Follow TV Tropes


Awesome / 3rd Rock from the Sun

Go To

    open/close all folders 
  • Dick gets one in "The Physics of Being Dick." After spending the episode bemoaning the fact that physicists like him get no respect, and after a botched attempt at taking part in a police interrogation, Dick looks pretty down in the dumps. Then this happens:
    Cop: I know you did it, Jonesy. You jumped the fence and you stole the money.
    Suspect: But you got no proof. Besides, I couldn't jump that fence. It's physically impossible.
    Dick: [racing back into the room] Physically impossible? That's where you're wrong. You may not have much respect for the law, Jonesy, but there's one law you can't break: Coulomb's Third Law of Universal Gravitation!
    Suspect: What?
    Dick: It states that the force between two objects is proportional to the algebraic products of their respective charges as well as the inverse square of the distance between them! But of course you knew that, didn't you, Jonesy?
    Suspect: Um ... not all of it.
    Dick: You're object X, and the fence is object Y. Now, where V is the velocity of the two objects, and R is the distance between them, and E is a unit vector directed from the first object to the second, we see that the fence proved little challenge!
    Suspect: Yeah, well, I guess ...
    Dick: You guess? I bet you guess. And so we see that X equals zero while Y approaches infinity. That's how you avoided the security camera! That's how you managed to get back over the fence! That's how they found you exactly 1.3 miles from the crime scene, proving that you, and only you could have perpetrated this heinous crime! There's the proof!
    Suspect: Okay, okay! You got me! I did it! I did it! I did it! My God, what kind of a cop are you?
    Dick: I'm not a cop! I'm a physics professor!
    • It becomes even more awesome when Dick reveals that his equations didn't prove anything aside from the fact that Jonesy is orbiting the sun.
  • In another episode Dick convinced the other professors to go on strike and the Chancellor called their bluff due to Dick being a terrible bluffer. At the end of the episode, Dick uses his terrible bluffing to his advantage, pulling a reverse double bluff on the Chancellor in order to get back the letters of resignation. The result is another Crowning Moment for Dick:
    Chancellor: Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to present these letters to the Board of Trustees.
    Dick: Oh, of course, the Board. Yeah, they were certainly right about you. You are a real operator.
    Chancellor: You know people on the Board?
    Dick: No, I have no friends on the Board. [pretends to fidget]
    Chancellor: You don't know anything.
    Dick: You're right, I know nothing. You have no reason to worry about losing your job over this "debacle". [makes air quotes] I don't know why I did that, I'm not quoting anyone. [Chancellor sets the letters down] What are you doing with those?
    Chancellor: I'm thinking of giving them back to you. What do you think of that, Dr. Solomon?
    Dick: I think that would be a huge mistake, Chancellor.
    Chancellor: Would it? [pushes letters towards Dick]
    Dick: Yes, accepting them was your greatest triumph. [pushes letters back]
    Chancellor: You'd like to see me fired, wouldn't you? [pushes letters back]
    Dick: No. And believe me, I have no designs... on your position. [pushes letters back]
    Chancellor: Oh, I'm sorry, Solomon, but I can read you like a book. You lose. I'm rehiring the faculty. [pushes letters into Dick's lap] Now, take your letters and get out of my office!
    Dick: Well, it looks like you've outsmarted me once again. [laughs to himself] I mean... damn!
  • After Sally is made High Commander by the Big Giant Head, she orders Dick, as the replacement security officer, to kill a tabloid reporter doing a story on Vicki's half alien baby. Dick fails, so Sally decides to kill the guy herself before Dick informs her that high commanders, as "upper management", aren't allowed to kill. So Sally makes herself security officer again. Dick points out she can't be both the high commander and security officer so Sally, exasperated at this point, makes Dick high commander again. His first act? She can't kill the reporter. Sally tries to make herself high commander again before Dick says "can't do that, lieutenant".
    Sally: You had this planned all along!
    Dick: That's why I'm High Commander. ...and no, I didn't!
  • Dick's Sitcom Archnemesis, the lunch lady, insists on charging him a quarter for crackers when everyone else gets them for free. After spending the entire episode fretting over why she dislikes him and trying various methods to get on her good side, Dick declares to her he refuses to let her dislike of him dampen his day, dumps his purse of quarters on the counter, and walks off with the entire bowl and a smirk. It even comes with a Bond One-Liner.
    Dick: "If there's any extra... buy yourself some crackers."
  • "Sensitive Dick." Dick's "I'm an offensive person" speech doesn't make him any new friends, but for Dick himself, it's a triumphant moment.
  • Dick's speech in Dial M for Dick. Even when he interrupts himself it's awesome:
    Dick: And who knows more about poisons than an anthropologist?! A toxicologist, yes!
  • Dick recalling the speech from Footloose. If it was virtually anyone else, this kind of Actor Allusion would be in the Funny section, but it's John Lithgow, so it's Awesome instead. (Tommy owning Dick with an insightful response may also qualify.)
  • After finding out Mary once slept with Strudwick in "Dick For Tat," Dick is horrified and can't stop thinking about it. And it leads into this amazingly snarky dialogue so epic it's as awesome as it is funny. And it's all in response to a dumb question from Nina.
    Dick: I can't get his face out of my mind!
    Nina: Strudwick's?
    Dick: No Nina, little Davey Tennant, the boy down the block. You see, ever since Davey was three years old he's always wanted more than anything to see a real professional baseball game. He wished the biggest wish his little heart could muster, but his dad was laid off and couldn't afford the tickets. Well, one day last week, little Davey was outside playing ball like he always does. And who should walk up the block, tall as a building, but home run king Mark McGwire. To see little Davey's eyes light up as McGwire handed him four seats on the first base line, well, it's something that I will never forget.
    (Nina looks extremely touched by that story)
  • When Liam Neesam (notable for being The Ace and always having been better than Dick at everything) is planning to turn everyone on earth into a monkey, Dick manages to trick him in to giving him the transformation device and then uses it to turn Liam in to a monkey, thereby saving humanity.

