How John Lithgow Dodged A Common Sitcom Problem With 3rd Rock From The Sun

Because the journey of the main characters from “3rd Rock from the Sun” is about their adaptation to society and wacky attempts to function as ordinary humans, it allowed John Lithgow to experiment wildly with Dick Solomon as the character discovers what kind of human he wants to be. “Dick Solomon was not just Dick Solomon,” the actor told the LA Times. While Dick does have his own personality — a hilariously outlandish one I should add — viewers never know what to expect from the character from one episode to the next. “Anything could go! I could sing Gershwin songs, I could dance like Gene Kelly in ‘Singin’ In The Rain’, I could dance like Michael Flatley, from Riverdance,” Lithgow said. “It was just –- I could do anything!”

Because of this freedom, Lithgow, along with his co-stars, Kristen Johnston, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and French Stewart, showed his range as an actor and helped made “3rd Rock from the Sun” one of the most unpredictable shows on TV at the time. Possibly, not only did this not trap him, but his showcase of range may have helped increase his stock. I’m now trying to think if there’s any episode in particular that would have convinced the producers of the psychological crime drama “Dexter” that Lithgow would make the perfect Trinity Killer.

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