SNL: S27E08... HOST: HUGH JACKMAN... DATE: DECEMBER 8, 2001

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or...

More Like, Huge Laughs, Man

By the time this episode originally aired, I was already fully over the action genre of film which is probably why I’m not as familiar with Hugh Jackman’s career as I thought, before going into this viewing. For one, I came from a chaotic broken home and movies where my escape from living in the constant state of fight or flight that was my anxiety-inducing home life, so I was never all that impressed by the fictional boost of adrenaline.

I was also deep in my interest in screenwriting by this time and always felt that fighting was a cheap way to express conflict that was far too literal to enjoy on a deeper level. I’d much rather see a guy who thinks he may die because he’s losing his mind over a guy who thinks he may die because he can feel the steal from a gun being pressed against his head.

Finally, I feel that 9/11 was the final straw because between the violence of the day and all of the violence that followed and continues to this day, I feel depressed when I see any form of aggression. Don’t get me wrong, I get why people love the excitement of actions films and there are still a few that I’ll watch but in general, it’s not a genre I often watch, which I just now realized, might be why I’m not as familiar with tonight’s host as I thought when I hit play to start tonight’s episode.

Though I’d probably be hesitant to see a Hugh Jackman film, I knew going into this viewing, based on his promotional tours, that Jackman can also be a very light-hearted, funny man and since the last three episodes were so good, I wasn’t all that concerned. In fact, I didn’t even think of him as an action star until after the episode over when I checked out the IMDB when I discovered just how few of his films I saw.

Thankfully, tonight’s show makes four great episodes in a row because up until this good show streak, I was ready to write this season off. The one interesting thing that I am beginning to notice though, is how last year I wasn’t a huge fan of any complete episode but these slower episodes also contained some of the funniest sketches of all time. Meanwhile, I’ve been struggling to nail down my favorite sketches within these new episodes that I like better as a whole.

The sad thing is, these horrible shows with one or two hilarious moments will probably stick with me much longer than these episodes where I enjoyed the entire night. Then again, I’ve watched so many episodes in such a short amount of time by the time this challenge is over, I’ll have the same exact spotty memory that I had at the very start.

Either way, it’s been a blast and I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings for me to watch. Now it’s that time for me to switch gears and wrap this thing up so that I can move on. With that, I give you…  

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a White House Meeting where Darrell Hammond as Al Gore interrupted an important secret White House meeting between Will Ferrell and Bush, Darrell Hammond as Cheney who was calling in from a secret video phone and Maya Rudolph as Condoleezza Rice when he called in order to offer his help as if he were desperate to have any involvement with the Presidency. Hammond as Gore quickly got off the line when Hammond as Rumsfeld entered the scene and triggered the fear of God into the former Vice President. Of course, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Hugh Jackman then officially opened the show with a monolog about his transition out of action and into the rom-com world, He then talked about how they celebrate Christmas in Australia since it’s a summer holiday Down-Under. This led him to burst into the song Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas with the women of the cast singing backup.
  3. We then got a fake ad for Loose Bear which was an anti-constipation aid that would literally scare the crap out of constipation sufferers with the drug-induced presence of this loose wild animal that hunts the users’ dreams.
  4. Jarret's Room then returned for another installment of Jimmy Fallon’s Jarret character’s dorm room webcast with Horatio Sanz as his sidekick, Gobey. This time, the two had on brace-faced Hugh Jackman in order to make fun of their roommate, Jeff Richards while they watched him through a spy camera that Jackman had set up in his room.
  5. The Robert Goulet All-Holiday Special was one of those sketches that allowed the host and cast to practice their impressions in order to fill out a star-studded Christmas special with Will Ferrell as the special’s host, Robert Goulet.
  6. Family Christmas Portrait had Hugh Jackman and Seth Meyers as two photographers who once worked in the world of fashion but are now stuck in a Sear’s taking family portraits following a stint in rehab. Throughout the sketch, the two wreaked havoc for a family who was just trying to pose for a Christmas family portrait.
  7. Mick Jagger then took to the stage to perform God Give Me Everything I Want.
  8. Once again, Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey gave us the news. This week, Chris Kattan dropped by for another installment of his Terrible Re-Enactment where this time he shared how Geraldo Rivera fell while reporting from Afghanistan. Jeff Richards also introduced his Drunk Girl character who attempted to flirt with Jimmy Fallon while trying to get through her commentary on how to handle your booze during the upcoming holiday celebrations.
  9. Hello, Dolly then returned and once again, Ana Gasteyer attempted to sell another collection of creepy dolls on her Home Shopping Network-style show, with this week’s special guest played by Hugh Jackman who kept trying to talk about “chicks” even though he seemed like he was completely gay.
  10. We then went to Mick Jagger's Dressing Room where the real Mick Jagger talked to his reflection, as played by Jimmy Fallon, in the mirror as he tried to psych himself up before hitting the stage for his second performance.
  11. Next, we went to Superman's Fortress of Solitude where Hugh Jackman played Superman whose parents, played by Will Ferrell and Maya Rudolph, struggled to make awkward small talk with their son since they were just projection of dead people from the memory crystals who knew very little about their kid.
  12. Mick Jagger then returned to the stage to perform Vision Of Paradise.
  13. The Donatella Versace Show then returned with Maya Rudolph as Donatella who once again interviewed a collection of fashion experts who all tried to one-up one another with their quirky fashion industry ways.
  14. The Christmas Kangaroo was a sketch where, through flashbacks, Hugh Jackman shared the tale of his father, Will Ferrell’s fight with the mythical Christmas Kangaroo as if this were an Australian Christmas tradition that one year ended with Will getting anally-raped by the bouncing Christmas beast.
  15. Finally, Hugh Jackman closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

As I said up above, this makes the fourth show in a row that was really good with the help of sketches like these that contained my three favorite moments. First, I loved The Christmas Kangaroo because even though I just talked about my love of non-violent content, it still cracks me up when it’s comical so the idea cracked me up that all Australia fight a magical Kangaroo on Christmas in order to earn their gifts. Next, I really liked this week’s Jarret's Room because the overly excited, brace-face Hugh Jackman really had me laughing out loud. Finally, I was a fan of the Mick Jagger's Dressing Room sketch because it hit that surreal sweet spot that I love.

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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.