Lizzie McGuire

Season 2 Episode 26

A Gordo Story (aka Inner Beauty II: A Gordo Story)

Aired Unknown Feb 28, 2003 on Disney Channel
out of 10
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32 votes

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Episode Summary

A Gordo Story (aka Inner Beauty II: A Gordo Story)
Lizzie, Gordo, Miranda and Ethan Craft are playing a little basketball (and doing a lot of trash-talkin'!) when Parker McKenzie comes by to watch. After Gordo gets his last shot stuffed by Ethan, Parker comes over to talk, and it looks like she's got her eye on Gordo. He surprises Lizzie and Miranda by saying he might ask Parker out to the upcoming dance. Later at the Digital Bean, though, he's hesitating until Lizzie and Miranda encourage him to do it. When he does ask Parker, she simply tells him, "I can't." Lizzie asks her why she turned Gordo down and Parker is blunt: he's short. He might be a nice enough guy to hang out with, but she doesn't want to go out with a short guy. Gordo overhears this and is obviously devastated. He leave the Digital Bean, leaving behind his two friends, who don't feel very good, either. At school the next day, Lizzie and Miranda are still concerned. Gordo stumbles onto the scene wearing a pair of new (high-heeled) cowboy boots, claiming he's OK with what happened with Parker. But when Miranda blurts out that Parker is going to the dance with Ethan, his mood turns glum. He accuses Miranda and Lizzie of "buying into the whole 'tall guy' thing." Later Gordo talks to Mr. Dig, telling him that his shortness never used to bother him before, but now he can't stop thinking about it. Mr. Dig tries to tell him that once his height stops mattering to him, it won't matter to anyone else he cares about. Gordo stops by Lizzie's house and apologizes for saying she was part of the problem; he realizes the problem is within himself. Lizzie assures him that she and Miranda like him just the way he is. Gordo asks Lizzie to go to the dance with him, and after a few short jokes, she agrees. At the dance, Gordo is there with two "dates," Lizzie and Miranda. They watch Parker out on the dance floor, looking like she's afraid she'll get hit by one of Ethan's flailing limbs while he's doing his spastic dancing. Parker comes over and apologizes to Gordo for the way she treated him, realizing she'd have been better off going to the dance with him. She asks Gordo for a dance, and Miranda and Lizzie agree to let him. Miranda goes out on the floor too, to dance with Ethan. That leaves Lizzie alone--and suddenly feeling very empty inside. Meanwhile, Matt has to do a report on his family's ancestors, but he's disappointed to find out that the McGuire relatives were pretty dull ones, especially compared to Lanny's family tree. So Matt cooks up a preposterous family history, starting with George Washington and going through Davy Crockett and Elvis. Lanny sees right through this silliness and stops talking to Matt. ("How can he tell?" asks his Dad.)moreless

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  • Gordo asks Parker McKenzie to go to the dance with her but she turns him down just because he was short. He tries everything to make himself taller. At the dance Ethan (Parker's date) acts all crazy and she apologizes to Gordo and asks him for a dance.moreless

    Lizzie, Miranda, Gordo and Ethan were playing basket ball together. Gordo shot twice. Parker McKenzie was watching the last few seconds of the game and in those last few seconds Gordo tried to shoot but he failed. Parker complemented Gordo and left the room. Gordo was flushed and said that he might invite Parker to the dance as his date. At the digital bean Lizzie asked Gordo if he had asked her yet but Gordo said he hadn’t but he would. After a long while, he came back looking upset.

    Parker had turned him down.

    The next day Lizzie asked Parker why she turned Gordo down and Parker said that it was because he was short.

    Gordo turned up at school with a pair of cowboy boots on which were supposed to make him look taller. Lizzie felt bad because Gordo was usually the one saying that you shouldn’t worry about what other people think.

    On the night of the dance Gordo came to apologize to Lizzie and asked her if she could be his date but as a joke Lizzie said “I don’t dance with people with blue eyes but on this occasion I can make an exception.”

    At the dance Ethan Craft (Parker McKenzie’s partner) was going out of control so she scuffled away to say sorry to Gordo for calling him short and ask for a dance with him but she had to ask his date first. Lizzie agreed.

    Miranda stole a dance with Ethan and Lizzie was left all alone but she didn’t mind.

    Meanwhile Matt is jealous of Laney because he is related to someone famous.

    So Matt decides to fake his project.moreless
  • boring

    this episode is boring because gordo gets turned down by a girl coz she thinks hes short the only good part of it was the music in his daydream/dream and the end actually at the dance where ethan was dancing i liked the music and the dancing was funny but silly at the same time
  • That was totally weird and mean.

