EPISODE REVIEWS


John Goodman / Neil Young
May 6, 2000


Na na na na na na na Polishuk! Na na na na na na na SNL review!

My school Reach for the Top team (of which I am the captain) won our city
championship, and thus all five of us get $1000 scholarships at the
University of Western Ontario. I was going there anyway, so hooray for me.
We also get to go to the provincial Reach championships in Kingston, Ontario
next weekend, which should be fun.

This means, however, that between next weekend and the weekend after that
(when I'm in New York) I will be either unable or just very late in writing
reviews. I know, my legions of fans are disappointed about this, but there
are so many other good reviewers out there (my personal picks are Davidson
and Allison Lowe) that my absence will be barely missed.

Or, if Sean still doesn't have his page updated in three weeks, my absence
won't be missed at all! Just kidding, Sean. I love you, man (in a
completely heterosexual way, of course).

Reach For the Top, by the way, is a team trivia game. It's sort of
Jeopardy, except there are two teams of four players each playing, and we
don't have to answer in the form of a question. Plus, there's no money.
Damn.

My beloved Maple Leafs are in a bit of a bind against New Jersey, down 3-2
in the series. I fully believe that they can still pull it out, because I
need to get bragging rights over this girl in my creative writing class.
She's a Devils fan (why?) and the taunting has been intense on both sides.
Besides, the Leafs have to do well or else Toronto will have a bad sports
year all around; the Raptors got blown out of the NBA playoffs, and the Blue
Jays can't pitch a tent, let alone a baseball.

FANTASY BASEBALL UPDATE
Jordan Davidson's Men in Fuschia: 5th out of 10, 89.5 points
Mark Polishuk's P-Wings: 8th out of 10, 77.5 points

I'm closing the gap (sort of).

OVERVIEW: I am now 4/18 in the Guess the Hosts contest, thanks to good ol'
John Goodman. His hosting job last year was kind of weak, so maybe he'll
get off the schnide this time around.
My TV listings this week said that Don Henley was the musical guest, but I
guess they were just being incompetent. The real musical guest is Neil
Young, who I never cared all that much for.
Plus, we get a new cast member tonight! Maya Rudolph is in the house.

[COLD OPENING] Celebrity Millionaire
* A few notes about the real celebrity WWTBAM; Dana Carvey was absolutely
hilarious through the whole run. Drew Carey is a lot brighter than his
"average guy" persona allows him to be. Lance Bass (the N*Sync guy) was a
complete moron! If he hadn't had the answers fed to him, he would have left
with nothing! What a chump.
* That being said, I loved the options given to Parnell's Bass in this
sketch. My choice is (c), homeless. I also liked Parnell's physical
interpretation of him; he looked like a bewildered cow.
* The jabs at Disney got irritating after the first few. I did enjoy the
ones about taking Elian and Denmark.
* GREAT LINE ALERT: "Michael Eisner, I swear to God we at Time Warner are
going to beat you to death with a garden shovel."-- ad from Time Warner
cable
RATING: ***3/4

[MONOLOGUE] John Goodman
* As mentioned, this is Goodman's 11th hosting gig. One more and he'll tie
Steve Martin for the all-time record. Steve Martin hosted 12 times, and 11
+ 1 = 12. God bless kindergarten math.
* This was kind of a train wreck. Who was the alcoholism stuff supposed to
be a dig at?
RATING: ***

[COMMERCIAL] Gillette Platinum Mach 14
* This was kind of funny, in that it kept getting sillier and sillier.
* I always look like I have a five o'clock shadow, so I could use one of
these things. Where did I put my credit card?
RATING: ***1/2

[SKETCH] Wanna Be A VJ III
* This was not a spoof. I'm pretty sure that MTV has put this on the air
before.
* The biggest laugh came from the poll, where 98% of the audience asked MTV
to "play some damn videos." I'm so glad I live in Canada, where we get the
infinitely superior MuchMusic.
* Maya Rudolph makes her SNL debut. Three lines later, and the only thing
we've learned about her is that she has a lot of space between her breasts.
* GREAT LINE ALERT: "I'm single and I like to mingle."-- Ana Gasteyer
RATING: ***7/8

[SKETCH] Adele, the Bad Innenudo-Making Office Skank
* I thought this sketch was like a Chemical Brothers song. By that, I mean
that it was okay to start with, but then got really repetitive.
* My school had a dance on Friday, and I'd say that maybe 3 of every 5 girls
there was dressed like Adele. By that, I mean that they were dressed like
sluts.
* Actually, this wasn't all that bad. I'm being too hard on the skit. By
that, I mean that I was having an erection on...wait a minute. I didn't
mean that. Never mind.
RATING: ***3/4

[CARTOON] The Life of a Catch Phrase
* Lorne Michaels IS Dr. Evil now, officially. Mike Myers, you've ruined
this poor man's reputation. How could you?
* Poor Joe Piscopo. Doomed to be a joke on the show that he once carried.
* Poor Molly Shannon. She's already a joke on the show, and hasn't even
left it yet!
* This was okay, I guess. Jon Lovitz is probably crying, however.
RATING: ***5/8
[SKETCH] The Christopher Lowell Show
* This is one of those cases where if you've seen the real show, it's funny.
If you haven't seen the show (like me), you think it's retarded.
* It's scary that they all dressed like my economics teacher. Goodman
looked like Dom DeLuise.
RATING: ***

