Comedy sitcom, The Conners was a series born out of controversy when comedic leading lady Roseanne Barr found herself in hot water over a tweet. At the time, the future of the series, without its matriarch, was uncertain. But both Barr and the network worked to salvage the series. According to NBC, Barr reportedly stated:
“I agreed to the settlement so that the 200 jobs of the beloved cast and crew could be saved, and I wish the best for everyone involved.”
Thus, The Conners was birthed.
After its initial airing, it was clear that the network had made a good decision to continue the series. And astoundingly, The Conners has made it through four incredible seasons, with three of them being highly fruitful to the network. Near the conclusion of season three, the numbers were in and executive producer Bruce Helford confirmed that it was ABC’s No. 1 comedy that season.
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Season 4 was rife with lessons on dealing with the highs and lows of life. It depicted near victories and fumbles, but the overall appeal was relativity. Many have connected with the blue-collar family for decades. Their problems and relational tensions reflected the everyday struggles of family units across the country. Yet the Conners manage to stick it out and remain stronger for it. And although their success is born on barely scraping by, they share an overwhelming abundance of love in the best way they can.
Season 5: The Storyline
One thing The Conners got right was its refusal to avoid complex topics. And season four stuck true to that formula exploring such themes as faith, God, existentialism, mass shootings, gun violence, self-introspection, fresh starts, sexual orientation, gender identity, connection, death, heritage, and sobriety. And, like the previous seasons, the series creators demonstrated a unique ability to break those topics into their most elemental forms while creatively reshaping them.
That was underscored by the actor’s ability to blend satirical humor and sincerity to make such palatable. Sources indicate that season 5 will provide quite a bit of entertainment. Executive producer Bruce Helford sat down with TV Line, revealing:
“Every episode [in Season 5] has a surprise.”
Which is a definite plus because who doesn’t love surprises? However, that was not quite all Helford had to share. He also revealed how season five would continue the storyline of the previous season. That brings the fans to what we do know. Those who watched season four understand that the season ended on a high, with a particularly endearing episode. It was one of the happiest closers in the history of the series. The finale saw two feature characters who are often most unlucky in love, Darlene (Sarah Gilbert) and Jackie (Laurie Metcalf), married. Of equal wonder that season was Dan’s (John Goodman) decision to take the next step in his healing journey choosing to marry his new love, Louise (Katey Sagal).
For the upcoming season, Helford alluded to a double honeymoon being a plot point of exploration in season five. According to Helford, in speaking of the newlyweds, “They go when they can afford to, in a way they can afford to, and that may be interesting in and of itself.” So, of course, the season will also delve further into the subject of marital ties and life. Additional storylines will include Mark (Ames McNamara) and his deepening feelings for his love interest. Furthermore, the new season promises a storyline that focuses on Becky’s (Lecy Goranson) growth and development. But the casting news points toward the most exciting developments and a season full of enormous drama.
Season 5: The Cast
John Goodman (Dan), Sara Gilbert (Darlene), Laurie Metcalf (Jackie), Lecy Goranson (Becky), Ames McNamara (Mark), Emma Kenney (Harris), and Katey Sagal (Louise) are all due to return. However, there will be a big shake-up. This season a bedrock character will no longer be present to add his barbs and less-than-sunny disposition. It has been reported that DJ will no longer be a part of the show. Actor Michael Fisherman has been given his walking papers.
In an earlier interview, he stated that being excluded from season 5 was not his desire. Nevertheless, he didn’t say goodbye without offering his gratitude. A letter from Fisherman:
“While I was told I would not be returning for Season 5, Lanford was a valuable place to grow up, learn and develop. As I venture into the world to build the future, I send tremendous love and success to everyone involved in production.”
Releasing Fisher is not the only surprising reveal. The new season promises the introduction of an unknown relative, a surprise star, and the re-introduction of a series alum. As for clues on who that might be, nada. All lips are sealed.
The show was in limbo after its fourth season. However, the series survived the cut. So, hooray for the upcoming season of The Conners. Viewers can catch the season 5 premiere on September 21, 2022, on ABC at 8 pm ET/PT and simultaneously streaming platform Hulu.