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The couple met in Minneapolis in 1983 when Arnold, then an unknown comic, had opened for the rising stand-up who billed herself as a “domestic goddess.” In 1988, Barr hired Arnold to be a writer on her new ABC sitcom, Roseanne. The show quickly established itself as a critical darling and ratings hit, making Barr an instant superstar. The couple wed two years later, resulting in a tumultuous marriage that ended four years after that. The two put an 18-year estrangement behind them last August, with a tearful appearance from Arnold at Barr’s Comedy Central Roast, during which he relayed the story of how he first met Barr, then his comedy idol. The two have occasionally tweeted at each other since.
But troubles sprang anew on Sunday, when Arnold tweeted that he had cleaned out the garage and dumped the boxes at Goodwill, including some old wedding videos. Arnold, who has been married four times, didn’t specify which wedding the videos were from. One day later, Barr caught wind of Arnold’s plans and asked her ex-husband if the videos were from their wedding. If they were, she wanted the videos back, since her children were in them and it wasn’t his “choice” to “destroy” them. The conversation degrades from there — though have faith, for by the end, the two found a way to patch things up and even share a few niceties about Arnold’s newborn son, Jax, whose loveable, bespectacled face adorns Arnold’s Twitter page.
The Hollywood Reporter has pieced together to the best of its ability the entire correspondence into a readable script, complete with annotations. Who knows: You may soon see it performed at a local dinner theater, Love Letters-style (possibly starring Barr and Arnold themselves).
The Twitter Fight
by Roseanne Barr and Tom Arnold
Tom: Cleaned out garage and dropped boxes at Goodwill. Hope someone really needs 47 remote controls, 65 phone chargers and my old wedding videos.
Roseanne: Of me? bc if they are, I would like that footage since it has my kids in it-it’s not really your choice2 destroy.
Tom: It’s still there. They are only charging $1 for it and the proceeds go to a good cause.
Roseanne: what the fuck is wrong with U?
[A Twitter user comments, “Some poor sap hoping for canned goods is gonna get a box with VHS tapes of the Jackie Thomas Show — life’s cruel.” To which Barr replies, “Oh, no — those are protected in his vault w shwartznegger’s dna.” The Jackie Thomas Show was Arnold’s 1992 sitcom on ABC, co-created by Barr. It lasted only one season.]
Tom: What is wrong with you? So damn serious all the time
Roseanne: i’m asking you a question — try answering it honestly. It’s not THAT hard, really.
Tom: Yes mother dear
Roseanne: hey, can u answer my q?
Tom: Here’s the better question: What did YOU do with your copy of our old wedding videos?
Roseanne: you took it
Tom: Let’s put this petty bickering to rest and agree that The Jackie Thomas Show was awesome.
Roseanne: can u just answer my q b4 it all becomes about you?
Tom: All about me??? I’ve got old wedding videos from several women. Why you think it’s all about YOU? Good lord I feel sorry for Monsanto with you on their asses
[Monsanto is the agricultural biotech corporation involved in a number of class action lawsuits over health issues related to its products. Barr has been an outspoken opponent.]
Tom: I’ve been thinking and your uterus might’ve been an actual tracking device all along. How did you find me???
Roseanne: some 1 sent ur tweet here
Tom: Remember when U said your uterus was a tracking device only your real uterus was not actually a tracking device. Was a joke.
[Roseanne had a line in her stand-up act that went, “But this bugs me the worst, when the husband thinks the wife knows where everything is, huh. Like they think the uterus is a tracking device. ‘Cause he comes in and goes ‘Hey Roseanne, do we have any Cheetos left?’ Like he can’t go over and lift up that sofa cushion himself.”]
Roseanne: So then your answer is: no, they are not of me or my kids? That’s all u really have to say —
Tom: Don’t you agree that it’s pretty fucked up that I even have to say that???
[By now Twitter has gathered around to cheer on the two parties as if at an illegal cockfight. Roseanne tweets that “it’s fun to spam block all the ppl commenting!”]
Tom: Fun? Is it really? You must get out more sweetie.
Roseanne: I’m sick in bed.
Tom: I’m sorry. Hope you feel better. Just glad I could brighten up your day a bit 🙂
Roseanne: ppl think this is a fight! lol-anyway-i’m taking it that it wasn’t me in the video-thanks for the response! have a good one-ur kid is very cute.
Tom: Thank you. I will seriously look to see if there’s anything with you or your kids out there. Don’t think so but will look.
Roseanne: i do appreciate that-what is the baby named? how old?
Tom: Jax Copeland Arnold. 15 weeks of amazing. Hopefully he will sleep one day.
Roseanne: that’s a cute name — what a little doll — thank you:) forgot to ask — what sign is he?
Tom: April 6 so what is that?
Roseanne: aries in hebrew calender — ur pisces, what is ur wife sign?
Tom: November 29….1996..kidding. It’s November 29
Roseanne: sag. u guys will have your work cut out 4 u as jax’s sign is powerful as hell.
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