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Whatever Happened To The Cast Of Parker Lewis Can't Lose?

Back in the early '90s, Parker Lewis was, as he might say, the coolness. The 1991 to 1993 single-camera sitcom Parker Lewis Can't Lose was one of the first hits for the young Fox Network, going after the same young audience that made made stuff like Beverly Hills, 90210 popular. But while 90210 was all teen dreams and soapy drama, Parker Lewis was the surreal, absurd, innovative comedy side of the same coin. 

Veteran child and teen actor Corin "Corky" Nemec played Parker, the coolest kid in Santo Domingo High School, known as much for his loud-print clothes as he was for his kindness, craftiness, and seeming ability to bend time and space. With him in his constant struggles against his own nefarious little sister and the corrupt Principal Musso were Parker's best friends, guitar-playing rocker dude Mikey Randall and genius sycophant Jerry Steiner. 

It may not end up as part of the nostalgic revival wave, but the show is still remembered fondly by retro TV junkies. Want to know what the cast has been up to in the last 25 years? Not a problem. Synchronize Swatches, Parker Lewis fans.

Corin Nemec (Parker Lewis)

Previously billed as "Corky" Nemec, the young man cast as Parker Lewis, the embodiment of early '90s swagger, had already built up a packed resume as a child star. Nemec had a recurring role as Nicky Papadapolis on the '80s sitcom Webster, won a role in Francis Ford Coppola's Tucker: A Man and His Dream, and had earned an Emmy nomination before the age of 18 for his title role in the ripped-from-the-headlines made-for-TV movie I Know My First Name is Steven.

When Parker Lewis ended its three-year run in 1993, Nemec transitioned to more mature roles, in both character and material. He played lovelorn nerd-turned-bad guy Harold Lauder in ABC's blockbuster miniseries adaptation of Stephen King's The Stand, and has worked steadily in film and TV ever since, popping up in everything from CSI to Operation Dumbo Drop. His most prominent post-Parker acting giga regular role on the syndicated sci-fi series Stargate: SG-1. He's also into some loftier pursuits. In 2018, under his full name, Joseph C. Nemec IV, he published Venice High, a mystery novel about a teenager coming of age in Venice Beach, California, set against the backdrop of the graffiti and street art scene.

Billy Jayne (Mikey Randall)

Before taking on the role of Parker's laid-back best friend, rocker Mikey Randall, Billy Jayne's face was well known to aficionados of '80s TV and movies. He'd worked steadily as a child actor, including a lead role on the TV version of The Bad News Bears, voicing characters on various Scooby-Doo shows, a part in the horror classic Cujo, and a recurring role as Ricky Stratten's dim friend Brad Langford on Silver Spoons. His most famous non-Parker Lewis role was Buddy Griffith in Just One of the Guys.

In the years after his tenure as Mikey ended, Jayne kept working, specializing in one-off roles on dramas like Walker, Texas Ranger and Charmed. Since 2000, he's only booked a handful of parts, but he's seemingly been driven by the same rock energy that powered his most famous character. Jayne has directed (and served as cinematographer) for a number of music videos by artists such as Buckcherry and Louise Goffin.

Troy Slaten (Jerry Steiner)

Troy Slaten brought surrealism to the series with his role as Jerry Steiner, the crafty third point of a friendship triangle alongside his pals and heroes Parker and Mikey. He always had an item on hand to solve to most any problem, generally concealed in his signature trench coat that he claimed was built by NASA. After Parker Lewis, Slaten took just a few more acting roles, including a spot on Night Stand (a talk show parody hosted by Parker Lewis co-star Timothy Stack) and a leading role on the Power Rangers knockoff Superhuman Samurai Syber-Squad

If you've seen Troy Slaten around lately, you'd better hope you were only on the jury. He left acting to join the one profession even more performative — and potentially more lucrative — than show business: the law. After graduating with honors from UCLA, Slaten studied law at Pepperdine University and then took a job in the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office. He earned a lot of hands-on courtroom experience as a prosecutor, which served him well when he went on to be a criminal defense attorney with the Beverly Hills-based law firm of Floyd, Skeren & Kelly. While Slaten no longer acts, he does appear on TV frequently as a pundit to discuss prominent legal cases on cable news shows.

