When ABC broadcast the series finale of Roseanne in 1997, it seemed pretty clear that John Goodman’s character, Dan Conner, was—and hope I’m not spoiling anything here—dead. So when it was reported in May that the series had been greenlit for an eight-episode reboot, well, it raised some questions.
Now, Entertainment Weekly confirms that Goodman will in fact be included in the revival, which is great but also...how.
“I don’t want to talk too specifically, but I wouldn’t say we’ll ignore the events of the finale,” ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey told reporters on Sunday. “Dan is definitely still alive.”
Recall that the series finale revealed that Dan had actually died of a heart attack, and that many of the show’s plot twists were invented by its titular character in the course of writing a book about her life—including not only hitting it big with the Illinois State Lottery, but that Dan was still alive.
It will be interesting to see how the show’s writers handle such overt retconning, but I’d certainly rather have Goodman included in the show than not, especially over something as frivolous as thematic continuity. After all, if NBC can overlook the fact that the eponymous characters of Will & Grace got married and had kids before stuffing them right back in the same apartment for their reboot, I’m sure ABC can maneuver around something as fungible as death.
Dungey also added that Johnny Galecki is still in talks about whether he’ll return as David. Honestly, as long as Roseanne keeps her promise to not sully the show with her murky political beliefs, I’ll be happy.