Rev. Al Sharpton / Pink
December 6, 2003

By Bob Barron

Next week due to computer problems and standby my review will probably be a bit late. Don't worry- I'm still going to do one- it just may be later then usual.

Sports Report-

Leafs- Two weeks ago they were left for dead in the midst of a horrific road trip. Then they became the first team to beat Vancouver at GM Place. Since then they have not lost. They've defeated high caliber teams like the Canucks, Bruins and the Wings. I hope they are for real and this 8 game winning streak wasn't just a good stretch of games.

Canucks- They've played alright but aren't on the torrid pace that they were at the beginning of the year. Still they are not losing games so I should not complain. But not being able to get a win in two games against Calgary? Bah.

The 2003 Stanley Cup Champion New Jersey Devils- Well the unbeaten streak had to end sometime. Even though tonight's game against Ottawa was a big win- maybe they can put together another big streak.

New Jersey Nets- They give the ball to K-Mart and their losing streak ends. SHOCKING! Oh and I hate Alonzo Mourning. What a worthless piece of garbage he turned out to be. A comeback isn't really that courageous when you retire after a few games. Oh and- GIVE BACK THE MONEY YOU WORTHLESS PIECE OF TRASH. Sorry- I was against signing Alonzo from the start and I'm not happy I turned out to be right.

New Orleans- Well this is the biggest game of the year. Lose and the season is over. Win and they keep their slim playoff hopes alive. They seem to have Tampa Bay's number and since they're reeling- I really hope they can win tomorrow.

Mailbag!!!!!!!-

IWasLikeEMILOO@aol.com writes-

Hey Bob, hows it going? I havent been digging this season, and often i fall asleep after update. Im just wondering if im the only one who thinks that. I love Kenan Thompson, he was great on All That (i watched it religiously when i was younger) I just wish they gave him something good to work with.
Angie
PS what happened to www.snltv.com???

 

This season has had its ups and downs. But honestly- did anyone expect Halle and Roddick to be good? No. Ripa was disappointing I will admit- but all the episodes have gone as expected.

Kenan's misuse has saddened me and it seems like he has slipped into the role of 'Other Black Guy' that Tracy Morgan created in 1996. Basically: One black guy gets all the airtime, while the other plays Cop #2. The fact that Tracy got a sitcom and a Best Of is pretty amazing to those who remember him when he first started out. Somewhere- there's a lesson to be learned there. Jerry Minor and Dean Edwards assumed the role when Tim left and they were in a combined seven skits. It looks like based on the first couple shows they are giving Finesse a big role while Kenan gets to punch Wanda Sykes. I hope they start giving Kenan more material- he's a sketch comedy veteran and come on- Who DIDN'T love Good Burger?

PS: I believe you mean saturdaynightlive.tv. That site went the way of the dodo bird and Al Roker's fat. I think Hugh was just too busy to continue running the site.

Wanna be in the mailbag?????? Email me at philhartmanrip@yahoo.com

Simon and Garfunkel-

I had the awesome pleasure to see Simon and Garfunkel at Air Canada Centre on November 30th. I had seen Paul two times previous but never had the pleasure of seeing Art Garfunkel. Even though you could tell they still hate each other (Message to Paul: Doing banter on how you used to hate each other is not funny when you still hate each other). But who really cares- I came to see them play their hits and they obliged. I won't bore with the full set list (They have it up at www.simonandgarfunkel.com) but hearing them play 'Cecilia, 'Boxer', 'Bridge over Troubled Water' and 'Mrs. Robinson' was a real treat. The Everly Brothers played 3 songs and were also quite good. I hope they do a second tour or go back into the studio because I would love to hear some more great work from the greatest band of all time.

A Minute with Stan Hooper-

A Minute with Stan Hooper:
I'm thankful the show hasn't been cancelled yet

A Minute with Stan Hooper was hilarious this past Wednesday. Even though the plot was basically the same as episode 3 (Stan tries to blend in and something bad happens) it's formula and the formula worked. The stuff with them hunting was great and Fred Willard truly shined in this one.
I like that they kept Molly and Chelsea in their own subplot so their suck wouldn't bring down the other good characters like Stan and Fred. It was nothing special but wasn't unwatchable anything so I didn't mind.
Why is the butler a complete and utter dick? I'm trying to like the guy but they just make him so unlikeable that I have trouble defending him.
All in all the show was awesome and better then last weeks effort. From Stan's hunting outfit, to the car ride to Fred shooting the duck- the show was hilarious throughout.

