The Roseanne reboot paid a subtle tribute to late actor Glenn Quinn, who played Mark Healy in one of its new episodes.
Quinn passed away in 2002 after an accidental drug overdose. He was 32. The show's writers and producers decided to honor Quinn's memory by writing that his character had died at a young age as well, which will likely play a part in Becky Conner's storyline for the season.
However, there were a couple of other nods to Quinn in the first two episodes of the highly acclaimed reboot. Darlene Conner's young son is named Mark, reportedly in homage to his late uncle. Not only that, but Mark Healy's passing was mentioned in passing in the new season's first episode, when Aunt Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) discussed how hard Becky had it since her husband passed away. According to a report by PopSugar, that won't be the last we hear about the elder Healy brother.
“We all had great affection for Glenn. We really wanted to say something,” Roseanne executive producer Bruce Helford told reporters. “He comes up a couple times. It isn’t just [the premiere episode]. He comes up a couple times in the course of the nine episodes.”
Helford added that Quinn's passing figured heavily in their writing process, saying “when you have a show that’s so naturalistic, we had to deal with that and that Becky was going to be single.”
The clearest tribute to Mark Healy — and Quinn himself — is in the background in the Conner family living room. In the season premiere, a photo of Healy can be seen on the table behind the couch, along with many other family pictures and the notorious Godzilla figurine.
Michael Fishman, who plays D.J. Conner, took to Twitter during the premiere and promised more shoutouts to Quinn are to come.
"Only blemish on tonight's @RoseanneOnABC return was not having Glenn Quinn here to celebrate with. We will honor him in future episodes of #Roseanne," he wrote. "So much more to come".
Only blemish on tonights @RoseanneOnABC return was not having Glenn Quinn here to celebrate with.
We will honor him in future epsiodes of #Roseanne
So much more to come— Michael Fishman (@ReelMFishman) March 28, 2018
Barr spoke to the grief of Quinn's absence with PopSugar as well.
“We all missed Glenn so much, because he was just a great part of the show, and it’s not something we wanted to just gloss over," she said.1comments
The details of Mark Healy's death still need to be fleshed out in the reboot. In coming episodes, the show will presumably address how he died and how long he has been dead.