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TV Series Review

Creators of TV shows like to hire writers young. That way they can work them to death and pay them (initially, at least) pitiable wages. For Fox’s sitcom Stacked it seems they hired them really young—like about, oh, the sixth grade. This unfunny, wretchedly sophomoric program sinks so low that one half expects to see Beavis and Butt-head jumping into the scene.

Stacked stars the buxom Pamela Anderson—cue 11-year-old boy jabbing you in the ribs saying, “Stacked, get it?”as a party girl wanting to change her ways by working in the intellectually stimulating environs of a bookstore called The Stacks. Since her character, Skyler Dayton, is just a step up from a dimwit, the store’s snobbish owner, Gavin (Elon Gold), is reluctant to hire her. But his lecherous brother and business partner, Stuart (Brian Scolaro), has no such compunctions. Who cares if she doesn’t know Dante from deviled eggs? She looks hot.

The store is also populated with plain-Jane employee Katrina (Marissa Jaret Winokur) and a retired rocket scientist played by a bored-looking Christopher Lloyd, who must’ve owed someone a favor. At times he makes little effort to hide the fact that he’s reading from cue cards just offscreen. His superfluous character pops in daily for a newspaper and coffee.

As one might guess from Anderson’s casting, this series is obsessed with sex. The premiere episode is barely a minute old when Skyler enters the store yelling into her cell phone, “Call me old-fashioned, but if you’re going to be in bed with two women, one of them had better be me!”

In another episode, Gavin asks Skyler to pretend to be his girlfriend while his ex-wife and children pay a visit. His tween son’s response? “Way to go, Dad!” as he high-fives his father and his eyes remain fixated on Skyler’s bust. And remain fixated … and remain fixated. Even after a commercial break, the boy is still staring through the store window with a silly grin on his face.

It’s downhill from there. Barely disguised erection gags. Lesbian double entendres. Tasteless remarks about epileptics. Skyler also favors extremely skimpy clothing, which made finding a photo suitable for this magazine a real challenge. Ironically, both Anderson and her character wonder why they aren’t taken more seriously. To viewers ranging from rocket scientists to sixth-grade boys, the answer should be obvious.

Episodes Reviewed: April 13, 20, 27, 2005

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Tom Neven

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