Ian McKellen / Kylie Minogue
March 16, 2002


THIS IS MY 15TH REVIEW OF THE SEASON AND 30TH REVIEW OVERALL.

Preshow Thoughts: Last weekís show will be hard to top. Jon Stewart was an excellent host. Although he did play himself in some sketches, some other reviewers olbliviously donít watch The Daily Show. Jonís performance in the Talking with the Stars sketch was questioned but thatís how Jon sometimes acts on the show.

Ian McKellan best known to the young SNL fans as Magnento and Gandalf. X-Men 2 should start filming in April in Canada while The Two Towers will be out this December. He just won a SAG Award for his performance in Fellowship of the Rings. When he was on Letterman in December he was quite funny for a gay old British knight known for dramatic roles. Iíd really like to see how they incorporate him into some recurring sketches.

This will be the 15th show of the season. Wow. The season has gone by so quick. Only five more after this one and its spread out between nine weeks. Some celebrities I would like to see host the final four would be

Keifer Sutherland (24 finale), Tom Hanks (Road to Periditon), Christopher Walken (heís such a great host), Mike Myers (Austin Powers 3), Samuel L. Jackson (Episode II), Tobey Maguire (Spider-Man), Kirsten Dunst (Spider-Man), Natalie Portman (Episode II), The Rock (The Scorpion King), Dana Carvey (new movie this summer), Rob Schnieder, Steve Martin, Will Ferrell (wait he hasnít left the show yet....)

No Will once again. But this will be the last show he'll miss the season. Who saw the trailer for Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones on Fox? Great trailer. Canít wait. Plus thereís also other great summer movies, Spider-Man, The Next Installment of Austin Powers, Minority Report and The Road to Periditon.

As for the late night happenings that was I guess a recurring theme last week, Dave returned from his vacation on Monday and said he's staying at CBS and hopes that Ted stays at ABC or atleast gets to choose where he goes. Dave was hillarious on Monday too. Stephen Colbert was almost perfect as a guest host for Jon. Some minor errors during the interviews but he was great with Headlines and introducing corespondants. Also this week, Jon has returned and was able to do a bit on ex-Winnipegger Ashliegh Banfield climbing to the top of the Brooklyn Bridge to do a report on terrorist targets. She (with her hair still not back to blonde) said that she didn't see any security measures at all climbing up here and there probably hasn't been anything done since 9/11. She also said that a bridge would be a prime target. To which Jon said and I quote, "NO SHIT!" Okay it was bleeped but anyway he told her.

Got some mail this week! So let's open up the ol' CBS Mailba... I mean Yahoo! Inbox!

Hi, can you PLEASE tell me where the heck Will Ferrell has been lately? He was not in the SNL episode with Jon Stewart and has barely been used this season?? Is he being slowly pushed off the show or is this his last year?? I have a feeling he is leaving for movies, but was hoping you could shed some light on the situation, thank you.

Steve

Well I told Steve that he's filming a movie right now about some older guys trying to recapture their college years. That Will is considering staying on for an 8th season (few have) but he also could leave and make movies since he's a big enough star with great potential.

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Hey, I read your review of the Jon Stewart episode and thoroughly enjoyed it - I loved all the 6 Degrees of Seperation you mentioned, but there's a few more big ones! Jon's old talk show, the Jon Stewart Show, was directed by Beth McCarthy. Also the head writer was Steve Higgins
(now SNL producer), and Dennis McNicholas and Andrew Stelle wrote for both shows. I'm sure I didn't improve your life any by telling you this, but I'm sitting at work bored. =)

Sharilyn

Well I didn't know about those facts, but it was more of a The Daily Show and Saturday Night Live connection. Funny thing is we both live in the same city. She's a big Jon Stewart fan (created this new webstie on Jon's show from the mid-90s) and is actually going to NYC to see a taping of The Daily Show and Late Night with Conan O'Brien. She also mentioned that she'll probably get autographs from the SNL cast.

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Wrestlemania X-8 occurs this week in Toronto, Ontario. There was talk and planning of going to T.O. to see the big show (haha that was lame) but they fell apart faster than the Spanish annouce table. But anyway if you live in Canada its real big here. In the States I doubt ESPN or Fox Sportsnet have stories on the subject. TSN and The Score (all anchored in Toronto) have had stories and and programs related to the event. Winnipeg's own Chris Jericho will defend his title and I will watch him most likely lose it.

The Colin Quinn Show - I watched most of the premiere on Monday and I must say that just proves that Colin was wasted as WU Anchor for those few seasons. You watch the reruns and you wonder how he kept his job? Anyway he excels in this half hour live show. Some of the material might not be prime time TV material but its entertaining and I enjoyed it. His monolougue, the ethnic backround sketch, the two couples with the foriegn guy it was funny and smart. Meaning it probably won't last long. The thing wrong with the show is the timeslot. Right now its alright, but if they keep it on at that time next year they have WWF Raw and ABC's Monday Night Football. Lot of teens and twentysomethings will be watching will probably not watch it. They're all live though. Anyway I think the Quinn's show would be a great alternate to airing reruns of SNL. Whenever there's a rerun air a new live show, then air the SNL rerun afterwords. I don't know how the NBC schedule r! uns but I think they can cut a half hour out of there very late night programming.

