SNL: S18E04... HOST: CHRISTOPHER WALKEN... DATE: OCTOBER 24, 1992

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or...

Walken A Little Slow As He

Continues To Find His SNL Hosting Legs

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If you want to know my expectation levels for this episode going into this viewing, I decided to watch this two days earlier than I needed to, not to get further ahead in my effort to create a backlog but just because I wanted to watch a classic episode hosted by Christopher Walken. Unfortunately, this is only his second time hosting the show and even though I feel that he’s so close to being there I don’t think that he’s quite tapped into the character of himself which I know will eventually get him to be one of the best SNL hosts of all time.

Don’t get me wrong, this episode was still fun but it seems to be missing that certain thing that’s been making this season feel at best, average. Unlike other seasons where I know exactly what’s not working for me, I can’t quite put my finger on why I’m just not feeling this year. I guess "not feeling it" isn't quite fair because I don't mind what I’m seeing. Once again, I’m just stuck struggling to drum up the enthusiasm to passionately express why something is just okay.

I mean, if every sketch were as good as Ed Glosser: Trivial Psychic, I’d be screaming from the windows how much everyone should watch this episode. Hell, even if half the sketches where that funny, I might take to social media with a reminder to check it out. Two sketches like this would have been cool as well but instead all I got was this one great sketch, another installment of The Continental, which I mainly still like for nostalgic reasons, and a bunch of sketches that were just okay to the point where I just watched the episode and none of them come to mind with scanning The Wicker Breakdown.

Fortunately, that’s not really a bad thing either because I still thought everything was still okay and if I wasn’t documenting my experience I’d think nothing negative at all because I’m still loving the overall experience. So, with that, it’s now time move on from sharing my thought to sharing what I actually saw as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with Dana Carvey as Ross Perot as he took his Vice Presidential running mate Admiral Stockdale, played by Phil Hartman, out into the woods in order to ditch him the way that people would ditch a dog back in the day. Though I don’t remember Admiral Stockdale from the time, I fully remember this characterized version of him from this sketch, especially the “GRIDLOCK” line. Of course, this being the opening sketch, it eventually built to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Christopher Walken then officially opened the show with a song and dance to the tune of Let’s Face The Music And Dance which got him to dance with every female cast member before he grabbed a “random old lady from the audience” who he danced backstage where he continued to sing and dance with special guest, Jan Hooks. These two kept going until they were stopped by Lorne Michaels, for this new monolog lecture thing that they’ve been doing this season, only before Lorne could get too deep into his concerns Walken started to dance with him as well. Walken ended when he got back to the stage to throw to the first non-opening sketch of the night.
  3. This was followed by a fake ad for Jiffy Express which was a FedEx-style delivery service that was willing to mislabel or damage your package in order to take a brunt of the blame if your package was going to be or was already too late to miss the deadline you needed to meet.
  4. The Continental then returned for another installment of Christopher Walken playing a lecherous creep who tries to trick his date into settling into his hotel suite with his hopes to get her alone. This sketch would be way more disturbing if this never-seen date didn’t always seem to have the upper-hand and was way too smart to fall for any of his traps.
  5. Ed Glosser: Trivial Psychic was a sketch where Christopher Walken played a psychic who was only able to make mundane predictions about what was going to happen in his coworkers' lives thanks to a freak accident that took place during a trip to a tanning bed. 
  6. We then got another installment of Deep Thoughts By Jack Handey where Jack shared his ideas on pudding-traversing ants.
  7. Arrested Development then took to the stage to perform Tennessee. 
  8. Once again, Kevin Nealon gave us the news. This week, “Jan Brady” dropped in to share her views on this year’s election as an undecided voter because she has personal issues with all three candidates because they remind her of specific Brady Bunch moments from the past. David Spade also stopped by for another Hollywood Moment where once again he roasted the celebrities that were making the tabloid headlines that week. 
  9. Stalk Talk was a talk show sketch hosted by Julia Sweeney who allowed her creepy guests, both men, and women, to share their stalker stories. Where the three men stalked their exes, crushes, or missed connections, the one female guest is only virtually stalking David Hasselhoff. Other than who they are interested in this is another sketch that couldn’t be made today because all four characters nonchalantly shared their stalking stories as if they were no big deal.     
  10. It's Pat then returned for another installment where Christopher Walken meets Pat who just got hired as his new personal assistant only to have everyone get caught in the usual Pat game, only this time Walken kept pulling Phil Hartman to the side to discuss how much this androgyny was really messing with his brain until he got so confused that he jumped out of the window to end it all.
  11. Sinead O'Connor’s Good Time Happy Jamboree was a sketch that showed Sinead’s attempt to show her lighter side as more of a cliché Irish performer following her recent controversial musical spot where she ripped up the picture of the Pope on the same season that’s now making fun of her.
  12. Super Sleuths was a sketch that took place in a hospital following some crime that was solved by a Scooby Doo-like collection of sleuths. It turns out Christopher Walken was injured during the case and now they’re all in the hospital just hanging out. The nurse eventual entered the room with a bedpan in hand which everyone took as a sign to leave except for Walken who continued to make the gang stick around no matter how personal the hospital treatments grew to be.
  13. “Sinead O'Connor” then returned to the stage to share her truth of the real picture she intended to tear up only the audience just wasn’t having it because they were angry at the hate and not at the message at all.
  14. Arrested Development then returned to the stage to perform Everyday People. 
  15. Christopher Walken then sang a parody called The Boulevard Of Broken Balls which made fun of a song with an extremely similar name that I’ll let you figure out on your own.
  16. Finally, Christopher Walken closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

Though this was a fun episode it was hard to come up with spot number three of my top three favorite moments that I am about to share. First, I loved Ed Glosser: Trivial Psychic because I love when characters have amazing powers that only work in extremely mundane ways. Next, I really liked this week’s installment of The Continental because I love this Walken character even though I can’t stand his lecherous ways. Finally, I was a fan of The Boulevard Of Broken Balls because it was a fun parody cover and it was cool to see Walken sing.

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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.