In American Dad!, the Smith family often shrug off Roger as uninteresting, but the extraterrestrial’s physiology provides him with remarkable powers.
Roger’s role in American Dad! tends to shift from each episode. Sometimes the Smiths ridicule the alien as unremarkable, while other times Roger exhibits amazing abilities. The alien’s physiology allowed him to survive intense physical conditions, produce electrical shocks, enter people’s dreams and use super strength and speed at different points in the series.
One of Roger’s most remarkable abilities is his increased lifespan. As of Season 5’s “Great Space Roaster,” the alien is 1,601 years old. Due to his age, Roger claims to have been present across several landmark events throughout the 20th century, such as the 1980 Olympics in Season 5’s “The Return of the Bling,” the Vietnam War in Season 3’s “42-Year-Old Virgin” and the birth of disco in Season 2’s “The Best Christmas Story Never.” While “Great Space Roaster” reveals that Roger’s species undergo puberty at the age of 1,601, the alien exhibited sexual maturity as early as Season 1’s “Deacon Stan, Jesus Man” when producing breastmilk and orally impregnating Stan via egg-laying.
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Roger’s physiology makes him durable. “Great Space Roaster,” features Roger surviving the vacuum of space, while Season 13’s “Funnyish Games” shows him breathing water. His skin also appears fireproof in Season 3’s “Big Trouble in Little Langley” and Season 6’s “Stan’s Food Restaurant,” as he is set on fire in the former episode and blasted with a blowtorch in the latter. Although he survives both incidents, each event temporarily darkens his skin. The alien can also survive extremely cold conditions. He declared that his planet’s ecosystem is 400 degrees colder than Earth in Season 3’s “The Most Adequate Christmas Ever.”
Some of Roger’s abilities are also superhero-like. During Season 6’s “Jenny Fromdabloc,” Roger uses super-speed to fake a death, while Season 7’s “The Wrestler” features Roger utilizing super-strength to kick a tree across a yard. In Season 12’s “The Life and Times of Stan Smith” Roger creates electrical shocks strong enough to resuscitate another person, which he admits is due to his species’ 60 percent electrical bodies. Roger can also explore someone’s subconscious as exemplified when he enters Francine’s dream alongside Stan in Season 14’s “Enter Stanman.”
Despite American Dad!’s inconsistencies, some of Roger’s abilities continue throughout the series. Roger’s golden turd from Season 1’s “Homeland Insecurity” has become a recurring gag throughout the series, making its latest appearance in Season 15’s “300.” In the pilot episode, Roger excretes what he calls xenoplasm every seven hours, which occurs again in Season 1’s “Roger Codger” due to stress and Season 3’s “Office Spaceman” by choice.
Thanks to the fluidity of American Dad!‘s stories and timelines, Roger has juggled various abilities throughout the show’s run and appeared at different points in human history. Although the character’s appearance is relatively unassuming underneath his ridiculous costumes, Roger’s physical attributes are a force to be reckoned with.
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