During the show’s 2020 Halloween episode, Becky makes a peculiar comment. At one point she mentioned she is one of Dan and Roseanne’s three children. Dan jokingly replies the couple “had one favorite and two backups.” Longtime Roseanne fans will tilt their heads at that response because it seems to neglect Jerry Garcia Conner.
Showrunner Bruce Helford talked to TVLine about this oddity. Jerry never appeared in person for the Roseanne revival or The Conners. During the initial revival, Roseanne mentioned him being on a fishing trip, but that was it. Helford clarifies some aspects of the later seasons wouldn’t come back. The reasoning? Stifling creativity, as well as it possibly being part of the “dream” sequence.
“We decided that some of the things from the 8th and 9th seasons wouldn’t apply, as they were either limiting to opening new creative roads for the characters or part of the ‘dream’ period, like winning the lottery,” Helford explained. “We didn’t really have room to add Jerry Garcia, but we had a soft spot in our hearts for him, so we put him on a fishing boat and said he rarely contacted the family.”
Additionally, the new cast made The Conners teem with storylines and interesting ideas. Since Jerry was basically a footnote at that time, they didn’t bother mentioning him anymore. Helford did say they don’t completely rule out the possibility of Jerry returning, noting “We’ll just have to wait and see.”
Where Did Other Iconic ‘Roseanne’ Characters Disappear to on ‘The Conners?’
Jerry isn’t the only character absent on The Conners. Along those lines, what about Mark Healy or Jackie’s son?
Mark Healy was Becky’s husband in Roseanne and his death was mentioned again in The Conners. Talking about him in the third season, Becky said he died in a “freak accident.” When her roommate mentioned it being part of God’s plan, Becky wasn’t receptive. “The last time [God] helped me, she threw a deer in front of my husband’s motorcycle and he died.” It should be noted Mark’s actor, Glenn Quinn, died from an overdose in 2002.
As for Jackie’s son, Andy Harris, he apparently never existed. In a separate TVLine interview, Helford said Andy fell into the “dream sequence,” like many other show aspects. “We made a conscious decision that certain years were going to be part of the dream that was revealed at the end of the run of the original Roseanne, and [Andy] was part of the dream. Andy fell into the same category for us as winning the lottery; [it’s] something we chose not to acknowledge.”