SNL: S20E18... HOST: COURTNEY COX... DATE: APRIL 15, 1995

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A Case Of Seasonal Effective Misorder

Keep in mind that this review is coming off of watching two episodes in a row that I thought were good enough to be the season finale and season opener, respectively. It’s not that this episode hosted by Courtney Cox was all that bad, but the drop the drop off in quality was noticeable. I feel this would have been the case no matter who had this spot in the hosting line up.

I mean, John Goodman’s episode, which should have been the season closer, was practically co-hosted by Dan Aykroyd and was filled with surprises and cameos. This was followed by my ideal season opener with Damon Wayans as the host which was basically a mini-mash-up of In Living Color and Saturday Night Live which would be a hard show for anyone to follow.

Tonight’s Courtney Cox episode would have been average if it appeared during the middle of the year and absolutely brilliant if it was episode three or four but in this actual order, the show felt a little flat in comparison. Other than my problems with the order of the shows, I also took issue with the fact that the cast wasn’t on their game. There were many flubbed lines and random chuckles that felt like nervous reactions from being unprepared instead of in a way where you can’t help but laugh along as you join in on the fun of the error.

Other than that, I don’t have all that much to say about this viewing, so, I’m going to cut this one short and already switch gears to move on and share what I actually viewed, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a sketch called Matt Foley, Bilingual Motivational Speaker. In the sketch, Chris Farley’s character was sent down to Venezuela to warn a wealthy landowner’s kids about how they don’t want to end up, “LIVING IN A VAN DOWN BY THE RIVER,” while speaking a broken version of Spanish while hopped up on coca leaves. Though the sketch was pretty fun, it was also basically the same routine with the backdrop of a foreign land. Of course, with this being the open sketch, it eventually built to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Courtney Cox then officially opened the show with a monolog about her “new show Friends” before she went on to parody her break out performance in the Bruce Springsteen Dancing In The Dark music video with Adam Sandler imitating The Boss.
  3. Good Morning Brooklyn was a parody of morning talk show with Courtney Cox and Jay Mohr as a pair of hosts who play-up Brooklyn stereotypes while putting on their show.  
  4. Gapardy was a sketch where the Gap girls returned after a long hiatus to compete in a Gap themed game of Jeopardy.
  5. Dave Matthews Band then took to the stage to perform What Would You Say? 
  6. Once again, Norm MacDonald gave us the news. This week, Molly Shannon dropped by as an English teacher to discuss the issues with the modern education system while miming her punctuation throughout her entire rant.
  7. Chris Elliott and Molly Shannon then returned home from a date for a sketch called Melanie Babysits where Mark McKinney played the titular Melanie who Chris Elliott flirts with while driving her home. I’m guessing that the central joke is McKinney in drag because other than that, this is just a realistic scene of a lecherous creep who’s trying to hook up with a high schooler which wasn’t funny at all unless you count that the fact that he used Zima to get her drunk.   
  8. Hiring Charles Manson was a sketch where Mike McKean played an executive who was too busy to listen to his staff which led him to sarcastically say, “Go ahead and hire Charles Manson for all that I care,” during a meeting about a job opening. Since his staff was made up of brown-nosing yes men/women, they took his request to be literal. They then had to fight to get Manson out of jail even though McKean was actually against the idea. That is until Charlie showed up and turned out to be pretty good at the job.  
  9. Truth Vs. Jokes was a sketch that took place at a company party where Kevin Nealon could not tell whether or not Tim Meadows was joking since his playful fibs were told with genuine conviction.
  10. Replacement Baseball was a parody of a Ken Burns-style documentary that showcased the pathetic lives of the baseball scabs that took to the field during the baseball strike that was still being arbitrated during the start of this season.
  11. His Muse Friday was a parody of His Girl Friday via a black and white sketch with Mike McKean as a poetry publisher where everyone in the sketch spoke in poems while making fun of the old noir film with Courtney Cox as the femme fatale.
  12. Dave Matthews Band then returned to the stage to perform Ants Marching. 
  13. Obnoxious Co-Worker was a sketch were David Spade went from being the office’s man of intrigue due to his mysteriously arrogant ways to being a complete obnoxious needy nerd after a one night stand with Courtney Cox after her first day on the job.
  14. Finally, Courtney Cox closed the show by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.

Again, my main issue with this episode is its placement in the season because other than the fact that it followed two beastly shows, it was still fun to watch thanks to sketches like these three that contained my three favorite moments of the night. First, I loved the Replacement Baseball sketch because it was genuinely a good mini-mockumentary. Next, I really liked Matt Foley, Bilingual Motivational Speaker because even though it was more of the same, it was still pretty fun to watch. Finally, I was a fan of Truth Vs. Jokes because I’m usually a fan of sketches that use this brand of confusion.

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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.