Dan Aykroyd / Beyonce
May 17, 2003

By Link

Hey people. It's time again to count off my favorite sketches, commercials and my final takes on the cast this season.

 

Top 10 Favorite Sketches (In no specific order):

 

1) Sexual Harassment Seminar - A successful attempt by Parnell to be the new Ferrell. Going to the point of bringing his pants down, I was shocked and doubling over with laughter at the same time. This is proof that the producers were idiots in firing Parnell in the first place.

2) Hardball (John McCain Episode) - It wasn't just that McCain did a funny Ashcroft impression but Tracy's Belafonte was the highlight. I just adored Darrell's little verse: "Day-o, Day-o, Belafonte is a crazy mofo." It's not the same without Begala, but they made it work just fine.
3) The Celebrity Game - Probably the only good sketch out of the McCormack episode, Rachel just going crazy and destroying the house was great. I mean, who would write down Felix Mendelsen as a celebrity? Good portraying by Eric as the boyfriend who sucks at games.
4) Address by President Bush (Nia Vardalos Episode) - Ok, this is a cold opening but a sketch nevertheless. Appearing for the second time as Bush, Parnell did a much better impression as him, getting the facial features down and his voice acting, plus the fact that the makeup artists let up a bit on him that time. The whole premise is that that he can't count at all and it's funny. Pure and simple.
5) The Falconer - I believe Forte's first sketch as the main character, he did a great job but it was mostly the falcon's doing that made it good, eating the fine food, sleeping with his master's wife and ending up getting him a mouse. Genius writing by the writers that week.
6) East Coast vs. West Coast Rap Off - Eh, a monologue, but they feature some of the members rapping, the best being Parnell and Poehler. One of the most solid monologues I've seen in a while.
7) Leslie's Bedtime Story - I thought I wouldn't include a sketch from a DeNiro episode, but this was good enough to make it. Luckily, DeNiro didn't look at the prompter so much that time, only because there were easy words to remember, but the hidden motive was expressed well. A nice job by Kattan as well.
8) Daily Affirmation With Stuart Smalley - If this were cheese, I would've added it anyway, just because this sketch came back. It was perfect in every way and I was blessed to see it once more. Man, I'm acting pathetic now *shakes head*
9) Saturday Matinee: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory - I loved Jeff's impression, but having an accountant as a brother was a smart idea also.
10) Annual Christmas Song - Really can't say much more than that. A song, but it's a tradition that no one can dislike.

Top 10 Favorite Commercials, Cold Openings, Tributes and Songs (In no specific order again):

1) The NRA Commercials - Probably the best so far. At first, they fool you with the AFLAC duck, and then they shoot it, prompting into Happy Hunting by the NRA. The second of the 2 wasn't as great, but Seth's Carrot Top was right on the spot. Come to think of it, I'm glad they tried to kill him also. Like the Dell kid, he's been in too many COLLECT commercials. Give it a break for once.
2) The Hannukah Song Part 3 - An all-time favorite song of mine. The only other names I'm writing down are Adam Sandler and Rob Schneider.
3) Corona Commercials - It was a real shame that no one got what they meant, but I did and it was great. I think the quote is "Miles From Home" and they have Jimmy drunk and doing stupid things. It wasn't in the right episode though, since it sucked overall.

4) Pier 1 Imports - By the Nia Vardalos show, people were sick and tired of Kirstie Alley and made a funny parody of forcing people to buy their stuff. Competes against the NRA commercials in cleverness.

5) Welcome Back Potter - The only reason I really liked this was because I like the Welcome Back Kotter theme song but it's funny watching Will standing in front of a subway with graffiti all over it. What went wrong after he left?

6) Joe Millionaire Parodies - I really liked these, except the fourth one was a bit too much. The best one though was Joe Caucasian. Are most of the girls' idiots on the real show? You bet they are.

7) Clappin' The serious faces that were plastered on the cast's faces while they were performing was enough of a highlight to put it up here. It was a good parody of Stomp.

8) Annual Christmas Song - Really can't say much more than that. A tradition that everyone looks forward to.