And now the episode review.

 

Cold Opening
Cast- Jimmy Fallon
Thoughts- Good to see Jimmy getting a chance to do some impressions which I always thought were his Will forte. Not a lot of people know how Jeff Zucker acts so I'm glad Jimmy was able to get the crowd into it just by being funny. I thought a lot of the mock TV show stuff really worked and who didn't mark for the Carol Mosely Braun reference. I also enjoyed the enthusiasm Jimmy showed for saying 'LFNYISN'- that's always a very nice thing to see. ***1/2

Monologue
Cast- Al Sharpton, Tracy Morgan
Thoughts- I thought for sure when Al mentioned past mistakes we were going to get Tawana Brawley jokes and I would admire Al Sharpton for being willing to make fun of his past. But it turned out to be Tracy Morgan making his long awaited and anticipated return after being away for 6 long shows. Well Kattan was back after 3- at least Will waited until February. While this skit wasn't very funny I loved seeing Al Sharpton getting funky like a monkey and dancing to some James Brown. Could Howard Dean do that? Well if he thought all the cool kids were doing it he would try but that's neither here nor there. Okay monologue helped by the dancing Al. **1/2

Mom Jeans
Cast- Tina Fey, Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph, Amy Poehler, Chris Parnell
Thoughts- Haven't seen Tina in a commercial in a long time. I assume this joke was aimed at the female demographic but I still was laughing along with the rest of the women in the audience. Good commercial parody here. ***1/2

Jacko on a Rollercoaster
Cast- Sharpton, Parnell, Poehler, Dratch, Horatio Sanz
Thoughts- I really miss Dean Edwards. Not because SNL has had a decrease in skits with cops in the background- but his Michael Jackson was just fantastic. I love Amy Poehler but her Michael Jackson sucks and isn't it very funny. They brought back Parnell and since Jacko will be in the news for a long time- bring back Dean! This skit just never got off the ground and just died. Al Sharpton didn't even try to be like Johnnie Cochran. I did laugh at the part about Horatio being a stranger on the roller coaster. They gave Amy a shot at Jackson in the Garner episode and it died then- time to put this one out to pasture. _*

Brian Fellows' Safari Planet
Cast- Morgan, Sharpton, Parnell, Fey
Thoughts- What is with the obsession of cast members coming back and deciding to perform their most awful recurring characters? Will did it with the Lovers and Tracy is doing it with Brian Fellows. I don't condone them coming back and hogging airtime but if Tracy is gonna do it- couldn't he grace us with some Astronaut Jones? At least that was actually funny. God bless Tina Fey. She turned what was looking to be the usual sucktacular Brian Fellows into something quite okay. I especially loved the stuff about her gender and her interplay with the Fellows Brothers. The clubbing stuff was cute and Al's 'I like the ladies' line grew on me. So while this wasn't a great or even good Brian Fellows- it was better then the usual junk we get- so bully I guess. **1/4

Three Wise Men
Cast- Morgan, Sharpton, Thompson, Fallon
Thoughts- I believe this is the third time where Kenan has been the subject of racial humour in some way, shape, or form. Amanda Bynes never made fun of him for being black. This skit had a ton of potential and seemed to be living up to it. Then in the middle it just kind of died off and the laughs just stopped coming which is a shame since I was really hoping this skit would've been great. Kenan's performance here was very funny and I really hope he gets more airtime next week. I just wish the skit had kept its momentum that it started out with cause I hate giving it only ***. ***

Pink
Thoughts- Despite my numerous complaints and my call to Senator John Edwards to make it a campaign promise- SNL still has not changed the train sign. It's driving me crazy. This was an alright song helped out by Pink pulling an Avril by wearing her pants very low. Now I'm always a sucker for gratuitous T&A so I have to up the star rating just a bit. **1/2

Weekend Update
Cast- Paris Hilton, Fallon, Fey
Thoughts- After being the first person to ever make fun of her (and having no one care) Tina must've felt quite vindicated seeing Paris Hilton get big applause when she showed up at the Update desk. David Letterman must be PISSED after Paris bailed on his show only to show up on Saturday Night Live. Also- if Paris Hilton is so rich- why is she so disgusting to look at? You would think with mummy and daddy's money she could get a lot of work done and not look like a walking piece of disgust. The jokes were a bit below what they had usually been but there was still a lot of funny stuff to be had. I enjoyed the knocks at Bush, the bit where Tina called Jimmy an idiot and when there they yelled at the places that wouldn't carry SNL. This was the usual good stuff but I was hoping for a bit more. The Paris-Jimmy was really funny though despite Paris' awkward delivery. Maybe Pink is a Weekend Update curse. ***1/2

