Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Lazy, but not free

Another big acquisition for the iTunes store: current and classic "Saturday Night Live" sketches for $1.99 a pop, plus a bunch of the "Best of" compilation DVDs for $9.99 apiece.

There doesn't seem to be any duplication between the compilations and the individual sketches, so you can't just download "More Cowbell." But the solo sketches include some classics and some head-scratchers. In Volume 1:
  • "Word Association," with Richard Pryor and Chevy Chase. ("Honky honky!") A no-brainer, one of the best sketches of all time, and appropriate given Richard's death.
  • "Brownie," with Gilda Radner. Another easy one; Judy Miller was Gilda's best character, and this is just pure Second City-type comedy, one actress bouncing around a set and playing off of herself.
  • "Samurai Night Fever," with John Belushi. There are other Samurais I prefer ("Samurai Delicatessen," maybe), but not a bad one.
  • "Theodoric of York / Medieval Barber": Quintessential Steve Martin, part one.
  • "King Tut": Quintessential Steve Martin, part two.
  • "Julia Child," with Dan Aykroyd: So memorable that when the real Julia died, the first image that came to mind was Aykroyd bleeding profusely from the finger.
  • "Point / Counterpoint," with Dan and Jane Curtin: Easy choice, probably the highlight of '70s Weekend Update.
  • "James Brown's Celebrity Hot Tub Party," with Eddie Murphy: The only Eddie clip; even though he's the biggest star to ever come out of the show, it wasn't under Lorne's watch, so those years are always referred to in obligatory fashion.
  • "The Contestant," with Martin Short and Christopher Guest: Ed Grimley talks a Wheel of Fortune staffer out of committing suicide. The Guest/Short/Billy Crystal year is arguably one of the best the show ever did, but again, it wasn't a Lorne year, so we only get one sketch from them.
  • "One More Mission," with Jon Lovitz and Phil Hartman: A sentimental favorite of the people who worked with Phil; it popped up in the Best of Lovitz special, and was talked about during the "Lost in the '80s" documentary. I've never been crazy about it, though; I can think of better material for both guys.
  • "Five Timers' Club," with Tom Hanks and a cast of thousands: One of the most memorable monologues ever, even though it turned into a sketch halfway through. An argument could be made that this episode, which also featured Mr. Short-Term Memory doing a game show with Tony Randall, "The Global Warming Christmas Special" and Hanks and Dana Carvey with dueling Dennis Miller impressions singing "Jingle Bells," may have been the best "SNL," from start to finish, of all time.
  • "Massive Headwound Harry," with Dana Carvey: Massive Headwound Harry, Meet Massive Headscratching Alan. What the hell is this doing here? If you have to pick a one-joke Carvey sketch, go with Lyle, the Effeminate Heterosexual.
  • "Mr. Belvedere Fan Club," with Tom Hanks and Phil: This may be the first one I buy, if only because I don't think I've ever seen it in reruns. Incredibly random, creepy and funny, particularly their quest to come up with their own nickname for Mr. Belvedere ("Brocktoon") and Phil's poem about Mr. Belvedere ("...to tear the flesh, to wear the flesh...").
  • "Perot/Stockdale," with Dana and Phil: One of Phil's finest moments. "GRIDLOCK!!!"
  • "The Chris Farley Show," with Chris and Paul McCartney: Remember when Chris asked Paul if he remembered when he was in The Beatles? That was awesome.
  • "Motivational Speaker," with Chris, Phil and Julia Sweeney: The first Matt Foley sketch. I was always more of a Bennett Brower fan, but there ya go.
Of note on the Vol. 2 list are "Schwetty Balls" and four sketches from this season, including "Lazy Sunday" (which is no longer free), "Lettuce" (the other digital short from The Lonely Island), "Christmastime for the Jews" and "Elf Motivation" (or, as I call it, "Glengarry Elf Ross"). Obvious absences are the lack of anything featuring Bill Murray, Chris Rock or Mike Myers. (Plus Spade and Schneider, but I never liked those years.)

Still, not a bad start. "Brocktoon." I would like some of whatever they were smoking the night that got written.

1 comment:

Millie said...

Alan, you ignorant slut.