Actor Michael Fishman — who played son D.J. Conner on Roseanne from 1988 to 1997 and has returned for the revival of the ABC sitcom (Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET) — blogs exclusively for EW about his experience filming the new episodes.
“No Country for Old Women” is another powerful episode from the best writing staff in television. Like the title might suggest, the episode — is spearheaded by Dave Caplan — deals with aging, and the connection we have with our parents as they get older, in a very unique way. I have to admit, there are moments even I didn’t expect from our writers. I missed a few days mid-week when I was off working on another project, and when I came to set I was fascinated by the adjustments.
Sandra Bernhard, Natalie West, and Estelle Parsons all return. Surrounded by Roseanne, Laurie, Sara G, Lecy and Emma. I can’t help but feel like we are witnessing a timeline of classic female performers across the generations. Estelle is timeless, much as I imagine Roseanne, Natalie, and Laurie will be. Sara and Lecy have real demonstrated their excellence, with Emma primed to represent a younger generation.
We get spoiled on Roseanne surrounded by legends on a daily basis. Just when you think we have reached our zenith, here comes Christopher Lloyd playing Bev’s boyfriend Lou. To be on set and watch Christopher Lloyd work is special. Watching each actor go through their own process, listening to how they shape things from the early pages at the beginning of the week to the heightened and sharpened presentation to a live audience is truly enlightening.
While most actors go back to their dressing rooms between their scenes, I have always preferred to stay on set. There is so much you can learn; I always try to steal an insight, choice, or technique. While we do need time away to learn lines and focus, I find watching others work fascinating and illuminating. I grew up at the feet of giants in our profession, it is imperative to attempt to steal elements of their greatness.
There is a great really candid scene in the kitchen with our plethora of powerful women having truly uninhibited conversation, led as only Bev can. Estelle Parsons plays Bev, the over bearing, opinionated, and painfully honest mom to perfection as always. The whole episode really demonstrates Estelle’s ageless prowess. Estelle is an inspiration to us all; she remains as sharp, spry and subtle as ever.
Dan and Mark find themselves linked. The way they seemingly come together is fantastic. Obviously, there are some bumps in their relationship but the very real way Ames McNamara, John Goodman and Sara Gilbert interact is fun to watch. Ames’ talent continues to shine.
Finally, if Estelle Parsons, and Christopher Lloyd aren’t reason enough to watch this episode wait until you see Roseanne the Uber driver! Then add Jackie in the car with a customer…