SNL: S22E12... HOST: NEVE CAMPBELL... DATE: FEBRUARY 8, 1997

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or...

A Scream Of A Saturday Night With Neve

 

Though I’ve always found Neve Campbell to be really attractive, I can’t say that I was ever a huge fan of her work. That’s not to say that I didn’t like her brand of acting or anything, I just never watch Party Of Five because of my hatred of hour-long shoes and Scream turned me off of the horror genre after finding out the killer was just some guy and had nothing to do with anything paranormal.

Even though Scream changed my opinion of the horror genre, I still watched every one of them as well as all of the Scary Movie parodies. This was back when I still felt parody movies were good so I mainly watched the Scream series in order to get the jokes that were made in the referential films. Though I didn’t watch the Scream movies due to an interest in the series, I still enjoyed them enough to understand the appeal and never had a problem with Neve’s acting.

Other than the Scream films, I mainly know Neve from Drowning Moana which is one of my favorite movies of all time. It’s because of this film that I was looking forward to this appearance by Neve since I would be excited to see anyone host from that cast. I’m not sure how scripted Drowning Moana was, but there definitely was improv feel to how the actors interacted which made me feel it would cross over well into the world of sketch comedy.

It turned out that I was right in expecting this show to be a fun one, even though it was far from a favorite of this year. Then again, this seems like it’s an impossible season for there to be a failed episode in because the mostly sophomore cast still seems to be loving their jobs and are all putting out solid content. Aside from that, the line-up of hosts is filled up with a bunch of comedy legends included seven alumni host, which would make it hard for any standard actor to stand out as the best of the bunch which might be the only thing working against Neve.

Not that this episode would be an absolute favorite any other year, but I could definitely see this being one of those shows that I hoped would be good based on one role from the host’s career to then have it end up higher on my list of favorites since I wasn’t expecting it to be as good as it turned out to be kind of like how Danny Aiello who turned out to be my favorite host from last year when I only kind of expected to like him based on his role in Hudson Hawk.

Now that I’ve rambled on enough about my insights of Neve Campbell, it’s now time to shift gears and share what I saw while she was hosting the show, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a parody of an O.J. Simpson Press Conference because of a fictional incident where Tim Meadows as O.J. was caught with a wheelbarrow full of money that he was attempting to hide following the eight million dollar settlement that he was issued to pay after his civil trial. During the press conference, O.J. acted naïve when anyone from the media would question his story about how he magically became broke overnight. Of course, this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Neve Campbell then officially opened the show with a monolog where she joked about how often people mispronounce her name while adding a few joke where she mispronounced common words with similar spellings where the rules on how they are pronounced are the opposite. This was interrupted by a phone call from special guest, David Spade, in order to parody Neve Campbell’s famous phone call scene from the first Scream which was the movie she was there to promote.
  3. We then got a repeat of the fake ad for Caribbean Essence Bath Oil from earlier in the season where Tracy Morgan played the bath oil mascot who would magically appear in bathtubs when people were using the Caribbean Essence Bath Oil product.
  4. Chris Kattan then revised his mumble-mouthed Suel Forrestor character for a game show sketch called Jackpot where the contestants were so confused by the ranting man mad that they couldn’t get a single question correct.
  5. Delicious Dish then returned for another installment where once again, the droning NPR host talked about their favorite food which this week was rice but then they barely had time to talk about the topic as they went on to promote the latest pledge-drive. After the pledge drive promotions, Neve Campbell joined the two host as a contest winner who ended up talking more about the pledge drive than rice in another perfect parody of the NPR talk show style.
  6. TV Funhouse also returned for another installment of Fun With Real Audio where they animated Bill Clinton’s recent State Of The Union Address which highlighted the ever-present divide in our two-party political system which included an interruption from Ross Perot who was portrayed in a straitjacket even though he seemed to be the one making the most sense considering Bob Dole also joined in on the conversation to represent the right at one point during the animation. In the end, the giant rabbit that Ross Perot rode in on was the only thing that got everyone to agree even though he only spoke with a horrifying squeak.
  7. We also got another visit from The Spartans Cheerleaders/parody of Scream where this time the two school-spirit addicts tried to hype up Neve Campbell’s high school party as she portrayed her character Sydney from Scream who was Cheri Oteri’s cousin as well. The sketch parodied Scream in that every time the sketch seemed to be setting up a scary moment like one from the movie, the Spartans would chime in with a cheer scaring the guest more than the killer would have.
  8. Janet Reno's Dance Party was another sketch to get a return visit where once again Will Ferrell as Janet Reno hosted a dance party show from her basement and snuck in political talk while trying to interact with her dance party guests. This series of sketches seems to be a joke that this dance party show was Reno’s attempt to cope with the aftermath of the Wacko Incident that happened a few years before the original airing of this episode.
  9. Once again, Norm MacDonald gave us the news. This week, David Spade dropped in for a special Hollywood Moment where he gave us an update on the going ons in Hollywood since Spade had left the show.
  10. David Bowie then took to the stage to perform Little Wonder.
  11. We then got a parody of 20/20 where Ana Gasteyer portrayed Mia Farrow to talk about the recently revealed affair with Soon-Yi. Meanwhile, David Spade returned for another cameo where he played Woody Allen who was at home watching the interview with his stepdaughter turned wife from his apartment, only to have Mia and several other characters from his life step through the TV screen to confront the perverted director in the style of one of his movies.
  12. Urban Teens was almost a reboot of the Spartans sketch only with Cheri Oteri and Neve Campbell playing two white girls from the hood who try to hook up with people playing a pick-up game at the neighborhood park. The fence that separated the girls from the player gave it that cheerleader feel but they would also randomly dance from time to time not really to be encouraging but to show off what they got.
  13. Hitler Speech was a sketch where Colin Quinn played a Nazi named Rolf who gossiped with other Nazi’s behind Hitler’s back why he was trying to give a famous speech. Meanwhile, Tim Meadows and Lorne Michaels give the sketch the same treatment as they start to gossip about everyone involved as the sketch continued to play out on the screen in Lorne’s office.
  14. David Bowie then returned to the stage to perform Scary Monsters. 
  15. Adventures Of The White Trash Disaster Trailer was a sketch that shows the trials and tribulations of the white trash folks who live in Tornado Alley who also have an incestuous drive towards procreation.
  16. Finally, Neve Campbell closed the show by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.

As I said up above, this might not be my favorite episode of the year but it was still super fun especially with the help of these three of my favorite moments of the night. First, I loved Scream Meets The Spartans because it was the first time in quite a while that the show made fun of the movie or show that the host was there to promote and I feel this sketch did well at providing jabs at the referenced material without being too critical with their jokes. Next, I really liked the Jackpot game show sketch because not only do I love game show parodies, I love the brand of confusion that Chris Kattan’s rambling Suel Forrestor brings to his. Finally, I was a fan of this week’s installment of Delicious Dishes because again, I’m a huge fan of podcasts and talk radio in general so I love this dig at NPR and its ever-present pledge-drive.

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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.