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Dan Conner

Dan Conner is a fictional character in the Roseanne television series. He is the husband to fellow primary character Roseanne Conner, and father to two daughters Darlene and Becky Conner, and two sons D.J. Conner and Jerry Garcia Conner. He is portrayed by John Goodman.

Dan Conner
Roseanne character
First appearance "Life and Stuff"
Created by Roseanne Barr
Portrayed by John Goodman
Gender Male
Occupation Building contractor, motorcycle mechanic
Family Ed Conner (father)
Audrey Conner (mother)
Crystal Anderson Conner (step-mother)
Little Ed Conner (half-brother)
Angela Conner (half-sister)
Spouse(s) Roseanne Conner
Children Becky Conner Healy
Darlene Conner Healy
D.J. Conner
Jerry Garcia Conner
Relatives Harris Conner-Healy (granddaughter)
David Healy (son-in-law)
Mark Healy (son-in-law; deceased)
Lonny (step-brother)
Religion Christian (Protestant)
Nationality American

Throughout the years, Goodman has won several awards, including a Golden Globe, for his portrayal of Dan Conner.


Creation and conceptionEdit

When John Goodman was chosen to play Dan, co-star Roseanne Barr stated that she was happy, adding that she had a "big crush" on him from the start.[1]

Dan is a loving, easygoing, funny, witty family man who at the beginning of the series was looking for a job, but quickly became a drywall contractor. At one point during the second to last season, Goodman walked off the set after Barr had an on-set outburst. It was speculated that he was growing tired of her outbursts. While he considered leaving for good, Goodman held negotiations with its producers. At first, he agreed to finish the episode, but later agreed to do an episode to explain his exit. However, Goodman eventually agreed to return to the series [2] and chose to reduce his role in Roseanne to focus on his film career.[3] After this announcement, he was in negotiations with the producers on how many episodes he would appear in the following season.

Ted Harbert, boss of ABC Entertainment, commented that Barr was excited to return for a ninth season, with or without Goodman, which could be about her and her sister, Jackie Harris, as single parents. He attempted to dismiss the role of Dan, stating that Jackie has a lot more screen time than he does.[4] Los Angeles Daily News editor Phil Rosenthal criticized Harbert for his comments, describing Dan as the emotional anchor of the series. Rosenthal compared Dan to daughter Becky Conner, who was portrayed by two different actresses due to scheduling conflicts over the years, and son D.J. Conner, who was portrayed by a different actor in the pilot than the one in later episodes. He called Metcalf a wonderful actress, but added that Dan's love for his wife showed viewers that she could be lovable despite her abrasiveness, similarly to Edith Bunker and Archie Bunker in All in the Family. Rosenthal brought up similar departures that caused their respective programs to slip in quality, and warned that Roseanne may suffer the same fate if Goodman left.[4] In the end, Goodman signed on for one more season.[citation needed]


Dan Conner is an easy-going, hardworking father. Throughout the series he holds many occupations and is often seen balancing work, home, and personal interests. He is the typical working-class father who provides comic relief, but also is a good example for his children. He is an avid Chicago sports fan, including the Bears, Bulls, Cubs, and Blackhawks, and many of the shows make mention of the teams. He also enjoys junk food, playing poker, and fixing motorcycles with his friends. In many ways, he epitomizes the stereotypical American father and is widely considered one of the best TV dads of all time.

During the final episode of season 9, when Roseanne reveals that the entire ninth season was written as a book based on her life and family, she changed certain elements of what she had not liked; most notably, that Dan had actually died after having his heart attack in "The Wedding", near the end of season 8.

In 2017, news of a revival of the series is said to be in the works, with most of the original cast members reprising their roles, including Goodman.[5][6] In season 10, Dan is alive and well and stumbles upon an unpublished memoir of Roseanne's where he states that the book would have been a success had she not killed off the "most interesting character"; vaguely implying that the season 9 finale revelations were the actual details made-up for Roseanne's book.

A list of the top 25 television dad earners created by Brookstone listed Dan in the 24th place, with $17,856 a year. They came to this determination through use of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and human research firms.[7]

Critical receptionEdit

Dan Conner has often been described as one of John Goodman's most famous roles.[8] In an article about television dads, The Post and Courier editor Mindy Spar began discussing how 1990s TV dads became goofier than dads from earlier decades, calling Dan more like one of the children than the father. IGN editor Edgar Arce called Dan Conner a prototypical everyman.[1]

MSNBC commentator Gael Fashingbauer Cooper called Dan one of the first TV dads to be seen struggling to make ends meet. She also praised the character, stating that without him, the Conner family home would not be able to last. She added that in the later seasons, the series took risks with the character, such as his heart attack, his affair, and the revelation that he had died. She compared this to the revelation of Lieutenant Colonel Henry Blake's death in the M*A*S*H television series.[9]

The relationship between Roseanne and Dan has received praise. An article in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune called their relationship realistic, commenting that while they mock each other, viewers can feel their love while they deal with the kinds of problems real families face.[10] During the final season, Dan and Roseanne live apart after Dan cheats on her. Daily News editor David Bianculli stated that while they were the most entertaining and realistic couples on television, they were one of the least during their separation.[11]

The potential absence of Dan from all or most of the next season prompted Phil Rosenthal of the Los Angeles Daily News to describe it as a rare occasion where ending the show would be preferred to doing without. Robinson described Dan's potential absence as leaving a tremendous void, owing to his ability to make everyone around him better.[4] The revelation that Dan actually died and the latter part of the series being a work of fiction was not well received.[12]


John Goodman was nominated for several awards throughout his portrayal of Dan Conner, winning four, including one Golden Globe in 1993.


Syndication, 1989

  • Golden Globes: Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical, 1993
  • Viewers for Quality Television Series: Best Actor in a Quality Comedy Series, 1992
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1995
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1994
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1993
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1992
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1991
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1990
  • Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series, 1989
  • Golden Globes: Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical, 1991
  • Golden Globes: Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical, 1990
  • Golden Globes: Best Performance by an Actor in a TV-Series - Comedy/Musical, 1989
  • Screen Actors Guild Awards: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series, 1995
  • TV Land Awards: Favorite Elvis Impersonation, 2007


  1. ^ a b "Roseanne - The Complete First Season Review". IGN. 2005-08-31. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  2. ^ "Goodman staying". Daily News. 1995-10-20. Archived from the original on 2009-07-28. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  3. ^ The Miami Herald. April 21, 1996.
  4. ^ a b c Phil, Rosenthal (16 March 1996). "Casting Their Fate to the Wind". Los Angeles Daily News. Los Angeles, California. 
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Barovick, Harriet; Derrow, Michelle; Gray, Tam; Levy, Daniel; Lofaro, Lina; Spitz, David; Tartakovsky, Flora; Taylor, Chris (1999-06-21). "TV Dads: Who Brings Home How Much Bacon". Time. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  8. ^ "Broadway leaps into spring". The Christian Science Monitor. 2009-02-13. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  9. ^ "A toast to TV's best (and worst) dads". MSNBC. 2004-06-17. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  10. ^ "Christmas in a box; DVD, CD sets make great gifts". Sarasota Herald Tribune. Sarasota, Florida. 2 December 2005. 
  11. ^ "Two Old Sitcoms Going Rancid". Daily News. 1997-02-26. Archived from the original on 2009-07-28. Retrieved 2009-03-09. 
  12. ^ "TV Eye". The Austin Chronicle. 1997-06-05. Retrieved 2009-03-09.