Monday, December 18, 2006

SNL: Step one: cut a hole in the box

Okay, so that's now three "Saturday Night Live" episodes this season that made me happy. You expect it out of Hugh Laurie or Alec Baldwin, but Justin Timberlake? The guy's enthusiastic, game for anything, and he's done it enough times that he has multiple recurring characters (Robin Gibb, Omeletteville/Homelessville Guy).

The opening song was cute, especially Amy and Maya harmonizing on "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night," I have a soft spot for both Homelessville Guy and "The Barry Gibb Talk Show" (it's such a strange idea that I love it in spite of it being the show's eight millionth talk show parody, plus the reaction to Sandra Day O'Connor's joke this time was priceless), and the Digital Short was absolute genius, and perhaps proof that Andy Samberg and his buddies should stick to using them to make music videos. Much like "Lazy Sunday," this one's been rattling around in my head for the last 36 hours, only I can't really sing any of it in public. (If you haven't seen it, the NBC site has the uncensored version.)

So that's three good shows out of nine. In baseball, that's success.

20 comments:

Aristophanes said...

Alan, I'm glad to see you liked this episode. I enjoyed it, in large part because Justin Timberlake holds nothing back when he hosts. Halfway in, I was thinking how much I liked him, and then he sang and I recalled why I don't own any of his albums. Still, he seems to throw himself in and have a lot of fun with the cast. I think being willing to really integrate with the cast goes a long way in making an episode great.

Anonymous said...

I also have to say that I can't think of a single person on this cast that I don't think is very funny (now that Horatio Sanz is gone). When Will Forte can barely crack the show, you know it's a deep talent pool. Also love how much they are using Kristen Wiig, who may be the most talented person on the entire show and is almost certainly cultivating herself legions of male fans.

JJoeScott said...

Most of the skits worked, and as someone has already posted, that is strictly thanks to Timberlake who has delivered all three times he's appeared. And yeah, I can't stop replaying that song in my head either ... there was not a wasted shot in that straight-out-of-the-'90s video ... dare I say, I think it was better than "Let's Go To the Mall"?

Alan Sepinwall said...

For me, the highlight is Maya mouthing "Thank you" to Andy, like it's the greatest possible gift anyone's ever given her.

Tosy And Cosh said...

I thought the similarly preposterously dirty Tom Hanks short from last year as great also - more support for the "music shorts are best" thesis.

J said...

What a difference a year makes: Looks like NBC's upped every single sketch to YouTube themselves.

jim treacher said...

If you'll pardon my French, Kristen Wiig is the shiit.

porter said...

My only gripe: I assumed they were saying "c*ck in a box" in the bleeped version, and I find that even a little bit funnier.

That, and I totally have to get something new for my girlfriend now.

Dan Coyle said...

Figures: one of the few good SNLs of the season and I miss it (I thought it was going to be a rerun, since it was Dec. 16).

I got a good belly laugh out of Timberlake's fight with Kermit the Frog in one of his episodes- While singing "The Rainbow Connection" Timberlake accidentally steps on the puppeteer (Will Forte), who responds with "Why are there so many... songs about Douchebags..."

dez said...

My only gripe: I assumed they were saying "c*ck in a box" in the bleeped version, and I find that even a little bit funnier.

Aw, that's what I thought they were saying, too! Sorta like Dr. Seuss, except instead of "Fox in Sox," you have "Cox in Box" (which works as a "Scrubs" theme, come to think of it).

Mac said...

My only disappointment (well, I've never liked the Target Lady) is that there wasn't a Smigel Christmas cartoon this year.

Jaynee said...

Alan, I was wondering if you were going to post about this weekend's SNL. I hardly watch the show but specifically Tivo'd this weekend's because of Timberlake. I squealed when I saw that Jimmy Fallon returned to do Barry Gibb since that was my all-time favorite skit from the past few years.

The only total bomb of a skit from this episode was Amy Poehler's extremely UNfunny Nancy Grace bit towards the end of the show. Just appallingly bad and I can't believe Lorne let it go on for as long as it did (it felt like an eternity but was probably only three minutes or so). Other than that, and Justin's singing (gag), it was a nearly perfect episode.

anon said...

Those who love Samberg should familiarize themselves with The Lonely Island Boys.

Completely off-topic: Alan, any thoughts on the _Dexter_ finale? The series has shaped up to become some mighty fine TV. Here's to hoping it warrants regular blog commentary next season.

Anon

Undercover Black Man said...

It's amazing that "Dick in a Box" was as funny as it was even with all the "dicks" bleeped out. I wish I could've seen it with the live audience. I assume they heard it uncensored. Sounds like the place went up for grabs!

Adam said...

I had assumed it was "cock", but "dick is just as funny because it's just so, so crude.

I can't believe they were able to secure Fallon's services for the Gibb sketch; he must be so busy these days, what with . . . uh, nevermind.

Undercover Black Man said...

Samberg and his boys have a knack for songwriting. "Dick in a Box" flows a lot better than "Cock in a Box."

jim treacher said...

"Dick in a Box" is definitely better. And yes, the Lonely Island stuff is funny, especially "White Power."

"I can't believe Lorne let it go on for as long as it did..."

Yeah, but we're talking about LORNE MICHAELS.

Dan Coyle said...

Hey, what about that Nancy Grace Christmas message? Holy shit that was awesome.

"I've studied how to do this... and I know just what I'm gonna wear."

BF said...

I have nothing to add except:

Justin Timberlake in that getup looks eerily similar to Dominic Monaghan.

marc b. said...

Related only because it's a show with some comedy, where do you stand on CAMPUS LADIES?

The first mini-season on Oxygen was great and mini-season two is shaping up quite nicely. There are too many guest stars, but they don't get in the way of some seriously funny moments.