- In "War and Peace," Roseanne finds out that Jackie has been abused by Fisher, her boyfriend. While Jackie breaks down and sobs, Dan comes in and asks about the situation. Roseanne only says that "Fisher beat the crap out of her," and takes her into the bathroom to clean up. Dan stands silently in the kitchen...then goes without a word to the back door and picks up his coat—and we immediately know what's about to happen. Half the studio audience did the standard dramatic "Ohhh!" The other half applauded.
Roseanne: Well, what did he say?
- A better moment is later on when the police come to arrest Dan after Fisher calls the police afterwards. Dan insists on going along quietly.
- Also, from the second half of the two parter of the above episode, Roseanne's final words to Jackie's boyfriend, Fisher:
Roseanne: If you ever come near her again you're gonna have to deal with me, and I am way more dangerous than Dan. I got a loose meat restaurant; I know what to do with the body.
- And then she breaks his television.
- The episode "Roseambo". Roseanne kicking some serious terrorist ass was awesome enough, but when one of the remaining guys snuck through the window and tried to attack, Mark immediately whirls around and shoves the guy through an open window.
Roseanne: Mark, remember all those times you screwed up? This isn't one of them.
- In the episode "Don't Make Me Over", Becky and Darlene give Roseanne a beauty spa package for Mother's Day, trying to butter her up and let them go to an out of town concert for a weekend. Roseanne, thinking that they were actually trying to be nice to her for a change, is heartbroken when she learns the truth and is reduced to tears. Dan steps in and saves the day by giving the girls a very deserving tongue-lashing, carting them off to be with Bev for a very boring weekend, and taking Roseanne out for a romantic dinner and weekend. This was after Roseanne had complained earlier that Dan was not a good disciplinarian.
- When Becky leaves and decides to start staying with Jackie, it causes a lot of friction between Jackie, Dan, and Roseanne. When Darlene visits her at Jackie's apartment she calls her sister out on the fact that her selfishness is causing everyone to be miserable, and points out that she was the one who covered for her, and got grounded, when she lied about Becky going out with Mark and Becky never came to her defense.
Darlene: Becky, you're a selfish, inconsiderate, spoiled little brat!
- Of course, Becky returned the favor in "Stressed to Kill". Becky had had anger bubbling for weeks during Darlene's depression, since she was picking up all the slack in terms of chores and getting nothing while Darlene laid around on the couch and was being fawned over. When Becky helped Darlene with a history paper and only got yelled at for her trouble, she finally let Darlene have it.
Becky: You know, I don't believe you Darlene. I help you out with your paper and you get me nailed for it.
Darlene: Look, I apologized for that yesterday. Besides, I didn't ask for your help. You just felt sorry for me and I don't need your damn pity.
Becky: Are you kidding? You're begging for it. "Oh, high school is too hard. My friends don't like me. Nobody understands me." Well, then do something about it, you little wimp!
Darlene: Shut up Becky. You don't know what you're talking about.
Becky: Of course not, 'cause you're so complex, you're so deep. Well, that's crap. You're just a whiny little basket case who's milking this depression thing for all it's worth. So here it is, four in the afternoon and you get to do exactly what you want, well, way to go. Now excuse me, but I got a zillion chores to do or Mom and Dad are gonna kick my butt.
- In "Home Economics", D.J. was being bullied at school by Kevin Morgan, who told him to bring him a Twinkie every day. However, Kevin's dad comes to the Conner house and insists that D.J. has been bullying Kevin. D.J. explains that he decided to get an older girl named Maxine Spencer to bully Kevin, by giving her a Twinkie every day. D.J. then explains that he tells Kevin he'll get Maxine to back off in exchange for two Twinkies every day. D.J. keeps one for himself and gives the other to Maxine as payment.
Roseanne: He is a genius.
Dan: Woah, back up there or I'll give my wife a doughnut to kick YOUR butt!
- David gets two in one of the Thanksgiving episodes. When he discovers that Mark knows absolutely nothing about football, David offers to teach him about it. When Mark starts making fun of him regardless, David makes up a bunch of nonsense just so Mark will embarrass himself. During the end credits, when Mark is still being an Ungrateful Bastard as David fixes a rip in his jeans, David pulls out the seams from the back and Mark walks out of the room unaware that his bare ass is showing.
