The Roseanne reboot debuted to monster ratings Tuesday night, proving that the craving for television reboots is alive and well.
The sitcom scored an average rating of 5.1 in the 18-49 demographic and a massive 18 million total viewers, even beating the Stormy Daniels interview on 60 Minutes Sunday night.
But while many can claim the nostalgia aspect to credit the show's success, there has to be more to how Roseanne scored the highest numbers for a television sitcom since 2014.
Brand and marketing expert Ali Craig weighed in with PopCulture.com exclusively about the series' record breaking numbers, using her 20 years of experience in the field to comment on how ABC's efforts, as well as the first episode's heavy political themes led to big ratings.
"Love-or-hate Roseanne or love-or-hate Trump, the truth is Trump brings in big ratings," Craig told PopCulture.com. "No matter what side you are on, you have a huge opinion about it... Roseanne's smart in the sense that this is the first comedy, and first TV Show, honestly, that is speaking to the pro-Trump, as well as to the other side, in an irreverent kind of way."
Craig called Barr "smart" for including what she called "The Trump Effect" on the reboot's first episode.
By tackling the country's political divide head on during at the start, all the press and social media commentary surrounding the show's premiere only contributed to viewers, old and new, tuning in.
"ABC's marketing was super smart," she said. "They made sure that everyone knew that Roseanne and the Conners in general were going to be the Pro-Trump side, but they were going to have the adversarial in Aunt Jackie who was going to be the Pro-Hillary side... that is something that everyone can relate to."
Craig also gives credit to the series for offering a look into the lives of blue collar families, or "Forgotten Americans" as she calls them, who don't find themselves in the majority of television.
"Trump won the presidency because he targeted the 'Forgotten Americans' and the unheard Americans, and Roseanne is being so smart with this show because that's exactly who she is targeting too... These people still exist, they still have dollars and they still have viewership power, and she's smart enough to say 'I don't care what the PC political commentary is at the moment, I'm going to play up to these people because no one else is.'"
Craig does point out that the series is also successful because it doesn't characterize itself as a television show with a conservative or a liberal agenda, it presents both sides of the issue and moves on.
Having both sides represented on television, whether on Roseanne or a new series, regardless of personal opinions is the key to viewership success, Craig said.
"There are both sides to that equation, which means they both have dollars, they both have marketing reach and they both want to have a place to belong to, so TV execs would be smart to make a show that allows for each side to be heard and each side to be respected in their opinion. It doesn't mean you have to agree with it, it just means you have to have a little respect for it," she added.0comments
While not officially announced, Roseanne's ratings success pretty much secured it a second (eleventh) season pickup at ABC, and if Craig's insight is correct we will be seeing many more series tackling issues "The Roseanne Way" in the near future.
Roseanne airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.