***** - Future classic
**** - Almost perfect
*** - Average in every way
** - Eh
* - Is this 1994-95 again?
COLD OPENING: A Message from President Bush
- Damn, they’re really giving Jason’s Bush impression a work-out this season. I was hoping they’d take a hint from the last episode and do another non-political opening.
- This went on a little long, although a lot of the list of troops being sent to Iraq was pretty funny, especially when Allen Iverson was listed.
MONOLOGUE: Jake Gyllenhaal
- The token Brokeback Mountain reference of the night. Although Will and Jason were pretty funny.
- Jake in drag brought back creepy memories of Antonio Banderas doing the same thing when he hosted last year. And Jake singing wasn’t that funny, either.
SKETCH: Deep House Dish
- Oh, god. Here we go again.
- The musical performances and Kenan/Andy parts were dumb as usual. And now, Kenan seems to say “Ooh-wee” ALL the time now (like after each singer is done with their song), instead of only saying it when angry at his co-host, which makes it even more annoying. Will there ever be an end to this damn sketch?
- Good ad-lib from Maya when her when her earring flew off.
SKETCH: Bronx Beat with Betty and Jodi
- Hmm, a New York-accent based talk show sketch. Never seen that on SNL before… (*coughCoffeeTalkcough*)
- This wasn’t too bad. I liked Amy and Maya’s rapid-fire delivery and they had some funny comments, especially when talking about Jake and their sex life. You just know they’re gonna make this sketch recurring, though, but this seems to have some potential.
SKETCH: Donald Trump Press Conference
- Darrell’s Trump is played-out to me and this sketch was one-joke, but I admit to still laughing at some of his Rosie slams, especially the Jabba the Hut bit. Him randomly saying “The Apprentice” at the end of every sentence is still not funny, though.
- Man, Amy and Maya got changed really fast from the last sketch.
NEXT WEEK: January 20, 2007 - Jeremy Piven
SKETCH: Cool Food
- You’re kidding me, right? Food that smokes and plays music like cool people? THAT'S the whole premise of the sketch? This is supposed to be funny? And this was placed in the first half of the damn show??? If there was any possible way they could’ve executed this into a decent sketch, they sure didn’t try it. This sketch goes right down there with the infamous Hot Plates sketch in terms of incredibly lame, corny sketches that almost feel like something out of a kiddie show. And why the hell was the audience laughing so damn much at this?
- The mushrooms line at the end was okay, but didn’t stop this sketch from being a complete waste of time. At least this was short, though.
- I think that was Samberg and Armisen playing the meatballs, but I couldn’t tell who played the chicken parmesan. Anyone know who it was?
DIGITAL SHORT: Laser Cats 2
- They had me going at the beginning where I really did think Bill and Andy’s film would be different, but it ended up being Laser Cats again. I never thought they’d bring this back again - in fact, this is the first sequel to a digital short (you could argue the Peyote/suicide short last season was a follow-up to the Lettuce short, but that's kinda stretching it). At least this wasn’t Lazy Sunday 2. There's no way a Lazy Sunday follow-up would ever work, and I hope they wouldn't be foolish enough to ever attempt it.
- This short was very funny like the first Laser Cats one, and had a lot of funny little details like the cat reloading by eating cat food, Amy carefully placing the cup on the table before fainting, the "identity scanner" being a copy machine, etc.
- When they first showed Jake, I thought he was Will.
- The ending with Lorne rejecting their idea again was expected, but still made me laugh. And his deadpan expression always cracks me up.
SKETCH: Stock Footage Awards
- Clever idea for an awards show sketch, and all the categories were really funny.
- This was too short, though, and actually would’ve been better if it were about 2 minutes longer.
WEEKEND UPDATE: Poehler & Meyers, with Steve Jobs and Whitney Houston
- Best Jokes: Bert and Ernie, Penelope Cruz/Salma Hayek, Underwear, Britney and Paris/fur
- Fred’s Steve Jobs/iPhone bit was pretty good, much better than his weak Steve Jobs commentary from last season.
