High Commander of the aliens and as such patriarch of the family, he teaches physics at the local university. He somehow manages to be a condescending genius while also being an idiotic manchild, and has an on-off relationship with his co-worker Mary.
Brutal Honesty: Most of the time except when he's denying his existence as an alien. The concept of lying was just as foreign to the aliens as emotions and gender were.
One of the first season episodes focused on Dick discussing the concept of "ass kissing" to the other aliens in regards to a Jerkass professor who is having a party thrown in his honor, and fails to understand why people continue to suck up to him face-to-face yet badmouth him behind his back. Dick's blatant and carefree honesty towards the professor actually causes him to like Dick, so much so that he considers him a friend. When the professor dies at the party, Dick is shocked to learn afterwards that he's expected to deliver the eulogy at the funeral because the professor figured he was the only person who wouldn't lie.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Dick's bizarre, childish behaviour is tolerated at the university because his advanced alien knowledge of physics makes him one of the best in his field.
Catchphrase: "Family meeting! FAMILY MEETING!" and, less frequently, "You're not family GET OUT!"
An example would be when Mary compared his family to The Addams Family. Dick assumed she meant second president John Adams. When she states that wasn't what she meant, Dick thinks she meant John Quincy Adams and becomes enraged that she would compare his family to "that freakshow".
Gag Penis: Dick poses for a nude painting class in one episode. Apparently, he really lives up to his name.
Harry: I'm gonna need more pink.
I Can't Believe It's Not Heroin: Got addicted to collecting stuffed animals called "Fuzzy Buddies". His friends and family staged an intervention when it reached the point that he had so many he was keeping them in the freezer.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's selfish, arrogant, condescending, and a complete drama queen, but he truly does love Mary and comes to care for the other aliens as family members rather than just crewmates. Worth noting that for better or worse, it's uncertain how much of this is due to his inexperience coping with human emotions.
Large Ham: He has three voices — shouting, talking at normal volume but being overly emotional, and shouting while being overly emotional.
Single-Target Sexuality: A subversion. Mary is the only woman with whom Dick considers himself to be truly in love with, and spends the length of the entire show either with her or trying to get back together with her. But he's had other relationships, including a one-night stand with the mother of one of his students.
Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: Had three, the only frequent one being Vincent Strudwick. The other two were fellow alien Liam Neeson, and grumpy lunch lady Lucy.
What Does He See In Her?: The other aliens hate Mary and don't understand what Dick's obsession with her is. As the series progressed their opinion of her as a person softened, but they still hated the idea of the two of them together.
Security Officer and Dick's "sister", she comes to realize that by Earth standards, she's gorgeous, and learns to use her looks to get what she wants and use men as she pleases. However, she's still Security Officer and is easily the most Badass member of the family when required.
Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: While Dick, Sally, and Harry manage to humiliate Tommy on countless occasions, Sally's overbearing manner makes her the worst offender.
Ax-Crazy: Borders on this at times, such as when her role as the security officer would require having to kill someone deemed a threat to the mission. Her solution to stop an auditor from discovering they're aliens was to snap his neck, and then the necks of everyone they encounter on the way home.
Character Development: Originally rather tomboyish and hated her femininity. By the later episodes, she became a more feminine (but not girly) character, letting out her softer side.
Sally(demonstrating): "They seem to have more power when I squeeze 'em together. What do you think?"
I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: In the last two episodes she turns Don into an effective police officer and gives him a backbone before leaving Earth, because she couldn't stand the thought of him spending the rest of his life as a muffin making coward.
Ugly Guy, Hot Girlfriend: To Don, but it's played with — Sally considers Don sexy (though it may just be the uniform and authority), and in one episode where she comes to obsess over her flaws, she convinces herself she's ugly and that Don is too good for her.
Information Officer and Dick's "son". He's actually the oldest and perhaps smartest of the crew, and much of his character comes from being frustrated with the conflicts between his literal age and his teenaged body, such as why he can't date a middle-aged woman and hanging out at a senior's home where he fits right in.
Did Not Get the Girl: Actually, he did get the girl. But Sally misconstrued Alissa's thoughts on graduation to her wanting to break up with Tommy, so she told her that he was breaking up with her. He had two chances to get back with Alissa afterwards, and blew both of them. The first, Tommy wound up telling everyone at graduation in his valedictorian speech about how they made out on her parents bed. The second, he tried to sacrifice Alissa to save himself when it appeared that there was some maniac brandishing a power tool in Alissa's backyard. It was Sally and Harry pulling some hair-brained scheme to push the two back together again.
Dick's "brother", Harry is the "transmitter" with which they contact the Home Planet. Otherwise though, his role is deliberately ambiguous as even the narration in the early episodes states — "they had an extra seat".
The Casanova: He's easily the oddest of the aliens, yet he has had the most relationships with gorgeous women who could easily do better than him.
