Saturday Night Live May 7, 2011 with Tina Fey

As I write I’m watching a six-months-pregnant Tina Fey dressed as the Little Mermaid. I have no idea whether this is funny, because I’m totally turned on and can’t think of anything else. Just turned to my wife and said “Wow. This is really kind of hot.”

It’s 37 minutes in and I haven’t changed the channel once. I’ve enjoyed everything except the SNL Digital Short so far.

I’m not very impressed with the English chick who’s singing in a fake English accent.

My wife asked me if that was English she was singing. We ended up fast forwarding through most of her stuff.

That was my reaction too. It seemed like the kind of song you should be able to understand the lyrics to. She was cute though. I fell asleep before her second song.

Got it on my DVR, but haven’t watched yet. Any good ObL skits?

You can assume that the majority of them were.

You know, I didn’t actually laugh at the skit with the awkward teenager who is really way too into her mom, but I liked it a lot anyway. It’s one of those character-piece sketches that is enjoyable without being hilarious.

Favorite moment of the show: “Newt Gingrich, you aren’t going to be president, and I don’t think you really even want to be. Do you want to just duck out early?”

You didn’t miss anything. This was a fantastic episode, but whoever the musical guest was wasn’t on the same level as everyone else. Her second song was a horrendous cover of Elton John’s “Your Song”.

I sincerely believe she was lip synching the first song. As for the second, she sang it with this Northern Ireland accent so I was really surprised to look her up and find out she was born and raised in London.
Now, right or wrong, my impression of her is someone who fakes her way through songs with a fake accent. Oh well.

I thought the rest of the episode was great, Digital short included.

Yeah we were also speculating that the first song was lip-synched.

She probably performed it because she sang it for Will and Kate’s first dance. Why they didn’t get Sir Elton to perform it I don’t know.

william and kates first dance your song cover by ellie goulding

Probably because they’re kids and Elton John is some old guy their parents used to listen to.

Huh. I thought that was the funniest part of a weak show.

I’ll never understand how it stays on the air, when it doesn’t have as many good jokes per month as the “Daily Show” does per day.

I did like the joke about Katie Couric during the debate sketch. (It was said by Tina Fey as Sarah Palin, and went something like, “I’m glad that the evil doer is finally gone. Good riddance to Katie Couric.” But most of the show was unfunny (unlike the Daily Show or the Colbert Report). Even the cold open with Osama was weak.

It’s an institution and gets better ratings than pretty much anything else you could put on at 11:30pm on a Saturday night… A night when most stations just run reruns and movies of the week.

One word: STEFON

I laughed towards the end. Pedrad reminds me of Rachel Dratch in that role, and I wish she’d play more characters like that. I mean, I always for a second think it’s a different actress. She plays too many pretty and/or ditzy girls, which are almost always the weakest characters in a skit.

The only sketch I didn’t love was the birthing one. The timing of the sarcastic quips were off, and the concept just isn’t that funny to begin with. That means, though, that the usually tired Stefon wasn’t bad. In fact, it was a riot! He was having so much fun, and you can tell. I didn’t even care that he slipped up–that just made it that much more hilarious.

For once, the show was good enough that I want to see if I can find the sketches that weren’t on Hulu. Besides the musical guest (which I never watch), what did I miss?

Seriously? I saw that coming from a mile away. Okay, not specifically Couric, but I knew she was going to mention someone else. And a telegraphed joke isn’t funny.

I don’t know what to say about not finding the show itself funny. I usually don’t find it more than amusing, but I think this was one of their best shows is a while. I don’t see what the fake news shows even have in common with a sketch comedy show. Their sketches are often horribly acted and badly timed as well.

The Daily Show usually has fake news in the first segment, which is almost always much funnier than the directly corresponding “Weekend Update” on SNL, and then usually has an interview or “on location special report” in the second segment, which could easily be an SNL sketch, and again is almost always much funnier than an SNL sketch. And they are working under a handicap, not only because they do four shows a week instead of three shows a month, but because their target is often taking the interview seriously, and not reading lines the writers gave him. And of course, the Daily Show’s budget for the year probably wouldn’t be enough to shoot the Michael Bolton short, which I did enjoy.

I realize it’s just my opinion, and I acknowledge that SNL has produced some true gems of comedy, but most of those I can think of are from long ago, with Bill Murray (e.g. “The Mighty Hercules”) or John Belushi (e.g. “Miles Copperthwaite,” which I suspect had Michael Palin not only as the guest star, but the co-writer). Today, I think the average sitcom is funnier than the average SNL episode, and that’s a pretty low bar.