SNL: S16E18... HOST: STEVEN SEAGAL... DATE: APRIL 20, 1991

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or...

Disappointed That I Wasn't More Disappointed

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Based on the fact that whenever a cast member from this time is asked about the most difficult host to work with it seems the unanimous answer is Steven Seagal, I went into this viewing expecting to watch a complete shit show that constantly falls off the rails. Unfortunately, that wasn't really the case as this episode ended up being pretty good where are worst I would consider it average.

In fact, my only issue with this episode at all is the fact that Steven Seagal just can't act because the content wasn't that bad at all. I think what made his acting seem worse is the same disconnect that I pointed out in my Jeremy Irons review where his well-trained stuffy British acting style didn't really mesh with the laid-back comedy style of the case, only with Seagal it was his bad action acting that led to the disconnect.

Though the issues between the host and the cast didn't really play out on the screen, I could totally see him being a monster to work with behind the scenes. I think this appearance might be the impetus of the famous story where Steven Seagal stepped out of his dressing room while proclaiming, "I've just finished reading the best script that I've read." Which led someone to ask, "Really, who wrote it?" Leading Seagal to respond, "Me!"

With that type of arrogance, I really wanted this episode to be not just bad but so bad that it's good only to end up watching a show that was nothing more than okay. Oh well, they can't all be losers that lose so bad that they actually win, so it's time to move on to the next segment where I will 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 where Franz the muscle-bound brothers are back in their gym to squelch any rumors that they are on steroids before promoted an upcoming Arnold Schwarzenegger film which led them to make fun of Steven Seagal for being such a girlie man. Little did they know but he was behind them all of the time who then used mind over matter and his pinkie to put the pumped up cable hosts in their place leading to the announcement of, "Live from New York..."
  2. Steven Seagal then officially opened the show with a monolog where he lists off all of his films before going on to promote the new one and then rambling on about Zen in a build up to his performance of the song Kung Fu Fighting in what I have to admit was a pretty interesting arrangement.
  3. We then got a repeat of the fake Winston-McCauley Funeral Home commercial from earlier in the season where they promise that nobody working at the establishment has sex with any of the bodies.
  4. Nico Tenelli was a parody of a cop movie where Steven Seagal played the traditional wildcard cops who gets demoted to working behind a desk after going a bit overboard during a drug bust. Nico (Seagal) then had to make copies as part of his new desk gig which is where we found out that this was actually another installment of the Richmeister sketch where Rob Schneider got beat up by the host.
  5. All-Star Celebrity Tributes was a parody of a TV special to pay tribute to Tim Meadows for his services during the Persian Gulf War and as with most of these TV special parodies, this is mainly a sketch that allows the cast to try out their most random celebrity impersonations.
  6. The Dark Side With Nat X then returned for another segment of the only fifteen-minute show on television where Nat X gave the Top Five Reasons The L.A. Cops Beat Up Rodney King before interviewing Steven Seagal who does a pretty good Andrew Dice Clay impersonation.
  7. This was followed by a Deep Thoughts By Jack Handey segment where Jack share why he would be interested in seeing a nude opera.
  8. Michael Bolton then took to the stage to perform Love Is A Wonderful Thing.
  9. Once again, Dennis Miller gave us the news. This week, Mr. Subliminal dropped in for an editorial on a tell-all book about Nancy Reagan. Adam Sandler then made his news debut as a travel advisor where he shared a recent trip to Greece where he mainly talked about the hotel room that he stayed in while barely mentioning the country at all.   
  10. Musicians For Free-Range Chickens was a parody of a Farm Aid-type collaboration where it seemed the entire cast and crew impersonated a singer from the time to sing about the benefits of free-range chickens. 
  11. We then got another Deep Thoughts By Jack Handey segment where Jack shares the fact that he's humored by seeing some mystery thing that scurried across the room and latches on to people's necks.
  12. Date Intimidation was a sketch where Chris Farley dropped by a house to pick up his date only to be intimidated by Steven Seagal who plays the role of her father. 
  13. Michael Bolton then took to the stage to perform Time, Love And Tenderness. 
  14. Brace Steele: Greenpeace Photographer was a parody of a Steven Seagal film where Seagal played the titular character who is a bad as with a camera that is out to fight corporate pollution by documenting their evil deed through pictures but he doesn't seem to realize that pictures don't capture the words being said which leads him to revert to using good old fashion violence.
  15. Finally, Steven Seagal closed the show by thanking the audience and saying their goodnights.

I was really hoping that this list would be populated with sketches that were so bad that they were good but instead, these three favorite moments from the night helped make the episode as good as it was. First, I loved the Musicians For Free-Range Chickens sketch because it was another one of those sketches that I completely forgot about until the moment it started and found that I could sing along word for word. Next, I really liked this week's installment of The Dark Side With Nat X because Steven Seagal's impersonation of Andrew Dice Clay was actually amazing. Finally, I was a fan of Steven Seagal's opening monolog because he sang a rendition of Kung Fu Fighting that was legitimately good as well.

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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.