay doesn’t sit well with us if that is the case. They introduced one of the rawest and sincere storylines of the season with John Goodman finally delivering at the level we had been waiting for, and then gave us an average finale. We’ll be back for season 11 and hope they take time to analyze what worked and what didn’t in season 10 and if we get as many knocks out episodes as we did this season we can walk away happy, as long as they nail the next finale!