- David gets yet another in "Lost Youth". After Mark spends the entire episode bullying him and flirting with a girl he likes out of pure spite, David finally calls him out: "You were willing to risk your own marriage just to hurt me! [...] Put me down, take a girl away from me, whatever it takes to make you feel superior. Just remember, Mark, besides Becky I'm the only person around here who gives a crap about you!" Mark immediately goes off to break the plans he'd made with the girl.
- In "Chicken Hearts", Roseanne is employed at a fast food restaurant. Her boss Brian is an obnoxious teenager who forces her to work weekends, even though she made him promise not to do so when she first took the job, as she needs to be home for her kids. When she discovers that Brian is struggling with an auto shop assignment, she decides to invite him over for dinner and have Dan do the project for him in an attempt to get on his good side. He accepts, but still fires her at the end of the evening, which immediately begins a series of Moments of Awesome. Dan nearly tears Brian's head off in anger; Becky and Darlene call the kid out for being a jerk (this is especially awesome as both can occasionally be nasty to their mother); Roseanne delivers a speech that points out that Brian, for all his cockiness, is nothing but a spoiled brat; Dan, Becky and Darlene destroy his project and hand him the pieces as he walks through the living room (earlier dialogue implies this will ruin his GPA bad enough, he'll no longer be able to hold on to the job that's given him this ego in the first place;) and Roseanne caps his visit off by asking "Would you like fries with that?" and slamming the door in his face.
- The "Wellman Walkout". In "Let's Call It Quits", their obnoxious, condescending, and sexist boss Mr. Faber has set unrealistic quotas for the factory workers. Roseanne discusses it with him, and he says he'll lower the quotas if she'll show him some (undeserved) respect. She does, and he turns around and raises the quotas back to their original numbers. When she goes to confront him and ask why he did it, he says simply "Because I can," and when he realizes he could break her, he could get the others to do whatever he wanted. Roseanne tears him a new one about it and storms off into the lunchroom. When Mr. Faber follows her and offers more insults, Roseanne announces that she won't put up with this any more and punches out her time card, quitting. Mr. Faber sarcastically applauds her "performance," then reminds the women that there are two doors to the lunchroom: "one that pays, and one that doesn't." There's a moment of silence...and then Jackie gets up and punches out as well. Crystal follows, and one by one, every woman on the staff joins them. As they leave, Roseanne turns and says, "I guess we won't be making our quotas today, honeybunch."
- What makes it even better is that the women were largely blue-collar workers with families, who didn't have a ton of employment prospects outside of Wellman. But despite all that, they still rallied together and chose their dignity and friendship over their jobs.
- The spontaneous, amazing dance at the end of "Roseanne in the Hood".
- Roseanne's takedown of doorbell-ringing state representative Mike Summers:
Mike Summers: Hi, I'm Mike Summers, your state representative. How are you doing?
Mike: Good. I'm going door to door trying to get to know my constituents.
Roseanne: Oh, door to door, huh? That takes a lot of time. Why don't you go down to the unemployment office and see everybody at once?
Mike: I hear you. And you're right. We can't let this area's workforce lay idle. That's why bringing in new business is my number one priority.
Mike: Through tax incentives. See, we're going to make it cheaper for out of state businesses to set up shop right here in Lanford.
Roseanne: So they get a tax break?
Mike: Yeah, that's why they come here.
Roseanne: Well, who's gonna pay the taxes they ain't payin'?
Mike: Well...you will. But you'll be working. Good, steady employment.
Roseanne: Union wages?
Mike: Well now, part of the reason the these companies are finding it so expensive to operate in other locations-
Roseanne: So they're gonna dump the unions so they can come here and hire us at scab wages, and then for that privilege we get to pay their taxes.
Mike: ...Is your husband home?
- Later, when Mike shows up at the bike shop, all it takes is Roseanne coming out and giving him a friendly hello to send him packing.
