Posts Tagged ‘chris parnell’


(Season 38, Episode 3)

 

WHAT THEY’RE PROMOTING:

DANIEL CRAIG: “Skyfall”

MUSE: “The 2nd Law” (album)

 

 

COLD OPENING: First Presidential Debate (7:24)

–      Excellent cold open. I honestly had no idea how they were going to approach this first debate sketch and the creative method they used was quite funny.

–      No surprise to have Chris Parnell return and play Jim Lehrer but it was still nice to see anyway. He was always really good at playing moderator to these debates dating back to Bush/Gore in 2000.

–      My favourite parts (prepare yourself… there are a lot) were the stock footage of Michelle’s stoic reactions to Barack celebrating 20 years of marriage, Barack announcing that he handed the biggest crisis to ever happen to anyone ever, Romney’s cold stares while Barack was talking, Romney discussing a plan with “42 basic elements” (3 of which are blatant lies), Obama forgetting about an anniversary gift, Lehrer telling Barack that Romney just claimed to have killed Bin Laden to which Obama has no response, Obama worrying about passing out because of the “altitude,” Lehrer’s inner thoughts about losing PBS, and Romney’s comment about lifting speed limits.

–      The ending was also funny with Romney’s inner thoughts telling him that he’s a “bad ass mother fucker.”

RATING: **** ½

 

 

MONOLOGUE: Daniel Craig (3:42)

–      This was an interesting way to go about the monologue and it was a pretty original premise for sure. I liked the idea of Craig doing a tribute to all the guys that he killed in his films including Bond ones and others. My favourite parts though were Craig’s little comments in between all the kills, especially his comments regarding the sound engineer and the large amount of fog.

–      The best one was “The Dog That Saw Too Much.”

–      Wow, the girls were in “woo!” overdrive when Daniel first showed up on the stage. On top of all that, Daniel did very well here and seemed to be very much at ease.

RATING: *** ½

 

 

SKETCH: Construction Workers (4:02)

–      This was an interesting sketch as I wasn’t really expecting it to go any further beyond the repetitive joke of Daniel not knowing how to properly be offensive towards women that walk by. The flashback definitely added a hilarious twist though and Craig’s performance was great and carried this.

–      Craig’s best comments were the long-winded compliment and the one regarding the girl who he bets has a penis.

–      I also liked the others’ reactions, particularly from Robinson and Moynihan.

–      Why did they choose actual female castmembers to play the passers-by rather than extras or writers? They didn’t have any lines and just played eye candy.

RATING: *** ½

 

 

COMMERCIAL: Bond 50 (2:50)

–      Great impression showcase for the ladies here (and a couple gentlemen) with Daniel Craig just playing Bond as more of a straight role.

–      I think my favourites were Kate McKinnon as Jodie Foster and Ellen DeGeneres along with Bayer as Diane Keaton and Molly Ringwald a close second.

–      Nasim as Lea Michele was the only part that didn’t really work for me.

–      It was nice to see Fred back as Penny Marshall again too.

RATING: ****

 

 

SHOW: Three Days Later: A Look Back at the Barack Obama Debate Disaster (5:08)

–      Another excellent debate-inspired sketch.

–      Cecily Strong was really, really good as Rachel Maddow. I’d say her impression was better than Abby Elliott’s; it was certainly more accurate. She also had some great moments making fun of Romney’s “gaffe” and then making fun of a silly face he made during a freeze-frame.

–      When Jason showed up as Chris Matthews, I had flashbacks to his awful Bill O’Reilly impression simply because he was taking over another Darrell Hammond impression but he did a fantastic job and was almost as funny as Darrell himself.

–      Kate McKinnon also gets another strong showing here as the one conservative correspondent. She also looked qite attractive here.

–      Kenan’s bit as Al Sharpton was fun as he was continuously making up ridiculous and absolutely absurd comments to make excuses for the fact that Obama got destroyed. My favourite one was his theory about Obama and Romney switching bodies before the debate in a Freaky Friday style.

RATING: *****

 

 

COMMERCIAL: Long Island Medium (2:13)

–      I’ve never heard of this show but I still really liked Kate’s impression of the crazy Long Island psychic and her various interactions with some of the other castmembers were pretty funny.

–      My favourite reaction was from Taran Killam, who freaks out at his father having “the sauce.” Fred was also really funny with his quick “he drowned in the river” response.

–      Daniel was great in his brief role as her soul patch-wearing douchebag husband.

–      The best overall part was from Cecily Strong and Bobby Moynihan as a couple and Kate telling Cecily that her husband is in a very bad place before he shows up and tells her off.

