SNL: S14E07... HOST: DANNY DEVITO... DATE: DECEMBER 3, 1988

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or...

One Visit Away From The Coat!!!

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As with the rest of the shows from this season, I found this episode to be entertaining and well performed but I didn't find it to be all that funny while at the same time not being boring at all. Part of the problem is the same issue I've had with past season where the sketches have funny premises but go on for too long while beating the jokes into the ground.

With that said, the difference between this season and the others with similar problems is that the writers this year seem to stick to one concise premise rather than turn to convoluted storylines crowbarring in multiple attempts at unrelated jokes to fill the time. Now, when I zone out during these longer bits it's easy to pick up on what I missed while I was out and about in my own mind.

I continue to hold out hope that they are going to figure this out before the end of the season because as I have to keep repeating my issue is that all of my quality needs have been met but I've still yet to find an episode from this season that has gotten me to laugh out loud more than a chuckle and in most of those cases the laugh was induced by a sketch that I've already known.

As I look at the lineup of host, I see plenty of potential for a turnaround but at the same time most of these actors aren't known for comedy even if they have been in funny films making my realistic belief to be that the rest of the season is going to play out at the same tone, leading to more of these repetitive reveals that point out the exact same problem, but keep in mind, I still like what I've seen so far, I just want to laugh a little more.

So, again, now I've gotten this off my chest, it's now time to move on and share what I saw, as I give you... 

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with another installment of Pumping Up With Hans And Franz where they are back in their TV gymnasium and answering viewer mail by bragging about their muscles no matter what the questions are. After viewer mail Danny DeVito entered the scene as a new addition to their pumped up family who warns that Arnold is on the way because they must have been in town together promoting the movie Twins because the real Arnold does make an appearance to make the manly men feel like little girls. As always, with this being the opening sketch, it ended with the announcement of, "Live from New York..." 
  2. Danny DeVito then officially opened the show with a monolog about being excited to host the show while trying to explain how the adrenalin feels so he runs backstage in order to officially open the show again and gets so worked up with excitement that he has to lay down and take a nap. 
  3. We then got a fake ad for Big Red which is one of my favorite obscure commercials of all time about a Viking toy that you fill with fake blood and when you pull the attached string the toy sprays blood all over the room through its Viking helmet horns. I think the Big Red song is actually my favorite part.
  4. Sex Tonight was a parody of an Entertainment Tonight type talk show where Kevin Nealon and Jan Hooks play the hosts who talk about all the sex in the news at the time in a sketch that felt like it went on forever without any involvement from the host.
  5. Reclino Love Lounge was a fake ad within the Sex Tonight sketch where Wilford Brimley pitches a sex chair for the elderly. 
  6. Bankrupt Scrooge was a follow up to the Scrooge story where it's the Christmas after he saw the ghosts and is now bankrupt from all of the good deeds that he's done since gaining the Christmas spirit to where Bob Cratchit now looks like the jerk for not appreciated all of Scrooges efforts now that he doesn't have all that much to give.
  7. The Bangles then took to the stage to perform In Your Room.
  8. Once again, Dennis Miller gave us the news. This week, "Yasser Arafat" checked in via satellite to share his experience in Switzerland being that he's there for a peace summit and is more excited about his experience traveling than any efforts to reach a world peace agreement with the rest of the people involved. Kevin Nealon also got a segment where he started out talking about the deficit only to end up rambling off topic as his character usually does.  
  9. You Shot Me! was a sketch that took place in a Mexican Tavern way back in the days of the Wild West where Danny DeVito enters the establishment as a bad ass bandito who accidentally hits Jon Lovitz with a bullet while shooting at his feet in an attempt to get him to dance. Though DeVito was being a bully that actually shooting was a complete accident that he instantly regrets as the rest of the patrons pile on by guilt tripping DeVito into regretting the fact that he drew his gun in the first place. 
  10. The Bastard Battalion was a WWII sketch which mainly consisted of soldiers being everyday jerks while throwing around the word, "Bastard," at whoever was being a jerk at the time of the example being shared.  
  11. The Bangles then returned to the stage to perform Hazy Shade Of Winter.
  12. Celebrity Restaurant was a sketch that took place in a restaurant that only lets celebrities into the main dining area while all the average attendees have to cram into a tiny bar. The main joke of the sketch is people having to justify their level of celebrity to Dana Carvey who is working the door.
  13. Danny DeVito then played an Amateur Guardian Angel to recreate the scene from It's A Wonderful Life only he jumped the gun and attempted to save the life of Kevin Nealon who never even planned to jump. This failed save leads Phil Hartman to arrive as DeVito's supervisor and through their conversation, DeVito wished that he was never dead. This leads to Dana Carvey to arrive and Hartman's supervisor to correct him on his treating of Danny DeVito.
  14. Finally, Danny DeVito closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

I think I'm getting used to my issues with this season because thought I was entertained without any laughs, this time I found it easy to find these three favorite moments from the night. First, I loved the Big Red ad to the point where it might be my favorite of the obscure fake ads and the theme song often gets stuck in my head to the point where it drives me crazy. Next, I really liked the Bankrupt Scrooge sketch because I like the Christmas Carol story in general, and this was a pretty funny follow up showing Scrooge the year after learning his lesson. Finally, I was a fan of this week's opening Pumping Up sketch because not only did I like DeVito as a little muscle man but I also liked how the real Arnold Schwarzenegger was involved to make fun of his puny "cousins." 

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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.