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Series / Zeke and Luther

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Zeke and Luther is a sitcom created by Matt Dearborn and Tom Burkhard that ran on Disney XD from 2009 to 2012.

It centers around the namesake characters, two best friends in the northern part of Gilroy, California (primarily the fictional Pacific Terrace area) who aspire to become the world’s greatest skateboarders. Zeke (Hutch Dano) is an average student born in Japan who has issues with girls, while Luther (Adam Hicks) is a video gamer who happens to be a cup-stacking champion, but is also on the dimmer side.

The show mostly follows their various adventures as they work towards their goal, accompanied by their Friendly Rival, Kojo (Daniel Curtis Lee), and Zeke’s antagonistic younger sister, Ginger (Ryan Newman), along with a whole host of recurring characters also from Gilroy, California, such as Kojo’s girlfriend Monica and the two boys’ many friends.

Not to be confused with Zack and Cody, or Zeke and Justin.

This show provides examples of:

  • Acrofatic: Zeke's algebra teacher Mr "Twirls" Rucker is a pretty good skateboarder for a "800 pound 37 year old." note  Luther even lampshades this.
  • Actor Allusion:
    • When Daniel Curtis Lee poses as Luther's brother he hams it up and accidentally calls him Loomer.
    • In an episode featuring Hayley Kiyoko, Luther goes up to her, takes a whiff of her hair, and says it smells like lemons.
    • Hutch Dano (Zeke) also had a role on The Suite Life on Deck as Moose, Bailey's ex from Kettlecorn and in one episode of Zeke and Luther he is found shedding corn and he says, "What, I shed corn when I am stressed" and on the The Suite Life on Deck he also sheds corn.
  • Alliterative Name:
    • The duo's favorite hangout is Don's Donuts, which is owned by Donald Donaldson.
    • Dale Davis is a recurring reporter that covers events in the neighborhood.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Ginger is an exaggerated case. She freely admits she lives to torment Zeke, be it getting him in trouble, embarrassing him, or profitting off his hard work.
  • Big, Stupid Doodoo-Head: When a skateboarding manager tells Zeke and Luther "You skate rats need to grow up", Luther replies "No you need to grow up Dooty-McPooface"
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Zeke and Luther often will interrupt the show to explain, interject, or something else. It's also functions as a Confession Cam.
  • Broken Aesop: In "Cup Stacking". So, if my best friend shows talent in something that doesn't interest me, I should find his friends and scare them into abandoning my friend so he'll come crawling back?
  • Butt-Monkey: All of the main characters (except for Zeke) fall to this trope at times. For the recurring characters, it's pretty much: Ozzie, Kirby Cheddar and Deputy Dingle.
  • Catchphrase:
    • Ginger repeatedly calls Zeke and Luther "pit-sniffers". In return, Zeke usually calls Ginger "mini-munch."
    • Ginger also tends to say "Oh yeah, baby!" when things are going her way.
    • Also, Kojo's "Watch out!" accompanied by a butt-slap.
    • Poochie's "YAY!"
  • The Chains of Commanding: Played for laughs in Kojo's subplot in the finale. With the guys going out of town, he takes over overseeing Ramps and suffers constantly.
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Parody: The B Plot of "Luther Leads" starts with Ginger finding a golden golf ball inside a donut and thus being named heir to the donut shop, complete with a Suspiciously Similar Song to "I've got a Golden Ticket". She is eventually refused because she couldn't stand training or donuts and intended to tear the place down and erect an office building.
  • Christmas Episode: "Bro-ho-ho." Zeke and Luther use Kirby to get expensive skateboards and then try to fix his Christmas. Meanwhile, Ginger encounters someone claiming to be the real Santa Claus.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome:
    • Olivia completely disappeared following "Adventure Boy" and no mention has been made at all of her since. Her poster still hangs on Zeke's bedroom, however.
    • Poochie, Stinky Cast, and Kirby Cheddar disappear after Season 2. This can in part be attributed to Ginger being Demoted to Extra, as they had more interactions with her than the titular duo.
  • Confession Cam: "There's No Business Like Bro Business, Part 1" opens with the boys revealing they've been doing this the entire time and recording various exploits as video journals. They even introduce the audience to their cameraman.
  • Crossover:
    • Zeke and Luther once appeared in a Peter Punk episode.
    • Also, Dale Davis appeared in Kickin' It and Pair of Kings.
    • Indirectly in I'm in the Band Burger yells "Skateboard on the sidewalk Zeke" which is highly possible he was referring to Zeke but which other skater in California is there named Zeke?. This is more proof that Zeke and Luther & the 3 areformentioned shows take place in the DCLAU.
  • Demoted to Extra: Ginger in Season 3 due to Ryan Newman leaving the show. She still appears in five episodes, however, but unfortunately not the Finale.
  • Disappeared Dad: While parents are already rare on this show, Kojo constantly refers to his mother but not his father.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Lisa gets distracted by watching Zeke drink water, which causes her and Ginger to lose an academic competition against Zeke and Luther.
  • The Ditz: Luther, at times. Such as when he thinks a hospital bedpan is a guacamole bowl and asks if he can have one.
  • Enemy Mine: After their actions in "Law and Boarder" lead to the neighborhood association imposing all sorts of strict rules and bans, Zeke and Ginger team up to get Jumpsuit Johnson (the head of the association) to relent. Their plan is to trick him into violating the very rules he's been enforcing.
  • Expy:
    • It's pretty obvious that Ginger is the Pim Diffy of the present day.
    • Ginger is also very similar to Megan Parker (the show itself is often compared to Drake & Josh).
    • Jumpsuit Johnson can be considered one of Crazy Steve from D&J. They are both grown men with a Hair-Trigger Temper who always wear the same outfit every day. Except Crazy Steve is more of a friend/co-worker with Josh but Jumpsuit is considered an enemy of Zeke & Luther