    I think that it was mean of Parker Mackenzie to turn Gordo down just because he is short. I also think that Gordo shouldn't try and change who he is just to make other people happy. Gordo should accept who he is and if others can't do that he should just move on. Thats a lesson: Don't change yourself just to make others happy.
  • Gordo’s ‘Da Man!

    Gordo’s ‘Da Man!

    A ramification of showing a Series Finale out of order is that any revelations revealed in it are revealed. Which means that any episodes that advance the current state of affairs and lead up to that revelation are by comparison anti-climatic. We already know how it turns out, so the events that lead up to it are not as thrilling as they would otherwise be.

    That being the case, one must strive to ‘judge’ the episode without the prejudice of that foreknowledge. Were said episode to have appeared in the order it was meant to it would have no doubt had the impact that was desired. Thus is the case with this episode.

    In this episode we are privy to a shocking revelation: Gordo’s short. Okay, so maybe it isn’t so shocking.


    We find out that ‘even clowns cry’. Or more to the point, that even Gordo, who knows that physical appearances aren’t important, even he, is affected by what others think of him. His being turned down by Parker to go to the dance due to the sole fact that he’s short, stings the boy genius to the core. So much so that he not only wallows in self pity at being short, but he even makes a farcical attempt at looking taller (cowboy boots). And talk about a clotheshorse! The price tag on those boots said they were over 60 bucks. And he balked at loaning Lizzie 30 to buy a pair of pants in “Best Dressed for Much Less”!

    We see in this episode one of the few times Gordo lashes out at Miranda and Lizzie (the others being in “Come Fly With Me” and “Educating Ethan”).

    One can really see why the title of the episode was “Inner Beauty 2: A Gordo Story” at one point. Because like its predecessor “Inner Beauty”, this episode deals with a common teenage malaise. While girls worry about being fat, one of the multitudes of worries for a boy is being short. Both Gordo in this episode, and Miranda in the previously mentioned one, start to feel bad about themselves.

    In both episodes, the characters featured go from being strong, confident characters to exhibiting visible signs of distress. And both need the advice of those around them. In this episode’s case the advice comes by way of Mr. Dig. Like all good advice, what he says is what Gordo already knows. If being short doesn’t matter to him, then it won’t matter to anybody else. And those that it *does* matter to are not the sort of people he should/would want to be around.

    Not only are Gordo’s own actions and reactions to the situation on display for us, the audience, to see, but those of Lizzie and Miranda are as well.

    Notice how in the beginning they are just as nervous as Gordo when he asks Parker out. And notice their reaction to when she turns him down. They get angry. Miranda goes so far as to instantly lash out and brand Parker as a “witch” as well as “weird”. And Lizzie is so angered and confused on Gordo’s behalf that she confronts Parker to find out why she turned Gordo down. She even goes so far as to obliquely call Parker short as well.

    And speaking of Parker, what’s up with her? At first she’s practically coming on to Gordo. Then later she says that she won’t go out with him? Then what was with the ‘come on’? And then even later at the dance she’s practically groveling for Gordo to dance with her! Talk about mixed signals! *LOL*

    Gordo’s the ‘Mac daddy’ as it were. The boy’s got some serious skills at basketball! And the way he played it cool with Parker at the end, making her basically beg him to dance with her… You go boy! Talk about your male power fantasy! You ‘da man Gordo! You ‘da man! *LOL*

    Then there’s Lizzie. First she can’t wrap her mind around the idea that Parker might be flirting with Gordo. Then she’s indignant that Parker turned him down. Then she’s not very happy when Gordo and Parker dance together at the end. That last reaction of which puzzles her. Why isn’t she happier that Gordo and Parker are dancing? Answer: because she likes Gordo herself!

    And that is the primary purpose of this episode. It’s one long series of events just to set up another ‘Lizzie likes Gordo’ moment to develop the ongoing Lizzie/Gordo romance plot thread. But since we know how this thread ends (having already been shown the final episode of the series), this is anti-climatic. It’s like watching the 5th round of a prizefight when you know Fighter A goes down in the 10th. You already know how it ends, so watching the set up isn’t quite as thrilling as it would have been had you seen the fight straight through.

    And that’s the real flaw of this episode. Not the quality of the story itself, but the order in which it aired. It’s all a matter of timing. Since this episode showed *after* instead of *before* the one(s) it was supposed to, it loses the vast majority of its impact. Had we seen this episode mid way through the season, after “First Kiss” but before “Just Friends”, I’m sure it would have had the ‘punch’ it was intended to.

