Today’s sitcoms are anything family friendly. They have become increasingly over laden with sexual innuendo, foul language, and completely dumbed down humor. These are the main complaints that are received by many audiences about many of the sitcoms currently airing on television’s “Big 4”, and even on some cable based comedies. Thank goodness for companies Mill Creek Entertainment for offering audiences an alternative to the mostly blue humor that pollutes today’s comedies. One of the most recent of those alternatives from Mill Creek Entertainment is the release of NBC’s hit sitcom, 3rd Rock from the Sun Season Six.
The sixth and final season of the once powerhouse NBC comedy is just as funny as the show’s previous five seasons thanks once again to the show’s writers. The Solomon family continues trying to learn the ways of humans in its ongoing mission, all while creating its own share of laughs along the way. Dick learns in the show’s final season that he’s *gasp* Canadian. The Solomon family also temporarily takes on new lives in an alternate universe. And Tommy experiences the human experience that is college. These are just a few of the funny moments that fill out the final season of 3rd Rock from the Sun. That’s not all that makes this season such a joy. A who’s who of guest stars appears throughout Season six, too, adding to the laughs. A whole slew of fellow NBC stars come in this season including former Saturday Night Live cast members Darrell Hammond, Tracy Morgan, and Ana Gasteyer. Richard Belzer (Law & Order: SVU) and Mark McKinney (The Kids in the Hall) and singer Elvis Costello also show up this season. Even as small as their parts are, the guest stars add their own comic element to the show, making it even more entertaining.
The writing in 3rd Rock’s final season is just as entertaining as it was in the series’ premiere season. Some might have considered it a bit of a cheap thing to do a Saturday Night Live crossover and a slight pump for Law & Order: SVU. But it all works quite well in the two-part episode, “Dick’ll Take Manhattan.” The writers, probably knowing it was the show’s last season, take a playful stab at then fellow NBC hit, Saturday Night Live and even the NBC brass as Harry becomes the head of the network. The writers didn’t just take a stab at NBC. They even poked fun at HBO’s then hit show, Sex and the City, with Sally (Kristen Johnston) taking the place of Sarah Jessica Parker’s Carrie. It gets even funnier, with each member of the cast having their own hilarious moments. This standout episode was just one that served as a tribute to the wit of the show’s writers. Fans will also love the semi-political comedy of “Red, White & Dick.” This episode sees Dick discovering that he is Canadian in his quest to become more American. What it is about this kind of joke that makes it so funny is anyone’s guess. Canada seems to be the butt of so many jokes in American entertainment. But it is hilarious nonetheless, and it serves as a solid cornerstone for Dick’s attempts to become more American and in the same vein, more human. It will have any viewer laughing till they cry.
The writing behind each episode of 3rd Rock’s final season offers nonstop laughs in every episode. It’s a prime example of what used to make NBC a powerhouse network during the 1990s. The cameo guest spots don’t hurt, either. Megan Mullally (Will & Grace) appears as Mary’s (Jane Curtin) sister Renita Albright this season. She sets out to steal Dick from Mary purely out of sibling rivalry. That adults could be such strong rivals goes back to the show’s solid writing. Audiences will love watching Mary and Renita going back and forth, sniping at one another like two little children. Mullally is just one of the many guest stars that made an appearance this season. Richard Belzer, Tracy Morgan, and Ana Gasteyer—all NBC stars—made appearances, as did singer Elvis Costello. Costello made an appearance in the series finale. The others all appeared in the two-parter, “Dick’ll Take Manhattan.” Watching a then young Joseph Gordon-Levitt go toe to toe with the then rising SNL stars is a laugh riot. Who ever would have thought that Tommy would date Ana Gasteyer. And his moments with Tracy Morgan are just as funny.
The writing and the guest spots together make this final season a fitting way to close out what is by this critic’s view, one of the greatest sitcoms of the 20th century. The DVD release of this season has one more aspect that while not being perfect, is still good in its own right. Mill Creek has packaged all three discs of this set in their own envelope. Mill Creek Entertainment is the only company that packages DVDs in this fashion. It isn’t a perfect packaging method, considering that the envelopes are not padded. That would make them perfect. But having them in envelopes allows audiences to take as many discs as they want when travelling instead of having to take an entire DVD case. This is actually quite smart in its own right. If the higher ups at Mill Creek would maintain its form of packaging and simply make the envelopes padded, it would make this packaging fashion quite impressive and the overall presentation of its multi-disc sets that much more impressive. 3rd Rock from the Sun Season Six is available now on DVD. It can be ordered online via the Mill Creek Direct website at https://www.millcreekdirect.com/3rd-rock-from-the-sun-season-6.html. After ordering the three-disc set, audiences can find out about more releases from Mill Creek Entertainment on its official website, http://www.millcreekentertainment.com or its official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/MillCreekEnt.
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