EPISODE REVIEWS


Julianna Margulies / DMX
February 12, 2000


Ain't no review like an "S" club review...okay, so I'm not British. But
there is an 's' in Polishuk, so I could still qualify, right? Right? Oh,
just shut up and jump in the air while drawing an 'S.'

Speaking of jumping in the air...Vince Carter. Ho-lee-crap. If the NBA
wants its next superstar, look no further than the Raptors. The dunk
contest got funny to watch after a while, because all of the other players
on the sidelines were in awe of the dunks as well, and you'd see Shaq or
somebody just staring with his eyes bugging out of his face. I'd say
Carter's first dunk was his best one, with that tandem move with McGrady
being second. How in the WORLD did he not make the U.S. Olympic team? How
could the American coaches not give the league's next big star this chance
to perform on the world stage? Weird, huh?

You know what's weird? I finally had the patience to let Sean's web page
finish loading, and I looked at his pictures of himself with various SNL
personalites, and I got a big surprise. I look a lot like Sean Bradley! I
have less hair than he does, and I look generally more unkempt, but we're a
pretty close match for each other. If I were to play him on SNL, for
example, I would certainly not need a lot of makeup. Weird, huh?

There's a commercial up here in Canada for his new lottery that gives you
$1000 a week for life if you win. The guy in that commercial ("Fantastic!")
sounds exactly like Will Ferrell, and he looks kind of like Chris Parnell.
Weird, huh?

I have more of an appreciation for Heather Graham after seeing her in
Bowfinger. She was pretty funny in this one, as opposed to Spy
Who Shagged Me,
where she just had to show up and look pretty. I also
recommend the movie Bowfinger as well. Steve Martin can really write
and Eddie Murphy can really act. Weird, huh?..Well, it's not that weird,
but I've got a pattern going here.

Derrick Thomas, Sid Abel, Doug Henning, Jim Varney, Tom Landry, R.I.P.
There's five rather diverse personalities. Weird, huh?

Added R.I.P. for Maude Flanders. You know, since everybody thinks Maude is
gonna be the one to die, wouldn't it be cool if they kill off somebody else?
That would be weird, huh?

OVERVIEW: Julianna Margulies has been on ER since the show started (I think)
and she's leaving at the end of the season. NBC is likely giving her the
hosting job as a) a farewell gift, and b) to increase ratings in her swan
song episode. As I've never seen an episode of ER in my life, I'm not
familiar with her work. I am familiar, however, with the work of DMX,
thanks to the musical taste of my brother. As is the norm for rappers, if I
miss a detail in reviewing their "songs," that's because I changed the
channel. Sorry.

[COLD OPENING] A Message from Hillary Rodham Clinton
* Okay opener. A bit down from the usual Clinton bits.
* Does Darrell have his fan club here or something? There were these people
howling every time he opened his mouth. The dialogue was good, but not that
funny.
* I liked how Hillary was referred to as "dykey and threatening," and also
how when she talked about Bill's skank-pronging, he just leapt into the
screen and gave the thumbs-up. Funny stuff.
RATING: ***1/2

INTERLUDE: It's good to hear that Don Pardo is back, and presumably over
his health woes.

[MONOLOGUE] Julianna Margulies
* A nice, composed monologue. It was a good spoof of both ER and Law &
Order.

* Julianna Margulies looks like a girl at my school, except the girl at my
school isn't Hispanic.
* I got a kick out of Wyle's moustache. He looked like a demented Rollie
Fingers.
* That writer looked kind of like a female version of Chris Farley...not
that I'm being insulting, just pointing out a fact.
RATING: ***3/4

[COMMERCIAL] Litter Critters
* Repeated commercial, so I can't rate it. I gave it **** the first time,
though.
RATING: NA

[SKETCH] Dinner with the Robins...er, Blakes
* THAT'S DISGUS...I mean, pretty funny. I guess this is one of those
sacrifices in the name of comedy, eh?
* God, you'd figure that Julianna, after all of her time on ER, would react
better to Will choking like that. Instead, she just laughs! That's cold.
* Phil Hartman awards to everybody in this sketch, because how could they
NOT laugh during this? Minor deduction for Julianna for laughing at Will's
possible demise. Not kosher.
RATING: ****1/4

[SKETCH] E! Fashion World
* An okay sketch, with the highlight being the dialogue between the two E!
hosts.
* A Tale of Two British Accents: Margulies' Liz Hurley was terrific, but
Horatio's Elton John faltered a bit at the end.
* Molly's impression was also good. I thought she was going to bust out a
"Pretty Lady" at Julianna's phone outfit, but she managed to restrain
herself.
RATING: ***1/2

[SKETCH] Simmuhduhnuh at Augusta General
* This clinches it; SNL is now definitely hurting for recurring characters.
* I will call Cheri's character Augusta, and trademark this name. If SNL
ends up referring to this character as Augusta, I demand either financial
compensation or a hosting job. I'm fair.
* I did enjoy the Schwimmer-Dow-Gnaw connection. For future sketches, may I
suggest Don Zimmer-Tony Dow from Leave It To Beaver-Nuts N' Honey cereal.
There's another copyrighted idea.
RATING: ***5/8

[SKETCH] Crocodile World
* Okay sketch that was basically a vehicle for the SNL makeup department.
* The Aussie accent on Kattan was pleasantly goofy, as is the host of the
real show.
* This is a pretty gory show. All the blood here, Tracy's lost hand...did
Julianna bring some over from the ER set, or what?
RATING: ***1/4