- Also, it looked like Fred almost laughed in one part. He smiled in this weird way.
- The Whitney Houston commentary was lame as usual. Why do they keep putting her on Update so damn much? If you’re gonna bother using Maya’s awful Whitney impression, then do it in it’s own sketch next time instead of dragging down an otherwise fine Update.
SKETCH: Law and Order Acting Workshop
- This had a good premise, but the sketch didn’t turn out to be as funny as it should have. They could’ve done a lot more with it. And like the Cool Food sketch, the audience was laughing a lot more than I was.
- Fred as the out-of-work Sam Waterson impersonator was hilarious. This is the first time I’ve seen his Waterson impression, after hearing about it a lot of times before. He was really good and even looks a lot like him.
SKETCH: Wheelchair Date
- Maya and Jake trying to act oblivious to the wheelchair issue was good, especially when they kept going “WHAT?! NO!” and Maya’s sudden “How do you go to the bathroom?” outburst.
- The ending was nice, but like some other sketches tonight, this sketch felt a little too short overall.
SKETCH/COMMERCIAL: Kaplan, Leibowitz, and Dolemite
- Continuing tonight’s theme of short sketches, this one ended VERY unexpectedly early. This was only, like, 20 seconds long. I almost thought they ran out of time again and had to cut the sketch off, ala the Cat Lawyer sketch with Annette Bening, but it was only 12:57 when this ended, so I guess that was the full sketch.
- Kenan as Dolemite was funny and he had a good line or two, like the line about telling the price of butter from looking up a bull’s ass. But this was just way too damn short.
- What was with Jake’s eye?
- Laser Cats 2
- Weekend Update
- Stock Footage Awards
- Fred as the Sam Waterson impersonator
- Cold Opening
- Deep House Dish
- Cool Food
- Whitney Houston commentary on Weekend Update
Not too good, not too bad. Not much about tonight's show to write about. Most of the sketches weren't anything more than average, and as mentioned earlier, there was a strange amount of sketches that felt unusually short or should've had more added to it. Jake Gyllenhaal was a decent host as expected.
CASTMEMBER/HOST COUNT DOWN:
ARMISEN: 5 sketches (Cool Food, Laser Cats 2, Weekend Update, Law and Order Acting Workshop, Kaplan, Leibowitz, and Dolemite)
FORTE: 1 sketch (Monologue)
HADER: 3 sketches (Cool Food, Laser Cats 2, Law and Order Acting Workshop)
HAMMOND: 3 sketches (Donald Trump Press Conference, Stock Footage Awards, Kaplan, Leibowitz, and Dolemite)
MEYERS: 1 sketch (Weekend Update)
POEHLER: 8 sketches (Monologue, Deep House Dish, Bronx Beat with Betty and Jodi, Donald Trump Press Conference, Laser Cats 2, Stock Footage Awards, Weekend Update, Law and Order Acting Workshop)
RUDOLPH: 7 sketches (Monologue, Deep House Dish, Bronx Beat with Betty and Jodi, Donald Trump Press Conference, Weekend Update, Law and Order Acting Workshop, Wheelchair Date)
SAMBERG: 3 sketches (Deep House Dish, Cool Food, Laser Cats 2)
SUDEIKIS: 4 sketches (A Message from President Bush, Monologue, Donald Trump Press Conference, Wheelchair Date)
THOMPSON: 3 sketches (Deep House Dish, Donald Trump Press Conference, Kaplan, Leibowitz, and Dolemite)
WIIG: 7 sketches (Monologue, Deep House Dish, Bronx Beat with Betty and Jodi, Donald Trump Press Conference, Cool Food, Stock Footage Awards, Wheelchair Date)
JAKE GYLLENHAAL: 9 sketches (Monologue, Deep House Dish, Bronx Beat with Betty and Jodi, Cool Food, Laser Cats 2, Stock Footage Awards, Law and Order Acting Workshop, Wheelchair Date, Kaplan, Leibowitz, and Dolemite)