Peter Horton was as shocked as anyone that he ended up on ABC's The Geena Davis Show. The actor — best known for dramatic roles such as Gary on

thirtysomething — tells the TV Guide Channel that the opportunity to do comedy pretty much came out of nowhere.

"I wasn't looking to do another series at all," Horton says. "I was in the process of developing projects and directing. [And] I'd never really done that much comedy... I never really considered it before."

Well, that all changed when he was informed who his leading lady would be. "They told me that Geena Davis was doing it [and] that's sort of a different animal," he says. "I mean, a chance to work with Geena Davis is a chance to work with Geena Davis."

Despite woeful reviews and so-so ratings, The Geena Davis Show recently was renewed by ABC for the remainder of the season. Still, even if the sitcom makes it to a 10th season, it remains likely that Horton will still be best remembered as the thirtysomething character who was abruptly killed in a bicycle accident.

"I don't think any of us quite predicted the emotional reaction there would be," laughs Horton of Gary's demise. "It was the only time in my life that I will ever have a sense of what it might be like to be someone really famous. For six months, everywhere I went, people said, 'Oh, wow, there's the dead guy!'"