Lucy Liu / Jay-Z
December 16, 2000

My first term of university is officially over, as my last exam was last
Wednesday. This is good, because now I will no longer feel guilty about
spending my Sunday afternoon writing a review of SNL other than studying or
doing an assignment. Since I'm no longer pressed for time, I can now spend
lots of time ramblin' on about all sorts of things.

Steve Martin: Oh, I'm a ramblin' man. I'm ramblin'.
R-A-M-B-L-I-N-Apostrophe, I'm ramblin'.

For those of you looking for a good book for Christmas, then look no further
than the works of John Irving. I'm currently reading A Widow For One
which is a tremendous. I would only recommend this one, A
Prayer For Owen Meany
or The World According to Garp, however,
since his earlier books tend to focus on bizarre sex acts, Austria, amateur
wrestling and urinal diseases. If you're into that sort of thing, however,
more power to you.

My beloved Maple Leafs have been in a bit of a stink lately. Losing
back-to-back games to the New York Islanders and Calgary Flames is the
equivalent of slipping on an icy driveway, breaking your leg, managing to
pull yourself to your feet, and then slipping again and breaking your other
leg. This minor losing streak aside, the Stanley Cup is still inevitable.
I realize I've said this before, but this time it's true. It's true.

If Alex Rodriguez saves his money, in ten years he will be able to walk into
any 7-11 in the world and buy 252,000,000 Cokes. Can't beat the real thing.
The Texas Rangers can't beat the real thing, or, in fact, anybody, since
their pitching staff blows. A-Rod won't help Texas enough for them to make
the playoffs.

I have a new car! I'm the proud owner of a 2000 Toyota Echo. My old 1990
Honda Prelude still had some juice left in it, but let's be honest: Honda
gave it the name because they made it as a prelude to making good cars. It
still got $5000 in the trade-in, though, so hooray for everything. Since
this car is now specifically for me, I am paying for half of it, plus half
the insurance, plus all the gas, etc. Ergo, I won't be able to afford any
on-line Christmas presents for anybody.

Jordan Davidson: Dammit! I wanted that Wade Phillips voodoo doll.


Lucy Liu is on the frequently silly Ally McBeal, and starred in the
almost completely silly Charlie's Angels. Yet, I've never seen her
in a role that isn't some kind of a riff on her stone-faced, borderline
psychotic Ally character. Since SNL is not usually hosted by
border-line psychotics (John Malkovich being the last that I can think of),
I would assume/hope that she'll branch out a wee bit.
The musical guest is another rapper, Jay-Zed (Oh Canada). As I've
reiterated before, I'm no fan of rap, but Jay-Z is a pretty big wheel in the
cracker factory that is rap music, and thus I'll cut him some slack.
Consider it my Christmas gift to the world of rap. Why should I put down
the poor man's rapping, since U2's performance from last week will already
make Jay-Z look absolutely sad in comparison?

[COLD OPENING] Getting the Hispanic Vote
I said last week that these sketches are getting stale, but the Chi-Chi's
locale provided some freshness. The "Ballot/Boob Inspector" hat was too
small for Darrell's head; I feel his pain. Whenever I buy a hat, I have to
adjust it to the second-last button. Finding a fitted hat is virtually
impossible; it would take a specially trained team of Vietnamese sweatshop
employees working around the clock to make a covering for my giant head.

Ron Jeremy: I have the same problem.

So, Dubya is the president. Congratulations, United're now a
joke. During his victory speech, the man smiled like a goof and compared
himself to Thomas Jefferson...this is not a good start. For the record, I
will no longer refer to the president-elect by his full-name; since there's
already been a George Bush, I will now be referring the next leader of the
free world only as Dubya. B+

[MONOLOGUE] Sony, Panasonic, JVC and Other Stereotypes
Uh, remember that thing I wrote about Lucy's character on Ally McBeal
being stone- faced? Never mind. She was downright effusive in this
monologue, almost to the point of reaching camp-counselor levels of
enthusiasm. They left out the scene where Lucy solves math problems, but
other than that, I think all of the stereotypes were hit. Of course, SNL
would never stoop to making fun of Oriental people.

Ching Change: Absorutery light. Chicken makea a rousy housepet.