  • After spending the whole night by the phone waiting for Brad to call, Sally ends up taking matters into her own hands...
    (Sally, still wearing the red dress from their date, kicks down Brad's apartment door.)
    SALLY: Hello, Brad.
    BRAD: Sally...
  • Sally gets firmly in Boss Mode again in "The Art Of Dick." Tommy signs Sally up for a bake sale. When she goes to the first meeting, she immediately gets sick of the pretentious chairman, verbally cuts her down to size in front of the group, and assumes command of the bake sale in just a few minutes.
  • "Fourth And Dick." At the beginning of the episode, Sally is barely even familiar with football, only knowing that if you get all the way to the end, "you get to dance!" However, Sally's also the security officer and a master strategist, so when she attends the homecoming game - which the home team is badly losing - she just waltzes down to the coach, tears his plays up right in front of him, and writes a whole new play. They use it. And win.
    Sally: [walking off the field with a football player on each arm] Hey, Nina! Look what they gave me for winning!
  • One time Sally realized her current boyfriend was a wannabe intellectual who turned out to be a complete hypocrite, so she dumped him by smashing a wine bottle and scaring him out of the house for being such an uppity jerk. Sally Solomon doesn't fuck around.
    Sally's Boyfriend: Relax. You're being stupid.
  • In the last few minutes of Dick And Harry Fall In A Hole, Sally does her best impression of a Drill Sergeant Nasty to get Dick and Harry (who have resigned themselves to just staying there forever) to just get off their butts and get out of the damn hole, at the behest of a "hole" expert played by Alan Cumming who claims that they'll need weeks of deprogramming.
  • In "Dick, Smoker", the car has to be taken to a mechanic to be fixed. When Sally, Harry and Tommy show up to get it, the mechanic A) states it still isn't done despite saying it would be by Friday (which is today), B) refuses to acknowledge Sally is talking to him, only talking to Harry, and C) blows her off by telling Harry "you gotta humor 'em". This prompts Sally to grab a pair of pliers while he continues to talk to Harry, and then... use them. And yes, you can hear a crunch.
    Sally: [as the mechanic can barely restrain his agony] Hello. I'd like my car ready in a half hour. I don't want a 200% markup on parts. And I'd like it washed.
    Harry: [quietly motions to the mechanic to nod]
    Sally: Thank you.
    • This crosses into a funny moment when Harry has to remind her to remove the pliers after she walks out of the room.
  • In "Tom, Dick And Mary," Sally makes one final attempt to speak to her boss about his inappropriate behaviour but he just continues to harrass her, so Sally decides she has to kick his ass. Sure, it gets her fired but it's deeply satisfying to see her return to her Action Girl ways after spending the whole episode acting so meek.
    Sally: Oh wow, I don't believe it: Harry was right. I'm going to have to plant a patent leather pump right in your ass.

