Ed Conner is played by Ned Beatty. Ed is Dan's father, a charming traveling salesman who always brings presents for the grandchildren. Dan has a troubled history with his father, and Roseanne tries to keep the peace between the two. The family likes Ed, but Dan grew up feeling neglected with Ed seldom being home and his mother's mental illness e.
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It usually takes little to no time for Dan to become annoyed by his father's presence. All this was unknown to Dan until Crystal revealed it to Roseanne.
Ed hoped to provide Dan with at least one stable parent as he would often be gone on sales trips during Dan's adolescence. He wants to learn from his past actions and be a better father and husband.
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He loves his son despite their troubled relationship, and also loves the rest of his family. He marries Crystal and has two children with her Ed Jr. Jerry is the youngest of Roseanne and Dan's children, born in when the two are in their forties. Jerry's conception presented a real struggle for Roseanne and Dan, who previously had never experienced issues with their fertility. He was named for musician Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead , who died of a heart attack while Roseanne was pregnant and of whom she and Dan were fans.
Because he was so young, Jerry didn't play a large role in the series' initial run. Jerry did not appear in the premiere episode of Season 10, his absence explained by Roseanne as him being on a fishing boat in Alaska. The decision to add a pregnancy storyline to the series coincided with Roseanne Barr's real-life pregnancy with her son, Buck Thomas. Barr, like her character, struggled with fertility, though Barr ultimately resorted to fertility drugs to conceive while her character was able to become pregnant naturally. Initially, it was planned that the new addition to the cast would be a daughter, but when Barr gave birth to a boy, she decided the Conners should have a son instead, wanting her on-screen child's sex to match her newborn child's.
Once it was decided the child would be a boy, Barr named the character after Jerry Garcia and intended to have Roseanne give birth at a concert held by the Grateful Dead. However, plans for a concert birth were scrapped when Garcia died unexpectedly. Fred is played by Michael O'Keefe. Fred is a mechanic who works at the garage with Dan and is introduced to Jackie, leading to a one-night stand , accidental impregnation, and subsequent marriage.
After much encouragement Jackie eventually warms up and faces the fact that Fred is the father of her child and therefore a part of their lives. At first Fred assumes that Jackie is just putting him off lightly because he fails to understand that she had a previous abusive relationship in addition to her dysfunctional childhood. Being very conventional, Fred is shocked by the Conners' and Harris' unconventional ways and cannot understand the inner workings of Jackie's family. This leads to the dissolution of Jackie and Fred's marriage. Despite their attempts to make the marriage work, Jackie and Fred break up when they realize they have little in common.
Jackie breastfeeds Andy at the altar while marrying Fred "Altar Egos". Andy was the ringbearer in Darlene and David's wedding "The Wedding". Jackie occasionally dressed him up in outfits Fred deemed to be feminine. DJ made it a point to spend time with Andy because DJ didn't have any male siblings at the time, not until his brother Jerry came along a year later. Andy and Jerry are cousins and, as babies, took naps together in the same crib. She has a half-sister named Sonya. Overbearing and shrill, she's avoided by all of her family members.
She nags them with her shockingly whiny voice, often with good intentions but presenting them in the wrong way. The family especially Jackie tries to avoid spending any time with Bev, as she is quick to inadvertently criticize how people live their lives. After going back and forth playing tricks on each other in one Halloween episode, Roseanne ultimately gets the upper hand by having a fake phone conversation with Bev in front of Dan where she agrees to let her mother stay for three weeks. She is very traditional and conservative, as opposed to her daughters' more liberal and feminist philosophies.
She proves herself generous with the wealth she receives from her husband's alimony, constantly giving financial gifts to the family to bail them out. She even provides the seed money for the Lanford Lunch Box and insists on staying on as a partner, but is later forced out because Roseanne and Jackie do not want to work with her.
As revenge, she sells her share of the restaurant to Roseanne's ex-boss and rival, Leon Carp, effectively making him their new partner. During the show's final season, she comes out as a lesbian according to one of Roseanne's fictional twists on her family, along with winning the lottery , this is revealed in the finale in which Roseanne states that her mother is not a lesbian but that her sister is; she just thought it'd be interesting to put a radical twist on the character of her mother, who lived her life according to her husband's rules, and because she wished her mother had a better sense of herself as a woman.
Bev's relationship with her own mother is very similar to the one her daughters have with her. From what is known of Bev's childhood and marriage, life was hard on her emotionally, plagued with instability and neglect. Her mother, Mary, put her freedom ahead of her children and, as a result of her mother's promiscuity, Bev never knew who her father was. As a young woman, Bev, like her mother, found herself pregnant out of wedlock but, unlike her mother, married the man she was pregnant by, Al Harris. While Bev's marriage to Al lasted several decades, their union wasn't a success as Al was physically abusive towards their children and cheated on her for much of their marriage.
Largely disappointed by the outcome of her life, Bev grew to be a bitter person in her old age, which she dealt with by hiding her emotions and being highly critical of others. Nana Mary is played by Shelley Winters. Nana Mary is Beverly's mother and Roseanne and Jackie's grandmother, and first appears at a family barbecue in season three. She has another daughter named Sonya. She makes several appearances from season three onward, mostly during family occasions.
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She is a brash but caring, free-spirited, outspoken, lovable retiree who gambles with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Unlike Bev, she is popular with the family.
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She also disagrees with Bev on certain situations, such as siding with Jackie when Bev tries to get her to marry Fred, and revealing that she had two abortions, upsetting Bev who is against the idea. She outsmarts Bev and drives her crazy, much to the amusement of Roseanne and Jackie, who usually endure the same torment from Bev.
Her character is often a comic relief for the family, as well as offering a balance between Roseanne and Jackie's relationship with their mother, and Bev's relationship with Nana Mary. She was promiscuous in her younger days and claims to have dated Pablo Picasso and Louis Armstrong. Mary had Bev with another man before marrying her deceased husband Marvin.
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She tells Bev she was very young when she was born, and doesn't know who the father is, avoiding the subject whenever Bev brings it up. She is a big fan of a local radio call-in show that revolves around sex: "If I don't call, they worry," she claims. Nana Mary's last appearance is midway through season nine, in which she finally has a heart-to-heart with Bev, thus closing the story on their relationship. Despite her absence, Mary appears at other family occasions, including the birth of her great-great-granddaughter. In the reboot and spinoff, D.
Arnie is the overweight, hot-tempered but jovial friend of Dan. Originally, he was written as a relative stranger to both Roseanne and Jackie, although this was later retconned , and he was subsequently written as having gone to high school with them. He frequently cheats on the women he dates and is very ill-mannered.
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However, Arnie always tries to be a good friend to Dan. He marries Nancy but leaves her, claiming to be abducted by aliens later played upon in the fourth-season finale's end-credit sketch, where he is seen conversing with aliens on a spaceship. Before he and Nancy are engaged, he has a one-night stand with a drunk Jackie.
Arnie is often seen wearing a yellow University of Iowa sweatshirt Tom Arnold attended the University of Iowa in real life. He is last seen in season 5, where he unsuccessfully tries to win Nancy back, even after finding out that she is a lesbian. Tom Arnold appears in the ending credits of a later episode, but is now playing Jackie Thomas in his role on The Jackie Thomas Show , and none of the characters seem to recognize him.
All characters below appear in the first season and part of the second season before being written out altogether. Clooney would make one more appearance in a season four episode. All characters below appear in the show's second season only, when Roseanne takes a job as a receptionist and shampoo girl at Art's Beauty Salon.
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