- In "Springtime for David," David goes to work for a Souvenir Land called "Edelweiss Gardens," which turns out to be a disturbing cult-like location that brainwashes him into becoming a Stepford Smiler who is perpetually polite, energetic, and perky. When Roseanne finds out, she goes to save him, and the owner of the park claims that all of his employees are free to do whatever they want. She responds...
Roseanne: You say they have freedom—but do they really? Are they free, after work, to go sit and have a beer and trash their boss like you can on any other job? No! And yet this place claims to represent what America stands for. Well, my America stands for more than five dollars to park, thirty dollars to get in, and five dollar tasteless, bunny-shaped hamburgers! Now if you will excuse us, David and I are going to get in my crappy car, drive along that polluted river where we could get carjacked or forced off the road by drunks, pull up in front of our house and RUN IN BEFORE WE ARE ROBBED! Because that, mister, is MY AMERICA, AND I THANK GOD WE'RE FREE TO ENJOY IT!
- The episode's tag is similarly awesome. Roseanne, dressed in an American flag sweater, sets about deprogramming David.
David: (tied to a chair and smiling eerily) No, Mrs. Conner! I want to go back to Edelweiss Gardens so I can help people have fun again!
Roseanne: All right, let's go over this one more time. Your name is David Healy. You frown, you're introspective, and you mope.
Roseanne: LISTEN TO ME, DAVID. We do not whistle while we work! We GRUMBLE and COMPLAIN and encourage others to do likewise!
David: Oh no, no, no, NO!
Roseanne: Yes, yes, yes! Let me tell you something about your Edelweiss Gardens, David. It's mediocre food and mediocre fun at best. And you know why I know that, David? 'Cause I am an EXPERT on what is mediocre.
(David begins to pant with anger)
Roseanne: That's good! You hate me now, don't you, David? You're feeling hate! You hate me right now, don't you?
David: NO! (starts smiling again) You're a paying customer, and I respect and admire you!
: (slapping David across the face)
LIAR! BREAK, DAMN YOU! BREAK! Listen to me, David! Rabbits and geese and goats are not people!
THEY DON'T SING AND DANCE! THEY'RE FOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!
(He breaks down sobbing)
Roseanne: There, there. Welcome home, son.
- The whole episode is pretty clearly a massive Take That! aimed at ABC/Disney, which had previously forced the producers to make what was basically an infomercial for Disneyland.
- Darlene has been seeing another guy, Jimmy, while still with David. And despite initially accepting this, David finally confronts Darlene over it and demands she make a choice between him or Jimmy. Darlene picks Jimmy. And while it's a Tear Jerker moment, the awesome part comes when David delivers one line that shows how selfish and cruel Darlene has been to him after she states their break-up is hard on her too:
- Throughout "Little Sister", Roseanne was against Jackie's idea of becoming a police officer. By the end of the episode, they get into a fight to see if Jackie had what it took to be one — it ended with Jackie subduing Roseanne by twisting her wrist and making her apologize for not supporting her. And Roseanne does that.
- In "Good Girls, Bad Girls", Darlene convinces her parents to let her go to a concert out of town with her party girl friend Molly, only to get stood up by Molly in the parking lot when she picks up a couple of strange guys in the back of a van. Darlene is forced to find her own way back home alone and isn't back for hours, and is immediately accused of betraying her parents' trust in her before Molly calls to say she's coming home with Darlene. The next morning, Molly convinces her dad that the entire thing was an accident and tries to talk Darlene into covering for her. Seeing right through her scheme, Roseanne sets the record straight with Molly and chews her out for her recklessness.
Roseanne: Now if you wanna go and screw up your own life, I don't care. But when you leave this house with a Conner kid, you better be extra careful! Because Darlene is one of the few things we own outright!
- To seal the deal, Molly is forced to wash dishes at the Lunch Box to pay off the seventy-five dollars Darlene had to fork over for the cab ride home, except Roseanne intends to make her pay back twice that amount.
- In "April Fool's Day", Roseanne gives a snooty, condescending IRS employee a well-deserved "The Reason You Suck" Speech.