[MUSICAL GUEST] Neil Young
* I met this crazy guy at a bus stop once, and he looked exactly like Neil
Young. He gave me and all of my friends stock tips. We were literally
afraid for our lives.
* Getting back on topic, this was actually a very good performance.
* Hey Sisqo! See this? It's called actually performing your song. Learn
from it.
RATING: ****

INTERLUDE: We here at Time Warner would like to say that we are responsible
for the lack of updates of Sean Bradley's page. We would prefer it if he
based a web page around some of our great TBS programming, such as The Chimp
Channel, or WCW Thunder. Hurry up, Bradley, or else you will never see your
little dog again! HA HA HA!

[WEEKEND UPDATE] Colin Quinn
* Colin Quinn was on Open Mike with Mike Bullard (a poor man's Letterman)
this past week, and he was pretty funny. I only saw about two minutes of
it, so I can't go into more detail.
* Good Update. I enjoyed the jokes about Bill Gates being behind the I Love
You virus, the various Elian Gonzalez material, and Kentucky's anti-smoking
plan. Speaking of being anti-smoking, see The Insider. It's a great
movie.
* Let's just come right out and say that Kevin Brennan will be in the cast
next year, probably doing Update. I think he's funny, but he'll have to
make his material more believable. I mean, what's all this "my girlfriend"
stuff? The guy has jowls, for God's sake. How much action could a guy with
jowls get?
* Darrell's bit as Clinton absolutely ruled the world. The impression has
gotten so good that I laugh at everything that comes out of his mouth.
* GREAT LINE ALERT: "The decoder ring has already been picked out of that
cereal box." --Darrell Hammond, as Bill Clinton
RATING: ****1/4

[SKETCH] The Rock N' Realism Diner
* This was fairly mediocre. The idea was okay, but it was poorly executed.
* Parnell's pet names for Molly's breasts seemed kind of racked on...I mean
tacked on.
* I kept waiting for the Neil Young waiter (played by Neil Young) to show up
and have his impersonation dissed by the patrons. Hey...I kept "waiting"
for the "waiter?" HA! I love unintentional puns!
RATING: ***1/2

[SKETCH] The Bloater Brothers get Busted
* A snippet from my 2/12/00 review: You've got two guys who look the
same, have an easily recognizable verbal pattern, are refrigerator
thermostat calibrators and are played by two cast members who are guaranteed
to be around for the next four years or so. Ladies and gentlemen, meet your
new recurring characters.
* Now, who called that one? Who called it? It was me, that's who called
it! It was me, Austin! It was me all along!
* Geez, these guys are irritating. They had better not be long-lasting
recurring characters.
* A guy at my school also says "Hiyo!" all the time. He is also irritating.
* The genius of Tim Meadows: He can make the line "I'm gonna take this
nightstick and hit you in the head" into a laugh-out-loud moment.
RATING: ***1/2

[MUSICAL GUEST] Neil Young "Silver and Gold"
* Another good song. I guess all SNL needed to get out of its musical guest
slump was to get a Canadian on the show, eh?
RATING: ****

[SKETCH/COMMERCIAL] Tekco Coin Biter
* I may have said this before, but these ads are made much funnier because
Chris Parnell looks and sounds exactly like one of those cheesy TV pitchmen.
* This is kind of a random topic for a commercial, but it was pretty funny.
RATING: ***3/4

ACTOR OF THE NIGHT: Chris Kattan, Chris Parnell
SKETCHES OF THE NIGHT: Weekend Update, Wanna Be a VJ
WORST SKETCH OF THE NIGHT: The Christopher Lowell Show
LINE OF THE NIGHT: "I'm Carson Daly, and I'm a massive tool."-- Jimmy
Fallon, in the Wanna Be A VJ sketch
BUSIEST CAST MEMBERS: Jimmy Fallon, Chris Parnell (5 sketches each)
CAST MEMBERS WITH TIME TO WASH LORNE'S CAR: Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph (1
sketch each) Sucks to be a featured player.
NOTICEABLE MISTAKES: None
AVERAGE SKETCH RATING: A bit over ***5/8
GUT FEELING OVERALL RATING: ***1/2

AFTERSHUKS
A fairly average show. I think the problem with Goodman is that he's been
on so much that the entire show just seems routine when he hosts. Neil
Young was probably the best musical guest of the year except for R.E.M., so
good for the old-timer.

In the past, people have e-mailed me to say that I'm at my writing best when
the show is really bad, so I have full license to trash it. In that case, I
could be really damn funny next week, since next week is the much-debated
Britney Spears show. Hosting. Singing. All Britney for a full 90 minutes.
Now, there are two ways to look at this.

1) She'll do very well, as most host/musical guests are capable of juggling
the duties.
2) She'll do very poorly, because it BRITNEY FREAKING SPEARS.

So, you all could be in for a very good review next week. A little late,
but possibly very good. Until then, ciao.


Episode Review written by Mark Polishuk


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