Monday, November 24, 2008

Tim McGraw Recap and Updated SNL Cast Rankings [SNL Recap]

Posted by Double M

Saturday Night Live this week was hosted by Tim McGraw with bonus musical guest Ludacris and T-Pain. I'm not sure why McGraw hosted this week - usually the host will tell you in the opening monologue (which was interrupted by a commercial?!? Was it on yours?) but I don't recall anything (he did have a kinda funny concept of trying to convince hip-hop viewers that were tuning in to watch Ludacris & T-Pain, who were the musical guests, of why they should like hip-hop). To be honest, it felt like they didn't have any real reason for Tim McGraw, so they went with some hillbilly jokes and generic characters.

Anyway, Ludacris and T-Pain stole the show with the best skit of the night. Andy Samberg's recurring character, Blizzard Man, who looks like a mix between Informer and Vanilla Ice and does a ridiculous white rapper thing was hilarious. If you watch one skit from this past weekend's SNL, watch this one.

That "robot voice" was spot on, hilarious, and made that skit awesome.

As for the recap, SNL opened with an ensemble skit about the auto bailout. Not really all that funny. After the opening monologue, they went to a skit about Clear Rite, an adult retainer. This skit was, again, not all that funny but it featured a stereotypical Tim McGraw role from the night so I've included it below.

In just about every skit, this was McGraw's role - don't mess it up. I don't think there was anything skit that McGraw was in that another SNL cast member (except for Keenan) couldn't have done better. I don't know if Justin Timberlake was supposed to be on this show instead (last week he said he was), but I imagine it would have been better than this show.

They moved on with, was an awesome Bill Hader skit: Dateline: Real-life crimes and bad situations. The skit itself isn't that funny, but Bill Hader, who is awesome, was awesome and made me laugh quite a bit with his exclamations in the skit. Look for a generic McGraw role in the skit.

After that, they went to a Thanksgiving skit about turkey's being hunted. Side note: the camera/lighting seemed to break mid skit which was interesting. Its an ok skit but the real reason I've included it is because Keenan's character gets shot.

The only skit of the night that I felt McGraw was really qualified for was the Casino Royale skit. I assume they included this because Quantum of Solace came out last week (so it probably got cut from last week). The skit was alright, but the Pussy Galore portion was actually pretty funny.

All that said, the ending was atrocious.

Next up was the first Ludacris/T-Pain performance. These are Ludacris' actual words before the song "Yes. This is a classic tale of when you go to the club and the more drinks you have the better everything looks in the club." So, he wrote a song about beer goggles. The song that they performed, One More Drink is actually pretty good.

After the music, it was Weekend Update which was again mediocre without Amy, but it featured a great cameo from Darrell Hammond as Bill Clinton (an impression he's really knocks out). Update: See it here. Hammond has one job: good impressions and SNL has to be skeeting in their pants knowing that they have 5 minutes of jokes built into each week with Bill Clinton. Yes, they may get old, but apparently SNL doesn't care - they like to butcher jokes.

The second cameo on Weekend Update was by the new girl Michaela Watkins as Arianna Huffington. It was not really funny (but that seems to be the writers' fault, not hers), but you can watch it by clicking on the link in this paragraph. There was also a third cameo from Will Forte as Zell Miller making fun of the name "Jim Martin." Not that funny in concept, but Forte is pretty good at selling it. Not on Hulu, you're not missing much.

After weekend update there was a Thanksgiving dinner skit with a Will Forte recurring character, Jeff Montgomery mental patient, Trick-or-Turkeying (with a cameo from the other new chick, Abby Elliott, and all she says is "no"). This video's not on Hulu. I'm pretty sure Jeff Montgomery was also the sex offender from the Halloween episode and that video was also not on Hulu. Unlike that skit, however, this one was not funny. UPDATE: You can see the video for this skit here.

Speaking of not funny, the next skit was a commercial for Dale Britches' Down Home Phony Phone Calls. It was basically non-funny prank phone calls. Not on Hulu, you'd be wasting your time watching it.

The second Ludacris/T-Pain performance was next. I'm fairly certain T-Pain buys all of his hats from the vendors at Disney World/Six Flags (they are all ridiculously decorated top hats). Look, T-Pain is a poor man's Nate Dogg. He needs to stick to the choruses.

The final skit of the night was the Bobby Moynihan pizza parlor recurring character. It was awful. Bobby Moynihan is lucky that Keenan Thompson is on the show because otherwise he would be the worst cast member by a long shot.

Overall, McGraw was a mediocre host on a bad show. It really just seemed like the writers were off their game or didn't care or had another host in mind so they had to change pace. If you didn't see it, watch the first skit above and move on.

Other SNL News:

Rumors are out there that Fred Armisen is out as Barack Obama. This is good news for Barack skit (as long as Keenan doesn't take over) and bad news for Armisen who is probably losing his best role. Armisen should feel safe though, Moynihan has dropped below him in the SNL rankings (more on that in a sec), so he's not in danger of being dropped to a lower division.

New People Watch:

I got my first look at Abby Elliott this week. She's kinda hot. Unfortunately, she only said the word "no" in this episode.

We also saw Michaela Watkins' first skit this week. She was good (she's been on sitcoms before, so she can legitimately act) and instantly moves way up on the rankings.

So from my gut reaction, here's my updated rankings for the SNL Cast:

1) Bill Hader - Good enough that I'm disappointed when his skits aren't good
2) Jason Sudeikis - Still versatile, still good
3) Will Forte - Fart Face is a hit-generating machine for this blog
4) Kristen Wigg - moved up a spot, she's been pretty good in everything
5) Andy Samberg - moved down a spot, mainly because Wigg has been good
6) Darell Hammond - The Bill Clinton news means he will be more prolific
7) Michaela Watkins - new to the list...after one skit so she's volatile
8) Seth Meyers - unable to carry Weekend Update alone
9) Fred Armisen - losing his most important character
10) Casey Wilson - dropped...she overacts everything
11) Bobby Moynihan - he has two characters: dumb guy or quasi-gay guy, both of which are annoying
12) Abby Elliott - she's only here because she hasn't done anything yet. Doesn't matter, she's still better than...
20) Keenan Thompson

Dropped: Amy Poehler (not on the show right now)


MajorLB said...

Nooo, I'm horrified!

I'm disappointed in McGraw, he has actually displayed some acting chops in the past. Friday Night Lights for instance. Also...that hair makes me sad when I realized during the second clip that it wasn't a wig.

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