The Conners has been dealing with some serious heartbreak in recent episodes as Becky (Alicia Goranson) suffered from an alcoholic relapse and ended up in rehab. In the latest episode, "Cheating, Revelations and a Box of Doll Heads," the root of Becky's alcoholism was revealed: the death of her husband, Mark, played by Glenn Quinn in the original series, Roseanne. While Mark's death has been alluded to, an exact reason was never given. Quinn died from a drug overdose in 2002, but his character was not given the same end.
In the episode, Becky's roommate at rehab wonders if her stint in rehab is "God's plan," to which Becky replies, "The last time [God] helped me, she threw a deer in front of my husband’s motorcycle, and he died." Later in a therapy session with her family, Becky admitted that she turned to alcohol to numb the pain after her husband's death. "I didn’t want to feel anything for a while, and then a while turned into years," she explained. "I can’t help thinking if he was still here, maybe all of this would be different."
Dan (John Goodman) told Becky that he always thought that Mark was a "selfish little punk" who ruined her life, making her drop out of college and stealing money from Dan and Roseanne that was meant for Becky's tuition. "He shouldn’t have taken my college money," Becky replied. "And I am a little angry at him for some of the things he did that screwed up my life."
However, Becky ultimately takes responsibility for the choices that she's made. "I let him," she said. "I was so stupid. I didn’t want to drop out and move. I wanted to go to college, but I was so afraid to lose him. And then I ended up losing him anyway." Becky ends up bemoaning her "wasted time," admitting that she believes she squandered her potential. "I kept telling myself, over and over again, that I was going to stop drinking and get back on track, and now I’m so far behind," she cried. "I’ll never catch up. Remember how proud you were when I said I was going to be a doctor?" However, Dan wraps her in a hug and tells her that he's always been proud of her, "never more than now."
The Conners showrunner Bruce Helford previously explained that they wanted to show Becky in rehab for her alcoholism because it would seem unrealistic if she didn't have any problems kicking the habit. "We thought we may have done a little bit of a disservice making it look so easy that someone could stop cold turkey," Helford explained. "It isn’t so easy to [quit drinking] for most people, and our show is always trying to be a touchstone of reality in a world of sitcoms that often is not."