August 2007


Can’t Lose

A couple days ago, at the office, one of my colleagues brought up something that reminded both of us of an early ‘90s television sitcom—while I struggled to remember its name, he blurted out “Parker Lewis Can’t Lose.”

Not only were we thinking of the same television show, apparently the TV show was an international hit—he watched it whilst growing up here in Germany.

Strangely enough, it might well be my favorite American sitcom of all time. I cannot really think of any others that I loved as much: Night Court was fun, Married with Children was ok, and Saved by the Bell was good because of Slater (yum!).

However, since it went off the air, I have only seen it once—and I remember it quite distinctly. It was on TBS in the morning in late August while I was a grad student at Wyoming. In fact, it was on at a perfect time: I watched the 30 minute episode, turned off the television and walked to class arriving in a wonderful mood. I thought to myself, I have a pattern for the fall. Wake, shower, watch Parker Lewis, go to class.

Unfortunately TBS changed the schedule that weekend and I never saw Parker Lewis again—but my brief glimpse back into the world of Parker Lewis reminded me of its cool stories and the way they were told with unusual camera angles and broken fourth walls.

7 comments to Can’t Lose

  • The pilot must have been truly dreadful if the rest of the show was ok. This video you posted certainly doesn’t make me want to go watch it. *shrugs*

  • Ed

    I faintly remember it. Seems like it was pretty good. Sort of based on Ferris Buellers day off.

  • It did come out about the same time as the TV version of Ferris Bueller. It surprised everyone by doing better than Bueller, and surprised no one by doing better than Hull High (the third rip-off of Bueller.

    Melanie Chartoff did a decent job, better than expected based on her work as Friday’s news anchor.

    Cynical, the show was about the same as that clip.

  • I think my judgment may be clouded by the fact it was early 90’s. Everything culture-wise seemed great then, but with the benefit of hindsight, styles then were about as bad as styles in the 70’s.

  • Man, I used to love Parker Lewis Can’t Lose. After watching the video, I can only say, what the heck was I thinking!?!

  • disenchanted

    Geez, I’ve never even heard of this show!

  • @cq: I actually find the clip a bit weak… I have really fond memories of the entire show–in high school it was one of the few things I went out of my way to watch outside of Star Trek.

    @ed: As Domoni notes, it was a Ferris Bueller knock off. I read something on the net recently that says it was also a ground breaking sitcom–one of the first ones to not have a laugh track!

    @Domoni: Ferris lasted 13 episodes, and had I not started reading about Parker Lewis, I never would have known that Ferris was a TV series. They should never have tried to build off of the movie–the movie was perfection.

    @ChristinaG: I’m now loosely in your boat, but I want to see a few whole episodes to see if I can find the episodes I remember and love.

    @disenchanted: Hmmm…..