Come and knock on our door!
Come and knock on our door!
We've been waiting for you!
We've been waiting for you!
Where the kisses are hers and hers are his, Three's Company too!

A hugely successful television sitcom in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Three's Company pushed the envelope. Today, shows rife with sexual innuendo and double-entendres run rampant, but when Three's Company made its debut in 1977, this was unheard of. Religious leaders and morality critics were all over it and helped to make it a success by drawing more and more attention to it.

The basic story is of a man with two female roommates having to pretend he is gay so that the landlord will not throw him out. This concept is certainly obsolete today, as roommates of different sexes are plentiful and accepted as normal by most people. However, when Jack Tripper (played by John Ritter) moves in with Janet Wood (played by Joyce DeWitt) and Chrissy Snow (played by Suzanne Somers) in an apartment near the beach in Santa Monica, we have the kind of controversial eye candy that reeled in viewers back in the day.

Augmenting the cast and adding comedic elements were the Ropers, played by Norman Fell and Audra Lindley. Mr. Roper has to remain convinced that Jack is gay so that the roommates can continue their adventures even though his wife knows the truth. Mr. Roper's timely remarks about Jack's sexuality, which would be seen as politically incorrect in today's climate, are highlights mostly because they draw attention to how blind Roper is to the truth each time he makes his little "tinkerbell" gesture. The Ropers eventually moved out and into their own show, leaving our trio in the hands of Mr. Furley, played by Don Knotts, a wannabe swinger who has no idea how foolish he really looks and acts. With Furley, the "I'm gay so it is okay for me to live in an apartment with two attractive women" gags continue.

Also in the mix was Larry Dallas, played by Richard Kline. As Jack's used car salesman buddy who is constantly looking to score with the chicks, Larry became the "Lenny and Squiggy" or Kramer of Three's Company making impromptu visits to deliver oddball lines, ridiculous boasts and hopelessly misguided plots. He was the character for whom the audience would burst into spontaneous applause for.

The show lasted eight seasons before being dropped in 1984 and replaced by the failed follow up series, Three's a Crowd in which Jack gets married and the jokes get stale. Before then, however, there was a merry mix of characters and storylines that kept the show afloat. First, there was the much documented departure of Suzanne Somers. Wanting more money and a share of the profits, she was dropped from the show not long after she and John Ritter were featured on the cover of Newsweek and the show turned into a national sensation. Following her in what became a matter of "plugging in new blonde roommate" were Jenilee Harrison as Cindy Snow, supposedly Chrissy Snow's cousin, who was more of a ditz than Chrissy and tried to base her comedic existence around clumsy pratfalls. Then came Priscilla Barnes as Terri Alden, a nurse who actually had a functioning brain and was perhaps a response to critics of the "dumb blonde" philosophy. One also cannot forget Ann Wedgeworth as Lana, the scary middle-aged single woman in the apartment complex that wanted to get horizontal with our hero Jack so badly she practically drooled in his presence. Of course, Mr. Furley had the serious warm fuzzies for Lana, creating an ongoing comedy love triangle where Lana wanted Jack, Mr. Furley wanted Lana and Jack pretended he wanted Mr. Furley.

Most of the show happened in and around the apartment complex where most of the cast lived, although the Regal Beagle, a local watering hole and meet market, was also key in many of the story lines. Jack's efforts at becoming a chef were also featured prominently, through many different jobs cooking and working for at least mildly psychotic bosses, eventually ending with the opening of Jack's Bistro. Alas, after a strong run, Three's Company pretty much outlived its usefulness and by the time it was cancelled in 1984 it had managed to become completely dated.


Thanks to Sitcoms Online
and a seemingly endless supply of Three's Company fan sites
for research assistance
although most of this seems to be trapped as memories in my brain.

For the longest time, I watched the classic show, "Three's Company" and thought it was a rather corny show with poor acting. Then, one night a revelation came to me. I thought about how dramatically music changed during the 60's and 70's. There is not much question in my mind that the influence of hallucinogens and other consciousness-altering substances is responsible for this musical evolution. Sure, drugs have been used by musicians long before this period in time, but it wasn’t until the psychedelic experience really started penetrating the fabric of society that revolutionary musicians began to emerge. Pink Floyd, The Doors, Jimi Hendrix, and the later works of The Beatles, just to name a few.

I always realized this about music, but never considered the application to television. Three's Company came on the air in the late 70's. When I first started watching it on Nick at Night, (as I was not alive in the seventies) as I mentioned above, I thought the acting was pretty weak; it almost seemed as if they weren't really acting at all. Then it hit me, they're not acting! The actors and actresses on the show; John Ritter, Joyce DeWitt, Suzanne Somers, Don Knotts, etc. were all given all of the free drugs they wanted, and then were thrown on to a stage together and set free to do or say whatever they wanted. There is no doubt that there was a script for the show, but the influence of the drugs created a unique aspect of improvisation, as an experiment to observe the effects of psychoactives on television-based entertainment. The name of John Ritter's character 'Jack Tripper' itself hints at this.

When watching the show, with this information, you can clearly see signs of drug use in the way the actors/actresses move and talk, in their facial expressions, things they say, and their behavior in general. Sometimes, it's so obvious; you can even detect the exact drug being used. Don Knotts appears to be mostly influenced by cocaine, or possibly amphetamines, while John Ritter appears to be more inclined to common hallucinogens like psilocybin mushrooms and LSD. There are many specific examples of this that can be seen when watching the show. It's really something you must see for yourself, but if you watch this show, with the information I've presented in mind, you will see exactly what I'm talking about. Just watch, and see for yourself, it's no joke! Yes, this is just a theory, and I certainly have no proof, but I definitely believe there is compelling evidence to support what I'm saying. You may completely disagree with me. I could be wrong. Just think about these things the next time you hear that familiar little jingle, "Come and knock on our door. We've been waiting for you-" Well, you know the rest. I should also mention that this theory can be more clearly observed in some episodes than it can in others. On a final note, God bless John Ritter. He will be missed.

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