  • From "Dick And The Single Girl": Tommy and Harry are trying to write an episode of The X-Files. Tommy suggests they start with a fight. Harry takes it literally. And wins. He then starts typing the script with the suggestion Tommy shot down, all the while he's got Tommy pinned to the floor with his foot.
    Harry: Scully... and Mulder... at a picnic! [Tommy angrily writhes on the floor]
  • Harry doing some pretty good magic tricks with relative ease in "World's Greatest Dick." Including freeing himself from a straitjacket while chained to the closet door.
  • In The Big Giant Head Returns Again Part II, Vicki tries to murder Harry's new girlfriend out of frustrated jealousy. Sally attempts to stop her, only for Vicki to hold her off with her hair-curler/molecular destabilizer. Then Harry shows up and promptly seduces her in order to distract her long enough for Sally to get the destabilizer away from her.
    Vicki: How dare you trick me with your flesh?!
    Harry: Well that's what it's THERE FOR!
  • In one episode, Harry is forbidden from watching television, and with nothing better to do, discovers he can think. And while he goes on thinking, he coldly dresses down both Dick and Sally when they starts complaining about stuff. Dick should just go and get Mary back if he wants her so badly, and if Sally's boss at her new job is treating her like crap, kick his ass. Oh, let's just quote the whole Dare to Be Badass speech in all its glory.
    Harry: And you know what I've observed? You. And you know what. You're not very good at your job.
    Harry: Let's review. What've you accomplished since we got here? Well, you got a rathole apartment, a used car and you got lucky a few times!
    Dick: .....Seventeen!
    Sally: He's got you there, Dick!
    Harry: And you! You call yourself a security officer, look at you! Since we got here we've been robbed, mugged, threatened, and now some mental midget's making you feel all "uncomfortable in the workplace!" And all you can do about is yak, yak, yaaaaak!!! [points at Dick] You want your woman back, you go get her! [points at Sally] Your boss is a moron, put your foot in his butt!!! We're an interstellar squad of superior beings, for God's sakes! Now quit your bitchin', and GET OUTTA THE KITCHEN!! [Sally and Dick hightail it out fast]
  • Harry's speech to the feuding extended family in "Dick Solomon and the Indiana Solomons":
    Harry: Hey! Hey! Hey! What the hell's the matter with you people? You know what? I got a little news flash for ya. Dick, Jacob, both your fathers were world-class pains in the ass. And you know what I admire about 'em? They're both dead! And right now, I wish I was with 'em!
    Uncle Abe: Amen to that!
    Harry: Forty years later, you two morons are still carrying on the same grudge?! Give it a rest! What, you don't like each other? Boo-hoo! Suck it up. You're family! Don't get me started.

  • Tommy gets a couple in "World's Greatest Dick."
    • Wanting the accolades of being the father of a genius, Dick sends Tommy to a school for the gifted. Tommy hates everything about it, but not because it's above his skill level - being the information officer, he really is that brilliant. While preparing for the "Knowledge Bowl" trivia contest, Tommy outclasses Dick in physics (in Russian), and famous ontologists (in Greek).
    • The other one is just sheer spite. At the Knowledge Bowl, Tommy Trolls Dick by intentionally giving wrong answers, while Dick helplessly watches from the audience and absolutely loses his mind.
    • And after the Knowledge Bowl, Dick throws a tantrum (as only Dick can) and decides to put Tommy back in his old high school. Tommy and Mary follow him out of the theater and share a high five for a trolling well done.
    • A bonus moment: In the end credits scene, Tommy beats Dick at chess in seven seconds.
  • "Gobble Gobble Dick Dick." Tommy leaves the house in a huff during Thanksgiving, and with nowhere to go, he winds up at the local bar. Two sketchy-looking guys notice he has no idea how to play pool, and decide to hustle him out of some money by saying they're not that good either. Tommy accepts, and winds up venting all his family frustrations to them, while completely dominating the pool table almost as an afterthought.
    Tommy: You know, I left because they don't appreciate me. And I do a lot for those guys - 6 ball, corner pocket [sinks it easily] - y'know, they just don't understand how difficult it is to be a kid! I mean, I do a lot at home, but you have to have a life outside work too, ya know. 7 ball, side pocket. [hits it perfectly] I mean, occasionally, I screw up. I'm only trying to be human. But whatever I do, it's never enough for those people! 8 ball, three banks, back pocket. [nails it again to the frustration of the other guys] That's game.
  • "Sensitive Dick." Sally coerces Don into teaching Tommy how to drive. In the middle of Tommy's lesson, a crime breaks out in the city, which gives Tommy all the excuse he needs to step on it. With a huge grin on his face.
  • This exchange:
    Sally: While we're on the subject of bodies, why is mine so much higher maintenance than yours?
    Tommy: I think the economy depends on it.

  • Don at Career Day.
    Don: Sorry I'm late kids, but I was just involved in one of the world's most scariest police chases.
    Student: How did it end?
    Don: The guy got away (moans)... but I rolled my car! (cheers)
  • From "Dick and the Single Girl": Mary getting the best of the Scary Librarian who's been after Dick, and Dick's response upon seeing Mary beat her in a fight.
    Dick: Oh, Mary! I am so turned ON!
  • Take the cast and add a completely random dance scene for instant awesome.
  • "Two Faced Dick," the body-switch episode, is a crowning moment for Kristen Johnson and John Lithgow, who are note perfect emulating each other's mannerisms.
  • "Y2Dick," and Sally and Tommy's quest to build the ultimate home entertainment system. By the end, they've got a big screen and Dolby surround sound, and the sound actually blows Dramatic Wind through their living room.
  • In "The Loud Solomon Family: A Dickumentary," Nina says she's not surprised to learn Harry has a drinking problem (he doesn't, but is acting like he does to get screentime in Mary's film) because being around Dick makes people crazy. She then points out how Mary's sleeping with Dick, followed by her snidely commenting "Bet you don't have the guts to put that in your film." Not only does Mary include that footage, it's followed immediately with a scene of a stone-faced Mary addressing the audience with "Yes, I do have the guts." Mary might put up with a lot of nonsense from everyone around her, but she knows how to snap back when she feels like it.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: