SNL: S03E01... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE: SEPTEMBER 24, 1977

SNL: S03E01... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE: SEPTEMBER 24, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. First, An Oval Office was a sketch where Carter is saying goodbye to one of his cabinet members when it's revealed that no one knows who he is it becomes a fake ad for National Express and everyone knows his name on the credit card. They most have crowbarred in the "Live from New York..." because I can't even think of how it would fit in there.

  2. Steve Martin then opens the show with one of his silly routines. I liked this one better than most of his routines because he used more words than crazy body movements to get to the jokes. This must be because he was also promoting his album Let Get Small.

  3. Royal Deluxe III was a repeat of the ad of the kid getting circumcised in the back of the car to show how smooth the ride was. 

  4. This was followed by the introduction of the Two Wild And Crazy Guys sketch which was the first new addition of a regular routine of the season. They pretty much just fail at picking up on Gilda and Laraine without getting the clue the girls aren't into them.

  5. Jackson Brown performs Running On Empty.

  6. The news now has a very fancy set, and everyone in the cast is involved it in. It runs more like a real evening news show with multiple anchors each with their own area of expertise. Jane and Aykroyd head the new, Laraine doing special reports, Murray Reviewing Weather, Morris on sports and Belushi and Gilda on editorials with a weird weather segment with video from Central Park when it was a horrible area.

  7. Next was a horrible sketch called Mike McMack Defense Attorney. I know the whole point of the sketch is to show how awful this attorney was, but the joke is based on him blaming the victim of rape using her civil rights activism as proof that she actually wanted it. Garrett Morris is found innocent because of the case that was built (which adds more racism into the mix), and the attorney tries to hook up with the victim, but at least they don't have her give in to him. The sketch even makes a twist where they're about to save the sketch by making a statement, but nope, it ended as if this were no big deal in a failed attempt to make the point through irony.

  8. This was followed by a confession sketch where Garrett Morris admits to cheating on his wife with a married woman. The priest uses a computer to communicate with Rome to calculate the punishments. Morris then confesses to potentially killing the husband and now has hitmen out to kill him. This is when the priest offers to book him a flight out of town after the computer tells him he is innocent through God's eyes.

  9. Next was a replay of Lorne Michaels sketch where he ups the ante for the Beatles to appear on the show. They don't treat it like a repeat which is stupid because if you follow the storyline of the offer, this check has already been given to George Harris from when he appeared on Eric Idle's first episode.

  10.  Great Moments in Rock was a segment where Laraine explains how she ended up with Roy Orbison's glasses. We then flash back to the night of the gift and Belushi is playing Orbison. The most significant part of the joke is that there are two things to know about Roy, he doesn't move when he sings, and he likes to wear dark glasses. Laraine is lured out of the recording studio with the glasses. Belushi Orbison then puts on a new pair and sings Pretty Woman, and he is so stiff as he sings Billy Murray has to keep him from falling over.

  11. Franken and Davis then do a great routine where they play out what a Mr. America Pageant would look like.   

  12. Jackson Brown then returned to perform The Pretender.

  13. Next was a fake commercial for a Japanese watch called Kaomega III which is so complicated that it takes two people to use it. The tagline is, "It's like asking a stranger for the time."

  14. Finally, Steve Martin says his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E02... HOST: MADELINE KAHN... DATE: OCTOBER 8, 1977

SNL: S03E02... HOST: MADELINE KAHN... DATE: OCTOBER 8, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. The show starts with a parental guidance warning, and I couldn't tell whether or not it was a joke because they used the same warning template to introduce the opening sketch. Said sketch was a parody of the assassination of Oswald where he gets a pie to the face instead of a bullet to the head which allows him to announce, "Live from New York..."

  2. Madeline Kahn opens the show with a monolog about why we love SNL and have a fascination with the unknown.  

  3. Bill Murray puts in his best performance to date in a fake advertisement for Swill, the unfiltered mineral water from Lake Erie that is so thick from pollutants that it's as thick as gravy.

  4. Bad Opera is another sketch in the "Bad" collection with a stuff Aykroyd explains the bad opera that we are about to see that then plays out with the actors. This one was a story of the Gods called Golden Note where one of the angry God's strikes Madeline Kahn with vocal lock causing her to get stuck singing the same note for the rest of her life which carries over into the real world.

  5. Lorne then announces the Anyone Can Host Saturday Night Live Contest where he places a call to action from the home audience to send in a postcard to try to win a chance to host the show. This is a concept that I can't wait to see how it plays out and wish they would bring this idea back sight unseen.

  6. Next was a sketch that reminded me of this new reality show I just started to watch called My Kitchen Rules where we sit in on celebrity dinner parties. The show in the sketch was called Bianca Jagger Talks to Three or Four of Her Closest Friends with her guest Capote, Princess Grace, and Margaret Trudeau, who all just want to see Mick Jagger. Bianca breaks the fourth wall within the fake reality show admitting she doesn't really know these people.

  7. Taj Mahal performs Queen Bee.

  8. This was followed, but a short mockumentary called The Acid Generation where they interview geriatrics as if they were acid heads from the hippie generation. This one was pretty funny because the ages might match up in present times, but for then it was a significant exaggeration.

  9. This was followed by the news that's been readjusted from episode one to where it's now almost like the current format of Weekend Update. Now instead of the entire cast being involved, it's just Jane and Dan with the occasional mid-news guest with a special topic. Tonight's topic was delivered by Bill Murray as he reviewed the new Donnie and Marie Show.   

  10. Bill Murray then played a preacher character who performed a sermon called Silver Balls and Golden Pins that's connected to a hymn-like song that we cut back and forth between sermon and song to build a whacked out story.

  11. Next was a sketch where a school board had to pick between Garrett Morris and Belushi as to who will fill the final spot in the law program. Belushi threatens to sue for reverse discrimination because not only is Morris black but he's also blind which gave him the extra points to qualify. Since the school boards all white and don't want a lawsuit, they decide to tell the blind Morris that Belushi is black, which is the fake reason they choose him. This one was done right to where it felt like it was making a point about race and wasn't just being racist.

  12. Madeline Kahn then starred in a home movie where she sings Autumn in New York throughout the city.

  13. Next was a fake commercial for a feminine product that is so personal that no one knows what it actually does.

  14. This was followed by a sketch about a voiceover session where Dan Aykroyd provides all the voices for an Italian film. First, the three actors act out the scene pretending that they know Italian, then they have to act like the scene's being played in reverse to get to the start of the video. Then Aykroyd adds the English as the actors have to go through the actions once more. It reminded me of the improv routine where you provide the voices to a movie without knowing what's coming. 

  15. Dame Edna then makes a guest appearance to do a bit of a routine with Madeline Kahn. I have to admit, though it makes sense when I think about it, I didn't realize Dame Edna was around that long.

  16. Next was an airplane sketch that was a fake commercial for the Pocket Pal which gives travelers the ability to detect mid-air collisions.

  17. Madeline Kahn and Gilda Radner then have a sketch where they play two girls winding down a night of drinking. They talk about boys and the Patty Duke show as well as sharing their deepest secrets. It was more of a cute sketch than anything all that funny which is a kind of a standard way the show ends the night from time to time, so I'm used to it.

  18. Finally, Madeline came out to say her goodnights. 

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SNL: S03E03... HOST: HUGH HEFNER... DATE: OCTOBER 15, 1977

SNL: S03E03... HOST: HUGH HEFNER... DATE: OCTOBER 15, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. We start with a sketch about how dumb Playmates are, as Laraine plays a Bunny reading from the joke page.  You'd think this would be Hef biting the hands that feed him but apparently, the Bunnies find it empowering. Anyways the sketch ends with a convoluted joke to get to, "Live from New York..."

  2. Hugh Hefner then opens the show with a monolog about how he started Playboy. This leads to him getting really creepy as he talks about how excited he gets when he sees girls aged five to seven, hinting that he hopes they'll be in his magazine before breaking into singing Thank Heaven For Little Girls. The subtitles tried to lighten the tone, but this didn’t offset the creepy vibe and made me not look forward to this episode.

  3. Next was a replay of a fake soap ad for "beautiful but stupid" women. The soap is called Angor Boutique, and it's loaded up with tranquilizers to keep her in a Stepford Wife way of thinking.

  4. Men's Planet vs. Women's Planet was a sci-fi parody of a universe where the sexes were split, and we see what happens once the divide is taken away and the two sexes interact for the first time. I was expecting this to go horribly wrong, but the back and forth of sexist stereotypes was equal enough to seem playful fun.

  5.  Libby Titus then sang Fool That I Am.

  6. Garrett Morris then fills in for Lorne to remind the home audience of the Anyone Can Host Contest that is currently in progress.