[WEEKEND UPDATE] Weekend Update
* Odd. Colin used "simmuhduhnuh" in his opening here, and Tim used it to
open the next sketch the first time Augusta was on (in the Garth Brooks
show).
* A very good update, with lots of funny stories. I liked the reference to
Keith Richards as the world's largest drug factory.
* Cheri's character was very funny, and a nice departure from her usual
stuff. I never thought I'd see the day where a vibrating hero sandwich
would be on Saturday Night Live.
RATING: ****1/4

[MUSICAL (ALLEGEDLY) GUEST] DMX
* At least he used musical instruments, unlike Dr. Dre and his crew from
earlier this season. That's the closest thing to a positive statement that
you'll find here.
RATING: **

[SKETCH] Ad for Erectile Dysfunction...or Tootsie Rolls
* This was a very good sketch. I've always wondered about the actors in
these commercials...or at least the actors besides Bob Dole. Lord knows
HE'S all man.
* The different camera effect for the actual commercial shots was a nice
touch.
* I have here in my notes, "Tim calls them people too much." Then Horatio
mentioned it, and he did my work for me.
* You know Will's story about what happened to him on the beach? That
happened to me too! Except without the part about having sex...but the
running with the pants down around my ankles was all me!...I had better stop
now.
RATING: ****1/4

[SKETCH] Savin' It with Jessica Simpson
* Another funny sketch. I liked how Jimmy and Will were both literally
shaking with lust. I don't see what their problem is. They each said what,
six and eight years? Hell, I'm working on nineteen and I can still safely
hold onto a glass. :)
* Wow, that Jessica Simpson song sure is wretched. She's another one of
these singers who if there was no such thing as the music video wouldn't
have a career.
* Monty Python rules! Boo to SNL for saying only nerds like it. There
wouldn't be a Saturday Night Live without Monty Python.
* The hungry cobra? Eww....that's Marilyn Manson country there.
* Some of these terms escape me. "Down the chimney" I would assume is oral
sex, but what the hell is "attic window" referring to? Or maybe I don't
want to know...
RATING: ****1/4

[MUSICAL (ALLEGEDLY) GUEST] DMX
* It's good that he says his name over and over again, so someone who was
channel-surfing wouldn't mistake him for Bruce Springsteen.
* He even cleaned up his act for the censors, saying "Suck my..." and then
cutting himself off. I applaud his restraint. It's like that Simpsons
where Krusty wants the Red Hot Chili Peppers to
change their lyrics to "I Want, I Want to Hug and Kiss You," and they agreed
to it, saying "Wow, now everybody can enjoy it." Of course, the Chilis song
was enjoyable. This wasn't.
* This "song" was somehow worse than the first. This is the lowest rating
I've ever given!
RATING: *

[SKETCH] The Bloater Brothers try to pick up.
* Okay, you've got two guys who look the same, have an easily recognizable
verbal pattern, are refridgerator 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. I'll be the
first to say that the Bloater Brothers movie (coming to a theatre near you
in 2004) will suck.
* Their patter wasn't particularly funny, except for Jimmy referencing
Inspector Gadget.
* This bar set was the same one that was used in that classic sketch where
Heather Locklear and Kevin Nealon flirted with glances and Nealon ended up
poisoning himself. It's unfortunate using the same set, because it makes
this skit pale in comparison.
* I'll be generous with the rating because its the first one, but the next
time around I'll get harsh. RATING: ***3/4

[SKETCH/COMMERCIAL] William Shatner for Priceline.com
* What the hell was this? I thought it was a real ad, and I stayed
watching because I thought Shatner singing might be good for a laugh. Then
I recognized Darrell.
* I was once beaten with a can of corn. That damn giant isn't so jolly
when you try to steal his crops. He gets PISSED.
RATING: ***1/2

ACTORS OF THE NIGHT: Will Ferrell, Cheri Oteri
SKETCHES OF THE NIGHT: Dinner with the Robins...er, Blakes; Ad for Erectile
Dysfunction or Tootsie Rolls; Savin' It with Jessica Simpson; Weekend Update
WORST SKETCH OF THE NIGHT: Crocodile World
LINE OF THE NIGHT: "A small bomb went off on Wall Street this past week. A
small bomb, or what the IRA call an initial public offering."-- Colin Quinn,
Weekend Update.
BUSIEST CAST MEMBER: Ana Gasteyer, Cheri Oteri, Chris Parnell (5 sketches
each)
CAST MEMBERS WITH TIME TO WASH LORNE'S CAR: Rachel Dratch, Tracy Morgan,
Molly Shannon (one sketch each).
NOTICEABLE MISTAKES: None, really.

AVERAGE SKETCH RATING: ***5/11 (This was unfairly lowered by DMX)
GUT FEELING OVERALL RATING: ***7/8

AFTERSHUKS
A pretty decent show that actually got better as it went on, which is rare.
Julianna Margulies did a terrific job hosting, and I hope that she has to
plug her next job, and thus will have an excuse to come back. The less said
about the "musical" guest the better.
SNL will be hosted next week by Ben Affleck, who I'm fairly optimistic
about. Fiona Apple is the musical guest, and she's a relief after two weeks
of crap. As long as she doesn't make any political statements about the
role of women in music, she'll be fine.
TTFN, ta ta for now.


Episode Review written by Mark Polishuk


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