SNL: S01E12... HOST: DICK CAVETT... DATE: JANUARY 31, 1976

or...

Solid Center Appeal

Landing smack in the middle of the season, this episode was average in every way. Though I've always been aware of Dick Cavett but by the time I was old enough to where I might have appreciated The Dick Cavett Show it was bouncing around the deep cable and I wasn't enough of a fan to follow him around.

I always knew him more as an interesting guest on other's interview shows but never felt inspired enough to seek out his show or learn more about him.  I hate saying stuff like that because it sounds so negative comment on anything when I'm not fully on board with the program. 

It seems, especially as time goes on, even a solid center seems like one is pussy footing around saying something is straight garbage. Just think of the face that you make when you genuinely believe something was just okay. It seems that now unless you LOVE something, everyone else has an air of disappointment in their reviews.

That said, this episode, as well as many others from this season, have truly been just okay and whether or not I have enthusiastic energy when breaking down a show, there's yet to be an episode that I wouldn't watch again. I've now been doing this for 12 days straight and have yet to regret the idea.

And with that, I will sort through this boring episode as I give you...

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. The show starts in the green room with Chevy Chase talking to Garrett Morris about not doing the fall tonight due to a back problem from the fall last week (even though last week was the first episode to start without said fall.) Anyways, it's then revealed that Garrett Morris uses voodoo to get revenge and force the fall.
  2. Dick Cavett then opens the show with a pretty decent monolog.
  3. Chevy Chase then plays Jane Curtin's new duck hunting man, who accidentally kills everyone with his mishandling of the firearm in a sketch that I know I would have loved as a kid because of silly these accidents were, but now I can't help but see the political statement that blew right over my childish head.
  4. Dick Cavett then plays himself in a commercial and announces that he's opening a school for automotive refinishing and upholstery. 
  5. Jimmy Cliff then came out to sing The Harder They Come.
  6. Belushi plays a corrupt tax accountant in a commercial for H&L Brock.
  7. This was followed by the news where Chevy Chase had a line about rather having a president that would put soap in their coffee over one that would use red dye #2. I'm not sure who he was referencing with the shampoo but I have a feeling the latter half of the joke was referencing Trump.
  8. Of course, the news commercial was a repeat, this time for the fake commercial taste testing tuna vs cat food.
  9. Emily Litella rants about Eagle Right when the story was about Equal Rights and the news ended on the top story being repeated for I Love Lucy fans.
  10. Dick Cavett then pitches another school this time for Hydroplane Operation.
  11. This was followed by a parody of Our Town, which I'm aware of by title alone but apparently, it's nothing more than explaining a small town as this remake was Dick Cavett explain New York in small town terms.
  12. Jimmy Cliff returns to sing Many Rivers to Cross.
  13. This was followed by a funny but quick sketch where they bring out Dick Cavett's doppelganger who looks absolutely nothing like him. 
  14. Next was a short film that has a tailor suggesting a new suite for a plastic surgeon while that same plastic surgeon suggests a new face for the tailor.
  15. Jane Curtin then came out as Betty Ford and did an interpretive dance as she answered advice column style questions in a sketch called Dance to the Nation.
  16. Belushi returns as the corrupt tax accountant with more examples up just how corrupt he will be.
  17. Normally, Jane Curtin host Looks at Books but this time it was Chevy Chase interviewing Dick Cavett who was playing a Middle America pimp who gets offended when it is suggested that sex is involved. This sketch really made me laugh when Cavett improvised the line about the audience when he said, "...but these people have been so nice, not to laugh at my situation." It was so spot on because the crowd was silent throughout most of the episode which is what made me feel the need to reiterate that okay actually is okay to me, which triggered the intro above.
  18. Jimmy Cliff returns one more time to sing Wahjaka Man.
  19. Belushi returns again with more corruption from H&L Brook.
  20. This was followed by the airing of the first home video that Candice Bergen called for in the Christmas episode. This was a stop action short with apples in a strip club where the strippers were peeled to an old stripper song.
  21. Finally, the show ended on Allen Petersen dressed as a construction worker singing I've Got to Be Me as he strips to reveal he's wearing women's lingerie. 

The only problem I have with an average episode is the fact that it's hard to track down the top three but here goes nothing. First, my favorite was Cavett as a pimp for his spot on improv pointing out the lack of laughter from the crowd. Next, the doppelganger that doesn't look like Dick was visually entertaining enough to get a chuckle out of me, and rounding off the top three is the short film where the tailor suggests a new suite for a plastic surgeon while the plastic surgeon suggests a new face for the tailor but I liked the concept over the content so it landed in last. 

Matt Bunker

I started out with a goal of becoming a paid screenwriter. I had no interest in any other aspect of filmmaking. I received and scholarship to The Vancouver Film School's Writing for Film and Television program where I graduated in 2005. I fell in love with being on set during my first non-school produced short, . I loved being around all the creative people, seeing people having fun while working. The whole liking your job was a new world to me, so I decided to give it a shot. I volunteered for any project I could, doing what ever was needed. The set was my Film School this time. While working as a PA on a feature I was informed that the DP wanted the three tallest PAs to help out in the grip and electric department. That is when I found the department that felt like the best fit for me while I continued to write.