  7. Belushi and Jane then play medical students who are winding down their night with some weed. The X-Police then burst through the door to bust them for the illicit behavior. They knock out Jane right away and accidentally kill Belushi. They blame the death on marijuana but still decide to frame Jane as a murder. They bring her back to being conscious by throwing water in her face and telling her she killed her boyfriend and she's so confused that she believes it, leading her to jump out the window in shame while the X-Police officers continue to blame pot for the entire incident.

  8. Hugh Hefner then plays a mentor to Jane Curtin who I hope is playing a college student. Though they have her written as a super smart girl who's writing a mathematics paper with some crazy formula about having sex on a round bed and why it's the best way to do it. Hefner is playing himself, so it's no surprise when a helicopter lands on the roof. It turns out to be Jimmy Carter asking for advice on what headphones to buy playing of the Playboy's got great article claims.

  9. Listening to Great Music with John Belushi was a sketch with just Belushi in a study with a record player. He points out how great Wagner was and goes on to share The Flight of the Valkyries. He tells the story of the song and grows more and more intense as it goes until he finally snaps and trashes the set.

  10. The news returns with Jane and Dan, and it's interesting how now that it's two years after the election in the time of the show and now they barely talk about politics. Don't get me wrong, the jokes are still funny, I'm just noting this in case it becomes a pattern that I see as I make my way through ten more elections.

  11. Sex in Cinema was a segment host by Hefner where he shares the real story of the "One Foot on the Ground" standards, and practices rule then plays a fake clip from the first movie to abuse it.

  12. 3 R's was an education talk show hosted by Jane Curtin. She interviews Belushi who is suing the school for graduating Gilda's catatonic character who is Belushi's daughter in this sketch. The longer the sketch goes, the more it seems this is a scam as Belushi gets abusive every time Gilda speaks. Eventually, Gilda gets so smacked around that she admits that it is all a scam, then she gets whacked by Jane Curtin for not respecting her dad.

  13. The Story of H was pretty much a biopic of Hugh but with the false narrative that all of his successes were actually regrets.

  14. The Playboy Philosopher was a sketch with Hefner explaining his real philosophy but in the company of Socrates and Plato. 

  15. This was followed by a funeral sketch where Bill Murray comes up to do the eulogy only to end up doing a magic show where he cuts the coffin in half.

  16. Andy Kaufman comes out to sing a few songs ending with another visit from Elvis Kaufman who sings I Need Your Love.

  17. The Farbers (AKA the Coneheads neighbors) visit a Playboy Club. Once again, their naive but open-minded way of being, makes this a fun take on the gentleman's club even though there wasn't much to the story.

  18. Finally, Hef came out to say his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E04... HOST: CHARLES GRODIN... DATE: OCTOBER 29, 1977

SNL: S03E04... HOST: CHARLES GRODIN... DATE: OCTOBER 29, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown: 

  1. The show starts in what appears to be a break room for a regular job as Belushi shares his concerns with Gilda about tonight's episode. He sets up that "Chuck" Grodin was so busy promoting his movie that he missed out on all the rehearsals. Grodin finally arrives late and instantly confirms Belushi's fears as he displays that he has absolutely no idea what Saturday Night Live even is, which makes Belushi even more nervous as he explains that the show is live before making the famous opening announcement.

  2. Charles Grodin then opens the show keeping up the character that he is utterly unprepared because he missed all the rehearsals to take advantage of his trip to New York to fit in all sorts of tourist activities.

  3. Next was a fake commercial with Dan Aykroyd typing away on a plain as it's revealed this is a commercial for Aykroyd himself as the Weekend Update anchor.

  4. The Coneheads make their return to the planet with a sketch about them on Halloween handing out beer and fried chicken embryos to the kids until a pair of parents confront them.

  5. Grodin then plugs some fake movie that he not in promising to play a clip of a chase scene that will rival The French Connection. The clip play but cuts the moment Grodin jumps in the car. Grodin is upset that they didn't get to the good stuff when Lorne chimes in that it's because he ran long in the intro and they must move on. This leads to the intro of Paul Simon.

  6. Paul Simon then takes the stage to sing Slip Slidin' Away.

  7. This was followed by the famous Consumer Probe sketch where Jane interviews Aykroyd about unsafe Halloween costumes for kids including a bag of oily rags for the child to wear and set on fire.

  8. Bill Murray and Mr. Mike announce to the home audience that there is still a call for applications for the Anyone Can Host Contest.

  9. This was followed by the Samurai Dry Cleaner sketch which is "ruined" by Grodin's unpreparedness.

  10. Once again the news is hosted by Jane and Dan with Bill Murray reviewing the concept of one-man shows. I like the addition of the dancing NBC N that comes in with breaking updates.

  11. We then come back with Paul Simon sitting on stage next to what I swore for a second was Garfunkel but ended up being Grodin in a wig who wanted more airtime because of his failed movie plug from the earlier sketch. The two start to sing Sound of Silence, but Paul Simon can't put up with Grodin's horrible voice and walks off the stage leaving Grodin alone to sing what I assume is a Garfunkel solo song which is interrupted when the real Garfunkel arrives, demanding the wig from Grodin. 

  12. Next was a trick or treat sketch where the Killer Bees start out pretending they are children only to reveal they are the Killer Bees and demand Grodin and Gilda give up all the pollen in the house. Grodin breaks the scene confused by the concept of the sketch. This gets all the other bees to question the logic and gets Belushi outraged by how little effort Grodin is putting into the show calling him the worst host in history.

  13. Gilda then plays her child character who has to entertain herself in her room as her parents entertain guest downstairs. She pretends that she's the host of her own show to entertain her stuffed animals. She gets more and more hyper until she's literally bouncing off the walls then calms instantly when her mom calls out, "What's going on up there," as she answers back with a very passive, "Nothing."

  14. Garrett Morris pitches The Professional School of Football as if you can get into the NFL from this crappy TV certification.

  15. Once again, Paul Simon sings So Kind.

  16. Grodin then does a PSA for the Incompetent complete with the cast acting as characters to give examples of their ineptness. 

  17. Finally, Grodin takes the stage to say his goodnights while also clearing the false feud between him and Belushi.

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SNL: S03E05... HOST: RAY CHARLES... DATE: NOVEMBER 12, 1977

SNL: S03E05... HOST: RAY CHARLES... DATE: NOVEMBER 12, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. NBC must've just aired the first Godfather movie because the show started with a Godfather parody where Godfather Belushi is angry about the airing because he doesn't think something so violent belongs on TV. He wants to send a message to the LA branch of NBC keeping the New York branch safe so he can say, "Live from New York..."

  2. Ray Charles opens the show with a monolog about his hesitation to host. He went on to share his list of demands with the joke being that they told him this week's show is being shot at Carnegie Hall and they just tricking him because he is blind. Ray then admits that he's on to their scam and admits that he's not the real Ray Charles. This gets a laugh from the audience as Ray starts to perform I Can See Clearly Now That the Rain is Gone.

  3. After he finishes the song, Ray makes a quick joke about how close he is to Carter because Carter's family owned his grandpa. He then starts to sing Georgia On My Mind as we transition into an Aykroyd as Carter sketch where they make fun of his attempts to switch to alternative power.

  4. Ray then announces Ella Fitzgerald is stopping by and she's played by Garrett Morris. The two do a routine making fun of the old, "Is it real or is it Memorex," where the quality of the recording is so hi-fi that it can break a wine glass. "Ella" sing live breaking the glass and then tries again with the taped version. Though there is the sound of breaking glass the stunt wine glass failed to break. The way Garrett Morris scrambles to find the mistake made me think it was a legitimate blooper until Ray Charles turns to the camera revealing his glasses are broken.

  5. The Doody Girls was a sketch about Howdy Doody's wife and daughter discussing dating after his death.

  6. Tomorrow with Tom Snyder was pretty much a real interview with Ray Charles only highlighting that Snyder's an idiot.

  7. Garrett Morris then plays a sleazy record producer that tries to get Ray to sell out and start writing more music for white folks. The Young Caucasians then enter the scene made up of the entire white staff in matching outfits and sing a cover of That's What I Say, and I have to say they did a pretty good job with it.

  8. Ray then performed the real version of That's What I Say also killing the performance.

  9. Once again, we have the news with Jane and Dan and Bill Murray doing a review. This seems to be the new pattern with other additions including Don Pardo flubbing the intro and a buildup of passive aggressive bickering between Jane and Dan.

  10. Ray Charles then has a reunion with his old band and does a whole medley of his songs.

  11. Franklyn Ajaye then came out to do a little bit of stand-up mainly talking about his obsession with Star Trek.

  12. This was followed by a fake ad for a Slow Reading course to teach you how to read slow enough to retain the information you blow by while speed reading.