There was a Chinese restaurant right here in London called Fu Lam City that
got shut down a few years ago because the health inspectors actually proved
that they were serving dog. Horatio should've been brought in to take care
of the leftover inventory. B

[COMMERCIAL] At Least He Didn't Plug TekWar
Much like a meal at Fu Lam City, this didn't sit right. The actual commercials are so silly in and of themselves that they are
virtually spoof-proof. SNL's attempt to turn this ad into a rip on the
Internet didn't really work. Also hurting this ad was the fact that Darrell
Hammond's impression of Shatner was (surprisingly, for Darrell) not any
good. All in all, purty weak. D-

[SKETCH] I Want My MTV...Or In Another, More Accurate, Way, I Don't
One of...okay, the only good show on MTV is 2Gether, a very funny satire of
a boy band (Kevin Farley, Chris' brother, plays one of the band members).
The inherent stupidity of MTV, however, prevents them from realizing that
they themselves are the joke; the only reason that these talentless,
cookie-cutter boy/girl bands are popular is because MTV keeps hyping them.
This sketch was a good spoof of the average female R n' B group, probably
made more accurate by the fact that Ana and Maya can really sing. Most of
the women in these groups are pretty good singers, but their talent is
obscured by their crappy songs. I got a laugh from Lucy's emphatic
"Mini-van!" during Ana and Maya's harmony. Jimmy's Carson Daly impresssion
is also always good for a laugh. B+

[SKETCH] I'll Bet Millionaire Looks Pretty Good Now, Eh Trebek?
Jordan Davidson was wondering how they could possibly top "write anything"
for Final Jeopardy, but "write your own question and then answer it" managed
to do just that. Fallon's impression of Robin Williams was pretty good,
although not quite in Martin Short territory. Lucy's impression of
Zeta-Jones was funny, although SNL had to fall back on the standard "we
can't think of anything inherently funny about this person, so we'll make
them stupid." The comment about the diapers was pretty funny, though.
"Anal bum cover" was actually pretty obvious, since it was the only
non-obvious category (besides the immortal Potent Potables). A-

[SKETCH] Pretty, Living
Somebody check Hell to see if it has frozen over, because there was actually
a change in Pretty Living. Instead of bringing out her boyfriend, Helen
Madden brought out just a "friend," although Lucy was going for the whole
butch-lesbian deal. Actually, I thought she looked like Prince, but maybe
that's just me. Another monumental event occurred in this sketch, as Molly
didn't break character. (cymbal crash) That's Incredible! The greatest
change that could possibly occur in this sketch (it becomes funny)
unfortunately did not happen. The kissing mirrors bit was kind of funny.
That reminds me of the time that my brother was getting himself pumped up
for football, and accidentally punched a mirror while he was trash-talking
it. I laughed so hard I nearly choked on my toothpaste. D

[SKETCH] I Wish My RealPlayer Was That Clear
This has recurring sketch written all over it, but Jarret's Room didn't get
off to a promising start. The audience was pretty much dead throughout,
which is not a good sign. Too much of the stereotypical
slacker-college-student humour, and take it from me, it's mostly untrue.

Voice of Reason: But Mark, aren't you a geek that doesn't even live in a
dorm and prefers to live at home with your parents?

Shut up, Voice of Reason. By the way, I thought Phish actually did break
up. I thought SNL even made that into an Update joke a few weeks back;
what's the deal there? I guess it's not a big deal, since I couldn't even
tell you a Phish song, but it's still food for thought. D+

[WEEKEND UPDATE] Dolly Wasn't Enough Woman To Satisfy James
This was one of the more disorganized Updates I've seen in a while. It
looked as if Jimmy and Tina were just making it up as they went along. The
jokes were generally good, but Kattan's bit as the New Year's Baby was just
silly, as was Rachel's turn as James Madison. While a lot of those early
presidents did look rather effeminate, not Madison; he kind of looked like
Fallon. That story about Al Gore having a wild time at his concession party
was true; Gore apparently even got really hammered. Jimmy's comment about
how "I would've voted for that guy" is kind of ironic; the American public
did vote for this guy, when he was called Bill Clinton. Jimmy's songs were
pretty funny, but at the same time made me think that this is his ideal role
on Update; let Parnell or somebody be the anchorman. The Bono spoof was
pretty funny, as well. B-

