Roseanne Barr has long been one of President Donald Trump’s most ardent celebrity supporters, and as we found out earlier this week, the feeling is mutual. After the Roseanne reboot’s unexpectedly popular premiere on Tuesday, Barr revealed she got a congratulations call from none other than the president of the United States.
“It was pretty exciting. I’ll tell you that much,” she said on Good Morning America. “They said, ‘Hold please for the president of the United States of America’ and [that] was about the most exciting thing ever. It was just very sweet of him to congratulate us.”
There was a lot of buzz leading up to Roseanne‘s premiere, but the show still crushed ratings predictions, drawing 18.2 million viewers, which is 10 percent more than its finale in 1998. Unsurprisingly, most of Roseanne‘s viewers were in states and districts with a high population of Trump voters. New York and Los Angeles, the country’s top viewer markets, delivered lower ratings for Roseanne, while Tulsa, Oklahoma; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Kansas City, Missouri, were its top markets — all areas that Trump carried easily in the 2016 election. The only blue market to deliver high ratings for Roseanne was Chicago, where the show is set, but despite being a huge market, it was only the fifth-highest for the show. All the markets that performed better were smaller.
It’s no wonder Trump voters turned out for the Roseanne reboot since Barr’s very public support for the controversial president made a lot of headlines leading up to the premiere. She’s historically been unapologetic about her support for Trump even though she never formally endorsed him. She told The Hollywood Reporter during the race, “We should be so lucky if Trump won, because then it wouldn’t be Hillary,” drawing praise from Trump then.
Thank you Roseanne, very much appreciated. https://t.co/COXEJ1In8D
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 9, 2016
Reactions on social media to the reboot’s premiere have been mixed. Of course, with ratings like those, there’s some expected support.
— Korynn (@Korynn_W) March 28, 2018
Call me crazy or call it a hunch- This Roseanne reboot might be what unites us all.
— Josh Thrash (@Thrash04) March 28, 2018
The only upside of being sick is getting to catch up on the new #Roseanne reboot – it’s truly wonderful, warm and funny. Happy to have her back.
— Meghan McCain (@MeghanMcCain) March 28, 2018
But there was also plenty of criticism.
If Roseanne is a hit they should do an I Love Lucy reboot where it turns out Lucy loves Stalin
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) March 27, 2018
The Roseanne reboot is going to be popular with the Trump crowd because it provides a sanitary, cleaned-up reality in which they’re just concerned about their country. 1/
— Jared Yates Sexton (@JYSexton) March 29, 2018
For the millionth time we don’t want an inside look at everyday Trump supporters. It doesn’t matter if it’s a #Roseanne reboot or a mainstream media profile. They let their hatred get the best of them, fell for Trump’s con and wrecked our country. There is no other story to tell.
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) March 28, 2018
As the season progresses, we’ll just have to see if Roseanne can maintain its initial ratings success. But there’s one thing nobody can deny right now: The premiere was a huge hit despite controversial politics.