SNL: S11E02... HOST: CHEVY CHASE... DATE: NOVEMBER 16, 1985

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or...

One More Visit To Get The Five Timers Coat

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At first, I wanted to title this review, "Or... The Honeymoon Stage Is Over," because I wasn't as impressed with this episode as I was with the season premiere. Then, the more I got to thinking about it, I realized that it wouldn't be fair to knock this season when I'm always a little underwhelmed by the appearance of an alumni host, at least based on what I've seen so far.

That not to say that I don't like these visit from the host but I don't know if it leads to extra pressure on the writers, which I would fully understand, but each of these episodes tend to turn out a little flat which was the case with this episode where I liked it but really wanted to like it even more than I actually did.

I think what part of the problem is, especially when it comes to the original Not Ready For Prime Time Players is that when they come back as hosts they are a bit too casual make it feel like a mentor putting in practice with students over putting in a full blown appearance because unlike the regular host, if an episode fails with an alumni at the wheel the audience is going to blame the cast.

I'm also very surprised/disappointed that they never made even the slightest reference to Chevy Chase, Anthony Michael Hall and Randy Quaid all working together on National Lampoon's Vacation which is my favorite movie of all time.

So, even though this episode was a slight miss, mainly due to Chevy's casual approach, I still have hopes for this season but we'll have to wait and see.

Speaking of wait and see, it's now time to share what I saw as I give you... 

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with fire scene where Chevy Chase plays a fire chief who is extremely insistent that his men check every single door down the hallway full of smoke until he collapses from smoke inhalation then wakes to announce, "Live from New York..." 
  2. Chevy Chase then officially opened the show with a monolog about his history with the show and the fact that it's now been on the air for so long while mixing up all the details as he plays the super confused character that's become his signature bit.
  3. Wacky Glue was a fake ad for a Crazy Glue like product that works too well as the actor who gets a piece of wood glued to his head for the product's very first commercial ends up having to deal with the adhered lumber for the rest of his the time he's alive and even continued to stick to his skull after death.
  4. The Pat Stevens Show was a talk show sketch hosted by Nora Dunn who answers viewer mail about fashion with a serious tone but a dumb model type of response. The then went on to interview Danitra Vance who plays a feminist stripper who refuses to take off her clothes. 
  5. We then went to the White House again to make fun of Reagan's memory issues as he prepares for an upcoming summit meet with Russia by getting advice from Chevy Chase who is revising his impersonation of Gerald Ford and the two have an idiot off about the current affairs.
  6. Sheila E. then took to the stage to perform Hollyrock. 
  7. We then got a very patriotic fake ad for Freedom featuring footage of the Statue Of Liberty with voice over talking about how important it is to be free at first it sounds like it is talking about our country but the freedom the ads referring to is the freedom from kids as this turns out to be a fake ad for Trojans condoms. 
  8. Those Unlucky Andersons was a parody of a family style sitcom, complete with a laugh-track, that follows a family where everything starts out sounding positive but ends up going horribly wrong. 
  9. Once again Dennis Miller gave us the news. This week, Damon Wayans dropped by for some Uptown advice on the recession and how the US should start collecting on their loans to other countries just like they do in the hood.
  10. Jose Cuervo's Party School Bowl was as the title implies, a quiz bowl sketch between two party schools who struggle with questions about current events but ace any question that has to deal with booze. The sketch ended with a special announcement from The Jose Cuervo Institute that provides help to those who have injured themselves while on the hooch.
  11. The Life of Vlad The Impaler was a historical sketch that told the tale of how the man who went on to inspire the character of Dracula had to deal with the neighbor who took issue with the impaled people on his front lawn. We eventually go into Vlad's house to see that he is filled with self-doubt about his action and that his wife is an encouraging woman.
  12. The Blue, The Gray, & The Yellow was a "Civil War Drama" about two brothers, one from the North the other from the South who were both cowards that opted to run away from the war and both decided to head home to hide where they then went on to fight amongst each other over who is the biggest coward while keeping their North vs South pride.
  13. Drums, Drums, Drums! was a fake ad for a TV album filled with nothing but drum solos.
  14. Jon Lovitz then debuted his Pathological Liar character in a fake PSA for Pathological Liars Anonymous.
  15. Sheila E. then returned to the stage to perform A Love Bizarre. 
  16. Craig Sundberg, Idiot Savant was a sketch where Anthony Michael Hall plays Craig who looks and acts like a complete idiot who is filled with genius level insights while also not being aware of his own brilliance.
  17. Finally, Chevy Chase closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

Again, this wasn't a bad episode, just a bit of a letdown due to my high expectation from the host who still managed to create these three favorite moments from the night. First, I love The Blue, The Gray, & The Yellow sketch because I have a deep connection with cowards. Next, I really liked Trojans For Freedom fake ad because I liked the twist that the freedom that they were talking about was the freedom from not having kids. Finally, I was a fan of Those Unlucky Andersons because of how it felt like a premise that would have been used back when Chevy was still an official part of the cast.

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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.