His romantic interests have included Vicki Dubcek, Nina, an alien played by Cindy Crawford, a body builder policewoman named Janice, and in the last episode we find out that for the entire show he'd secretly been with Mrs. Dubcek.
Catchphrase: "LET'S GO!" and "Incoming message from The Big Giant Head!"/"Transmission ending in three... two... one.. (sneezes)"
I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: He told Vicki that she should stay with the Big Giant Head because he was sincerely trying to do right by her and Eric Travis, and he didn't want Dick to get punished for disobeying orders.
Kavorka Man: If he opens his eyes fully, he suddenly becomes a chick magnet.
Dick's (initially reluctant) Earthling love interest and an anthropology professor at his college. As much as she finds Dick insufferable and his family bizarre, she does come to care for them. Her work in anthropology often makes her the perfect foil for Dick, who is befuddled by Earth customs and society.
Broken Bird: Her alternate universe counterpart "Kiki" is this, a bitter and cold woman who doesn't believe in love anymore. Mary has the potential to be this, but she actually handles all of the stress of a horrible childhood and a somewhat crappy career better than you would expect.
Dysfunctional Family: Her parents both had affairs while she was growing up (including one that draws doubt to Mary's paternity). She's the eldest of three children, all twisted in their own ways. Her brother Roy sells aluminum siding and tells women he was abducted by aliens as an attempt to get laid. Her sister Renata is an affected, wealthy woman who has a personal vendetta against Mary and does everything in her power to destroy Mary's life (including trying to steal Dick). Their whole family seems fond of alcohol, and Mary has apparently followed in her mother's footsteps to become a borderline Lady Drunk.
First Name Basis/Last Name Basis: Dick initially calls her "Dr. Albright", but permanently switches to "Mary" after they hook up. The other aliens refer to her as just "Albright". Nina and Vicki call her "Dr. Albright" while the other professors call her "Mary".
Sexy Secretary: One episode involved Dick having romantic fantasies about Nina.
Officer Don Orville
Portrayed by Wayne Knight
A portly, dim-witted cop with an overblown image of himself as an enforcer of justice. He's Sally's boyfriend and will do anything to please her, including playing up said overblown image to turn her on.
Chivalrous Pervert: Told people that he and Sally had sex tons of times before they actually did. Don took offense when Sally asked if he told anyone after they did, at which he replied "of course not! What kind of heel do you think I am?"
I Can't Believe a Guy Like You Would Notice Me: Don doesn't understand why a woman looking like Sally would want to be with him, but he ain't complaining. For her part, Sally isn't aware that Don is considered unattractive in Earth terms.
Noodle Incident: Entered Mary's office, and the respective episode, finishing a conversation with Mary that ended with her saying "and when they found him, he was completely devoured by woodland creatures."
Laser-Guided Karma: Following her break up with Tommy, when he became editor of the school paper he kept telling people that their break-up had left her a wreck and that HE broke up with her. She kept having to remind people to her frustration that the reverse happened, but no one listened.
Pet the Dog: Wrote a rather scathing review of Alissa's performance in the high school play, but told Tommy (the editor of the school paper at the time) that she would understand if he didn't print it since Alissa was his girlfriend.note Reference to Jedediah Leland's scathing review of Susan Alexander in Citizen Kane, which this plotline was a Whole Plot Reference to.
Tommy: Nina, I need a woman's point of view for something. Um, my girlfriend's not speaking to me because I didn't ask her to a dance. Nina: Mmm. Send her flowers. Tommy: She once told me that flowers reminded her of the morbid stench of death. Nina: Okay... well, how about a gift? Maybe a nice makeup kit? Tommy: She sees makeup as a way for the arrogant misogynists to decorate the women they own and turn them into, you know, like vacuous playthings. Nina: Oh, I bet you two have a lot of fun.
The skanky white-trash daughter of Mrs. Dubcek and Harry's on-off girlfriend. She repeatedly fails to understand that Mary is Not That Kind of Doctor and has a Southern accent for some reasonnote This is Jan Hooks' natural accent and she hardly ever plays a character without it.. Ultimately, she ended up being Queen of the Universe. Don't ask.
Chewing the Scenery: Her conversations with Harry will usually begin to sound like they're in a porno. Their first sexual encounter happened on Thanksgiving, on Mrs. Dubcek's kitchen counter and involved Harry wearing a turkey carcass on his head.
Large Ham: After she becomes the Big Giant Head's wife, but even then she had plenty of moments.
Everything's Better with Monkeys: In his second appearance, he came back to Earth with plans to turn everyone into monkeys in order to turn it into an amusement park, "Planet Monkey World". Dick winds up turning Liam into a chimpanzee in order to stop him. Unfortunately, Mary saw the whole thing, and this leads to Dick admitted he's an alien.
Evil Is Petty: Was originally sent to blow up Earth. Why? We're blocking his home planet's view.