  13. Ray Charles announces his love of New York and the Con-Ed power company causing us to flashback to the reason for this statement. In the sketch Ray in staying in a hotel and almost get robbed by burglars pretending to be room service. Just as the robbers try to make their move, the power goes out, and we hear a fight and when the lights come back on the robbers have been taken care of. Ray then gets a courtesy call from Con-Ed apologizing for the mini blackout then we realize that Ray didn't even notice it.

  14. Buck Henry then steps out on the stage to announce he will be hosting next weekend. He also announces that the finalist from the Anyone Can Host Content will also be featured on the program.   

  15. Ray Charles then performs Oh What a Beautiful Morning.

  16. Then the cast came out and stood around the piano all singing along with Ray Charles. Mr. Mike then breaks up the fun to crowbar in one more blind joke, but at least they always have Ray ahead of the joke as he lets us know that Mr. Mike is going to get his ass whooped at the wrap party by Ray's very large and very black entourage.

  17. Finally, Ray Charles says his good nights, and we are treated to more group singing.

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SNL: S03E06... HOST: BUCK HENRY... DATE: NOVEMBER 19, 1977

SNL: S03E06... HOST: BUCK HENRY... DATE: NOVEMBER 19, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. The show starts with a fake notice that The Walton's Eat Their Young will not be airing tonight so that they can air this special episode of SNL instead.

  2. The opening sketch is Gilda and Garrett talking about the Anyone Can Host finalist. We then get a quick intro of the final 5 which leads to the announcement of "Live from New York...

  3. Buck Henry then spends more time with the finalist where we learn the first one is the governor of South Dakota. He's very politiciany and gives us nothing to root for. Next, we meet a student from Vassar who claims to be a groupie of the show but other than that is not all that interesting. Next, is a drop out from Oregon who seems like he could be from Portland right at this very moment. He's pretty annoying but the only one trying to promote that he's funny enough to earn the win. Next is a mom from Peoria who seems like an average mom. Finally, there is an old lady from the south who had a funny moment just being old in the opening sketch, but like the rest, this was a nonperformer's intro.

  4. This was followed by the famous Little Doughnuts sketch that might be my favorite of all time. Not only do I love seeing Belushi as a supreme athlete but I love how he smokes while eating.

  5. Buck Henry then has a session with the Samurai Psychiatrist. This sketch starts out like the rest of the sketches in the Samurai series only this time Buck calls Belushi's bluff of hara-kiri causing Belushi to finally commit suicide as he stabs himself in the stomach.

  6. Bill Murray then plays a director telling all the actors their motives. Buck is playing an angry Dad, with Jane as the wife who's had too much as well as a bundle that's supposed to be a real baby. Murray talks to the baby as if it were an adult before starting the scene. Buck and Jane get into a fight and Murray call cut just before Buck Henry is about the slam the "real" baby to the ground. They then call in a stunt baby that also supposed to be real, and we return to the scene where Buck viciously attacking the baby and throwing it out the window. It was so obviously fake and over the top that it was hilarious no matter how bad it sounds in writing. 

  7. Next was the A.M.O.A Motel Sanitizer fake ad that shows how this service goes about sanitizing motel rooms using flamethrowers and harsh chemicals to kill any germs in the building.

  8. Leon Redbone performs Champaign Charlie.

  9. Once again, we have the news hosted by Jane and Dan. Laraine has a segment where she interviews all the finalist once more but cuts them all off before it gets to anything all that important. Again, the Oregon guy is the only one that gets the laughs, and the old lady is funny just by being old.

  10. Reunion in Kiev was a dramatic parody of an art house movie. In it, Gilda plays a woman who is traveling by train through Russian. She bored while entertaining her inner monolog which sends us into a flashback to the day before where she is doing the same exact thing, just sitting on the train and thinking. The cabin attendant then enters to offer her wine which sends him into a flashback and again it leads to just being on the train on another day, but he has the glass of wine Gilda had asked for. When he goes to deliver the wine, she informs him that she didn't order it until the next day. This sends us flashing all throughout time while still trying to tell a linear story.

  11. Mr. Mike makes a quick appearance to introduce his latest segment called The Ricky Rat Club which is the Mickey Mouse Club dealing with much darker topics, mainly how missing members of the club are being used in government experiments.

  12.  Franken and Davis get another spot on the show where they give fake evidence as to how this comedy duo goes way further back in history than their SNL appearance. This eventually leads them to point out that this is how they became friends with Jackie O. They then flash to a dinner party at Jackie's house where Davis almost chokes to death while everyone assumes he's playing party games.

  13. Buck Henry then introduces a short film where he interviews all the finalist in his hotel room. The Vassar student tries to hook up with Buck. The governor attempted to pay him off. The Oregonian drop-out tries a disturbing joke that must have gotten Mr. Mike's approval. The mom admits that she was recently divorced and needs this win to provide Christmas to her family and finally. Finally, the old lady acknowledged that she wants to win because she predicts she'll be dead on New Year's.

  14. Leon Redbone returns to perform, Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone.

  15. This was followed by another short film with people discussing their near-death experience. At first, it seems like it's going to be a serious sketch that was more interesting than funny as person after person explains their near-death experience in dire terms but then all end with them ending up in a place with a giant sign that says "Please pick a number."

  16. Finally, the finalists have one last call for votes before Buck Henry says his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E07... HOST: MARY KAY PLACE... DATE: DECEMBER 10, 1977

SNL: S03E07... HOST: MARY KAY PLACE... DATE: DECEMBER 10, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Grizzly Adams Sets Fire to His Head is the show being interrupted for tonight's "special broadcast" of Saturday Night Live. 

  2. The opening sketch has the cast and the host in the locker as if they are preparing for a pep-rally. The host, Mary Kay Place, plays a super peppy cheerleader trying to hype up the jaded and cynical cast. Their negative response to her please causes her to cry and everyone to feel like crap for ruining her time as the host. The cast then pulled to together and decides to cheer up Mary Kay by putting on the peppiest show in history. They then all rush to the stage to burst through a sign for Saturday Night Live to give pep-squad intros leading to a group cheer of, "Live from New York...

  3. Mary Kay Place then officially opens the show by reading some of her eighth-grade diary entries.

  4. This was followed by a fake commercial for Hey Perfume, for those moments that you don't want to be subtle, the perfume for one night stands.

  5. More Insects to Worry About was an interview show with Jane talking about bizarre insects with bug expert Belushi.

  6. Total Womanhood was a sketch about woman's group promoting a Stepford Wife way of life and the girls take turns sharing their successes and failures of implementing the group's techniques of pleasing their men even if it goes against their own interests.

  7. Willie Nelson sings Whiskey River then goes right into singing Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.

  8. Once again we have the news hosted by Jane and Dan. The set has been slightly tweaked to where there seems to be a little more distance between the two main anchors. At one point, Garrett Morris interrupts the news dressed as a bell boy who has a note for Garrett Morris, which never pays off in any way. Laraine has a segment where she discusses Micro Facial Expression only her examples are anything but micro. Bill Murray then plays an old retired anchor who gripes about mandatory retirement ages while also complaining about the connection between TV and illiteracy just how old people today complain about how the addition of the internet is ruining the world. 

  9. Next was a convoluted sketch that started out with a filmed bit sharing the statistics of singles living in New York. This builds the setup of the actual sketch called Married in a Minute, which is about four girls who get off the bus in New York and instantly achieve all their dreams. Each getting a man, a million dollars and the career that they came to New York for. Every once in a while, there is a hint of some sort of Monkey's Paw, watch what you wish for, lesson, but nothing ever ends up going wrong. There is such a lack of conflict that it built anxiety in me as I was waiting for an even further fall that never came which was a brilliant play on expectations that you just never see any more these days.

  10. Andy Kaufman then does a bit where he sings gibberish while playing the bongos. He then pulls a woman onto the stage and does a bunch of weird Andy Kaufman stuff with her, leaving her confused as to what just happened.

  11. Bad Musical was another in the "Bad" series of sketches where Aykroyd tells the story of the “bad” thing that we are going to see to then see it play out on the stage in a funny but horrible way. Tonight's musical was called Leeuwenhoek about the inventor of the microscope that is filled with lots of bad singing.

  12. Willie Nelson then performs a song with Mary Kay Place called I've Got Something to Brag About in You.

  13. The Farber Family then gives us a Chanukah lessen as Gilda tells the real history behind the menorah to their gentile guest, complete with a flashback with Mr. Farber playing the part of Judas. It was a fun way to learn about this story without making it an offensive joke. There was an amusing moment when we come back from the flashback where Belushi is all disheveled from running back and forth between his flashback role and his spot on the couch in the present.

  14. Finally, Mary Kay Place closes the show by saying her goodnights and thank yous.

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SNL: S03E08... HOST: MISKEL SPILLMAN... DATE: DECEMBER 17, 1977

SNL: S03E08... HOST: MISKEL SPILLMAN... DATE: DECEMBER 17, 1977

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" How the Grinch Raped and Strangled Christmas.

