Saturday, March 13, 2010

Canon Review of some Parker Lewis Can't Lose episodes

In 1990, Fox debuted a show called Parker Lewis Can't Lose. The main character was a high school student named, interestingly enough, Parker Lewis. Also, he had the ability to always win, because he could never lose. I remember watching the show in my youth, but I don't remember whether I liked it or not, or anything about the show really. I think I just watched it because it was on the same night as In Living Color or something. Anyway, I stumbled upon a few episodes of this show on YouTube, and I decided, what the hey, I think I'll watch some of them. So let the insanity begin.

1st Episode: Parker Lewis Must Lose

Before we start, let me mention one thing, the opening credits lasts at least eight minutes. Once you think they end, there's somebody else's name popping up on the screen. To make things worse, the type takes up half the damn screen. Anyway, Parker is running for class president in order to make the principal angry or something. The principal, a woman named Grace Musso, loathes Parker and his carefree ways. Parker, having the gift of never losing, is assured a win, but after his friends set up a camera in his oppenent's war room, Parker finds out that the election means a lot more to her than it does to Parker. Because of this and also because Parker is developing a crush on the girl, Parker sets out to do the impossible, lose. Hyjinx ensues. There were a couple of funny moments, I suppose, but a lot of it was flat. I would give it a 4 out of 10.

2nd Episode: Musso & Frank

I must say that this episode was better than the first one. In this episode, Musso is trying to set up her niece with her assistant principal, a weirdo named Frank Lemar whose primary function in life is to carry out every wish Musso may have. Lemer is not comfortable with this, so he goes to Parker Lewis for help, asking Parker to set him up with another girl. More hyjinx ensues when Lewis inadvertently sets up Lemar with Musso's niece, Denise.  The rest of the episode involves Lewis scheming to break the two up, as Lemar is worried about Musso's influence in his life, even naming the first kid Frank and Denise have. First of all, it's kind of creepy that a high school student is dating the assistant principal, don't you think? Second of all, Parker's friend Jerry, who I guess is the smart one of the group, is very annoying. But I digress. This was a stronger episode than the first one, and even featured a guest appearence by Bud Bundy, who was assigned detention despite going to a different high school. That in itself makes this a good episode, so I'll give it a 6.9 out of 10.

Episode 3: Radio Free Flamingo

This episode was kind of in between the first two, as far as quality is concerned. In this episode, after the big football player Kubiak stuffs the gang in a locker, they stumble upon an old underground radio station. Naturally, Parker decides to restart the station, and naturally Musso has a huge problem with it. Musso stops at nothing to put an end to the station, and even threatens the students with Fs unless they find the location of the radio station. Meanwhile, Parker's trying to get together with this girl, but because of his newfound radio duties, he has trouble finding the time to see her. More hyjinx ensue, and eventually Parker and his buds frame Lemer for the whole thing, causing him to receive a big beatdown led by Kubiak. This episode has its moments, including Parker's new girl saying she doesn't "know Lincoln from a hole in my head". Ouch. Anyway, like I said, this episode is in between the first two, so I'll give it a 5.45 out of 10.

Overall, this show is heavily inspired by Ferries Bueller's Day Off. Like Ferris, Parker's the coolest kid in school, uses all sorts of fancy gadgets, is hated by his principal, and even has a sister that hates his guts. Although I must say Parker's kid sister is a little more tolerable than Ferris's sister was. Plus, unlike Ferris, who pushes his friend Cameron around, Parker's friends are more than happy to help with whatever he needs. Overall, Parker's at least more likable than Ferris, and best of all, Parker's not played by Matthew Broderick. But I digress. On its own, this show is perfectly average, it has its high points, and other times the show either gets too ridiculous or the jokes just aren't funny. There probably were better shows out during its time period, but trust me, there also was a lot worse. From the few episodes I saw, I'll give Parker Lewis Can't Lose a 5.80 out of 10.

Well, thanks for reading. If you have any ideas for future reviews, or if you want to submit a review on your own, than e-mail me the details at or at I leave you with a video promoting the second season of Parker Lewis Can't Lose, done 90210 style:


  1. I have very good memories of watching that show back in the day. For the time it was very good and it made me laugh and I always looked forward to it every week.

    Good Blog sir Dangerously! I have thought about buying the Dvd's for each season or getting them on netflix.

  2. That last comment was by flashymack

  3. If you like Parker Lewis Can't Lose, Corin Nemec's official fansite has a lot of great trivia and photos:

  4. Well, if I were you Flashy Mack, I'd rent before I buy. It's not a bad show, but unless you just had to own it, I think Netflix is probably the best way to go. But that's just my recommendation.