RATING: *** ½

 

 

SKETCH: Mars Mission (5:03)

–      This could have been a sketch featuring another one-note annoying character but Bobby Moynihan’s voice was funny and I liked his delivery. For instance, when he said he gives his cat a little kiss the sound effect he used was hilarious. Still, it was just about average.

–      I like how the characters, especially Ramirez, were clearly lifted from one of the Alien films.

–      The part with Bobby reacting in horror to his “lil kitty cat” potentially being dead had me rolling in laughter.

RATING: ***

 

 

MUSICAL PERFORMANCE: “Madness” (4:33)

–      Amazing performance. The soft tempo combined with the excellent vocals made this a truly memorable appearance for Muse. I don’t recall too much about their Season 35 gig but I’m sure it was great as well.

 

 

WEEKEND UPATE with Seth Meyers (11:08)

Guests: Big Bird and Cecilia Gilminez

–      Best Jokes: Obama handed it to Romney; Obama/Carter; China/PBS; New Jersey Zombie Walk; feeding candy to cows; gravestone codes; MGM hotel

–      Jesus, this was a great night for Seth. I loved almost every joke.

–      The Winners/Losers segment was another great one and I especially enjoyed the comments on Lehrer seeming like a ghost visiting a scene from his past life, Lehrer stammering like Hugh Grant in a rom-com, Sean Hannity getting a Gatorade  shower, pre-existing medical conditions, and Biden thinking it’s all up to him now.

–      Big Bird’s cameo was a huge surprise and I was delighted to see the real thing rather than a castmember playing a cheap version of him. It was funny despite being a rather tame piece overall (as expected). I liked Big Bird saying it’s seven hours past his bedtime, Sesame Street having wifi, and Big Bird talking about his newfound fame after being able to blend in with everyone else.

–      Kate McKinnon with yet another great performance here… this time as “artist” Cecilia Gilminez who recently altered an old painting of Jesus to make it look awful. Kate’s bug-eyed craziness really sold the whole commentary and I enjoyed her description of what Jesus looks like based on her recreation of the original painting. Her painting of Seth was funny too.

RATING: ****

 

 

SHOW: A Sorry Lot We Are (4:45)

–      This was a remarkably accurate parody of these types of BBC shows but it was very low-key and slow-paced which took away from the quality of the sketch a little bit.

–      The British accents were all over the place but I think I enjoyed Hader’s cockney-inspired accent the most while Bobby’s was the weakest. And did anyone else think that Fred sounded exactly like his Don’ You Go Rounin’ Roun to Rero character from Season 36?

–      The listing of places that Daniel applied at got more depressing as he went on and the Blockbusters tag was a great way to end it.

–      Kate McKinnon again! Even in a small role, she did quite well.

–      I gotta say that I found Aidy Bryant a little too over-the-top in this sketch. I hope to see more from  her but I was not a fan of her delivery here as well. I will give her credit for her little cackle at the end and quick nod as she left the sketch.

RATING: *** ½

 

 

SKETCH: Carl’s New Girlfriend (4:20)

–      Okay, I laughed at this one the first time I watched it last night but my oh my, I didn’t like this very much at all when rewatching it tonight. Fred has done drag a million times and even I, as an Armisen fan, will admit that it’s just about time to call it quits on the show.

–      I did like some of the odd, quirky things that Armisen had to say like his drink request and his yelling at Hader that he wants to talk about politics… and BOOKS!”

–      The odd detail of Armisen’s cigarette being unlit the whole time made me chuckle.

–      Hader and Armisen came perilously close to cracking up as did the normally-unflappable Bayer.

RATING: * ½

 

 

MUSICAL PERFORMANCE: “Panic Station” (3:01)

–      Another awesome performance and the best thing about it was that it was completely different from the first song. It had a faster pace but it was definitely just as strong.

 

 

COMMERCIAL: Undecided Voters of America (1:50)

–      Repeat from Joseph Gordon-Levitt/Mumford & Sons (9/22/12).

 

 

Goodnights

 

BEST PERFORMER(S) OF THE NIGHT:

–      Kate McKinnon

 

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Another very entertaining show for the season which has been on a great roll so far. Originally I said that this was the best episode of the season thus far but I would actually place this just below Levitt’s episode, making it the second best. Daniel Craig was a pretty good host; maybe he wasn’t as strong as the past two hosts but he did a commendable job and did well in many different types of roles.

TONIGHT’S RATING: *** ½

Advertisements

by Brendan Wahl

(Season 37, Episode 22)

The Show:

1. Cold Opening: The Lawrence Welk Show (5:01)

It’s time once again for Lawrence Welk (Armisen) to introduce another musical number from the sisters hailing from the Fingerlakes (Elliott, Pedrad, & Bayer) and their deformed sibling Dooneese (Wiig) as they attempt to seduce an Italian lothario (Jon Hamm!).

