Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday Night Live, February 12th, 2011

Saturday Night Live, February 12th, 2011
Host: Russell Brand
Music: Chris Brown

Cold Open.
Decent Bill O’Reilly impression by Jason Sudeikis.

I know it’s an SNL tradition for stand up comedians to do their “material” for the opening monologue, but it’s always made me a bit squeamish.

Gublin & Green.
Since they’ve already made plenty of jokes about the injuries related to Spider-man: Turn of the Dark, it was refreshing to see a joke about how the show “insulted the Legacy of Spider-man.”

Publishers Clearance House.
It must save a lot of time not having to write new sketches for every episode. Swapping out 2-5 words from the previous Kristen Wiig Publishers Clearance House sketch and replacing the people she interacts with, is really not worth sitting through, though. I tune out once I see the start of the sketch.

Digital Short: Don' You Go Rounin' Roun To Re Ro
A lot of time spent on a single joke.

Royal Taster.
The most dialog Taran Gillam has ever had in a sketch?

Chris Brown.
Considering Rihanna has been on SNL twice, I’m surprised the producers would invite the guy who beat her up on the show.
Weekend Update.

Taran Gillam’s Eminem impression was the best thing he’s done on the show so far. Hope he doesn’t get knifed! And of all the overly repetitious SNL characters, Bill Hader’s Stefon manages to make me laugh. And these last two appearances have at least changed it up in small ways. Mostly in the little moments between Hader and Myers.

Livin’ Single.
It’s probably the wrong attitude to view every new sketch through the lens of “I hope this doesn’t become a recurring thing because I already see how it would play out.” Points for Kristen Wiig not being the main character. Random thought: Russell Brand looked like magician David Copperfield.

A Spot of Tea.
Not exactly Monty Python.
Chris Brown.
I feel bad for any girl who gets that song sent to her on a mixtape.

George Washington travels through time.
That was kinda good! Good thing they hid it at the end so no one will see it.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Saturday Night Live, February 5th, 2011

Saturday Night Live, February 5th, 2011
Host: Dana Carvey
Musical Guest: Linkin Park

Cold Opening: Wayne’s World. Considering their ages, Dana Carvey and Mike Myers managed to pull this off pretty seamlessly. The material even managed to feel very of the time, despite the current references. Very satisfying for this SNL nerd.

It’s a bit weird how Dana Carvey’s mannerisms are starting to resemble his impression of Johnny Carson. Considering I first started watching SNL in the late 80s, I totally agree that Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz’s cast WAS the best. But I’m sure if Bill Murray came out at the end it would have been equally true. Also, I was expecting to see G.E. Smith!

VH1: Celebrity Teen Crisis Center
Yet another lame excuse for cast members to dole out their most overdone impressions. Abby Elliot still hanging on to that semi-obscure Anna Farris impression.

Digital Short.
Roommate horror film parody. Surprisingly straightforward with no real twist. Since Justin Bieber was around I guess it makes sense to film another thing with him in the hopes it could get linked to on Facebook. I wonder of Linkin Park fell left out.

Linkin Park.
I really liked the effect of projecting all those stars and lines on the band members. I’ve never really seen anyone do that before without wearing any kind of special outfit. The song sounded like 80s synth music, but with less keyboard.

Weekend Update.
Paul Brittain’s James Franco impression was just okay. This is a really off year for Kristen Wiig. She’s becoming the new Will Forte.

Live! With Regis and Kelly.
I wish Nasim Pedrad’s voice didn’t grate on me with 40% of her impressions. Otherwise she's risen to the top of the cast this year.

Kids Beauty Pageant.
This felt like it could have been funnier, but it at least seemed to be trying.

Abby Elliot thing.
I’m starting to wonder if she can play someone who isn’t kinda ditzy or Angelina Jolie. But at least this was sort of a character and pretty much worked as a sketch.

Linkin Park Intro.
It makes me happy to see Jon Lovitz, Mike Myers and Dana Carvey together. And it’s been a long time since Mike Myers has done anything to make me happy.

Sports Bar.
Speaking of synth-pop… I actually really liked the song. Dana Carvey’s mustache seemed out of place My wife said Paul Brittain looked like Matt Smith’s Doctor Who. Maybe SNL they should do a Doctor Who parody?

Final thoughts:
Dana Carvey hasn’t been on SNL for years and he’s way better at not looking like he’s reading the teleprompter compared to all the current cast members. He’s also better at fully inhabiting his celebrity impressions so they feel like fleshed out characters. In so many current SNL sketches, the cast members do celebrity impressions that can only be sustained for a minute before they have to cut to ANOTHER cast member doing another limited impression.