A small, instantly recognizable woman sits down across the table from me. She bumps fists, leery of the germs that tourists from around the world bring with them to Las Vegas. Roseanne, one of the few stars identifiable by first name only, is in the middle of a six-night-per-week standup gig at the Tropicana’s Laugh Factory. She admits to being a little tired, but nothing slows this woman down.
Roseanne is a steamroller who’s made a career of breaking down walls. She calls comedians “psychic boil-lancers,” and she embodies that concept to a tee. Named by Comedy Central as the ninth-greatest standup of all time – the only woman listed in the top 30 – Roseanne ruled the airwaves for a decade in her eponymous hit TV series, even as she fought Hollywood’s power structure every step of the way.