SNL: S29E01... HOST: JACK BLACK... DATE OCTOBER 4, 2003

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Solid Host, Soft Season Starter

 

Keep in mind that I watch this episode while still a bit hungover from yesterday’s bout with boxed wine, so I watched this through a bit of a miserable filter. It’s not that I didn’t like this show, but I do really feel that I would have liked it even more if I didn’t watch this while just wanting to crawl back into bed as soon as my viewing was through. It didn’t help that the order of the sketches didn’t really stand the test of time.

I mean, the main premise of the Queer Eye For The Straight Gal sketch was how lesbians aren’t as flamboyant and fun as their male counterparts who hosted the real Queer Eye show. It’s not that this was offensive, but it was also the first non-opening sketch of the night that wasn’t a commercial off the new year, and it was all about being reasonable. The sketch that followed was a parody of a show that I’ve never even heard of, that may have been funny if I got the reference, but instead, I just didn’t care.

From that sketch on, I liked the rest of the night. This leads me to feel that if the two sketches that I’ve just mentioned above both aired later in the night, I probably still wouldn’t have liked them, but I also would have been in a better frame of mind and not crawling out of a hole of disappointment. Then again, though the rest of the night was better, I wouldn’t say that there was a single sketch that really stands out in my mind which will show in my uninspired favorites list.

It too bad because as I said the last time he was on, I’m a pretty big fan of Jack Black. I also liked how he was one of the few hosts to actually acknowledge this as the season-opening show while claiming that he wanted to make it special. I’m still surprised how late I am in the show's history, and they still have yet to get to the point where they make the opening show and the finale more of a special event instead of just another show. It makes me wonder if this was a false memory and that the special even feeling came from within from having my favorite show return to the air after their summer break.

Based on this episode and this episode alone, I kind of feel like this season is going to be a repeat of last year with many ups and down from show to show, even with a comedic host who can generally get me to laugh by just looking at him. Then again, that could be a good thing because last year’s writer did really well with the firsts half of the year when none of the hosts were known for their comedy because looking at the lineup of host this seems to be another year of the non-comedian.

Oh well, we’ll see how things turn out and either way, I’m sure I’ll have fun even if my writing suggests the opposite. With that, it’s now time for me to shift gears and share what I saw, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a sketch called Californians For Schwarzenegger which was parody coverage of Darrell Hammond as Arnold Schwarzenegger in order to outline his generic and vague five-point plan that he planned to implement if the people of California were to elect him as Governor of the state. Of Course, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”

  2. Jack Black then officially opened the show with a song about the perils of fame now that he’s gone from being somewhat successful to huge and performed this tune while wandering through the audience and backstage areas. This gave the episode a true season premiere feeling because Jack Black introduced us to all of the new members of the cast, plus we could see Garrett Morris in the audience, and Will Ferrell even joined Jack Black for the last couple verses of the song.

  3. This was followed by a fake ad for Huggies Thong which was a diaper G-string for little babies.

  4. We then got a parody of Queer Eye For The Straight Gal which was supposed to be taking advantage of the success of Queer Eye For The Straight Guy only with a cast filled with lesbians who were as playful as the male counterparts.

  5. The Wade Robson Project was a parody of an MTV show with the same name that had Seth Meyers as the titular host of a dance show filled with people who don’t know how to dance with Wade Robson’s goal to train them.

  6. We then went to a Cooking Class where a group of adult students attempted to learn how to cook Italian cuisine from a long-haired chef as portrayed by Jack Black who gained all of his experience by working at big, cookie cutter, chain restaurants. Throughout the sketch, Jack Black kept getting his long lox into everything.

  7. TV Funhouse then introduced a new cartoon that had the Yankees as a collection of superheroes who prevented aliens from conquering Earth while in the middle of their season opener.

  8. John Mayer then took to the stage to perform Bigger Than My Body.

  9. Once again, Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey gave us the news. This week, Jeff Richards dropped in as Rush Limbaugh to comment on biased statements and pain pills after it was revealed that he was a hypocritical pill addict who had nothing but negative things to say about drug addicts back when his vice was still a secret. Finesse Mitchell then made his new debut to comment on the weird black girls, he saw at the movies, who talk through his entire viewing of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon which was the movie that he was supposed to review instead of reviewing the audience. We also got to see a clip from The Emmy Awards where Kenan Thompson as Bill Cosby punched Emmy host, Maya Rudolph, as Wanda Skyes after she asked him a simple question while doing a segment from the audience.

  10. Cat's in the Cradle had Jack Black as an acoustic guitarist who kept getting interrupted by his estranged dad, Horatio Sanz and his new wife Amy Poehler as Shelley Long throughout his performance of the titular song about an estranged father. The two finished the sketch by making up over a duet of the theme song for Cheers.

  11. John Mayer then returned to the stage to perform Clarity.

  12. Wine Critic had Jack Black as a wine critic as a tasting and kept splitting the wines he found putrid on the presenter Seth Meyers, instead of spitting into the wine spitting bucket.

  13. Telemarketers had Jack Black as a head telemarketer who sang a mournful song about the end of an era due to the fact that there was a new law that limited the phone access that was once freely available to telemarketing services.

  14. Finally, Jack Black closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

Again, this is another episode that will come nowhere close to the top of my all-time favorites list, but it was still pretty fun thanks to sketches like these that contained my three favorite moments. First, I loved Cat's in the Cradle not only because I’m a fan of the titular song that was performed but I also loved when Horatio Sanz joined Jack Black on the stage to sing a duet of the theme song to Cheers. Next, I really liked the Telemarketers because it turned out to have a pretty cool Jack Black-styled song. Finally, I was a fan of the Wine Critic sketch because there were funny moments when the host and the cast could barely hold in their laughs in a way that was infectious and not annoying.  

 
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