Sarah Chalke as grown-up "Becky"
|sometimes disobedient and irresponsible eldest child of Dan and Roseanne Conner who, at age 17 elopes with steady boyfriend Mark Healy (big brother of David who weds sister Darlene, who later plans to study to become a doctor and beomes an expectant mother later at series' end|
|Episodes appeared in:||211 in series |
Life and Stuff (Season 1)Last appearance:
Into That Good Night, Part 2 (Season 9)
|Character played by:||Lecy Goranson (Seasons 1-5,8) |
Sarah Chalke (Seasons 5-9)
Becky was born on March 15, 1975 in the town of Lanford, Illinois to a pair of young parents who were not long out of school themselves. Becky was an extremely intelligent child who was pretty, popular and enjoyed a close mother-daughter relationship with Roseanne- as opposed to her tomboyish, irresponsible and antisocial sister, Darlene.
At some point before 1987, the family vacationed by a lake where Becky caught a lung infection and both parents were terrified that Becky was going to die but she pulled through.
Becky was definitely the opposite to her sister; a bookworm who retained her femininity whilst at the same time being something of a feminist like her mother. She enjoyed dating boys and would often experiment with her clothes and make-up thus receiving a lot of attention. Becky would often do the lion’s share of the housework and often ran chores whilst her parents worked. She kept two guinea pigs – Pebbles and Bam-Bam.
She would always stand up for whatever it was she believed in, whether refusing to dissect frogs in school, taking a crummy job at the Buy and Bag to pay for a car or defending her husband from the cruel jibes of her mother. On the other hand, she could also be very selfish and did things because they were right for Becky and that she might get something out of the deal, not because they were right for anyone else or out of any sense of altruism.
Her relationship with her parents was quite easygoing in adolescence but began to grow fragmented and rocky the closer she got to adulthood. As the eldest daughter, Dan and Roseanne heaped more responsibility on her which she resented, instead demanding rewards for her good behaviour and good grades rather than realising that she was actually being treated more and more like an adult. That aside, she was also more supportive of her parents than her sister and brother realising just how much of a struggle it was sometimes to put food on the table- that is, until she realized they had been unable to provide her with a college fund after Dan's bike shop went out of business.
Becky and Roseanne had a mixed time together. One day they would be down at the mall together playing pranks on the security staff, the next they would be bickering over household rules. Becky won two major victories over her mother by running away to her Aunt Jackie and by giving the silent treatment, but she also set herself back quite a ways when she got herself and her friend drunk while her parents were away; Darlene loyally tried to cover for her, but Roseanne and Dan's trust in their eldest was badly damaged. In her quest for independence, Becky eventually defied her parents and eloped with Mark Healy at age 17, moving to Minneapolis.
Dan and Becky on the other hand didn’t appear to have much time together at first, since they had little in common; Dan was closer to DJ and especially Darlene. But Dan would often duke it out with Roseanne over the way he felt she was treating Becky, sticking up for her behind her back. Becky was never quite sure about how she should behave around her father leading to some awkward father-daughter moments but the two did love each other. However, Dan refused to speak to her for a long time after she eloped, although he eventually reconciled with her. Despite having a better relationship with her mother, in terms of personalities Becky was slightly nearer to her father; both are stubborn and do not take dissapointments easily, but they are survivors and protective of their families
Darlene and Becky often fought like cats and dogs whilst they lived together, squabbling over territory and status in the house. Darlene was the tougher, feistier one whilst Becky saw her position as eldest as her right. She softened when her mother told her that Darlene was going to spend her entire life killing herself just to be second to Becky as she would date boys first, graduate first, get married first. However, both ultimately defied expectations- Becky eloped when she was 17 to Mark Healy (someone Roseanne did not approve) and faced several hectic years whereas Darlene was accepted early at an arts college in Chicago and found a stable romance with David, Mark's younger brother- although she eventually became pregnant and married David at age 19. Becky was Darlene's bridesmaid at her wedding, and was there for her when Darlene went into early labor, almost losing her baby.
Becky and D.J. didn’t have much of a relationship as they were six years apart and Becky resented having to ferry her brother everywhere around Lanford. She always considered him weird, confirmed when she found the box of doll heads under his bed. There was an element of jealousy involved – Becky saw DJ getting treats which she felt she never had and resented him for it. On the other hand, Becky did not physically and verbally harass him constantly, as Darlene often did.
Jackie and Becky were very close, often sounding off against the unwanted interference from Roseanne as well as being mirror images of each other. Becky married young however whilst Jackie was always better off single. Although she’d be the last to admit it, the Becky/Jackie dynamic was more sisterly than aunt and niece.
