Baldwin / Missy Elliot
November 15, 2003
Cold Opener: Every time I see the first few frames
of this sketch, I pray that they will bring back Chris Parnell
for the role. Darrell is improving, but I do not think that
Dubbya is one of his better characters. His gestures, though
accurate at times, were a bit overplayed tonight. However, he
throws in a good pun at the end for good measure: "It took
the people's minds off of the economy which was--let's face it--depressing."
Monologue: Wow, this is Alec's 11th time hosting.
They should do an SNL all-stars special and turn the stage into
a comedic orgy of Alec, John Goodman, and Christopher Walken.
Oh, well. Two more times hosting and Alec will have fulfilled
his community service! Honestly, when I saw that Jimmy and Horatio
had a "cameo" in this monologue as members of the SNL
band, I touched my pen to the looseleaf to give this monologue
an automatic "D," but decided to gut it out for the
purposes of fairness. If it has not become apparent after several
reviews on this site, I am ardently opposed to any and all skits
that include both of them. Luckily, onto the stage steps SNL's
beloved Mike Meyers to save the day...and this monologue. Granted,
the failure was not one on Alec Baldwin's part, but on the part
of the writers who felt it necessary to include the not-so-dynamic
Huggies' Thongs: "A bigger mess than if there
were no diaper at all." A fun commerical to see again,
but will never measure up to "Oops, I just crapped my pants."
A valiant effort, though.
Plastic Surgeon: (I was going to type out the actual
name of the plastic surgeon involved, but could not read my own
handwriting. I should have taken speedwriting in college.)
Poor Amy. This is the first molestation of many she will suffer
at the groping hands of our esteemed host tonight. She stays
around for more than a "few more jokes," and just long
enough for me to lose interest in this sketch. D+.
Zinger and Burns: Why does Chris always get some ancillary
role? Things are not looking good for him, the writers having
stolen his George Bush gig. Honestly, I enjoyed this sketch,
if for no other reason than the sounds that escaped from the
respective throats of Alec (Burns) and Seth (Zinger). B.
Next episode: Al Sharpton as a host will be absolutely
priceless. I'll probably go pluck my eyebrows or do something
at least marginally constructive while Pink struts around the
Tony Bennett Show: Alec reprises his role as Tony Bennett
here. Not only does he resemble him somewhat, but he sounds
like him, too. When Horatio walked on to the stage, I felt a
feeling of dread, but was delighted to see him upstaged by Fred
Armisen as Robert Durst. In fact, Horatio barely had any lines,
since he never did find a suitable way to tell the clandestine
joke on television. Stayfree earns itself an in-show advertising
slot as Alec holds up a package for the world to see. There
is nothing worse than a woman who must forgo wearing her cream-colored
suits during her monthly. A-.
Gaystrogen: I loved this commercial the first
time, and I loved it the second time. Interestingly enough,
this is Fred's first of two homoerotic encounters tonight (see
my Weekend Update blurb below). Chris and Fred offer
up the hottest primetime kiss in the history of television.
The Falconer: I felt a sense of elation when I saw
the opening sequence to this skit, similar to the one I experienced
when WU brought back Drunk Girl for some commentary. Our poor
hero finds himself hanging upside down in a coyote trap "like
a urine-soaked pinata." I am fairly certain that the old
woman in bed with Alec is someone famous, and I cannot remember
her name for the life of me. A-.
Missy Elliot: These lyrics are rotting my brain.
Weekend Update: What surprises me so much about WU
this year is that Tina has whipped out some extraordinarily accurate
impersonations, including Arnold Schwartzenegger and, this week,
George Bush. The writers must have received some positive fan
response after Tina's Arnold impersonation last week, because
she brings it back again this week. After some news briefs about
one of the Judds and Justin Guarini's saving grace--his driver's-side
hairbag--we plow into Will Forte's Sex Tape. Good grief, this
is the most disturbing thing I have ever seen. Fred gets some
more action as Will's lover, not to mention a foot in the proverbial
door of the porn industry. Next, we learn that Jethro Tull has
been ostracized by fans for his "unpatriotic" comments
on people who adorn their cars with flags. Now, I'm no Dixie
Chicks or Jethro Tull fan, but heaven forbid these artists express
their honest opinions (rather than strap on some phony Hallmark
American sentiment for the purposes of acceptance). At least
they're honest and not pretending to feel something that they
don't. Tina and Tom need to find a new place for their trysts,
as Rockefeller Center is opening up its observation deck to the
public. Joan Rivers looks awful, even for a car. Brilliant
observation on Christina Aguilera: "It used to be a-cute,
now it's just a-skanky." Except I never thought she was
cute. Neither did my boyfriend, just in case anyone out there
is naive enough to think that all men adore her brand of exhibitionism.
There is a rather inane phone bit linking Christian Slater and
Jack Nicholson, followed by a statement that Demi Moore "feels
like a 25-year-old inside." B.
In his photo, Alec Baldwin asks
us to free the turkeys. I guess it's tofurkey for me this year!
Random Comment: Where are Jeff, Finesse, Kenan, and
Rachel? (I'd ask about Maya, too, but I'm not particularly concerned).
Sir Anthony McCullen: A lot of the jokes in here, though
profane, were hilarious. Fred's British accent proves to me
that he can pull off any skit into which he is thrown. Apparently,
according to this press conference, the prince has "pitched
his tent on the Isle of Man." Horatio is decent in this
skit, for once. A-.
Business Meeting at Embassy
Suites: Again, Amy finds
herself at the sexual mercy of Alec. The writers find a way
to include the missing cast members here, seating Jeff, Finesse,
Kenan, and Rachel around the table as "extras." They
have been featuring Amy a lot tonight, which would be fine except
for the failure to include Rachel (who is, contrary to my fears,
alive and well tonight). D.
Missy Elliot: Honestly, they did a great parody
of this song on a radio show called "Bubba the Love Sponge."
I am not a big fan of this particular show, but a certain personality,
Ned, recorded a rather dirty (yet hilariously profane) rendition
of this. It is sad that the parody is better than the original,
but such is the case sometimes.
Return of Roy: Jeff turns in a great performance
as Sigfried, but I am worried about his sparse screen time this
season. Alec, who plays Roy, eventually finds his eye torn out
by a ferocious turtle. B-.
Scheinwald Pictures: Armisen is back as an amateur film-maker.
It is really nice to see him again, and I find myself wondering
yet again why he has not been included as a regular cast member.
As it is, he has gotten more screen time than Chris Parnell
and Jeff Richards combined tonight. Rachel gets into character
to play the patriarch of the company, Abe. By the end of this
sketch, we are all painfully aware that, yes, Irene is dead.
Not only that, but the company has turned away The Matrix and
Lord of the Rings. C+.
Overall Episode Grade: B. Alec turned in a solid performance
tonight in all of his skits (though there were several times
when I caught him reading his cue cards). The lack of Jimmy
Fallon/Maya Rudolph and the showcasing of Fred Armisen made tonight's
episode all the more enjoyable. Next time, I'd like to see,
in the spirit of Forte's Tim Calhoun, "a lot more Jeff,
Finesse, and Kenan, and a lot less Amy."
"Good night, and have a