– A good choice for a cold open on Kristen Wiig’s final SNL. Everything worked here from Fred’s dependable Lawrence Welk, Jon Hamm’s surprise cameo and hilarious Italian accent, Kate McKinnon’s quick role, and of course Kristen as the gross deformed sister.
– I really liked Fred’s fingering joke at the beginning.
– The ending was perfect with Wiig finally finding her true love in Hamm’s character. I laughed a whole lot at Hamm sucking on her strange, disgusting hands. I think it almost made Kristen crack up as well.
Rating: *** 1/2

2. Monologue (3:10)

Mick answers some questions that he frequently receives from people every day.

– Jagger proved right away that he would be a fun host with his laid-back demeanour and funny delivery. His charisma really helped carry this otherwise-alright monologue.
– My favourite question that he answered was regarding the “I can’t hear you!” line that rock singers typically yell out at concerts.
Rating: ***

3. Secret Word (4:57)

Another round of the popular 60’s gameshow sees returning player Mindy Gracin (Wiig) and her teammate (Bayer) go up against “macho” film star Chaz Bragman (Jagger) and his teammate (Killam).

– Pretty strong Secret Word sketch for Kristen to finish off her amazing tenure on the show. Kristen had lots of great moments here (I particularly loved the canal/anal mix-up) but I thought Mick Jagger’s performance was very strong as well. Loved the voice he chose for the character.
– Hader’s birth control line was hilarious.
–  The “soft” secret word part was predictable but hilarious because of Jagger’s performance and Killam’s reactions.
Rating: *** 1/2

4. Karaoke Night (5:00)

A number of bar patrons (Jagger, Armisen, Moynihan, Wiig, Bayer, & Killam) witness each other attempt their best Jagger impressions while performing some of his hits, while one of them (Jagger) doesn’t feel that the over-the-top characterizations are that accurate.

– Funny sketch with another very fun performance from Jagger and a really, really good Mick Jagger impression from Fred Armisen in particular. This was a very good example of a simple premise executed really well
– The patrons thinking that Bobby Moynihan sleeping on the microphone was part of the impression was hilarious.
– Moynihan actually singing “Sympathy for the Devil” as part of the lyrics was great as well.
– I liked the ending with Mick’s soft singing.
Rating: *** 1/2

5. Digital Short: Lazy Sunday 2 (2:06)

Andy Samberg and Chris Parnell are back, this time rapping about the new Sister Act: The Musical on Broadway.

– Much like last week, I was blown away by the digital short. It was so fucking awesome that they did a sequel to the original hit as a way to say goodbye to one of the most beloved features of SNL for the last seven years.
– The best part about this sequel is that they didn’t repeat the first one but rather brought a new spin to this thing and the bit with Andy and Chris doing the new rap segment was terrific.
– “On these New York streets, I honed my fake rap penmanship; that’s how it began and that’s how I’m-a finish it!” was an absolutely perfect way for the digital shorts to come to an end. Absolutely brilliant.
Rating: *****

6. Politics Nation (4:16)

Al Sharpton (Thompson) brings on J.P. Morgan representative Colin McKechnie (Jagger), New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg (Armisen), and Peter Panache (Sudeikis) to discuss a huge financial loss for J.P. Morgan and job availability in the US.

– I was in the minority of really enjoying the first one of these sketches back on the Katy Perry episode and I enjoyed this one as well just as much as the first one. It was one of the highlights of the night actually.
– Mick looked like he was on the verge of cracking up at the end of his segment.
– Armisen announcing the available jobs for New Yorkers was a funny bit.
– The “salmon canary” mix-up was hilarious.
Rating: ****

7. Mick Jagger & Arcade Fire perform “The Last Time” (4:09)

– This was an awesome performance. Simply fantastic. Mick and Arcade Fire were a really unexpectedly great combination.

8. Weekend Update with Seth Meyers (8:43)
Guest: Stefon

Best Jokes: Obama: first gay president; Bloomberg commencement speech; anti-Obama Super-PAC; man candles; unsafe fish treatment; text message study

– Not much to say about the fantastic segment of Update this week. Stefon was the only guest and he was great like usual. Of course, he cracked up at one point and recovered somewhat and then continued on with his insane commentary. The highlights this time were the D-Bag Chopra, build-a-bear, roaming draggers, and human R2D2 comments.
Rating: **** 1/2

9. So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival (4:01)

Dave Matthews (Hader) hosts a series in which people attempt to dance to songs at an outdoor music festival while guest judges Carlos Santana (Armisen), Jewel (Elliott), and Steven Tyler (Jagger) look on.

