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 the Season 5 episode "Terms of Estrangement, Part 1" (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 SwallowTake My Bike ... Please!Why Jackie Becomes a TruckerDarlene Fades to BlackTolerate Thy NeighborTrick Me Up, Trick Me DownVegasVegas, VegasStressed to KillThanksgiving '91Kansas City, Here We ComeSanta ClausBingoThe Bowling ShowThe Back StoryLess is MoreBreakin' Up is Hard to DoThis Old HouseThe Commercial ShowTherapyLiesDeliveranceSecretsDon't Make Me OverAliens
Season Episode Guides

Roseanne: Season 1Season 2Season 3Season 4Season 5Season 6Season 7Season 8Season 9Season 10
The Conners: Season 1Season 2

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