    As for the subplot, Matt has to do a report in school about his ancestors. Like Lizzie finds out in “El Oro de Montezuma”, the McGuire family tree (as well as Jo’s) is nebulous to say the least. Jo goes back as far as the 1940’s, while Sam comes from a long line of dairy farmers. Not exactly the stuff biographies are made of. Much less the history books. Lanny on the other hand can trace his lineage to the first guy that got shot (and killed) in the Revolutionary War. A source of pride on Lanny’s part, and a source of consternation on Matt’s.

    Something I have always had a problem with is the inordinate pride one takes in whom their forbearers were. Just because one is related to a great man (or woman) does not in and of itself make one great. The triumphs (or tragedies) of a person in the past who just happened to have some tenuous connection to one’s own family do not in any way reflect on oneself. Being descended from a great man does not make one great. Being descended from a tyrant does not make one tyrannical. A person is ‘judged’ by what they are themselves, not whom they claim blood kin to.

    Be that as it may, Matt ‘spices’ up his report by claiming to be related to George Washington, Davey Crockett AND Elvis Presley. Talk about overkill! The doing of which makes Lanny mad at him, and the two stop speaking. Which is something else I don’t get. Why should Lanny be angry with Matt for ‘spicing’ up his report? Why should he care if Matt faked his report? It doesn’t affect him, so where’s the anger?

    Not only that, but we never get to see Matt and Lanny’s rapprochement! It happens off scene.

    The subplot, while not bad, doesn’t really seem to be up to the standards of what we are used to. It seems somewhat lackluster.

    At the end of the day, this is a Gordo-centric episode (one of the few ones there are). But in addition to being a ‘growth’ episode for Gordo, it also serves to further develop a long-standing plot thread. As well as present a possibly interesting situation.

    By the end of this episode it is pretty clear that Parker is attracted to Gordo. And in “Dear Lizzie” we find out (via Parker’s nosy sister) that Parker has/does write about Gordo in her personal diary. A girl’s diary (especially a teenage girl’s) is usually full of, among other things, romantic (i.e. ‘sappy’) scrawlings dedicated to some boy or another. The fact that Parker mentions Gordo in her diary is suggestive that she has ‘feelings’ for him.

    If ever a third season of the series were to have come about it would have been interesting to see how Parker would have fitted into the ‘New World Order’ as it were of Gordo and Lizzie being an item. Would she be jealous? How would she respond to Lizzie in such a scenario? The possibilities are rife. I can hear the clacking of keys of many a fan fiction writer right now. ;-)

    Overall, the main plot is good, and the subplot is at the very least serviceable. We get character insights. We get plot thread development. We even get to see Ethan ‘get his groove on’ (though we might wish we hadn’t!). Not a bad episode by any means.moreless
Christian Copelin

Christian Copelin

Lanny Onasis

Guest Star

Tricia Cruz

Tricia Cruz

Mrs. Varga

Guest Star

Jeremy J. Bargiel

Jeremy J. Bargiel


Recurring Role

Clayton Snyder

Clayton Snyder

Ethan Craft

Recurring Role

Arvie Lowe

Arvie Lowe

Mr. Dig

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (7)

    • When Gordo was about to take the last shot in the pick-up basketball game at the beginning of the episode, the scoreboard timer reads 0.8, then in the wide shot it is showing 9:58, but the next shot has the scoreboard at 0.0.

    • Nitpick: When Matt mentions being related to Kalamazoo dairy farmers a picture of him sitting on a cow appears. In the background is a very large mountain which would seem to be out of place in Michigan since the highest elevation is Mt. Arvon at 1,979 feet.

    • At the beginning, in the 2 on 2 basketball game with Gordo and Lizzie against Miranda and Ethan, the big gym scoreboard is being used. Normally in a small pickup game with no gym teacher around, scoreboards like that aren't used.

    • When Matt asks his parents about his family ancestry, they answer his question in detail right away. But in "El Oro de Montezuma," when Lizzie asked the same thing they seemed to know little about it, especially in Sam's case.

    • When Matt is talking to his parents in the kitchen, Sam McGuire is shown peeling a potato. In the first shot quite a bit of skin is missing from it, but in the next one the potato somehow has more skin than before. This inconsistency goes on throughout the scene. Although it may be that as Sam turns the potato one portion has more of the skin missing.

    • Sam states that "William "Braveheart" Wallace freed Scotland from English rule," that statement isn't completely accurate. While Wallace did defeat the English at the battle of Stirling Bridge in 1297, he was defeated the following year at Falkirk. As a result, England's King Edward I annexed Scotland outright, installing Englishmen to administer the country and garrisoning the castles. It wasn't until 1320 that Scotland declared its independence from England and in 1328 did the English finally recognize it.