  2. Our opening sketch takes place in the SNL locker room with Belushi and Laraine discussing tonight's 80-year-old contest winning host. Buck Henry joins on the conversation as the co-host/liaison. He informs the two that Miskel is acting strange and it turns out that Belushi tricked her into smoking weed by claiming a joint was a fancy French cigarette that will help her with her nerves because that's what works for him. This gets Buck Henry to freak out since there is just over a minute to get her prepared for the monolog. Belushi then says he has less time than that before announcing "Live from New York..."

  3. Buck Henry then opens the show by explaining the contest and introducing Miskel Spillman who is pretending to be stoned based on the opening sketch and won't let go of a fruit bowl that is keeping her grounded.   

  4. Meat Wagon Action Track was a fake ad for an extreme slot car track, complete with fire, crash paths and a meat wagon to clean up the bodies after crashes.

  5. American Date the Self-Conscious Association was a PSA with Gilda and Murray trying to set up a date while both being extremely self-conscious.

  6. Jane Curtin then reads a modern-day telling of The Gift of the Magi to Miskel who I don't think said a word the entire sketch. Instead, they transition to Gilda and Belushi who are acting out the scene in a hospital. In this telling of the tale, Gilda is sick and needs a kidney transplant but is also really into brushing her hair to keep it soft. Belushi plays her husband who sells his adorned watch to pay for the surgery in order to donate his kidney to Gilda. Christmas comes, and Belushi reveals that his gift was what I mentioned above and that he was the unknown donor. Gilda, whose head is wrapped in bandages, then gives Belushi his gift which is a chain for the watch that was just sold. Belushi then asks how she paid for this gift to which she says that she sold her... she grabs head bandages to remove them as if she's about to say, "Hair" and reveal a bold head only to say hair brush which sends Belushi over the edge because of the bum deal he got.

  7. Elvis Costello then performed Watching the Detective.

  8. Once again, Jane and Dan host the news. Garret Morris gives this week's point of view about the current state of the country as far as race relations go saying it's on a decline because of a basketball incident where a black player was fined for unjustly punching a white player. He then plays a clip that shows the black player was the obvious instigator. Morris goes from denial to defensive as he sees that he is wrong and starts accusing the other anchors of doing him wrong as he exits the news studio. Bill Murray does a review of Miracle on 34th Street where he is upset that they l left the existence of Santa open at the end of the film saying they had the perfect chance to share to the world he is real. The dancing NBC "N" makes a quick appearance revealing it's Emily Litella who owns the dancing legs behind the costume. She does a quick segment that is really lame, and Jane banishes her from Weekend Update.

  9. Garrett Morris then plays a desk cop who assigns a case to an unlikely team of detectives. Belushi plays a brute of a cop, and Aykroyd plays an existentialist, and that's just the beginning of this convoluted sketch. They get told that there's a guy in a bank with a bomb. Then we cut to Laraine as a hooker and Buck Henry as the John in a motel room for what seems to be no reason. The two detectives then enter the room to get information out of the hooker. Only the information they are after is just the address to the bank, and that's all there is to this moment. Then we get to the bank where Murray a bomb wearing robber who is holding his wife and mother hostage. Again, I don't think Miskel says more than three words as the detective tried to negotiate with Murray. The negotiation doesn't go well because Murray ends up blowing up himself as well as his family. And that's it.

  10. Franken and Davis then do a routine where Al Franken sings a song to his real-life parents. Things then go wrong, and Franken spazzes out after his parents share embarrassing childhood stories.  

  11. E. Buzz Miller Art Classics is a public access show hosted by Aykroyd with Laraine as a pornstar sidekick. The two analyze classic art as an excuse to show nudity on TV as they discuss each image like an immature child might.

  12. Jane and Aykroyd then play parents anxiously awaiting their sons return home from college as also await being introduced to his girlfriend for the first time. Belushi comes in as the son then it's revealed the Miskel is his girlfriend. No one ever mentions the age gap which makes it hard to tell if she's actually supposed to be that much older than him or if it's supposed to be a young character being portrayed by an older actress. This confusion is what adds to the fun, and this is the only sketch Miskel actually acts in.

  13. Gilda then plays her kid character who is sitting on Santa's lap requesting her gifts for Christmas. Murray plays Santa and rejects all her requests and is a bit of a bully throughout the gift wishing process.

  14. Mr. Mike then gets a segment where Laraine comes in claiming to be a drunk and needing a Least-Loved Bedtime Tale. Mr. Mike refuses until she sings a song and this back and forth goes on forever until she finally gives in and sings in the style of opera. As she sings soundly, we are given a tale in the subtitles. She finishes the song and asks again for her story but is turned down because Mr. Mike says her singing was awful. 

  15. Elvis Costello then starts with one song then gets all pissed off before debuting Radio, Radio which apparently was a controversial moment in the show's history being that Radio, Radio really bashes the broadcasting industry.

  16. Finally, Miskel comes out to thank the audience for selecting her then finishes off her hosting duties by saying her goodnights.

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SNL: S03E09... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE: JANUARY 21, 1978

SNL: S03E09... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE: JANUARY 21, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown: 

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" Bruce Jenner Wins the Javelin Catch.

  2. The opening sketch is a parody of The State of the Union Address from 1978. It sounds like Aykroyd sticks pretty close to Carter's speech with a few jokes thrown in, but the central humor of the sketch comes from the cut-away shots of the extremely bored congress members who Carter tries to win back by screaming, "Live from New York..."

  3. Steve Martin then officially opens the show with his usual form of scattered but prepared comedy.

  4. This was followed by a repeat of the Swill fake ad promoting sludge water from Lake Erie.

  5. Belushi and Gilda then play cabin dwellers that just moved into a spot in Big Foot country. They think the locals are crazy for believing in a fictional character. Their conversation is interrupted by Steve Martin who is playing a ranger that's evacuating the area due to a blizzard. He tells the couple that they have to go and warns them to watch out for Big Foot. The couple refuses to leave, opting to ride out the storm despite the warning. This is when it is revealed that the couple has gigantic shoes and Belushi leaves to get wood in his fur jacket. Seconds late Steve Martin looks out the window and spots what he thinks is a Big Foot and shoots what he sees with a tranquilizer dart. Then it's revealed he shot Belushi.

  6. Two Wild and Crazy guys return this time they're trying out computer dating (which I had no idea existed at the time.) It turns out that their dates are a pair of Soviet girls who are also on a quest to find swinging America romance, but both pairs are so the same that it doesn't work out but it doesn't slow down any enthusiasm. Belushi makes a quick appearance, and he reminds me of the main character from A Confederacy of Dunces.

  7. The Dirt Band then performs On the Loose with the Blues.

  8. This was followed by a fake ad for Body Floss because "No 'body' is really clean without it."  

  9. Once again, Jane and Dan do the news, and we are introduced to Roseanne Roseannadanna who starts out sharing home remedies for the cold then flips to her griping about food after telling a tale of finding a hair in her soup that was meant to be a cold cure.

  10. Randy Newman performs Short People then talks about how controversial the song has been before sticking out his tongue to those who are offended. He then goes right into singing Rider in the Rain.

  11. Next, the Coneheads compete on The Family Feud where they take on a family in the Romaine Lettuce industry.

  12. What if? Is a sketch that explores what if questions about history. This week's interview answers the question, "What if Napoleon had a B-52 in Waterloo?" We are also given a comedic dramatization.

  13. This was followed by a short film from Beverly Hills where Steve Martin claims he's going to take us on a tour of his famous friend's houses. He then buys a Map to the Stars from a girl selling them on a random LA corner. The tour then begins with Steve Martin standing on famous people property lines screaming toward the houses of his so-called friends, and we never meet a sing celebrity.

  14. Steve Martin then joins The Dirt Band to play banjo on a song called White Russian.

  15. Finally, Steve Martin thanks the crowd and says his goodnights to the home audience.

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SNL: S03E10... HOST: ROBERT KLEIN... DATE: JANUARY 28, 1978

SNL: S03E10... HOST: ROBERT KLEIN... DATE: JANUARY 28, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" Charlie's Angels Catch the Syph.

  2. Paul Schaffer then plays Don Kirshner who introduces Mr. Mike and the Mikettes who team up with Garrett Morris to do a Tina Turner review. This involves a blend of Morris singing Proud Mary that's mashed together with one of Mr. Mike's Least Loved Bedtime Tales. Which ends with Schaffer as Kirshner saying, "Live from New York..."

  3. Robert Klein then opens the show with a hilarious monolog/routine about how he moved from New York City to rural New York back when he attended college.

  4. This was followed by one of my favorite sketches of all time, and we enter The Olympia Diner that only sells cheeseburgers, chips, and Pepsi.