SNL Remembers John Belushi - I too watched most of this Monday night special. It marked the 20th Anniversary of his death, so there is a huge number of current SNL fans who hardly don't know of any of his SNL days (including me). They probably have seen sketches with him in other SNL specials or they have seen some of his movies. So they get Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon to host to attract the younger crowd. Anyway it was a very good show. Learned more of one of the great SNL castmembers. I thought the best sketch was the graveyard one, with a old John Belushi visiting all his former castmember's graves. I thought it was very smartly well done. I would like to see more of these SNL specials.

Opening: Homeland Security's New Warning System - 96

Not the president or vice president here. Darrell with an new impression that I must say was probably difficult to do since he can't smile or laugh or change his voice tone. So finally they've come up with level of terrorit warnings. Off White, Cream, Putty, Bone and Natural. All of course are pretty much white. Great opener.

Ladies and Gentlmen- 93

Sir Ian McKellan did a great mono. He didn't do any questions, have castmembers come up (as themeseleves or as other actors), he didn't sing he just did a mono. Not up to the standards of Jon Stewart's but that is hard to top. He talks about how he in his early beginnings Maggie Smith brought Anthony Hopkins to watch him perform and now that Maggie is known as the Harry Potter woman, Hopkins is known as a guy who eats people skins, and Ian plays with his action figures. I remember him talking about his action figures on Letterman in late December. Also another comment about the gays and how they can't be in the St.Paddy's Day Parade. But this time Ian had the better punchline than Jon. "You won't allow any openingly gay people walk but you have no problem with the ministers."

Kotex Classic - 98

At first I had know idea what was going on here, I thought it might have to do with birth control but instead its a tampon commerical.Oh man that's terrible for what they had to wear. Tina makes an appearence here, showing off her fifty year old tampon. This is the funniest sketch of the commerical of the season and will be hard to stop. They could air this thing two more times this season I wouldn't care. The ladies looked good.

Versace - 93

"EHHHH!" At first I was disappointed about this sketch, but as it kept on going it got better. Ana incorporated her pregnancy into a role, Liz Hurley. She didn't look that pregnant in the Kotex commerical but she does look pregnant here. Kattan did a pretty good Bono. Ian stole the sketch with his performance of whoever, a old gay fashion guy. Oscars mentioned here.

NPR - 89

This was the show's low point. Ana and Rachel played their characters well but its pretty much been done. No more "Good times." They talk about how lonely they are and what they do on the 17th. Ian plays an Irish man here who has his own cook book about Irish cusine. Let's have some Irish tonight. An alright sketch.

TV Funhouse Fun With Real Audio: How To Make The Oscars More Entertaining - 96

My first thought was not another Real Audio, but when the Oscars of last year was the use of the audio I quickly changed my mind. Ryder steals an Oscar, What's her name that wore the swan last year performs her song and the swan starts to come alive, lays eggs (which the female then wears as earings), grows legs, starts honking, peeing etc. Now the audience here is just disgusted. Clint Eastwood, Russell Crowe and some other guy (couldn't tell) rush the stage and attack her. Russell of course known for being a tough guy goes for the legs and starts punching while some "Unleash hell." audio is heard. Clint's gun is taken away by the swan. Kevein Spacey does the Best Actress, Roberts wins, you can hear "Damn You! Damn you all to hell!" (Heston, POTA) The swan fires the gun everyone scatters, Ryder steals another Oscar.

Hot Air Balloon Murder Mystery - 91

Hillarious concept. A detective goes from hot air balloon to hot air balloon solving crimes. In this balloon, Chris Kattan has been shot by a gun and died. So now Ian must figure out who did it. He assumes its Chris Parnell, and in the end it is. Ian chases Parnell around the balloon just stupid, but an alright sketch that gets marks for originalty and use of British accents. (classes it up)

Weekend Update with Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey - 100

Finally a great WU. Last week's was good, but could've been better. The jokes all clicked. Except maybe that Barbie/porno one and seceret joke. "Barbie turns around and takes it in the Matel." The thing that propelled this WU to 100 was Ian's impression of his friend Maggie Smith. Now I don't socialize with "Mags." but that was hillarious. Hopefully she was watching. Her she makes selections for the Oscars. She picks Denzel, Judi Dench, Her and Ian McKellen for the acting categories. She then goes on about how she doesn't go to the after parties. She asks Jimmy for a kiss on the cheek, so Jimmy goes in and Ian turns his head and Ian McKellan did what so many female Fallon fans want to do, kiss Jimmy Fallon on the lips. Doesn't look like this was supposed to happen either. Jimmy wasn't disgusted just shocked, Tina thought it was funny. Jim didn't know if he was just knighted or queened. That was great. Paula Jones and Tanya Harding make an appearence to talk about their rece! nt bout. Rachel and Amy played their roles well. Would've liked to have seena Tanya Harding/Tina Fey match. "You think you're so good with your glasses, and your... glasses." Some more good WU jokes than Jimmy accidentialy conjures up Louie Anderson. Over at MadTV Will Sasso does a good Louie and his former castmate, Jeff Richards who is know on this show, also does a good Louie. Just slightly better. This WU gets the Clinton Thumbs Up.