Racism and Sexism
Cast- Morgan, Sharpton, Fallon, Sanz, Rudolph, Will Forte, Finesse Mitchell, Thompson
Thoughts- This skit was a lot of fun to watch. When I saw Maya I got nervous but then I looked at the clock and realized it wasn't 12:30. The skit built to its climactic punchline at the end which was very funny. And I loved Will Forte's cameo at the end. I'm glad Sharpton was kind of able to poke fun at his image for one skit. His mockery of Maya was quite funny as well. ***3/4

Sharpton's Fish
Cast- Sharpton, Poehler, Rudolph, Forte, Thompson
Thoughts- This reminded me of the Derek Jeter show where Jeter advertised his taco restaurant. Al Sharpton was quite good at playing himself- much better then Andy Roddick although that is not saying much. Amy Poehler was quite good here- I thought she was really funny singing the fish song. This was absurd, had a funny song and Al Sharpton made me laugh- I enjoyed this quite a bit. ***1/2

Fun with the Dems
Cast- Fallon, Parnell, Richards, Forte, Seth Meyers, Darrell Hammond
Thoughts- I hope John Kerry becomes president just because Seth's impression of him was awesome. I'm disappointed that Franken didn't give Seth more to work with. I'm going to assume that this was the skit that Al Franken wrote since well duh. I wonder what Franken has against John Edwards since based on the debates he's become my favourite. Parnell did his usual excellent Joe Lieberman while Hammond did an okay Dick Gephardt. I wasn't really feeling Richards' Howard Dean though. Forte's Edwards got a bit old towards the end. John Kerry has a lot to work with and a lot to mock so I was really disappointed they didn't give Seth the ball and let him run with it- especially since this was his only skit. ***1/2

Pink
Thoughts- I liked this song better then the first one- it was a fun song to listen to and Pink looked like she was having a good time out there and I enjoy her music a lot. Hope to see her back again. ***

LaToya Jackson
Cast- Sharpton, Rudolph, Thompson, Fred Armisen
Thoughts- The after 12:30 rule applies here as usual in the case of Maya Rudolph. Al and Fred were nothing special. Kenan's Chaka Kahn was quite funny and he saved the skit from the bowels of suckdom. So please- Give Kenan more airtime! The guy did a movie with Abe Vigoda AND Sinbad. This was nothing special and only partially saved by Kenan. *1/4

Vasquez
Cast- Sharpton, Sanz, Rudolph, Armisen
Thoughts- Vasquez is nothing without Gabe Fisher damnit! This was Sharpton's third crack at playing himself and once again he was better then Andy Roddick. Some of Vasquez's lines were funny but the skit often dragged. The ending really sucked and Fred's role was definitely not needed and really ended the skit on a very sour note. *1/2

Cryogenics
Cast- Chris Parnell, Poehler, Rudolph, Seth Meyers, Jeff Richards
Thoughts- It took them way too long to get the joke of the skit. Amy's lactose intolerant line was pretty funny and there were a couple chuckles to be had but for the most part the humour fell flat. And it took them too long to make the Ted Williams joke. *3/4

Johnny Cash
Cast- Hammond
Thoughts- This skit just died. It was funny to watch in a sick sense just because Darrell was getting nothing from the crowd. It was kind of sad but quite funny. If you ever want to see a skit die before your very eyes- watch the rerun. This is the skit to see. Darrell continues his season slump with this horrible skit. They cut Hardball and putthis? Really makes you think. DUD

The Bottom Line- Avg. skit was **.3 making this is a thumbs in the middle show. The show was very hit and miss and built up some momentum after WU. But the last 4 skits just killed the show and really brought down which is a shame. Al Sharpton was pretty good even though he didn't mock himself as much as he should've. The writers worked hard to make sure he had good material to work with- so I commend everyone not making sure he didn't pull a Roddick. It was a good show until it hit 12:30- then it just died and couldn't recover.

Thumbs in the Middle