The Conners wraps its inaugural 11-episode season tonight (8/7c, ABC) with a fair amount of wind in its sails. Despite its controversy-plagued birth, the Roseanne spinoff has been a ratings winner (it’s the network’s No. 2 show behind only Grey’s Anatomy), making a second season more a question of when than if.
For her part Sara Gilbert, who in addition to starring as Darlene serves as an exec producer on the offshoot, tells TVLine that she remains “hopeful that there will be a Season 2” particularly since the episode ends “with a bit of a cliffhanger.”
Might said cliffhanger involve the rumored return of Gilbert’s onscreen ex Johnny Galecki? (ABC has been dropping strong hints that Galecki’s David will resurface to potentially throw a monkey wrench into Darlene’s plans to relocate to Chicago with new boyfriend Ben, played by Jay R. Ferguson). Without officially confirming Galecki’s return, Gilbert says, “I think David and Darlene are so tied to each other emotionally that they keep coming into each others’ lives. I don’t think either one of them can easily step away from each other.”
Regardless of what the future holds for The Conners, Gilbert believes this finale serves as a fitting “bookend” to the show’s October opener. “Some of the emotions of the premiere come up again in this episode,” she shares. “That’s something that was really important to me. I didn’t want to do a sitcom version of loss where there’s one “very special episode” and then it’s done and everybody moves on. This episode shows that emotional themes run through people’s lives and not just through a week.”