  5. Next was a return of the X-Police which was the same exact sketch as their first appearance, only this time instead of these X-Police killing and framing college-educated white people over marijuana they did the same exact thing blaming living together out of wedlock.

  6. Bonnie Raitt then hit the stage to sing Runaway.

  7. Once again Jane and Dan host the news. Dan still seems to be struggling to find his news legs because he barrels through all of his stories without switching off stories with Jane. You can tell that this isn't a joke because there's a bit of chaos as to who to focus the camera on and by the time Dan finally stops finally giving Jane her time she's so lost she doesn't know where to go to. She starts to read what was supposed to be her first story but the graphic no longer matches up, so she gives up and throws to Roseanne Roseannadanna who finishes off the segment.

  8. This is followed by another favorite of mine when Bill Murray returns as the shitty lounge singer who tries to interact with an audience that just isn't having it. This is the classic installment of this lounge singer character's career as he winds down the night singing Star Wars.

  9. Frogs Look At Films is a French Film review show that discussed the genius of Jerry Lewis, complete with a transition to a parody sketch called The Nutty Air Traffic Controller where Robert Klein did an impression of Lewis who accidentally thwarts a terrorist plane with his ineptness as an air traffic controller.

  10. Aykroyd then plays a radio DJ who interviews a band that's creating a genre called Nerd Rock. Keep in mind Nerd Rock was not a thing at that time so this was a fake band called The Nerds comprised of Gilda, Murray, and Klein making "jokes" about what this type of band would be in a sketch that lost all of the humor due to the fact that this is now a reality.

  11. Robert Klein then comes out to announce the next performance by Bonnie Raitt, but Jane interrupts with breaking news that Russia has released gigantic nuclear lobsters into the lakes and rivers of America.  

  12. Nothing really comes from this lobster announcement as Bonnie Raitt goes on to perform Give It All Up Or Let Me Go.

  13. Jane and Gilda then play to pot smoking housewives. The sketch starts with your traditional pot humor about paranoia and being confused but later, in the middle of the bit, we start to hear a weird sound. At first, it's unclear what this sound is supposed to be until even the actresses break character to investigate. They call in Belushi and then the director, but no one knows what the source of the sound is.

  14. After a while of this sound search, it's finally revealed that the sound is coming from the gigantic nuclear lobsters. This happens as we transition into a filmed segment called Attack of the Atomic Lobsters which consisted of stop-motion lobsters attacking the city and killing anyone that gets in their way. I have to say, the FX are pretty good for the time frame.

  15. Finally, we come back to the studio to a bunch of chaos. Everyone in the audience is playing dead, and the survivors continue to fight the lobsters. There is a very War of the Worlds end to this show, and it's the first one to end without the closure of the host saying their goodnights. Pardo does try to say goodnight, but he too is killed by a lobster.

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SNL: S03E11... HOST: CHEVY CHASE... DATE: FEBRUARY 18, 1978

SNL: S03E11... HOST: CHEVY CHASE... DATE: FEBRUARY 18, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight special episode is "interrupting" The Little House on the Prairie Burns to the Ground.

  2. The opening sketch is titled A Former President Speaks to the Nation, which is pretty much just an excuse for Chevy to do his "Ford is dumb" character. As always it's fun but not all that specific of an impersonation. This sketch also leads to an excuse for Chevy to fall down and announce, "Live from New York..."

  3. Chevy then opens the show with a monolog about his return to the show after quitting. Not only that but he talks about his return to New York after living in Los Angeles for quite a while. As I said in the intro above, I like Chevy on the show way more as a guest than I did during his contract negotiations.

  4. This was followed by a fake ad for The Moth Masher which is a device that mashes moths for decorative purposes. It seems that Dan Aykroyd really likes to abuse already dead animals. So far he's blended fish and bats, and now he's mashing moths.

  5. Chevy and Gilda are in bed after sex discussing the level of her satisfaction. It's obvious by the way that they talk that not only is Chevy clueless when it comes to women but this is a one night stand. As the sketch goes on it turns out that Chevy is clueless to everything, ending on a joke where Chevy is about to leave even though it's his own apartment.

  6. Billy Joel then performs Only the Good Die Young.

  7. They must have been trying to stick to the good die young theme because the next sketch was a "Docudrama" called King with a conversation between MLK, JFK, and RFK filled with subtle jokes about each of their upcoming assassinations. This sketch must have had to do with some new news from the time because the audience laughed several times where I really didn't get the humor.

  8. Once again, Jane and Dan host the news... that is until Chevy Chase tricks Dan into leaving the set so he can take over his old role as the lead anchor. I think Chevy read one of the jokes that Jane bailed out on last week due to Dan's over-ambitious fuck up. I believe this because the image of the joke was the one on the screen as the time of the incident. Belushi also joined the news with a recap of the Ali vs. Spinx fight. This leads to a tale of a Belushi bar fight and ends with him beating up Jane to test her self-defense response. Finally, there is also a reunion between Chevy and Emily Litella.

  9. This was followed by a sketch was Aykroyd trains Chevy the art of airline customs. He openly tells him to use racial profiling mainly keeping an eye out for black folks. The first in line is a Catholic Priest who gets to pass without being searched because he's white and part of the clergy. Garrett Morris then tries to pass and gets busted after they find one marijuana seed in his luggage. Aykroyd takes Morris to deal with the law leaving the rookie to check the rest of the passengers. Belushi and Laraine play an overly nervous couple who get past security despite the fact that they have tons of cocaine in their luggage. Both Chevy and Aykroyd let them pass because they're white, without even noticing loose cocaine that's now covering every flat surface. 

  10. The short film this week was Laraine going about her day with an Omen-esque soundtrack that makes it look like she's losing her mind to evil. Then she gets back to her place and approaches what appears to be an ominous room, only to find her roommate recording her singing audition which was the source of our horrific soundtrack.

  11. Sermonette is a sketch where Chevy plays an all-inclusive religious leader that gives a crazy sermon mixing all sorts of spiritual lessons.

  12. Somewhere in France 1944 is a sketch with three US soldiers guarding the base entry. Two undeniable Germans in US uniforms try to sneak past the guards but first have to answer questions about American culture to prove that they are not actually German. Their accents are too strong for anyone to really believe they're American, but they get all the questions right, so they almost gain access to the building. Then one of the three US soldiers suggests a better question. The Germans get this one wrong but so does one of the original three US soldiers. This causes the other two US soldiers to think that they have a third spy on their hand and then four when the other US soldier also fails to answer. Finally, the head US soldier who is in charge of this mess realizes he doesn't know the answer either. This leads him to believe that he too is a spy and the sketch ends without going much further.

  13. Billy Joel returns to the stage to sing Just the Way You Are.

  14. Three old biddies then have a tea party in what seems to be a boring last sketch that's going nowhere. It gets to the part of the scene where Chevy is supposed to enter which he does, but he's not in character. He just wants the sketch to end because he has a routine that he wants to do during his goodnights. Then, when the girls realized the sketch had no end, this new information landed them all in the Twilight Zone. The sketch then grew to be very convoluted but entertaining as twist ending after twist ending continued, until finally, the Land Shark finishes the sketch by eating the final survivors and then legitimately ended with Garrett Morris as the Pope who saw the mess and decides to shuffle off to Buffalo.

  15. Finally, Chevy thanks the crowd and closes the show with his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E12... HOST: O.J. SIMPSON... DATE: FEBRUARY 25, 1978

SNL: S03E12... HOST: O.J. SIMPSON... DATE: FEBRUARY 25, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" James at 16 Marries Roman Polanski.

  2. Gilda appears in the opening sketch answers questions that were written on cards by the audience. The first question is about what happens if they don't come up with a good opening sketch and the answer is to answer questions from the audience. The next couple questions are along those same lines with more answers that admitted the writers were just winging it this week. This didn't boost my confidence in this episode. She then reveals in one of her answers that the writers actually wrote these questions. Sure this means it's actually a scripted piece, but I still saw this as a lack of effort. The opening sketch ends with a question about the opening phrase which gets Gilda to announce, "Live from New York..."

  3. O.J. Simpson then runs out to the stage, and he's dressed like he's a Conehead. He on to do a long monolog about his football career and how he achieved everything he set his mind on. This leads to a story of his acting career and how he ended up on the show. He speaks so fast during his performance that it's hard to take in all he's saying, especially when most of his talk has to do with sports which I couldn't care less about. There were a couple of moments where the band would randomly interrupt which would cause O.J. to build in anger. This was the only time in the entire episode where I envisioned a joke based on what he is now famous for.