– Funny sketch. I love the music and the dancing was fairly accurate but Moynihan was easily the highlight. Then again, Killam’s segment was quite funny as well.
– I love Hader’s Dave Matthews impression. I also really enjoyed the appearances by Abby as Jewel, Fred as Santana, and Mick as Steven Tyler.
– The crowd seemed to REALLY like this sketch.
Rating: ***

10. Mick Jagger and the Foo Fighters perform “19th Nervous Breakdown” & “It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll” (5:56)

– Another fantastic musical performance, this time of a medley involving two great Stones songs.
– Jagger is clearly the best musical guest of the season and there has been a lot of good ones this year.

11. The Californians (5:49)

More melodrama, convoluted driving directions, and strange character twists from this stereotypical batch of Californian residents.

– Much like Politics Nation, I was happy to see this come back and I know barely anyone else felt the same way.
– My favourite moments in this sketch came from Mick’s strange and slow-paced Californian accent, Kristen nearly coming to laughs when questioning Fred having a father, and the great appearance by Steve Martin as an amnesiac.
– Steve Martin’s cameo was hilarious and totally unexpected. He got a great reaction upon his entrance as well.
Rating: ***

12. Mick Jagger and Jeff Beck perform “Tea Party” (3:07)

– A wicked original song written about the 2012 election. Something tells me that if Jagger could vote, he probably wouldn’t cast one for Mitt Romney.
– Jagger dropped an S-bomb.

13. She’s a Rainbow (4:20)

Mick introduces Kristen Wiig as a “graduating” castmember while “She’s a Rainbow” and “Ruby Tuesday” play to honour her legacy on the show. All the castmembers dance with Kristen as well as she waves to everyone in the audience and the goodnights immediately follow.

– This was one of the classiest send-offs that any castmember has ever received on the show and a hell of a way to end the season. Say what you want about Kristen but she left a legacy that will be hard to follow and she was one of the best female castmembers of all time.
– The Lorne Michaels dance almost made me cry. That was an extremely nice gesture on Lorne’s part and it was a sweet moment.
– Hader, Moynihan, and Sudeikis looked particularly upset at the departure of Kristen Wiig.
– It was awesome to have Martin, Parnell and Hamm come back and that Chris Kattan, Rachel Dratch, Amy Poehler, and Will Forte came back to send off Kristen.
Rating: *****

 

OVERALL: What a season finale. Mick Jagger was a terrific host & musical guest and Arcade Fire and the Foo Fighters were excellent accompaniment as well. To say that I will miss Kristen Wiig is putting it lightly and I can’t state enough how much of a wonderful contribution she has made to the program over the last seven years. Excellent season-closer. I will have my year-end statistics posted tomorrow.

 

BREAKDOWN:

HOST: MICK JAGGER – 7 segments (Monologue; Secret Word; Karaoke Night; Politics Nation; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)

CAMEOS: RACHEL DRATCH – 1 segment (She’s a Rainbow)
WILL FORTE – 1 segment (She’s a Rainbow)
JON HAMM – 2 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; She’s a Rainbow)
CHRIS KATTAN – 1 segment (She’s a Rainbow)
STEVE MARTIN – 2 segments (The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
CHRIS PARNELL – 2 segments (Lazy Sunday 2; She’s a Rainbow)
AMY POEHLER – 1 segment (She’s a Rainbow)

FRED ARMISEN – 6 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; Karaoke Night; Politics Nation; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
ABBY ELLIOTT – 4 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
BILL HADER – 5 segments (Secret Word; Weekend Update; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
SETH MEYERS – 2 segments (Weekend Update; She’s a Rainbow)
BOBBY MOYNIHAN – 3 segments (Karaoke Night; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; She’s a Rainbow)
NASIM PEDRAD – 2 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; She’s a Rainbow)
ANDY SAMBERG – 3 segments (Lazy Sunday 2; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
JASON SUDEIKIS – 2 segments (Politics Nation; She’s a Rainbow)
KENAN THOMPSON – 3 segments (Politics Nation; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
KRISTEN WIIG – 6 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; Secret Word; Karaoke Night; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)

VANESSA BAYER – 5 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; Secret Word; Karaoke Night; The Californians; She’s a Rainbow)
TARAN KILLAM – 4 segments (Secret Word; Karaoke Night; So You Think You Can Dance at an Outdoor Music Festival; She’s a Rainbow)
KATE MCKINNON – 2 segments (The Lawrence Welk Show; She’s a Rainbow)
JAY PHAROAH – 1 segments (She’s a Rainbow)

EPISODE MVPs: Mick Jagger/Kristen Wiig/Andy Samberg