9) Mr. Roger's Tribute I believe that everyone was sad when he died because he made us feel so good about ourselves. And the good thing about him was that he didn't come off as cheesy, just genuinely sincere. The tribute was short but the song by Horatio was nice.

10) American idol See my Adrien Brody review below for more details.

 

My Final Takes On The Members:

Rachel Dratch: And my prediction is correct. I think she is the female cast member of the year. My opinion of her is much of the same as the half way review. She did a solid job, in which she was given a lot of sketches to work with. I think she can keep this up for a few more years until she decides to leave

Jimmy Fallon: Well, he got better after my last take on him, but he still laughs during the sketches, especially during Top O' The Morning and the Weekend Update in which Horatio played Elton John. That was just pathetic. Seriously though, he has to work on that in the future or just go.
Darrell Hammond: Well, he's not leaving this year but I think he'll go next year. He doesn't seem that into sketches like he once was and he's breaking character more than he ever has before. I worry about him but he still has the veteran's edge to him that still keeps him funny.
Tina Fey: She's the Update woman, what can you say. She's been venturing out of her little niche though and into some minor roles in some sketches. Good for her.
Chris Kattan: 7 years, good for him. Now that he's moving on to bigger things, I think Jeff is going to take over as the guy who's not ashamed to embarrass himself. Most people hate Kattan, but I liked him a lot. Most of the people who've read my reviews recently knows that my favorite character of his is Suel Forrester. I won't see him again but at least I can see it on the reruns. You've done well, Chris. Good luck.

Tracy Morgan: And I was right. He is leaving but to do a show for NBC. I think he'll do better there since he'll have more exposure and freedom to do what he likes. He wasn't horrible this season but we didn't see his full extension of comedy like we did for the last couple of seasons.
Maya Rudolph: Bad in the first half, a bit better this time around. All of the female cast members have the same roles so I can't really say anything but she wasn't as great as the others. She'll pick up next season though.

Chris Parnell: I just love his solidity on the show. Everyone knows he's decent and they can rely on him for a good sketch. Like I said, he's not Ferrell, but he's the best SNL has right now. I want him in more sketches though. Too many cast members.
Horatio Sanz: Since my last review on him, his appearances have dropped for some reason. He doesn't seem that into the sketches he's in also. I feel a bit sorry for him since when he's not laughing, he's really funny but he has to learn to keep himself under control. That's when he'll become a great performer.
Amy Poehler: Just like Rachel. Very strong in what she does and she does a lot. Good thing for her that there are only 4 female cast members.
Seth Meyers: There was a time when he didn't appear that much in the second half but he's come on strong in the past couple of weeks. Seth is a really good person to come to and he can be relied on to carry a sketch if the writers gave him an opportunity. Like I said before, people want him as a regular cast member. He really does deserve it.
Jeff Richards: A combo of Ferrell, Hammond and Kattan. Does impressions and can be embarrassing endlessly without being embarrassed. Like Seth, he also deserves to be a cast member.
Dean Edwards: Well, I was wrong. He's still in the same number of sketches and isn't used to his full potential, which I think he has a lot of. They just don't give the kid a chance to shine, which I want him to do.
Will Forte: He already has an overdone sketch. That's hard to say about a featured player. My feeling is that he'll either be a featured player next year or bumped up as a regular since he has proved himself to be very good.
Fred Armisen: Thank god he hasn't done Fericito since but like Forte, he's done enough to prove himself. And he's doing more serious roles, which I think is fantastic for him. I hope he keeps this up next season.

 

 

Ok, I did watch the Adrien Brody episode but I didn't feel up to do a review so I saved my comments for this week.