  4. The next sketch started a little confusing, with an Italian family bickering about being broke as they eat their spaghetti dinner. I had no idea where this was going until we cut to the bedroom where it's revealed that we're watching the parody Samurai Night Fever where the Samurai plays the Travolta character. We go from the room back to the meal where they reenact the, "Watch the hair," scene from Saturday Night Fever. This would have been fine if it ended right there but we then go back to the room where the Samurai meets O.J. who doesn't want to be black anymore, so they have him dressed like a white guy. After this, we go to the club where there is a convoluted build up to get Belushi on the stage to disco dance his ass off.

  5. Great Moments in Sports starts with O.J. introducing the famous story of Babe Ruth promising a dying child that he would hit a home run which then leads into a reenactment. In this version of the story, the child is played by Garrett Morris, and the setup is the same as always only the outcome of the story is much different. First, there is a radio in Garrett's hospital room that is broadcasting the game, and it's the announcers tell of this promise to a dying boy, and this is how Garrett finds out that he's actually dying. After that, every at-bat is filled with close calls but no actual homers. Every time it gets closer and closer to the point where the anxiety alone is enough to almost kill Garrett Morris. Then it gets to the final chance, and Babe hits a ball that comes super close but is caught by the center fielder. This disappointment is enough to kill Garrett, and O.J. points out this is another case of a white guy taking back a promise to a black man.

  6. Ashford and Simpson then perform So, So Satisfied.

  7. Dan Aykroyd then pitches the Mohawk Master which is a Mohawk cutting clipper contraption that cuts the perfect Mohawk in one fluid motion.

  8. The Big Event must have been a docudrama series from the time. Tonight's installment was called The Raid on Nicosia which must have been a very recent event at that time because part of the joke was how quick it was coming to television. The rest of the joke was mainly stunt casting of which celebrity from the time would play the people involved.

  9. Once again, Jane and Dan give us the news. Also again, they open the news with another joke sponsor that wasn't funny enough to remember. Billy Murray made an appearance where he talked about that year's Academy Awards. Laraine also had a segment where she played the first woman to do a review from an NFL locker room which mainly leads to a bunch of double entendres about dick size. Roseanne Roseannadanna finishes off the segment by reading a serious question about dental work only to end up rambling about items she uses to pick her teeth.

  10. Next, a group of guys watched a football game with O.J. on a night that Walter Payton is on the cusp of breaking O.J.'s touchdown record. O.J. acts like it doesn't bother him but he uses a Voodoo doll to thwart his efforts. Again, O.J. tries to pull off that he doesn't care and that he'd moved on but celebrates with champagne when the game ends without Payton breaking the record.

  11. Franken and Davis do a routine where Franken has just gotten out of brain surgery. I was half expecting Franken to come out drooling and stupid like the surgery wrecked his brain, but he treats the condition a little more realistic, walking and talking just a little slower with a freshly bandaged head. He warns Davis that if he starts to lock up, it's because he needs to be sponged off with cold water. Franken then goes into doing a stand-up routine filled with kid jokes that still get laughter which pleases Franken so much that he begins to speak with more energy. He gets through one full joke then locks up just before giving the second punchline. Davis steps in and sponges Franken off which snaps him back so that he can finish his joke which he does but it's the punchline from the first one. This pattern repeats a second time where I feel the expectation is that when he comes to this time, he'd finish the third joke with the second punchline as if he one joke off, but no he once again repeats the first punchline. (Note: My description may suck, but this is pretty funny when it plays out on the screen.)

  12. O.J. then plays Mandingo who is making out with Laraine in the parody ad for Mandingo II. Then we cut to Garrett Morris dressed as a woman making out with Bill Murray as the ad progresses through this sequel story. Next, Laraine refuses to make out with Murray, but lady Garrett and O.J. make out before we cut to Laraine making out with the female Garrett Morris, and then we cut to O.J. making out with Murray, and the ad ends with Murray giving goo-goo eyes to a cow. All of this happens in such a short sketch that it seems like a chaotic make out fest that's hilarious.

  13. E. Buzz Miller returns with his cable access show with Laraine, his stripper sidekick. The two do nothing but comment over videos of animals having sex as an excuse to get anything sexual on television.

  14. This is followed by a parody of O.J.'s Hertz commercial only this time he doesn't get the special treatment as the Hertz representative informs O.J. that they gave his car to Walter Payton stating, "We also have to go with the winner."

  15. Ashford and Simpson return to perform Don't Cost You Nothing.

  16. Celebrity of the Sexes and Races put O.J. and Leon Spinks against Sandy Duncan and Marie Osmond who lose hands down at every step of the competition.

  17. Finally, O.J. closes the show by thanking the crowd and saying his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E13... HOST: ART GARFUNKEL... DATE: MARCH 11, 1978

SNL: S03E13... HOST: ART GARFUNKEL... DATE: MARCH 11, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" Jacques Cousteau Gets an Undersea Enema.
  2. The opening sketch is a parody of an old black and white silent film featuring two grave robbers in Switzerland who get past a patrolling police officer due to his ineptness combined with a comedic error as you would see in one of those old films. The robbers then drop their loot with is a body wrapped up in a carpet. It's revealed that it's actually Charlie Chaplin's body just as the cop starts to catch on enough to turn back to see what's happening. We then see a bit of a Weekend at Bernie's routine before being flashed the dialog card that reads, "Live from New York..."
  3. Art Garfunkel then opens the show and goes straight into singing What a Wonderful World without so much as a hello to the crowd. It then turns into a bit of a sketch after Garfunkel gets distracted by a speaker giving feedback. He asks to start again as Belushi steps on the stage and kicks the speaker in question. Belushi goes on to act his ass off as he bitches and complains about how cheap the show is and how the cast is treated like second rate performers. All of this while Garfunkel chimes in with a few line with the delivery of someone who was called up from the audience. He smiles and chuckles making zero attempts to add to the realness of Belushi's performance. The Belushi bit ends and Garfunkel goes right back into the song as if there were never an interruption.
  4. This is followed by a repeat of the Kaomega III the watch from Japan that is so complicated that it takes two people to work it.
  5. Tomorrow with Tom Snyder once again makes fun of Snyder's interview style as he questions the secret silhouette of a man about how it feels to be a battered husband. As the interview goes on Snyder keeps accidentally introducing more and more information about the anonymous man first by accidentally using his real name instead of the fake one then builds to where he accidentally shares the man's picture which causes the man to jump into the light to cover the image so panicked that he doesn't realize the world can now see him live.
  6. Stephen Bishop then hits the stage to perform On and On.
  7. This was followed by a sketch about an Irish bar owner preparing for St. Patrick's Day. In the sketch, a late Mayor of Chicago returns from the dead to talk to the two guys in the bar. I don't know who this mayor was which I think was a requirement to get the humor because the audience laughed out loud multiple times while I couldn't even start to think this was all that funny.
  8. The next sketch takes place outside of a musical venue with Belushi and Garrett on guest list duty mainly blocking people from getting backstage to a KISS show. This was similar to the last sketch in that I think that you have to know the people being referenced to get the humor because everyone being turned away were names that I heard of but didn't get why the jokes were all that funny. The sketch did end on a funny note where it's revealed that Belushi is not actually the tour manager but someone else just trying to sneak backstage as he and the rest of the group bum rush Morris.
  9. Once again, Jane and Dan anchor the news and start with the story about Charlie Chaplin's body going missing in real life. This made the opening sketch make ten times more sense and got me to look up the real story after. This was also the week Larry Flint got shot and there were two segments by Morris and Murray that were both fun but not worth going into.
  10. Art Garfunkel then hits the stage to sing All I Know then goes right into singing Scarborough Fair
  11. Look at Books is an interview sketch where Jane interviews the authors of Whatever Happened to the Class of '77 which is a fake follow-up to a real book of the same title only the year is '65 so these nerds that Gilda and Murray are portraying. This sketch is one part youth bashing and one part Gilda and Murray having fun as these spastic characters.
  12. This was followed by the saddest short in SNL history called Don't Look Back In Anger. This is the classic short where an Old Belushi visits the graves of his fallen cast mates. They always said that he would be the first to go and in this sketch, he outlived them all and accredits his longevity to the fact that he was also a dancer. I still get choked up not only because of the irony but also after seeing the tombstone for Gilda.
  13. Andy Kaufman comes out on the stage and apparently it's at the point of his career where he was more about torturing the audience. He does his routine where he literally does nothing but read The Great Gatsby and fight with the crowd when they get antsy.
  14. Looking For Mr. Goodbar Sleepytime Playset is a fake ad for a toy based on the book and movie. Once again, I didn't get the reference because I don't know the Looking For Mr. Goodbar story. Yeah, I could pick-up on the point of the jokes but I still didn't find it all that entertaining.
  15. Art Garfunkel then returned to the stage to sing Crying in My Sleep.
  16. Finally, Art Garfunkel closed the show by saying thanks to the audience and then his goodnights.
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SNL: S03E14... HOST: JILL CLAYBURGH... DATE: MARCH 18, 1978

SNL: S03E14... HOST: JILL CLAYBURGH... DATE: MARCH 18, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's very special episode is "interrupting" Bowling For Medicine.