Abraham Benrubi (Larry Kubiac)

Larry Kubiac, or just "The Kube," upended the high school bully cliché of teen shows. A gigantic person and imposing presence who caused earthquakes when he walked, Kubiac was at first a tough, mean bringer of pain who later became Parker Lewis' ally, revealing himself to be quite sharp and friendly. Still, he was forever at the mercy of his base needs and wants. His catchphrase was simply, "Eat now," which he would declare whenever it was time for food (even if it meant snatching a meal from someone else).

Abraham Benrubi's skilled comic work as the mostly monosyllabic Kubiac made him a breakout performer of the show, and just a year after Parker Lewis ended, he found a job on a pretty high-profile series. Beginning with the pilot episode, Benrubi portrayed County General desk clerk Jerry Markovic on more than 130 episodes of NBC's intense medical drama ER. His deep, booming voice has also served him well. He can be heard in TV shows like Robot Chicken and American Dad!, as well as in major video games such as World of Warcraft, Diablo III, and multiple Skylanders titles.

Melanie Chartoff (Principal Grace Musso)

Prior to portraying Parker Lewis Can't Lose's supreme antagonist Principal Grace Musso (who could shatter glass with her trademark angry-thumb gesture), Melanie Chartoff's best-known work was as a repertory cast member on Fridays. That was ABC's short-lived (1980-82) late-night sketch comedy answer to NBC's Saturday Night Live, which also launched the careers of Larry David and Michael Richards. 

While still portraying Principal Musso, Chartoff took on a side gig that ended up becoming a major role that would last for well over a decade. She played flighty mom Didi Pickles (and various minor characters) on Rugrats from 1990 to 2005, and all of the theatrical and direct-to-video movies and video game offshoots in between. That led to other voice work in major films and shows, including Dr. Dolittle 3 and Jumanji (the late '90s animated series).

Chartoff is also an inventor. In 1991, she teamed up with her business partner and some technically-minded scientists to patent a device called the Grayway Rotating Drain. It recycles shower and sink water and makes it irrigation-ready. Chartoff and associates say the device could save one home more than 20 percent on its water bills.

Maia Brewton (Shelly Lewis)

Principal Musso wasn't Parker's only antagonist. He also had to deal with Shelly, his equally crafty and confident sister. The only difference between the siblings was that while Parker used his powers for self-preservation and advancement, Shelly used her gifts to thwart Parker on his home turf of Santo Domingo High, where she was an underclassman.

Like many other cast members of Parker Lewis Can't Lose, Maia Brewton had been a performer for most of her young life already. Brewton had supporting roles in two of the decade's most beloved comedies, Back to the Future and Adventures in Babysitting. In the former, she portrayed Sally Baines, one of the dumbfounded family members who dines with Marty McFly when he crash-lands in 1955. In the latter, she was Sara, the Thor-obsessed, horn-wearing charge of overwhelmed babysitter Chris. 

When Parker Lewis left TV in 1993, Brewton pretty much did, too. Her only acting work since: she starred in a short film in 2002 and guest-starred on the Bravo sitcom Odd Mom Out in 2015. That's because, like co-star Troy Slaten, Brewton, pursued a career in law. She also took on the role of mom when her partner, Lara Spotts, delivered twin boys just a few weeks before she passed the bar exam.

Timothy Stack (Marty Lewis)

Like father, like son — that's the dynamic of the Lewis family. Decades before Parker breezed through Santo Domingo High, his father, Marty, filled a similar role. He's a provider of fun memories, parental support, and VHS tapes via his role as owner and operator of Mondo Video.

Timothy Stack played Marty, and he's still making TV just as arch and innovative as Parker Lewis. At the peak of the mid-'90s trashy talk show boom (thank you, Jenny Jones, Ricki Lake, and Jerry Springer), Stack co-created and hosted, in character as Dick Dietrick, the mock-talk show Night Stand. Adept at parody, Stack moved on to co-conceive and star on the FX Baywatch send-up Son of the Beach, in which he played overconfident but idiotic head lifeguard Notch Johnson. 

Beach ran for three seasons, but Stack kept Notch Johnson alive after it ended. He wrote for the long-running sitcoms My Name is Earl and Raising Hope, both created by Greg Garcia and both set in sleepy small towns. On each show, Stack occasionally appeared as "TV's Tim Stack," a drunk, unemployed exaggeration of himself, still walking around in his lifeguard costume from Son of the Beach.