 

American Idol: I'm a really big fan so I was waiting for this to come up. Unfortunately, I was surprised to find Kattan playing Clay (he's my favorite). I thought Seth would've done a better job as him or Ryan Seacrest but Kattan does have the facial expressions that Clay emits sometimes (it's not that bad though). I loved Rachel as Kim and how she knew she would go. The best part though was Parnell as Simon and how he hopes that Ryan gets SARS. Harsh, but hilarious. And I liked the repeated commercials and Dean saying Îdawg' all the time. A

Monologue: Very cheesy and just says Happy Mother's Day to his mom. C

Mom Jeans: This was a bit mean but kind of accurate at the same time. B

Brian Fellow's Safari Planet: This sketch gets weirder and weirder but I still like the fact that he has random spurts of intelligence which takes us by surprise. The normal type of sketch though. B

Look At Me!: I loved the big picture of Kattan's face on the wall. Caught me completely by surprise. Adrien as the manservant was cute but it dragged on and Kattan singing Journey was hilarious. ãDamn you Match.comä B -

Live With Regis and Kelly: This is just getting ridiculous. Now Hammond is breaking up, which is a shame. The sketch was good though as Adrien playing the guy who cut his own arm off to survive. And Gelman is carrying a pink parasol. B

Saddam and Osama: Too many Jew insults but that's ok, considering what this was about. The commercials were really clever and Smigel was really on with this. Good for him. A

Weekend Update: Rachel playing Q*TERPLX was pretty funny, although she was on for only a minute. Horatio as Elton John was seriously unnecessary though and it was basically a chance for Jimmy and Horatio to break each other up. For some reason, I laughed a lot though. B+

Lens Masters: A cheap version of Jeffrey's. This sketch could've done a lot better if Jimmy replaced Adrien. I liked the different glasses though and how stupid they were. C

Ballroom Dancing Class: Just like Seduction Class, but weaker since Adrien was in it. I still like Fred's character the best though. Gabe's voice and mannerisms are hilarious. B

Velvet Productions: Now this was awesome. Thinking up of homosexual porn names for movies. I loved it since they couldn't think up of names for The Pianist and Holes. They ended the show with a solid sketch at least. A-

OVERALL GRADE: C-. Honestly, I think the show would've been a lot better if Adrien wasn't in it. They should have one of those host-less shows again. I think a good episode would come out of it. Seriously though, Adrien brought everything down but the sketches itself were good.

 

 

Pre-Show Review:

The last show of the season and what a way to finish it with none other than Dan Aykroyd, who has appeared in a couple of sketches in the past couple of years. This is also the last episode for Kattan and Morgan, who are moving on to do movies and a TV show respectively. I think everyone knew they would go either this year or next year so it's not much of a surprise. I'm looking forward to a good episode and some singing by Beyonce Knowles.

 

COLD OPENING: Hardball (Members Involved: Darrell, Dan, Tracy, Parnell)

When I see Hardball now, I automatically assume it's going to be hilarious. And it was. I loved Dan as Andrew Card. I don't know who he is but what he said was hilarious, like the Democrats best chance to win is to lower the voting age to 6 and nominate Spongebob Squarepants and that Bush came up with Joe Millionaire. Not surprised since the show was cheap and stupid (I still liked it though). And of course Al Sharpton was back and found out that Bush was running again for president. All around a solid opening. I thought I'd never see 2 straight good Cold Openings but anything can happen, I suppose.

GRADE: A

MONOLOGUE: (Members Involved: Dan, Jim Belushi)

With due respect to Dan, I love the Blues Brothers but it was a mistake when he did it with John Goodman when John hosted one of his many episodes. This wasn't much better and I changed the channel when I started to listen. It was kind of better with John Belushi's brother, but not much.

GRADE: C

 

Sketch 1: Top O' The Morning (Members Involved: Jimmy, Seth, Dan, a lot of kids)

One shot of yager (or yagar?) and Patrick punches William? Harsh. I like the fact that William has 23 younger sibs and they all like hardboiled eggs as sweets. I dunno why this was so hilarious to me seeing them drink and hit Patrick with the eggs was funny.

GRADE: A-

 

Sketch 2: Buddy Mills (Members Involved: Jimmy, Kattan, Fred, Amy, Rachel, Tina, Dan, Maya)

I still don't get why the audience loves this sketch so much. It's the same shtick all the time but they still laugh. At least this is the last of this since Chris is leaving. Anyway, same old, same old.