  2. Garrett Morris sings Oh Danny Boy and this time he wrote the subtitles ahead of the performance to explain why he doesn't like having the subtitles while he sings, but he understands. He says that the random laughing distracts him as he sings but still has several jokes throughout his message. The song ends, and Morris announces, "Live from New York..." with no build up to it this week.

  3. Jill Clayburgh opens up the show with a monolog about how she didn't like her first monolog and goes on and on about what she did wrong and what she wants to do different and ends up in a loop where she never actually gets to a monolog.

  4. This was followed by a repeat of the Royal Deluxe II car commercial that highlights the fact that the car drives so smoothly you can perform a circumcision in it.

  5. Next, we get to see a second installment of the Olympia Cafe "Cheese Burger, Cheese Burger" sketch where Jill Clayburgh is training as a new waitress.

  6. Sybil III is a parody of Sybil where Jill Clayburgh plays Sybil's psychiatrist, only in this sequel, there are actually three people named Sybil, and the psychiatrist tries to convince them that they are just one schizophrenic person. At one point, the psychiatrist turns her back as she dictates her notes into a recorder at this point two of the Sybils sneak out leaving the psychiatrist to believe she was successful.

  7. Bad One-Man Show was another installment in the Bad series. In this one, Dan Aykroyd introduces a show called An Evening With... which is five one-man shows about famous individuals all playing out at the same exact time which is enough to drive you mental.

  8. Eddie Money then performs Baby Come Back To Me.

  9. This is followed by a fake ad for Nutrifix, an injectable breakfast that also contains meth for that family on the move.

  10. Once again, Jane and Dan host the news with an average weekend update segment featuring Roseanne Roseannadanna who starts out talking about taxes but end up telling a rambling tale about her experience dealing with an IRS man.

  11. This was followed by an airplane sketch where Belushi plays a jaded traveler. Jill Clayburgh tries to mine out the joy, but Belushi continues to complain about everything being out of focus and blurry. When Jill suggests that he might need glasses, Belushi seems like this is something he never once thought of. He then gets mad at her when her prescription isn't a match and gets mad at her for being a liar.

  12. Gilda starts out singing in the shower to shortly be joined by Bill Murray as his showering radio DJ character. He interviews Gilda with his soap microphone before introducing the neighbor who's been staying in the garage because of a fight with his wife and is in the shower to do some stand-up material. In the next segment of the shower show, Murray introduces the neighbor's wife to get the two back together.

  13. Jill plays a woman in a motel room who just finished cheating with who we find out is Dan Aykroyd Conehead. The sketch then cuts to the Conehead house for a sad sort of sketch about how they are both cheating on each other. They do end up working things out at the end making it feel like one of the boring "special episodes" with an emotional message that they used to cram into comedic programming.

  14. Celebrity Crack-Up is a celebrity talk show hosted by Jane who interviews celebrities from that time that had public meltdowns. They have an uncanny take on Blake Edwards, especially for what ended up happening in the future.

  15. Eddie Money returns to the stage to sing Two Tickets To Paradise.

  16. Jill performs a sing-song type monolog where she sang and talked about how young will eventually devolve to two people who just put up with one another. It was more sad than funny but an interesting piece nonetheless.

  17. Finally, Jill Clayburgh thanks the crowd and says her good nights.

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SNL: S03E15... HOST: CHRISTOPHER LEE... DATE: MARCH 25, 1978

SNL: S03E15... HOST: CHRISTOPHER LEE... DATE: MARCH 25, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" 101 Dalmatians Get Run Over 101 Moving Vans.

  2. The opening sketch takes place in the locker room with Gilda and Bill Murray discussing Belushi getting transferred out to L.A. to be the next Grizzly Adam's due to an NBC shuffle following a famous news anchor's retirement. Not only does he have to change jobs but the producers decided his name is now Kevin Scott and is really going to miss saying, "Live from New York..."

  3. Christopher Lee opens the show with an opening monolog about being hesitant to host the show. He then goes on to list off his resume as if this makes the show beneath him. He then takes a moment to gripe about modern-day horror which was the genre that gave him his start.

  4. This is technically a sketch within the monolog, but we cut to a parody commercial for an uninspired modern horror called The Island of Lost Luggage which is pretty self-explanatory.

  5. Next is another fake horror commercial, this one is the classic where Belushi won't leave the party in a sketch called The Thing That Wouldn't Leave.

  6. The final sketch fulfilling the rule of three is a fake commercial for Vincent Price as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Rodgers.

  7. Christopher Lee then closes his opening monolog with a quick word before we move on.

  8. The next sketch feature to British Chaps discussing linguistic in a very fancy home library. Barbara Wawa then enters the scene seeking speech therapy to advance her career. They try for hours, then days, then weeks into months without getting any progress. It's then revealed that the two British guys end up talking like Barbara Wawa.

  9. Christopher Lee then comes out and announces that he's like everyone to meet Loaf. He quickly corrects himself, and there seems to be a bit of confusion that I'm not sure if this was an accident or a joke that got zero response. Anyways, Meat Loaf then sings All Revved Up With No Place To Go.

  10. Once again, Jane and Dan host the news. I'm noticing that it's getting a little dry without the election to give it focus. They seem to be throwing new tweaks to Weekend Update each week. This was the week that first featured Point, Counter Point where Dan calls Jane an "ignorant slut" as a release to all the passive aggressive tension that may or may not have been genuinely building. (I don't know, Jane seems, understandably, annoyed to be teamed up with Dan when she was doing just fine, if not better, on her own.) (Link 2)

  11. Jane Curtin then puts down her child, Laraine, for bed after promising to take her to the pet store to replace their dead dog in the morning. Child Laraine lays down to sleep only to be awoken by death who is there to give his apologies while sharing other regrets about his job. This goes on for a while, and I zoned out for a bit but was brought back with death telling the child he'd be back for her the day she turns fifteen.

  12. Garrett Morris then plays the King of Egypt who is panicking because of all of his recent mistakes. I'm sure this is a 40-year-old reference that is still significant to what's currently going on in the area. The sketch ends with Morris asking the home audience to send in suggestions to try to solve the problems.

  13. The short video this week is pretty much a fan music video for the Foreigner song Cold As Ice, which featured a woman killing what I assume to be her husband in various COLD ways.

  14. Dan Aykroyd then plays the pitchman for Del Stator's Rabbit Hut, a restaurant where the customers get to choose their rabbits to be cooked in front of them like one would do with a live lobster.

  15. This was followed by a vampire hunting sketch where a group of vampire hunters who have to get past Nixon to put a stake through the soul of the Watergate Investigation.

  16. Richard Belzer then hits the stage to do some stand-up and impersonations of rock stars from back in the days of when this episode was recorded.

  17. Meat Loaf then returned to the stage to perform Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad.

  18. MR. BILL DOES A CIRCUS SHOW!!!

  19. Finally, Christopher thanks the crowd and says his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E18... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE: APRIL 22, 1978

SNL: S03E18... HOST: STEVE MARTIN... DATE:  APRIL 22, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Once again, Paul Schaffer as Don Kirshner starts the show by introducing us to his latest discovery and with that, the world is introduced to The Blues Brothers who perform Hey Bartender before throwing back to Paul as Kirshner who gets this week's duty of saying, "Live from New York..."

  2. Steve Martin then opens the show with his best routine/monolog to date. My favorite part was that it felt like an actual stand-up routine minus all the exaggerated movements to get all the quick, cheap laughs which I wasn't a fan of in earlier appearances. He does end the routine with a very physical bit where he plays a very grabby magician, but even this felt like a natural bit because it didn't feel like he was forcing an illusion that this bit was just now coming to him.

  3. This was followed by a repeat of the fake ad for a perfume designed for one night stands.

  4. The Two Wild and Crazy Guys then return with another sketch that pretty much just makes fun foreigners and their crazy accents. This is another major disappointing discovery of this challenge, I no longer find these characters to be all that funny.

  5. Steve Martin then plays a Barber from back in the days when they were what we now consider to be doctors. His solution to everything is bloodletting while making fun of even older practices as a way to highlight no matter when you go to in time the masses think that we're at the most advanced that we will ever be without realizing their ancestors thought the very same thing and how it all leads to close-minded thinking.

  6. We then end up in a nightclub where Steven Martin sits at the bar and notices Gilda Radner who is sitting across the room. The two locks eye and approach one another to then silly dance throughout the entire studio. They finish their dance and head back to their seats as if all of what just happened was nothing more than a dream and they both go about their business.