[MUSICAL GUEST] One Bass Line, Over...and Over...and Over...
So that's what Barry Sanders has been up to since his retirement; he's gone
into rapping. On another football-related note, the stout fellow in the
yellow shirt looked kind of like Warren Sapp of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Well, he looked like a sap in general, but this fellow specifically looked
like Warren Sapp. Who, exactly, were these three guys who accompanied Jay-Z
in his, ahem, singing? Jay-Z pretty much stood there and let these guys do
all the rapping. Since he was stoned out of his mind, however, I guess its
probably for the best that there was some back-up. F

Aw, what a nice sweet Christmas sketch with an uplifting message. Not
particularly funny, but certainly uplifting. The only real humour came from
Maya as the instruction booklet and Horatio as the California Raisin.
Congratulations again to Molly Shannon for not breaking up during the
sketch. There's not much to be said about this one, really. C

[SKETCH] Vera Said That?
Robert Goulet was a featured part of one of the best Simpsons episodes ever,
the one where Springfield gets a casino and Marge gets hooked on gambling.
Damn, that was a great episode. As a result, Mr. Goulet (or if you're
American, Goolett) holds a special place in my heart. Will's impression was
not in any way accurate, but it was very funny. Will also gets kudos for
trying to cover for the rappers not knowing any of their lines; you can
blame that on the wacky tobacky. Laugh of the night comes from Jay-Z nearly
burning himself with his cigarette. C+

[INTERLUDE] Maybe Jimmy Will Ask For Some Composure For Christmas
This just kind of happened without being notable in any way, sort of like
the Christmas song from last week with Horatio, Kattan, Tracy and Jimmy. If
they ever make a Simpsons movie, the homeless guy is the perfect choice to
play Krusty the Clown; he's certainly got the hair for it. C

[MUSICAL GUEST] Pimpin' Ain't Easy
This little ditty is apparently called "Big Pimpin." And David Gray only
got one song...unbelievable. Nothing notable to mention here, except for
that the rappers are constantly making diamond hand-signs. It's good to
know that Diamond Dallas Page still has a few fans. F

[MUSICAL INTERLUDE] It's Like Deja Vu All Over Again. It's Like Deja Vu
All Over Again

Wow, no sooner do I mention last week's song than here it is again. The
exact same thing, in fact, except this week the guys are wearing green
shirts. I think the funniest part of this bit is that Tracy has such a
serious look on his face whilst dancing. D

BEST SKETCH: Celebrity Jeopardy
WORST SKETCHES: Shatner commercial, Pretty Living, Jarret's Room
BUSIEST CAST MEMBER: Jimmy Fallon (8 sketches)
MISTAKES: The camera cuts back to the family in the Ornaments sketch were
poorly timed; Weekend Update was sloppier than a hooker's hygiene.

"What do mean? There's more than one Chi-Chi's restaurant?"-- President
Dubya (Will Ferrell)

"Wars are like executions, super-sized."-- President Dubya (Will Ferrell)

"That's good dog."-- Horatio Sanz

"My name is Carson Daly, and I'm completely average in every way."-- Carson
Daly (Jimmy Fallon)

"What's the difference between you and a sick duck? I don't remember the
rest, but your mother's a whore."-- Sean Connery (Darrell Hammond), to Alex
Trebek (Will Ferrell)

"Colin Powell was named Secretary of Please-Don't-Hate-Me-Black-People."--
Tina Fey

"Can you tell me where I can find a chesty whore?"-- James Madison (Rachel
"43rd and 10th"-- Jimmy Fallon

Much like Carson Daly, this show was completely average in every way.
Probably a bit below average, actually; the first half hour or so was good,
but the show went downhill after that. Lucy Liu did a good job, and showed
a fair amount of range. Jay-Z was terrible. All in all, I think this show
merits a C-.

And thus endeth the year 2000. I hope that everyone has a happy holidays
and stuffs themselves full of food at Christmas and then gets nicely buzzed
on New Year's. A merry Christmas/ Hanukah/Quanza to all, and to all a good

Mark "Festivus" Polishuk
ICQ: 84781580

Episode Review written by Mark Polishuk

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