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The Reboot Of Roseanne Will Feature A "Gender-Creative" Child

The character is comfortable just being who they are regardless of gender role expectations…

The new season of iconic ’90s sitcom Roseanne has been highly anticipated and somewhat controversial (like, for example, the fact that Roseanne Conner is written as a Trump supporter). Despite that, the show is set to portray an under-represented side of the LGBTQ+ community—the “gender creative” child who is still figuring things out.

Roseanne’s original run from 1998 to 1997 didn’t shy away from openly LGBT characters. The first ever wedding between two men on TV, Roseanne’s former boss and his boyfriend, aired during the show’s original run. Nancy (played by Sandra Bernhard), a good family friend dated women and eventually identified as bisexual, and Beverly (played by Estelle Parsons), Roseanne and Jackie’s mother came out as a lesbian in the final season. Both characters are set to appear in the new season.

In the revival, Roseanne’s grandson (so her daughter Darlene’s son), Mark is a nine-year-old boy who likes to wear sequins and skirts sometimes and is more effeminate than your typical young boy. Executive producer, Sara Gilbert, who plays Darlene, told EW in an interview that Mark is “not a transgender character. He’s a little boy. He’s based on a few kids in my life that are boys who dress in more traditionally feminine clothing. He’s too young to be gay and he doesn’t identify as transgender, but he just likes wearing that kind of clothing and that’s where he is at this point in his life.”

Mark might be too young to know exactly how he wants to identify, but he feels comfortable expressing himself in a way that feels natural to him—something most kids in the 90s wouldn’t even consider doing. But the Connor family exists in 2018 so it’s only natural that they’ve grown and adapted too.

Roseanne and Dan, as well is the rest of the Conner family, are learning how to accept and support Mark, but they are also concerned about how he’ll be treated at school. That would be difficult for anyone who wants the best for their child or grandchild. Mark (who is played by newcomer Ames McNamara) hasn’t grown up being told he has to hide who he is, which is a common experience for more and more kids these days. In general, the Conner family is figuring things out together, which is a good example for all families—even the Trump supporting ones.

The new season of Roseanne premieres on March 27th on ABC.

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