A Bitter Pill to Swallow was the opening episode of Season 4 of Roseanne, also the 73rd overall series episode. Written by Amy Sherman and Jennifer Heath, the episode was directed by Andrew D. Weyman. It originally aired on ABC-TV on September 17, 1991.


While the Conners plan to open their own bike shop, Becky comes to Jackie and Roseanne for advice on birth control and reveals that she has already slept with Mark.


  • This episode marks the first time Roseanne Barr is credited as Roseanne Arnold
  • Dan tells Roseanne that Becky is only 17. However in Episode 98 (which aired about a year later) Becky is still 17 and won't be 18 for another couple months.
  • When Becky and Roseanne talk in the kitchen, after Roseanne tells Becky, "Not if you don't want me to." When Becky walks over to her, you can see a microphone at the top of the screen moving over Becky's head quickly moving out of frame.


Crystal (about to little Ed): Why won't he sleep? I've tried everything! Even the washing machine.
Darlene: You put him in the washing machine?

Roseanne (to Dan): Becky wants me to take her to get some birth control.
(Dan silently walks away)
Roseanne: Where you going?
Dan: Oh, I'm gonna kill Mark.

Jackie (after discussing Becky going on the pill): Roseanne, maybe you need to sit down.
Roseanne: No, I need to lie down... in a big pine box.

Roseanne: Season Four
A Bitter Pill to Swallow|Take My Bike ... Please!|Why Jackie Becomes a Trucker|Darlene Fades to Black|Tolerate Thy Neighbor|Trick Me Up, Trick Me Down|Vegas|Vegas, Vegas|Stressed to Kill|Thanksgiving '91|Kansas City, Here We Come|Santa Claus|Bingo|The Bowling Show|The Back Story|Less is More|Breakin' Up is Hard to Do|This Old House|The Commercial Show|Therapy|Lies|Deliverance|Secrets|Don't Make Me Over|Aliens
Season episode guides

Season 1|Season 2|Season 3|Season 4|Season 5|Season 6|Season 7|Season 8|Season 9|Season 10