GRADE: C+

 

Sketch 3: The Falconer (Members Involved: Will, John Goodman, Dan, Horatio, Amy, Maya, Jeff)

Quicksand in a forest? Oh well, the writers come up with crazy stuff every week anyway. This honestly has got to be the most disgusting and violent one yet, with people getting slitted by a knife and Maya making out with Donald :\ I didn't know a sketch like this could go that low. I knew this would end in a cliffhanger but what happened to the box The Falconer opened in the beginning? They left that out.

GRADE: A

 

TV Funhouse: Cokee: The Most Expensive Dog In The World

Stupid and disgusting. Hated it.

GRADE: D

 

Sketch 4: Donatella Versace (Members Involved: Maya, Dan, Jeff, John)

A very nice way to rebound, in my opinion. We get to see Jeff's David Letterman again, which was fantastic. Also, we got to see Donatella back away from kids and John dress like Anna Nicole Smith and look and act like an idiot, which she is. All in all, a wonderful sketch after a crummy TV Funhouse.

GRADE: A

 

Musical Guest: Beyonce

N/A

 

Weekend Update with Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey (Members Involved: Jimmy, Tina, Jeff, Kattan, Parnell)

- This is what I get for liking AI. A joke about Clay and Ruben and battle of the sexes

- And Drunk Girl is back yet again. I'm glad a guy plays her or else it would be really ugly if she decided to flash someone

- A horrible reenactment of Kattan's career. I love his horrible reenactments

- I know I've said this a lot recently, but I WANT SUEL FORRESTER AGAIN!!!

- Oh well, at least I'll see his characters again during the reruns

GRADE: A-

 

Sketch 5: Astronaut Jones (Members Involved: Tracy, Dan, Maya)

You know, I think I'll remember this sketch more for its opening song than the content in general, although hearing Tracy mutter is quite funny. I wondered who the woman alien would be this time and it was Maya although I thought Beyonce would've done it. It was funny having Maya go out of character and tell Tracy not to slap her ass. Apparently, he also wanted to get her pregnant even though he's married and has kids. A bit better than his usual ones and a nice way to go out·being his usual perverted self.

GRADE: B

 

Sketch 6: Cuisina Canina (Members Involved: Rachel, Dan, Jeff, Kattan, Parnell, Darrell, Maya, Dean, Amy, John, Seth)

Now this is the kind of sketch I'd expect the original cast to do. Very odd but something that would work extremely well. Well, that's what this cast did and although it was disgusting in a dog kind of sense, it was funny also. The funniest part was Rachel turning around in circles before she sat on the bar stool.

GRADE: B

 

Musical Guest: Beyonce

N/A

 

Commercial: Dr. Deacon's Haunch Crack Powder(Members Involved: Dan)

Well, I was hoping that the last sketch or commercial would go out with a bang but I was let down because of this. It was ok, but disgusting and I saw enough disgusting things already so this didn't help at all.

GRADE: C

 

 

OVERALL GRADE: B. Well, I was hoping for something better, but this was ok. I was kind of surprised that Dan didn't say anything about Kattan and Morgan's departure, especially Tracy's because he didn't even hint at leaving the show, except for the sign he was holding and I'm not even sure if the people who didn't know before now know. I was also hoping for Kattan and Morgan to be in more sketches but the writers disappointed me again. I just hope next season's opener starts off well.

 

Best of the Night: No one really impressed me at all, but I'll go with Jeff and Kattan. What they did was funny and Kattan deserves it for once so I'll give it to him before he leaves.

 

Worst of the Night: I suppose Horatio and Dean because they were in hardly anything and everyone else seemed pumped during the show except for them.

 

 

Well, that's it for this season. It's been fun reviewing for the site and I hope next year will be a lot better for me, in terms of actually writing a good review. I don't know if I'll review every episode but I will do as many as I can. Let's just hope the quality will be a lot better next year. I want to see some hosts that have done this before and did well, not some actor or actress who does it to promote a new movie. So I hope Conan is contacted and agrees to do another show *wishful thinking*. Anyway, this is Link and I'll cya next season.