Her relationship with Mark, her boyfriend and later husband, can be rocky at times, but both are devoted to the other; she broke up with him once, but it didn't last long. Subsequent to their marriage, they have fights more often than David and Darlene, their younger siblings (and siblings-in-law); however, they only split up once, for a very short time. Mark tends to be dim-witted and short- tempered with an overly masculine attitude, but he is a reliable worker and a loyal, loving husband with good instincts; Roseanne's objection to him was mainly based on his disrespect to her personally. In the final episode when they were visiting their newborn neice Harris, it was confirmed that Becky and Mark were expecting a baby.
Becky is a successful, popular 14 year old who does extremely well in school and is likely to be the first Conner in college. She supports her mother and father who work blue-collar jobs and lobbies successfully to be put in charge of babysitting at home. She can be somewhat distracted when the telephone rings and will spend hours talking to her friends. Becky gains her first boyfriend in the form of a middle-class boy called Chip who works at the local bowling alley. Becky cheats on him with Johnny Swanko aka the "Tongue Bandit" who is an eerie precursor to Mark.
Chip has been kicked into touch and Becky is now interested in Jimmy Meltrigger, a linebacker at school. Her relationships with her parents begin to get rockier as she spends a lot of time arguing with them over her responsibilities at home and her desire for a social life.
Earlier problems occasionally break into open warfare with Becky running away from home and to Jackie who takes her in for a week whilst Roseanne is furious at the situation. With Roseanne working at the diner at Rodbells, Becky has to pick up more of the household chores which leads to the desire for a car. She also meets the older Mark Healey who is a smoking, drinking 18-year-old senior whom her parents despise. Although she is banned from seeing him, she sneaks out to do so anyway leading to some spectacular feuding. Eventually their parents realise they are reliving the same arguments they had with their parents and let the two date. Becky and Darlene bond somewhat as Darlene enters the dating world and Becky provides advice.
Becky shocks her mother by asking to go on the pill- although she and Mark have already had sex together. She also gets a job at the Buy and Bag to help her pay for a car but after being bullied by her uptight boss, Mark punches him and she breaks up with him, this being the latest in a series of incidents which lead her to believe he isn’t the one for her after all. As Darlene enters a depression, Becky has even more to do at home which slowly builds up over the year and with the failure of Dan’s bike shop, she discovers that there’s no way she can go to college. By the end of the season, she is back together with Mark.
The failure of the bike shop leads to Mark finding a job in Minneapolis and she decides to follow him and they get married three weeks before her eighteenth birthday. Dan wants the marriage to be annulled but Roseanne points out she won’t need their permission in three weeks time and she will marry again only this time they will never see her again. Dan stops speaking to Becky at this point only to have them reconcile later on. Becky only has four appearances this year; her responsibilities are mostly dumped on Darlene, who does not complain as much but often ignores them.
Becky and Mark come back from Minneapolis shortly after Darlene has gone to school in Chicago – and there’s a new Becky in town played by Sarah Chalke. They move into the recently vacated room upstairs where Mark struggles to find work and Becky takes a job at an obnoxious bar called "Bunz" to bring in some money. Becky cooks this year’s Thanksgiving meal only to see Mark and Dan have a fight but they quickly make up and are buddies. Dan and Roseanne are furious to find out that the money they gave Becky for a year’s tuition at the community college was spent on Mark to do a mechanics course and even more furious to find out that Mark dropped out after two lessons; they briefly split up, but Mark returns after having talks with Dan and Roseanne respectively. Mark inadvertently reveals that David has moved in with Darlene in Chicago, causing Roseanne to drag David back; Becky urges her to go easy on them.
Mark is hired by Dan to work at the city garage whilst Becky quits her job at Bunz. The pair have moved out of the house and into a local trailer park. She is deeply unhappy with her marriage as she feels that Mark is wasting her time when in fact he feels very insecure about his attractive, intelligent wife and some timely intervention from Roseanne get their marriage back on track. She gets closer to David, the two sharing similar interests and with Darlene dumping David for a guy in Chicago, almost get it together on a couple of occasions; however, after she and David hurt Darlene's feelings badly, they withdraw from one another, and near the end of the series David reconciles with Darlene for good.
Old Becky returns – Lecy Goranson resumes the role but Sarah Chalke appears as Becky during the Disney World special- during which Mark actually becomes jealous of her friendliness towards Goofy. Becky’s malaise over her marriage continues as a theme this year and she actively considers dropping Mark and going to college to become a doctor. She serves as Darlene's bridesmaid at her wedding to David.
Becky only has a smaller part to play in the affairs of the Conner clan but finds out she is pregnant at the end of the series. It's revealed that "in real life," she and David were the ones who really got married.