The Turkish Tonight Show - 100

Missed like the first ten seconds of this so I didn't know what this was at first. I didn't know what country this was in. If Turkish television is like this, start airing it over here! Haratio is the host, Darrell is the sidekick (with the fake stache) and Ian is the guest who owns a night club. The thing about this sketch was that Darrell's moustache was peeling off. Ian tried to fix it and Sanz was trying to tell Darrell fix the stash. Then Harartio does some improv and says you're not even a real man! You can't even grow a real stach! wear a fake stache! The three did their best to keep it in, and they did for the most part. Then later in the sketch Darrell is seen with no moustache. I'd like to see this become a recurring sketch, but there is no way they can top this.

The Life and Times of Charles Dickens - 94

Ian is solo here (Parnell narates, Rachel is heard saying finally at the end) as he plays some soap opera doctor doing a one man show. Had its moments and I thought it was well written and Ian showcases more of his great acting.

Comic Book Zone - 97

Well I caught the end of the previous sketch at just after 11:30 so I got to see this sketch first really and couldn't wait to see the rest of the show, when it repeats at midnight on another channel. Seth and Haratio play to comic book store owners who have their own public access show. Great intro and their laugh alone will make you laugh. They do their Oscar picks, Seth lists the categories, Haratio declares their picks. All of them of course LOTR. Then they bring out their guest, an Doctor Who impersonator played by Ian. He came out dressed like Doctor Who and a bag of Cheetos in his hand. They talk about why he became a Who impersonator (only one who can do British accent) and that he is the manager at the local Pizza Hut. (haven't tried The Pazone, but I'm tired of the commericals) Then Ian does a impression of Gandalf. Just like the movie. Then he does a terrible Magneto. "That sucked." Finally SNL goes out on a good note.

Overall Show Rating - 94

Looks like we have a new champion! That was the funniest and best show of the season. Great opening, mono, WU, two decent recurring sketches, TV Funhouse, no Big Thick Book and great performances by all. Such a shame will wasn't here. Ian McKellan which even he questioned why he was doing SNL can come back any time and host again. He just proved why he's such a great actor with tonight's show. There wasn't really any castmember that dominated the sketches. Mostly everyone was in two or three. I'm glad I didn't miss this one, 'cause I could've but managed to see it. Five more live shows, two will be hosted by previous hosts that did a great job hosting, Cameron Diaz and The Rock. Fantastic show, if this isn't your top three of the season, then something's certainly wrong with you. The Oscars were mentioned atleast in four different sketches.

Funniest Three Sketches: Weekend Update with Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey, The Turkish Tonight Show, Comic Book Zone

Honorable Mentions: Kotex Classic, Homeland Security's New Warning System, TV Funhouse Fun With Real Audio: How to Make the Oscars More Entertaining

Funniest Performers: Ian McKellan (Himself, Fashion Guy, Eccentric Irish Cook, Hot Air Balloon Detective, Maggie Smith, Turkish Night Club Owner, Soap Opera Doctor, Dr.Who Impersonator), Haratio Sanz (Turkish Tonight Show Host, Comic Book Zone co-host), Darrell Hammond (Director of Homeland Security, Turkish Tonight Show Sidekick), Jimmy Fallon (WU Anchor), Tina Fey (Kotex Classic model, WU Anchor), Amy Poehler (Kotex Classic Model, Tanya Harding), Rachel Dratch (Delicious Dish co-host, Paula Jones) Seth Meyers (Comic Book Zone co-host), Ana Gasteyer (Delicious Dish co-host), Maya Rudolph (Donetella Versace), Jeff Richards (Louie Anderson)

Honorable Mentions: Chris Parnell (Kotex Classic voice overr, Killer on Hot Air Balloon), Chris Kattan (Bono) 

Four Bad Things: No Will, Tina and Tanya didn't scrap, NPR could've been funnier, N/A

Impressive Impressions: Chris K. as Bono, Maya as Versace, Ian as Maggie Smith, Darrell as Director of Homeland Security, Amy as Tanya Harding, Rachel as Paula Jones, Jeff as Louie Anderson

Line From Seinfeld That Best Describes This Show: "The Super Terrific Happy Hour." Jerry Seinfeld as Jerry Seinfled

RANKINGS:

01] Ian McKellan 02] Hugh Jackman                                                    ! 03] Jack Black                                                                                                     &nbs! p; 04] Jon Stewart 05] Ellen DeGeneres

Next Time: Cameron Diaz --- Can't wait. She hosted before and I can clearly remember that show. Will is back also. If they can top this show, we'll be in for a treat.


Episode Review written by Chris Schiffmann


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