SNL: S28E05... HOST: NIA VARDALOS... DATE: NOVEMBER 9, 2002

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Two Solid Stranger Hosts In A Row

Just like yesterday’s episode hosted by Eric McCormack, I’m not all that familiar with tonight’s episode host, Nia Vardalos but that didn’t stop either from being solid shows. The fact that My Big Fat Greek Wedding felt like a chick flick that focused on family tradition and a wedding was a big turn off to me since I never thought that I’d ever get married and my ties to family traditions have never been all that strong.

I do remember Nia Vardalos from her time in the spotlight promoting the flick so I was confident that her enthusiastic energy would be enough to make this episode pretty fun, especially after McCormack’s visit eased my concerns over this being a mid-term year that set in after John McCain’s boring political episode. In my McCain review I share how much I hated politics when really, it’s more the false promising made during campaigning season that I can’t stand and can make election years of SNL a bit hard to watch.

Thankfully, a big part of the politics referenced tonight was focused on the midterm results giving me high hope for the rest of this season moving on. I also have high hopes for the rest of this year because tonight was another show made up of shorter sketches, making only the McCain episode have the longer but fewer sketch format that I don’t like.

This short sketch format combined with Mia Vardalos high energy kept me from getting bored and helped to make the time fly by. It’s weird how you would think that one would prefer time dragging while enjoying a program but time flashing by is usually a better sign that you are actually having fun. Since this week seems to be dragging as I wait for my paycheck, I happy to watch time fly.

With that said, it’s now time to share what I saw during this show that seemed to pass in the blink of an eye, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with A Message From The President Of The United States where once again, Chris Parnell played George W. Bush in order to use fuzzy math to predict the potential Republican wins in the upcoming midterm elections. Of course, since this was the opening sketch, this all led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Nia Vardalos then officially opened the show with a monolog about her Greek heritage while plugging My Big Fat Greek Wedding only to be interrupted by Tina Fey who shared that she was Greek as well and then introduced our host to her Greek “family” who were watching from the audience and all brought food as a gift.
  3. This was followed by a repeat of the Swiffer Sleepers ad from earlier in the season which was a pajama for kids made out of Swiffer pad materials that allowed babies to clean up while they crawl around.
  4. Jimmy Fallon and Chris Parnell’s ginger headed, Bloater Brothers characters then returned to giggle while trying to hit on Nia Vardalos while at a sushi bar with many jokes based on the Japanese language. As always they were all talk until the second she flirted back which instantly led the pair of brothers to freak out and back down.
  5. We then got a parody of CBS Special Report with Darrell Hammond as Dan Rather who shared a story about how nerds had taken over the cool kids during a local high school student elections as a backlash against Bush.
  6. La Femme Day Spa had Nia Vardalos as a spa matron who fought with Rachel Dratch’s stubborn hairs during a hot waxing session.
  7. Eve then took to the stage to perform Gangsta Lovin'. 
  8. Once again, Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey gave us the news. This week, Jimmy and Tina demonstrated their new sonar security system and Seth Meyers stopped by in order to share the conversations that he planned to have if he was to actually go to his ten-year high school reunion.
  9. We then got another offensive installment of The Ferey Muhtar Talk Show which mainly made fun of Middle Eastern accents and clichés where this time Nia Vardalos played a Turkish actress/guest who attempted to discuss her calendar and night out dancing in the same over-the-top accent as the rest of the people on the set. The only saving grace to the sketch was how with it being the second round there was a little more focus on developing the characters but it was still pretty much accent and stereotype based.
  10. This was followed by the debut of The Falconer which is the classic Will Forte series of sketched where he plays a falconer known as The Falconer who would always save the day with the help of his falcon.
  11. We then got a parody of a Pier 1 Imports ad where Nia Vardalos played former Pier 1 spokeswoman, Kristie Alley who kidnaped Rachel Dratch as a businesswoman in a desperate attempt keep doing her spokeswoman job even though she lost it.
  12. Dropping The L.B.'s With Missy E. was a parody workout tape with Tracy Morgan as Missy Elliot who shared her workout routine that led her to lose some weight herself.
  13. Eve then returned to the stage to perform Satisfaction.
  14. Glenda Goodwin: Attorney-at-Law had Maya Rudolph as an ambulance chasing attorney who promised to sue even against the most unbelievable of circumstances like being attacked by werewolves.
  15. Community Accents was a public access talk show with Horatio Sanz as a character named Vasquez Gomez-Vasquez who was easily distracted while talking to his panel of guests by constantly chiming in with random jokes. Between Horatio’s character’s name and the name of the fictional show, I was expecting much more accent based humor that just wasn’t there. I even had to go back twice to make sure I didn’t read the fictional show’s title wrong. By the end of the sketch, the fictional guests seemed just as confused.
  16. Finally, Nia Vardalos closed the show by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.

As I said up above, even though I was unfamiliar with the host going into the episode, tonight turned out to be pretty fun with the help of these three sketches that contained my three favorite moments of the night. First, I loved The Debut Of The Falconer because I can’t remember what I felt of Will Forte before this episode but I do remember this as being the sketch where he fully won me over because it tapped into the convoluted humor that I really love. Next, I really liked Glenda Goodwin: Attorney-at-Law because the examples of the insane cases she was willing to take on got me to laugh out loud. Finally, I was a fan of the Pier 1 Imports Parody Ad/PSA because I liked how this sketch had both the feeling of being a commercial the store and a PSA about former spokeswoman Kirsty Alley mashed-up to make one funny joke.

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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.