Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Morning Quarterback – Jason Segel & Florence + the Machine

It’s funny, I’m not really aware of Jason Segel’s comedic styling’s. I’ve seen him on Letterman and I saw him in Knocked Up, but I haven’t seen Forgetting Sarah Marshall and I don’t watch How I Met Your Mother. I know nothing about this dude.

This should make for an interesting episode.

(As usual, here’s our rating system)
Phil Hartman – Comedic gold
Chris Farley – Definitely funny, but kinda messy
Norm MacDonald – Funny, but not for everyone
Tim Meadows – Solid Bit
Andy Samberg – Funny, but overstayed it’s welcome
Jim Breuer- Crowd pleaser, but a bit obvious
David Spade – Trying too hard
Chris Elliot – Didn’t click at all, how did it get on

Mitt Romney: Raw & Unleashed – You’d think in a week that more going on politically they’d more better material. But we get a “Mitt is lame” sketch. And a one note sketch at that. “Sex scandals and whoopsie-daisies” was a dope line that I’m totally going to steal for my autobiography. But the bit went on too long, although it did manage to get Jay Pharoah what I think is his earliest cameo all season.

Rating: Andy Samberg, Jim Breuer

Monologue – I was worried about Jason Segel turning in a hackneyed musical number, but that worry went away when the Muppets came out. I was especially happy to see Rowlf, who’s quietly one of my favorite Muppets. But the monologue was more cute than funny. Yeah, the Muppets thinking they were hosting and then getting bitter was funny, but it was spread out over too much filler. And ironically the Muppets completely usurped the monologue, leaving Segel a comedic enigma.

Rating: Jim Breuer, Tim Meadows

Red Flag – Eh, it’s funny, but it’s recycled. But it’s really funny. But it’s a sign that the show is weak because it’s a) recycled and b) a really funny bit.

Rating: Waived

Replacing Regis – This sketch was a calvacade of barely adequate impressions. Either the comedian didn’t look like who they were impersonating, or they didn’t do a good impression. Sadly Pharoah’s Denzel was the “best” impression, but didn’t differ at all from the previous four times he’s done it. I did love Armisen’s George Lopez, because it was spot on, not only his mannerisms, but his “comedy.”

Rating: Chris Farley, Tim Meadows

Kemper Petic – My first reaction was “boo, another commercial?” But this was funny. The premise was hilarious, and Segel totally sold the bit. The “rolling dice” killed me. And I was equally weak with the pounding pizza dough. It’s easily one of the best sexual innuendo skits I’ve seen on SNL in quite some time.

Rating: Phil Hartman

Kissing Family Thanksgiving – The Voglecheck’s are divisive. I appreciate them for the boundary pushing and the parody of overly affectionate people. But I can also see how it just grosses some people out. I don’t have a problem with it. I did enjoy the Paul Rudd pop in though.

Rating: Norm MacDonald, Jim Breuer

Florence + the Machine – I can’t front; as much as I wanted to give her a shot and find out what all the fuss is about, I was on the phone talking to Jay1. We were on the phone every break and took this opportunity to recap the show up to this point and predict (with 100% accuracy) where the Muppets would show up again. Sorry Florence.

Weekend Update – First the bad; it’s always tricky when a “real person” shows up on Weekend Update. It’s dope that Jon Huntsman doesn’t take himself all too seriously, but what would be better is if he could read cue cards and deliver lines. His kissing up to the people of New Hampshire was cute. Equally cute was Kermit the Frog tag-teaming “Really” with Seth. Not all too funny, but cute. Although Ramon the spider pimp slayed me.

Retirement Party – This was one of those sketches that you’re either going to love or hate, there’s no middle ground. I loved it. I loved how there wasn’t really a star. Sure they had Kristen Wiig in as a “just in case” measure (and she did fine, managing not to overdo it) while Segel’s drunk and dramatic coworker managed to make the most of his time. It was a weird sketch, but it was funny and everyone really played their part well. Even Armisen’s mute Mitch Gerst was funny. This is when SNL is at it’s best; when it’s not for everyone and it’s devoid of pop culture references.

Rating: Tim Meadows, Chris Farley

New Jack Thanksgiving – Wow, they’re really going to keep trying to make Medium Richard work aren’t they? The poor sound on the first song made it land with a dud. I did like Sweet Leftover Booty and Florence got crazy cool points for performing in a sketch. And Triangle Sally is always cool.

Rating: Jim Breuer, Andy Samberg

Seducing Women Through Chess – Now this was a funny digital short. Again, it’s devoid of pop culture references. The throwback to cheesy production values of yesteryear was nice as was Andy Samberg’s bumbling host. And the absurdity of it all was equally dope.

Rating: Phil Hartman

Andre the Giant Chooses an Ice Cream Flavor – Speaking of absurdity, this was totally random and completely appreciated. From the Don Pardo intro (which conjured up memories of Tarzan, Tonto & Frankenstein) to Segel’s out of left field impression of someone who’s been dead for decades, it was glorious and left me wanting more.

Rating: Phil Hartman, Norm MacDonald

Florence + the Machine – Um, yeah, Jay1 and I were talking about how awesome the Retirement Party, Andre the Giant and Chess were. My bad.

Massachusetts Afternoon – I would totally follow Blue Jean Committee around like the Grateful Dead. They could possibly be the guys I want to play at my wedding. This was a funny skit, from the atmosphere created to the cameos, which really put a bow on the episode. I’m just pissed the blocking ruined the Paul Rudd surprise. It was funny, but also had a cool mellow vibe too. It was a really good sketch to end the show on.

Rating: Tim Meadows, Chris Farley

Final Thoughts: Again, we have an uneven episode. Segel was an interesting host. On one hand he was game enough to hang with the Voglechecks, but on the other hand I’d almost forgotten who the host was by Weekend Update. He redeemed himself with the Retirement Party and Andre the Giant, though. This definitely feels like and episode before a break.

And that last shot of the thanks yous and goodbyes….you know what, I’m going to save that for a separate post.

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