  7. Once again, Jane and Dan do the news. I think I've made this point before but an average news night isn't as fun because they are parodying news anchors before they were allowed to show any personality because the actual news was the star of the show. I kind of miss those days as far as the "real" media is concerned but prefer the new Weekend Update where the anchors are allowed to smile. (Clip 2)

  8. Steve Martin does his classic King Tut song.

  9. Jane and Belushi are in bed, Jane wakes Belushi because she has to admit that she been cheating on him with the 72-year-old pharmacist. Belushi seems unsure how to take this news, so he admits that he's been cheating with a girl who is much younger than him. (Once again they go way too young by saying that she's a cheerleader and since they don't give an age I assume they are talking about high school) Aside from that aside, the two continued to go into details about their exploits. Only, Jane doesn't believe a bit of Belushi's story, and this disbelief seems to bother Belushi more than the actual affair does which is when it's revealed that these stories are this longtime couple's form of foreplay which lessens the creepiness of the over exaggerated age gaps.

  10. The short film this week is Ballet Girls vs. B-Boys as they have a dance off to the music of Swan Lake. The dancing is fun on its own but to top it off it features Ozone and Turbo from the Breakin' films which I'm a fan of for non-joking reasons.

  11. This is followed by an elevator sketch where a bunch of coworkers can't agree on where to go to lunch. This is where they decide to eat at Troff and Brew, and then we cut to said restaurant everyone drinks chili out of a trough and washes it all down by drinking beer straight from the tap, all this while discussing their business agendas.

  12. Bill Murray and Gilda then return as their nerdy kid characters to compete at the school science fair, their experiment is a toaster that is controlled by a phone which now that this is a reality it doesn't seem as ridiculous as it must have been at the time. They are competing against Garrett Morris whose experiment is just showing how static electricity will get a balloon to stick to a sweater. Their other competition is the big reveal of the sketch which is Steve Martin's experiment is a fully activated Plutonium bomb.

  13. Once again The Blues Brothers hit the stage to perform I Don't Know.

  14. This is followed by Next Week In Review which is a news show hosted by psychic who bicker over the most important stories of next week even though there are zero signs that any of these events will happen.

  15. Finally, Steve Martin thanks the crowd and says his goodnights.

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SNL: S03E19... HOST: RICHARD DREYFUSS... DATE: MAY 13, 1978

SNL: S03E19... HOST: RICHARD DREYFUSS... DATE: MAY 13, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Belushi and Gilda play Mexican marijuana farmers whose crops get dusted with Paraquat herbicide which makes them rush to sell the harvest before the Paraquat makes the herb disappear. We then see a map of the smuggling route from Baja to New York. On the way, there are a couple massive seizures, but little stashes continue to sneak by, all the way down to where there is just one joint as it gets to Bill Murray, who smokes it before saying, "Live from New York..."

  2. Richard Dreyfuss opens the show dressed up as a Shakespearian actor. He admits that he feels silly in the suit, but he feels he needs to prove himself to Belushi who think Richard Burton should have won the Oscar that Dreyfuss is holding in his hand. He then performs a bit from Hamlet to prove his acting chops only to get directed by Belushi who thinks he's not doing a good job.

  3. Richard Dreyfuss then recreates his Close Encounters' character only instead of building the mountain from the movie with mashed potatoes, his sculpture looks much more like a cone. This is when it is revealed that we are watching Cone Encounters Of The Third Kind where Dreyfuss discovers the Coneheads and ends up on a spaceship to Remulak.

  4. Richard Dreyfuss then goes on to introduce Jimmy Buffett but is interrupted by the soundtrack to Jaws which makes Dreyfuss nervous for a bit but then the show just goes on.

  5. Jimmy Buffett sings Son Of A Sailor.

  6. The Sex Test is an informative show where Richard Dreyfuss asks the home audience multiple choice questions about sex, complete with sexperts going into more details about the right answer.

  7. Once again the news is hosted by Jane and Dan, and it starts with Jane apologizing for her bitchy outbursts after reading a couple negative reviews and promises to not do it again. Bill Murray reviews his Oscar picks from last week to discuss all the choices he got wrong. He ends by tormenting Jane, and she does her best to hold back her rage. Roseanne Roseannadanna then does a segment on UFOs which evolves into a rambling story about a road trip where she came across an x-rated drive-in theater, and her talk of humungous buttholes finally sets off Jane.

  8. Bill Murray returns as his crappy lounge singer character which is always pretty much the same this time he ends singing a lyrical version of the tones from Close Encounters Of The Third Kind.

  9. This next sketch felt more like a way for Larraine and Dreyfuss to show off their acting chops because it's mainly a realistic couple fight where they act their asses off without there being all that many jokes.

  10. The David Susskind Show is an interview show, and this week they are celebrating Mother's Day. In this sketch, whoever Susskind is, interviews Kissinger, Snyder, and Spinks along with their moms who are pretty much their older female twins.

  11. Dreyfuss then goes on to introduce Gary Tiger and once again we hear Jaws theme, but this time Dreyfuss goes to investigate opening a nearby door only to find nothing.

  12. Gary Tigerman performs White Oaxacan Moon.

  13. Father Guido Sarducci then makes his debut, and I couldn't be happier to see him, knowing that this is the beginning of his run with the show because I can't wait to see him again.

  14. Richard Dreyfuss then sings Seduced which was also written by Gary Tigerman.

  15. Finally, Dreyfus remains on the piano from just singing his song when he thanks the audience and says his goodnights before finally getting eaten by the Land Shark!!!

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SNL: S03E20... HOST: BUCK HENRY... DATE: MAY 20, 1978

SNL: S03E20... HOST: BUCK HENRY... DATE: MAY 20, 1978

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. Tonight's special episode is "interrupting" The Boy In The Plastic Pants Suit.

  2. Nixon then addresses the nation in a desperate attempt to sell his failed book that no one is buying due to so much hatred. His new marketing call is, "Think I'm a crook, take it out on the book." Then has a Marine punt the books out into the audience followed by Nixon announcing, "Live from New York..."

  3. Buck Henry then opens the show with a monolog about his relationship with SNL as he defensively justifies his season finale appearance especially following their recent star-studded season.

  4. Gilda then plays her nerdy kid character, playing piano before getting sent up to her room to prepare for the prom by her mom. Bill Murray's nerdy character and his dad arrive and wait for Gilda to get ready. This is more of a silly sketch where it's more about the characters than the story, and in this case, it's the two kids denying their flirtatious love while the parents are just as awkward but into it. This leads to the parents hooking up to go out while their nerdy children are at the prom.

  5. Samurai T.V. Repairman is another Samurai sketch with Buck Henry that is redundant while also being entertaining.

  6. Sodom 2003 B.C. takes place in the title's location at the title's time with the people of Sodom trying to figure out a way to fix their soiled reputation of being a sodomy-based state and try to come up with better marketing.

  7. Once again, Jane and Dan host the news. There is a movie review by Bill Murray where he reviews a movie I never heard of just from the clip he shares with the audience. There's also a Point-Counterpoint about jogging, but nothing else all that exciting.

  8. We then return to the Olympia Cafe for more Cheese Burgers, Cheese Burgers, Cheese Burgers. This time Belushi is about to fire Bill Murray's character who sleeps in the back so that he can subscribe to a service that rents overnight guard dogs but hires Bill back only because the dogs were too expensive.

  9. Mr. Mike's Least-Loved Music is more Mike stuff, but with singing and of course, he has to sing a creepy song about hooking up with underaged ghoulies.

  10. More Insects To Worry About returns for another installment, this time it's Buck Henry who's discussing some strange ass bugs that don't really exist that all have fascinating behaviors.

  11. Bill Murray returns as his director character and they pretty much redo the Stunt Baby bit from the last time Buck was the host only this time Buck "beats up" a stunt dog.

  12. Bad Conceptual Art is called Pavlov, Video, Chicken which is a crazy performance piece with Gilda doing a weird dance on a balance board with two monitors behind her, one with an image of Larraine's mouth and the other, a close up of Garrett's eye.

  13. Franken and Davis then do a bit where they announce they are going to do a sumo routine, but before they get to that point, Franken decides to introduce his wife and his son and the woman who Davis is living with. This triggers Davis to get upset because he's tired of living a lie. He then announces to the audience that he and Franken are gay lovers and that the woman is just a disguise. This really upsets Franken because Davis is saying this in front of his wife and child who are both also upset and the child runs out of the audience crying. Franken and Davis then start to fight, and Franken ends up killing himself with a gun. It really seems like they were going to commit to this dark ending, but Franken jumps up and admits that it's a joke just before going to commercial.

  14. Sun Ra then hits the stage to play a medley of crazy sci-fi sounding jazz.

  15. Finally, Buck Henry closes out the season by thanking the crowd and saying his goodnights.

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