The Conners went a different route with their Feb. 11 outing, as it marked the show's first-ever live episode. And, unsurprisingly, fans had plenty of thoughts about how everything played out.
Many fans were particularly impressed that the show was able to feature live updates from the New Hampshire primary results. At one point during the program, the show was even able to report live that Democratic candidate for president Andrew Yang had suspended his campaign.
"Live news being watched on a live show is some sort of tv inception that just blew my mind a little," one viewer wrote on Twitter.
"I learned that Yang dropped out of the race from #TheConnersLive," another viewer noted. "This family has been informing me on issues for decades!"
"I'll say it again you guys should do every week live! You're killing it. Awesome job," one fan wrote, praising the cast for a terrific performance.
"I LOVE how @TheConnersABC is doing this live with the New Hampshire Democratic Primary. Go, Conners!" yet another fan wrote.
The Conners' live episode saw the family reacting live to the New Hampshire primary results. In advance of the episode, showrunner Bruce Helford spoke to Variety and discussed what fans can expect from it.
"We're obviously going to get a lot of new viewers, so we wanted to show them a good episode of The Conners as it is," he told the publication. "There's a lot going on in the show emotionally between Harris and Mark, and Dan and Darlene, and Dan and his girlfriend Louise."
"At the same time, we said if we were going to do this, we didn't want it to sound preachy in any way, shape or form," Helford added. "This family is political enough in their way because the working class is hit every day by what's going on at the top. We wanted to be sure that was represented but naturally and organically represented — and just kind of scattered throughout."
Additionally, the executive VP of programming strategy at ABC Entertainment, Andy Kubitz, also opened up about the network's trend towards live programming (in addition to The Conners, the network has also aired Live in Front of a Studio Audience, which featured new, live renditions of Norman Lear classics).
"We're always looking for opportunities to create compelling live events and programs that showcase the wide array of talent on our network," Kubitz said, also per Variety. "The Conners is a great example of a topical show that lends itself to reacting to a real-time event — in this case, the New Hampshire primary — in an entertaining and comedic way. If the stars align on other projects like this in the future, we're completely open to embracing them. This is the very definition of appointment television."