Photo: George Burns/Harpo Productions
Roseanne Barr has been called raunchy, brash and offensive—but she's also been called original, smart and wickedly funny. The one thing she's never been called? Boring.
It's been more than 20 years since Roseanne and her hit sitcom of the same name became fixtures in American living rooms. From 1988 to 1997, the sharp-tongued Conners tackled everyday family issues with outlandish wit on Roseanne. The show and its producers were fearless, taking on hot button topics like birth control, gay marriage, masturbation and domestic violence.
Offscreen, Roseanne's life was no laughing matter. In 1990, she left her husband of 16 years to begin a roller coaster relationship with Roseanne writer and fellow comedian Tom Arnold.
That same year, Roseanne sang the National Anthem at a San Diego Padres baseball game and offended millions, including President George Bush Sr., who called her rendition "disgraceful." After her infamous performance, Roseanne says she received death threats, and ABC even threatened to pull the plug on her show.
A year later, Roseanne dropped a bombshell when she publicly accused her parents of sexually abusing her as a child.
Although her personal life played out repeatedly in the tabloids, scandals couldn't stop Roseanne, and her show remained a hit. The curtain finally fell on her groundbreaking series in 1997 after nine seasons.