Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sunday Morning Quarterback – Jennifer Lawrence & The Lumineers

I’ve arguably been in a funk the last couple of weeks and I was really looking forward to Saturday Night Live to boost my spirits.  I really wanted to laugh again and I believed SNL could do it for me. 

I was genuinely looking forward to this episode, not only because it’s the first of the year (after a month long hiatus) but also because I’m a minor fan of Jennifer Lawrence.  Winter’s Bone slayed me and I was curious how she’d handle herself on SNL. 

Well, the episode is over and frankly I’m more depressed than ever.

Before we get into the actual episode, here are our ratings;

Phil Hartman – Comedic gold
Chris Farley – Definitely funny, but kinda messy
Norm MacDonald – Funny, but not for everyone
Kristen Wiig – So-so premise saved by performer.
Tim Meadows – Didn’t hate it, didn’t love it, dripping with adequatulence
Darrell Hammond – Funny, but overstayed it’s welcome
Jim Breuer- Crowd pleaser, but a bit obvious
Robert Downey Jr – Brilliant performer, not a lot to work with
David Spade – Trying too hard
Janeane Garofalo – Weird weird, not weird funny

Piers Morgan Tonight – First off, I’m not completely sold on Killam’s Piers Morgan.   Also Sudekis’ Lance Armstrong didn’t feel fully formed and Moynihan’s Te’o felt even less so.  It was cool to see McKinnon’s Jodie Foster again.  But yeah, it just felt sort of flat. 

Rating: David Spade

Monologue – First off; I’m glad there wasn’t a musical element this week. I guess the Tommy Lee Jones bit would work for someone who didn’t watch the Golden Globes, but it’s much funnier if you had.  Lawrence’s nervousness seemed to be on display, as her timing was way off.  Actually I think it was directing; she should have turned to a different camera when she was expressing her sincere thoughts on her fellow nominees.  The way it played on the show, her “sincere” moments were swallowed. 

Rating: Tim Meadows

Starbucks Verismo – This was pretty funny.  The notion of bringing the Starbucks experience to your home, but taken to the nth degree.  It was totally adequate. 

Rating: Tim Meadows

Girlfriends Talk Show – Initially I was glad to see this sketch return, because I really enjoyed it the first time around.  This time felt a little different.  The chemistry felt a bit off.  Last time it felt like a new friend was invading an established show.  This time it just felt like Bryant’s character was the odd girl out.  Bryant really didn’t have much to work with.  Lawrence did a good job, the jokes just weren’t there. 

Rating: Robert Downey Jr.

Hunger Games Press Conference – I was fine with this one.  Granted I’ve yet to see Hunger Games, but I got the gist of it.  The reporters seemed to ask the typical sports reporter questions and the contestants handled those questions like athletes do.  It wasn’t great, but it was the best premise meets performance so far.

Rating: Kristen Wiig

Hobbit Sequels – Despite the technical hiccups (Announcer said Hobbit 8 but the graphic said 10, glitchy playback) it was a pretty funny sketch.  And being an outsider to that whole franchise made it even funnier.  The Apple Maps joke was dope and the splitting of the check was hilarious. 

Rating: Chris Farley

Johnny Two Tones – The sketch started with a boom mic and went downhill from there. Lawrence’s character’s genuine disdain for the couple was funny, but it got old and didn’t really go anywhere.  And to top it off the sketch had no ending.  It came to a crazy abrupt stop.

Rating: Darrell Hammond

The Lumineers Performance #1 – I remember the first time I heard this song, it was Spring 2012.  I was actually with a coworker at The  Sound Garden when he picked up their album over the summer.  I passed on it because I was already sick of this song.  It’s currently in at least two ad campaigns, one, the Blue Moon ad, ran right after this performance.  I was less than happy to hear this song. 

Weekend Update – Seeing Anthony Crispino made me very happy.  He’s a correspondent that I really enjoy.  Hearing him reference Milk Breath Mike and Daniel Ray Lewis made me weak.  I also like Seth’s reference to Mississippi’s legislature being composed of 30 hissing possums in a barn.  But overall, Update felt short. 

Top Dog Chef – Wow, this was a horrible sketch.  This is the type of lame premise that show making fun of how bad SNL is would come up with, so to see it on the show was shocking.  And I’m a Top Chef fan, so I got what they were doing.   But the punny names of the judges were cringe-worthy.  This sketch had nothing redeemable in it.  Nothing. 

Rating: David Spade

Richard & The Buffalo – It felt like an obnoxious radio morning show.  I liked that Lawrence’s intern circumvented expectations with her freestyles.  I liked Karen’s no-nonsense attitude.  But I did not like this sketch. 

Rating: David Spade

The Lumineers Performance #2 – Honestly I liked this second song and not just because I hate the first song.  They’re still just a tad too earnest for me, what with one of the guys being barefoot on stage.  And it really feels to me like they’ve sort of hitched their boat to that shout chorus.  But I did like them better this time around. 

Danielle – This was really weird, because it felt like it crossed the line from a parody of a Cinemax flick to a spot on recreation of a Cinemax flick.  It had horrible dialogue and acting.  I liked the weird pseudo dubbing.  I really can’t recall the last time I saw something that made me scratch my head. 

Rating: Janeane Garofalo

Civil War Correspondence – I get where the juxtaposition of the two letter writers was supposed to be funny, but it didn’t click.  So basically it was par for the course for this episode.

Rating:  David Spade

Final Thoughts – This was a dreadful episode.  This is a great example of what happens when you take too much time off; you get rusty.  Sketches and targets were way off.  The writing felt disjointed and there was clearly no quality control.  It’s episode like this that turn people against the show. 

My goodness; that was a bad episode. 

Oh and next week sees Adam Levine hosting, something I called last year.  

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