SNL Weekly Review: March 11 by Dylan Zsigray ’18

After a dismal show last week that was hosted by Octavia Spencer, Scarlett Johansson rebounded this past weekend and hosted a strong episode, probably one of my favorites of this season.  This past weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live was both funny and well structured.  All the members of the cast, along with Johansson, were energetic and willing to push comedic limits.  The writers produced great material, which ended up creating a great show.  It was overall an excellent show, and is one that I am very excited to review.  Below is my review of this past weekend’s episode of SNL.

“SUPERSTAR!” (The Best Sketch of the Night)

“Translator”: Everything about this sketch was perfect, but the star of it was the dog.  He really just did not like that helmet.  I loved the concept of this sketch and Johansson trying to be nice to the dog while yelling at him for liking Trump was a really nice conflict that the writers wove through the sketch.  It was nice to see the whole cast maintain their composure,  even with the events involving the dog trying to escape.  I wonder that if this actually becomes a thing in the future is my dog would support Trump.

“I gotta have more cowbell!” (Good Sketches)

“A Sketch for the Women”: FINALLY! A sketch that is actually satirical.  This sketch was tremendously written and witty.  There are so many elements about this sketch that worked, but my favorites probably have to be when the camera panned to the girls to tell their story and Kyle Mooney continued talking over them.  Also, when Lorde came out to sing and Beck Bennett and Mooney sang over her, I laughed so hard.  This was a solid sketch, a type of sketch that SNL does not do often.  It was good to see them take this risk.

“Funeral Service”: There was no point to this sketch, but that does not matter.  The songs that the deceased dentist wrote were just too funny not to continue watching.  Johansson and Kenan Thompson had great choreography and a lot of energy, which was a pleasant surprise because of this sketch being at the very end of the show.  Nevertheless, I’ll continue rocking out to these songs!

“Scarlett Johansson Monologue”: This was a solid monologue that was short, concise, and funny.  The montage of Johansson’s highlights on SNL that was really just a montage of Thompson’s highlights with Johansson in the background was really funny to watch, especially when it came to Johansson’s reaction.  Also, the rip-off of the Subway $5 footlong song was humorous.  Welcome to the 5-Timers’ Club, Scarlett Johansson!

“Shud the Mermaid”: Perhaps no one remembers, but Kate McKinnon acted out this character before.  Just like the first time, I loved her portrayal of a humanized blobfish (who are by the way one of the ugliest creatures that I have ever seen).  Plus, when Johansson came in, the quality of the sketch skyrocketed.  The jokes were funny, well delivered, and the sketch was enjoyable to watch.  Bravo!

“Zoo Newscast”: I wouldn’t stop laughing as I was watching this sketch. The concept was so simple, mistaking a term like “photography” with “pornography,” but it was carried out so well.  The writing of this sketch is what made it work.  Bobby Moynihan and Cecily Strong demanding that the graphic be fixed as it continues to take Mikey Day’s character’s quotes out of context was hilarious.  The ending, where Thompson reads a statement with the zoo kicking Day out of his job was a satisfying conclusion to a fantastic sketch.

“Well, isn’t that special” (Hit or Miss Sketches)

“Alien Attack Cold Open”: I got feelings of watching the original Independence Day when I watched this sketch.  It was so great to see Alec Baldwin portray Trump again, especially since earlier this past week he said that he would not continue parodying Trump since President Trump has been critical of him.  This sketch was original and left me no hope that our current government could thwart off an alien attack, but hopefully that will not happen anytime soon. I almost wish that Melissa McCarthy would have come back and done something mocking Sean Spicer wearing his American flag lapel pin upside down.

“Fire Island”: I do not watch the show that this sketch was parodying, so it was kind of hard for me to connect with it and understand it.  Despite this, the performances of the SNL women were spectacular, particularly those of Aidy Bryant and McKinnon.  They embodied the characters so well and made the sketch fun to watch, even though I did not really understand what was going on.

“Olive Garden”: This sketch was funny for the first two minutes, and it was a unique concept.  However, by minute three of this six minute sketch, it just got old.  It was the same types of jokes over and over again, to the point where it just started getting weird and uncomfortable to watch.  The only thing that I enjoyed out of this sketch was Thompson dunking his head in a bowl of pasta for four minutes straight.

“Weekend Update”: Weekend Update felt a little off this weekend.  The jokes just did not seem to hit off and the characters they had on were bland.  This is particularly true with Pete Davidson, who portrayed himself.  The show puts him on so much and after awhile, his schtick is just not funny anymore.  Look, Weekend Update has been pretty consistent this entire season, so it is okay if there is an off episode.  I was just surprised that it occurred in this episode, as the first half of the show was so strong.

“Buh-bye” (Bad Sketches)

“Complicit”: This was a funny idea and Johansson plays a great Ivanka Trump, but what was the point of it? Yes, we can all agree that Ivanka has a ton of power to stop a lot of what is going on, but does this constitute a sketch to be made?  It just seemed like a waste of 90 seconds in my opinion.

“Shanice Goodwin Ninja-Rivals”: This sketch was so pointless and was not acted well at all.  It was four minutes of my life that I will never get back because I spent it watching Jones and Johansson doing ninja flips and twirls and attempting to perform adequate stage fighting, which was just awkward to watch on camera.

After a great episode hosted by Scarlett Johansson, SNL will go off the air for the rest March.  Be sure to tune back in on April 8 when Louis C.K. returns to host.

Dylan’s Ranking of the Episodes:

  1. Dave Chappelle
  2. Emma Stone
  3. Tom Hanks
  4. Scarlett Johansson
  5. Kristen Stewart
  6. Kristen Wiig
  7. Aziz Ansari
  8. Lin-Manuel Miranda
  9. Casey Affleck
  10. Alec Baldwin
  11. Margot Robbie
  12. Octavia Spencer
  13. Felicity Jones
  14. John Cena
  15. Benedict Cumberbatch
  16. Emily Blunt

 

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