'Roseanne' Drops P-Word and Twitter Lights Up

Did Roseanne just go there?

Early during the ABC reboot's first episode, the series revealed Roseanne (Roseanne Barr) and Aunt Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) had been estranged for a year following the 2016 presidential election, where Roseanne voted for Donald Trump and Jackie supported Hillary Clinton.

Darlene (Sara Gilbert), who recently moved back into the Conner household with her two kids, decides to bring the sister feud to an end by having the women talk out their issues.

Viewers get their first glance at Aunt Jackie as she arrives to pick up Darlene for a job interview, and she's wearing a "Nasty Woman" shirt and one of the p— hats made famous during the first Women's March.

"What's up deplorable?" Jackie says to Roseanne, poking fun at what Clinton called Trump supporters during the election.

After exchanging a few verbal jabs at each other, Darlene tells the sisters they must make up.

"You guys need to talk this out. Mom, Aunt Jackie right here. P— hat in hand," Darlene says.

This marks a unique occasion when the word has been said openly in a network television comedy, which fans were quick to point out on social media.

Television has had a complicated history with the vulgar p-word. Many cable news organizations used it while covering a tape of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump talking about kissing women without asking them and being able to "grab them by the p—."

At the time, several complaints were filed with the Federal Communications Commission, which sets regulations for permissible televised content. In many cases, profanity is censored with a bleep or is muted, but with the Trump tape, the word made it on the air.

According to the FCC's website, if a broadcast network violates the rule airing profanity, the FCC "has the authority to revoke a station license, impose a fine or issue a warning." As is the case with this word, Roseanne may be in the clear since they were referring to an item of clothing, as opposed to a vagina.


Whatever the legal ramifications for using the word during Tuesdays episode are, Roseanne fans took to social media to express their outrage, many of them angry about using the word in a family-friendly series.

Roseanne airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.