      Matt states that Lanny is related to Crispus Attucks "the first American killed in the Revolutionary War." Attucks was one of five colonists who were shot and killed by British troops on March 5, 1770 in what is commonly known as the Boston Massacre. While this event led up to the Revolutionary War, the war didn't begin until April 19, 1775 with the Battles of Lexington and Concord.

    • Everybody caught this one: Gordo says that Lizzie and Miranda never have asked Ethan out, yet Lizzie did just that--twice--in "Just Friends." This is a problem that comes from showing episodes out of order. Actually, "Just Friends" (production number 218, the 18th episode of season 2) was filmed after this one (#215). But "Just Friends" was first shown last June, eight months before "A Gordo Story."

  • QUOTES (12)

  • NOTES (8)

    • In one scene Matt can be seen using a Gateway notebook computer. It can also be seen in "Inner Beauty."

    • In one of the Toon Lizzie segments, Gordo is represented by an animated robot. He was also represented this way in the episodes "Gordo's Bar Mitzvah," "Dear Lizzie," and "The Gordo Shuffle."

    • Continuity: In "Obsession," Miranda says, "I can't believe how weird Parker [McKenzie] is." Things haven't changed, as Miranda here says, "It's Parker...she's weird." Also, Sam is shown working on a model airplane, which he also did in "Pool Party." Must be his third hobby, behind Gnomes (lamps and lawn), and collecting sports memorabilia.

    • Matt talks about the possibility about being related to Mark McGwire, who set Major League Baseball's single season home run record in 1998 (Barry Bonds broke it three years later). However, as you can see here, the last names are spelled slightly different.

    • Gordo resurrects his "King of Norway" joke from "The Longest Yard" when he starts to tell it here to Parker. Luckily, we don't have to hear it!

    • The clapboard seen on the blooper reel at the end of the show gives the date of production as January 17, 2002. That means this episode didn't premiere on television until thirteen months after it was filmed!

    • Music includes:
      "I Wish" by Skee-Lo. This 1995 single was the rapper's one big success. It's played during a dream sequence in which Gordo imagines himself being tinier and tinier.
      "Have a Nice Life" by singer/actress Dana Dawson, a 2001 single release. It's heard during the school dance scenes.

    • At the Digital Bean Lizzie is wearing a tank top which says "Pacific Hills Track." It's possible that it's from Pacific Hills School in West Hollywood, CA.


    • Mr. Dig: Both my parents are over six feet tall, and I'm not exactly Shaquille O'Neal
      Shaquille O'Neal is an NBA center for the Los Angeles Lakers who is 7'-1" tall and weighs 320 pounds (or more) and is considered one of the dominant centers in the league.

    • Lizzie: Well, I like who I am, but I'd like to be Britney Spears.
      As has been noted a few times before in these references, Britney Spears is the female singer from Louisiana who, after a stint on The Mickey Mouse Club, became the most popular teen singing sensation in the country, and maybe the world, with hits like "Oops!...I Did It Again." She was at the forefront of the spate of other teen singers and "boy bands" that crowded the record charts at the end of the 1990's. Ironically, by the time this episode aired in 2003, it was over a year old, and Britney's popularity, while still great, had slipped a bit, having been superceded somewhat by artists like Avril Lavigne.

    • Toon Lizzie: That girl's got some 'splainin' to do!
      This is a line taken from the classic TV sitcom I Love Lucy (1951-1957), which starred Lucile Ball as Lucy Riccardo, Desi Arnaz (her real-life husband at the time) as her husband, nightclub singer Ricky Riccardo, and Vivian Vance and William Frawley as their neighbors Ethel and Fred Mertz. On the show, Lucy was forever getting caught in some harebrained scheme and Ricky would often confront her, saying in his thick Cuban accent (which Toon Lizzie imitates a little bit), "Lucy! "You got some 'splainin' [explaining] to do!" The show, which is considered the prototype of the television situation comedy, has been a viewer favorite for over fifty years now, and has rarely if ever been off the air in all that time.

    • Mr. Dig: "In fact, I taught Allen Iverson the crossover."
      Allen Iverson is one of the top professional basketball player in the NBA. He came into the league in 1996 with the Philadelphia 76ers and won Rookie of the Year Honors. Among other career highlights Iverson led the NBA in scoring in the 1998-99, 2000-01 and 2001-02 seasons, and was named the NBA's Most Valuable Player for the 2000-01 season. Iverson's best move on the court is the crossover. A move in which he leads a defender in one direction only to quickly cross the ball over to his other hand and move past the defender.

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