  • Free-Range Children: And how! While there are assorted adults in the recurring cast (such as Jumpsuit Johnson or Dorothy) and one-off authority figures, the main characters' actual parents are never shown. At most, Kojo's mother is The Voice, but even then, he (like the other kids) is still often seeing going wherever he pleases at any time of day. The same is often the case for assorted friends, with only a few exceptions (such as Kirby's parents). If not for the occasional reference to some off-screen activity, you'd think the kids in this neighborhood were somehow living on their own.
  • The Ghost: Zeke's parents are mentioned but noticeably absent, even when the plot clearly calls for them. Ditto for Luther's parents.
  • Halloween Episode: "Haunted Board." Zeke and Luther come across a skateboard that seems to have a mind of its own and won't leave them alone. Meanwhile, Ginger bets Stinky Cast that he won't be able to scare her.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Zeke and Luther, obviously. They do literally everything together and their dreams of going pro involve being a duo instead of going solo.
  • Jerkass: Most of characters show their jerkass side. Luther seems to be the exception in this trope (sometimes).
  • Knight of Cerebus: Garm Garoosh. Who tries to destroy Luther buy making him ride a skateboard about to explode.
  • Lady Land: Skater Girl Island, a near-mythical place hidden somewhere in town that boys are forbidden from entering.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: In the Christmas Episode, the boys pull a trick to get Kirby Cheddar's parents to buy expensive skateboards that they want and know he won't so they can get them for free. It works, but then they see they kept Kirby from getting what he most wanted for Christmas.
  • Obnoxious In-Laws: Luther's beloved grandmother, Dorothy, is Happily Married to Carl. Neither Luther nor Carl can stand each other, being only barely able to pretend otherwise for Dorothy's sake and quite honest about their dislike when she's out of earshot.
  • Only Sane Woman: Bridget (a character introduced in Season 3) is this, being a fairly down to Earth figure in a cast full of crazy people.
  • Out of Focus: Kojo in the last season. He makes fewer appearances, as the show focuses more on Zeke and Luther's professional skating careers than one-off adventures in the neighborhood.
  • Puppy-Dog Eyes: Luther will sport these when he wants to guilt Zeke into doing something. To his frustration, Zeke says in "Soul Bucket" that this is a family trait, as Luther's grandmother and other relatives are all capable of it. And, as to be expected, so is the family dog.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Luther's little brother, Roy, who appears a couple times more than halfway into the show's run. Lampshaded by the characters noting that Roy spends so much time playing video games that he rarely leaves his room and doesn't even recognize Luther.
  • Santa's Existence Clause: In the Christmas Episode, the characters encounter a guy claiming to be the real Santa Claus, who constantly talks about the true meaning of the holiday. Others are willing to indulge this, but an annoyed Ginger finally demands he prove he's the real deal by getting Zeke and Luther the rare present they're looking for to give to Kirby. Subverted in that he says he can't, is just a guy who plays Santa for kids, and only wanted to teach her the meaning of Christmas. Double subverted when he reveals at the very end that he was Santa all along and got Kirby his present after all.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Luther (sensitive) and Zeke (manly). Kojo is manly to Luther but sensitive to Zeke.
  • Sexophone: Lisa tries to invoke this by getting a friend to play the saxophone to help her seduce Zeke.
  • Shipper with an Agenda: Stinky Cast has a big crush on Ginger. Zeke and Luther exploit this so that they can get him to film their stunts for less money.
  • Story Arc: A good chunk of season 3 revolves around the boys skate careers picking up for real.
  • Terrified of Germs: Ginger is a downplayed example. Germs in general don't bother her, but she's very protective of her belongings, especially when her brother's involved. The subplot to "Robo-Luth" involves Zeke messing with her by sneezing on something in her room but refusing to tell her what it was. It infuriates her to no end, and she eventually and aggressively scrubs all of her belongings. Once she's done, Zeke tells her what he sneezed on: the gloves she used to clean her other belongings.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Ginger at the end of the episode "Old Nasty". When she falls down the ride, Deuce catches her and saves her from being seriously injured. Deuce then tries the stunt himself and severly injures himself. After, Ginger breaks up with Deuce because she didn't want to take care of someone super injured even though Deuce saved her life. Such a Bonnie Swanson thing to do. Enough for Zeke to agree that Ginger is a cyborg. (A Brick Joke that Luther stated throughout the episode).
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: Garm Garoosh from "Luther Waffles and the Skateboard of Doom". Garoosh is the darkest villain/antagonist in this Kid Com show. He tried to kill Luther by having him stuck to a magnetic skateboard that was about to explode.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Zeke and Luther with Kojo. He's acknowledged his dislike of them and vice versa (to the point of Zeke calling Kojo his enemy), yet they always hang out and do things together.
  • The Voice: Kojo's mother. (She is only seen at the end of a music video although it's uncertain if it's actually the same woman with the voice.)
  • We Want Our Jerk Back!: "Kojo Loses His Mojo." Kojo gets struck by lightning and his personality completely changes. He becomes sickeningly nice and gives up boarding. Zeke is initially thrilled, but he realizes their rivalry makes races and competitions more challenging and fun.
  • Yes-Man: Ginger's best friend, Poochie, is often treated as an assistant, but she's an exaggerated case. She not only defers to her over every possible thing no matter how trivial, but she also shouts an enthusiastic "YAY!" while clapping in the process. Ginger's subplot in "Soul Bucket" is trying to find a more independent replacement and only welcoming Poochie back when she demonstrates some actual backbone.