Whereas it was necessary when following the movies of Norman Reedus to refer back again and again to Boondock Saints, I think it will be the same with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, only in his case, we will be referring to 3rd Rock from the Sun. Besides the fact that it established him as a presence in Hollywood that needed to be followed, it also is just one of the most hysterical shows I have ever seen. Not a huge fan when it first came out in 1996, I am watching it now with back to back episodes , laughing my ass off with each and every one. I do not think there has ever been as great over-actor than John Lithgow.
For those of you who don't know the show was pretty simple in concept: four aliens from a superior race come to earth, take on human forms and study our life styles and daily existence. There is Dick, the high commander; Tommy the information specialist; Sally, warrior and Harry -- who we don't really know why is there at first except to get into trouble in funny, funny ways. Tom, Dick and Harry and Sally all stuck in Ohio. It was defiantly a show, like Boondock Saints, in regards to nailing script with characters, with dialogue, with actors, director and every other aspect that goes into a perfect mesh that comes across the screen in every episode I have seen so far. Change one aspect and the entire show would have been different and we would have been all the sadder for it.
It made me a little uncomfortable at first when I kept thinking how cute Tommy was, how great he delivered his lines and then remembering he is fourteen in the show and if I think a fourteen year old kid is cute, professional help might be necessary. But then I realized the actor might be fourteen but he is portraying the oldest member on the team, the adult among all the adults. The delivery of the lines is a testament to an actor, still young and learning his craft, but still able to nail the character he is portraying: an old man interested in learning the habits or earth, especially girls and sex.
One of my favorite exchanges:
Coach Strickland: Solomon, climb the rope!
Coach Strickland: Your self-esteem.
Tommy Solomon: My self-esteem?
Coach Strickland: Now climb the rope or you get to go sit with the girls.
Tommy Solomon: So if I don't climb the rope, I get to go sit with the girls? You're going to have to help me out here, I'm failing to see the downside.”
Bottom photo: French Stewart as Harry with JGL as Tommy