Welcome Back To The World Of Sketch,
Though I was a pretty big fan of Jamie Foxx back in the days when he was on In Living Color, h never managed to win me over as a serious actor. That’s not to say that I think his serious acting as bad but his switch in acting style came with a brand of arrogance that led me to say away. Part of me feels that this came after working with Tom Cruise on the movie Collateral since Cruise carries himself in that same arrogant way that doesn’t feel like it’s coming from a place of humor.
Of course with Tom, he was never all that funny in the first place so I never really felt left down, but when it comes to Jamie Foxx, I miss the days when he seemed more silly and sincere. Luckily, this episode if from before the Foxx/Cruise collaboration, before Jamie’s arrogance grew to be unbearable to me.
That said, he was there to promote his first serious role in Any Given Sunday which led to a bit of a hybrid between the old school funny man and the male diva who is out of control. Don’t get me wrong, I do see why people are fans of his serious work and still find him funny to this day but, personally, I find it funnier when jokes come from losers and any overconfidence comes from a place of irony.
With Jamie Foxx, I feel like success got to his head to the point where he genuinely started to carry himself as if he can do no wrong. Again, good on him because he’s a superstar, but his change lost me as a fan. I mention this because I feel like my current outlook on tonight’s host may have affected my attitude going into this viewing that wasn’t all that bad but it did definitely feel more like a serious actor as a quest over a sketch comedian who was coming home, which might also be why I felt a little let down.
Oh well, those are my views on tonight’s host, and now that I’ve shared them, it’s time for me to shift gears in order to share what I actually saw, as I give you…
The Wicker Breakdown:
This week's show started with a sketch called Hillary's Departure where Darrell Hammond as Bill Clinton was more interested in talking with Will Ferrell as Vladimir Putin over the phone about his recent victory in the recent Russian presidential election over saying goodbye to his wife, as played by Ana Gasteyer, who was leaving town after being elected as the senator of New York. As always, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
Jamie Foxx then officially opened the show with a monolog about how he was excited to be back in the world of sketch comedy following his recent serious role in the movie Any Given Sunday before he was interrupted by Will Ferrell as Oliver Stone who wanted to direct our host through the rest of his intro in order to keep total control of his film even throughout the promotional phase. Jamie Foxx fought through the distraction and started to tell a story about an interaction with Al Pacino which led Chris Kattan to take to the stage as to add even more value to the plug.
This was followed by a fake ad for Hamburger Helper Antibacterial promised you could add this product to any meat that’s past its expiration date or has been improperly stored in order to kill all the germs and make it completely harmless to eat.
Puff & Jennifer In Therapy had Jamie Foxx as P. Diddy and Cheri Oteri as Jennifer Lopez in order to show how the biggest power couple from that time attempted to salvage their relationship with the help of Tim Meadows as their therapist. Most of the jokes were based on the impersonations, and since I’ve never been a real fan of either performed most of the humor didn’t really register to me. I did, however, find it funny that Diddy wasn’t able to share a single feeling without ripping off the lyrics from an already established song.
Blackjack's Bitch took us to a prison in the middle of the night where Jamie Foxx played the titular Blackjack while Will Ferrell played his cellmate who was desperate to reassure the alpha male of the cellblock that he was still his prison bitch because he was feeling a bit insecure. The best part was that the tone of the conversation was more that of kids at a slumber party than a conversation you’d expect from a couple of prisoners in a cell.
A Special Message From John Goodman was a quick segment where John Goodman took to the stage as Linda Tripp and while speaking as himself, promised the audience that he would continue to do his Tripp impersonation without any change despite the fact that the real Linda had recently lost a lot of weight and looked way different after an extreme make-over via tons of plastic surgery.
Nick Burns, Your Company Computer Guy then returned for another installment only this time, Jimmy Fallon, as the arrogant IT guy, had a spaghetti western-style standoff with Jamie Foxx, while Jimmy was tried to fix a few issues after a major system update. Unlike the rest of the staff, Jamie was competent enough to solve all of his issues on his own which started this nerdy feud.
Tracy Confronts Jamie had Tracy Morgan approach our host as he attempted to leave the stage in order to share how pleased he was to have a black actor as the host for this week of SNL because usually, he feels so alone since he didn’t recognize Tim Meadows as a black guy. He also made a few jokes about how there is usually only one black host a year and how he was happy they chose Foxx over Alan Keyes. They ended the sketch by trying the bit where Tracy tells Lorne, “Now get me my soda… bitch,” once again but this time it felt so forced that it wasn’t funny at all, and this is coming from a huge Tracy Morgan fan.
Once again, Colin Quinn gave us the news. This week, Jamie Foxx as Stevie Wonder dropped in to remove his bandages following a vision restoration surgery and was pissed to find how his handlers dressed him as well as what they did to his hair and was super freaked out when he first saw his wife, as portrayed by Tracy Morgan. Horatio Sanz also got a segment his Jasper Hahn character who would draw what appeared to be pornographic images only to reveal extremely innocent finished products. Will Ferrell rounded out the news a John Rocker who really pissed of the New York crowd by adding more to the controversial statements that he recently made about the city.
Blink-182 then took to the stage to perform All The Small Things.
We then got a parody of It's Showtime At The Apollo! In the sketch, Tracy Morgan played Steve Harvey in order introduce Chris Parnell and Chris Kattan as two white dancers who failed to win over the crowd. Cheri Oteri also headed a group of TLC wannabes who also performed to nothing but boos. The night finally ended with Jamie Foxx as a thirteen-year-old who looked like Urkel who won over the crowd with a horrible rendition of Somewhere Over The Rainbow. Even though the crowd seemed to behind Foxx’s effort he lost to a girl who simply took off her top.
Stereotypically Jeffrey brought us to an office breakroom where Tracy Morgan played a new hire named Jeffery who was hanging out with the rest of the staff until he left to get back to work. Horatio Sanz then entered the room and overheard a conversation about this Jeffery character and when he asked who Jeffery was everyone described him without ever mentioning that he was black. After a few hints Horatio announced, “Oh, the new black guy,” which got everyone in the room to turn on him, especially Jamie Foxx who was pissed because all Sanz saw was that Jeffery was black. Horatio then tried to apologize but could fit in a word as Jamie Foxx spouted out a laundry list of racist stereotypes that could have better described Jeffery that were way worse than simply identifying him as being black.
Blink-182 then returned to the stage to perform What's My Age Again?
A Martin Luther King Day Moment was a profile sketch that had Jamie Foxx as MLK and highlighted an early version of the famous King sketch only the dream in this speech was about how he was naked in front of his high school class the evolved into the typical dream telling scenario with flying fish and faceless people where nothing makes sense to anyone other than dreamer.
Finally, Jamie Foxx then closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.
As I said up above, I was a little disappointed by seeing the beginnings of Jamie Foxx’s shift from funny man to serious actor, I still thought tonight was pretty fun thanks to sketches like these that contained my three favorite moments of the night. First, I loved Blackjack's Bitch because it always cracks me up when adults in prison for serious crimes act like little kids. Next, I really liked Stereotypically Jeffrey because it reminded me of the days when I was really into boxing and I used to laugh about how the announcers would spend so much time describing the colors of the fighter’s shorts instead of simply saying the black guy or the white guy. Finally, I was a fan of A Martin Luther King Day Moment because I liked the joke about what it’s really like to describe a dream when MLK attempted to share more than the mountaintop in an earlier version of his speech.