SNL: S30E16... HOST: CAMERON DIAZ... DATE: APRIL 9, 2005

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More “Meh” But Again I Blame The Year

 

Once again, for the fifth show in a row, this was another episode that was perfectly fine to watch, but it was so uninspiringly average that I'm struggling to come up with anything to say about what I saw. As I've pointed out over the past couple of days, this season came out when I was too busy with film school to keep up with pop culture or the news, so I feel no real connection to the references being poked fun of. That said, I don't blame Cameron Diaz or the rest of the cast because I can see the effort is there, but I am just not feeling it this year.

It doesn't help that this was another thirteen segment night which made even the funnier sketches of the night feel like they were dragging on. I mean, I'm sure the Popes death was more appealing at the time when there was a mystery as to who would replace him, but knowing the outcome and that the replacement Pope didn't last all that long made the ten-minute opening sketch about the subject seem insignificant as it droned on.

Speaking of droning on, another issue that with tonight's viewing was that though the sketches had funny premises, the characters seem too serious. Like in the Pope sketch mentioned above, part of the joke was how boring the line up of potential Pope successors were. Yeah, it's funny for the joke, but it also means that you're still dealing with boring characters throughout the scene. The same thing happened during The Barry Gibb Talk Show where, for this installment, Barry was portrayed as being in a bad mood. Again, it worked for the joke, but it also created a less playful mood.

At times it felt like many of the sketches were written to be serious at first only to have the jokes crowbarred in during later drafts. I can't wait to get back to shows that inspired me to explain the tiny details that get me to love the viewing experience, but I've given up hope that this will be happening again during this year. Thankfully, there's only a handful of shows left before I get to move on to next year.

Speaking of moving on, it's now time for me to shift gears to wrap this thing up, so with that, I give you...

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with parody coverage of Papal Debate '05 that was moderated by Darrell Hammond as Tim Russert and featured the dullest of Cardinals who were vying to be the late Pope John Paul II's successor. About halfway through the sketch, the debate came alive when Fred Armisen as one of the Cardinals kept flipping everyone off for questioning his intentions to be the next Pope. Kenan Thompson as Al Sharpton also lightened the tone as well. Of course, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York...”
  2. Cameron Diaz then officially opened the show with a monolog where started out promoting her new MTV travel show where she pretty much just lived a perfect life while traveling with her friends. Rachel Dratch watched from the wings, seeming jealous of our host lifestyle before Cameron called her over and attempted to relate with claims of being an ugly duckling in her youth. This got all of the female character to join the scene to call Cameron out by sharing true ugly duckling photos of themselves with each new photo being more hideous than the last.
  3. This was followed by a parody of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition where Seth Meyers portrayed a shirtless Ty Pennington to lead his crew in an extreme makeover of Cameron Diaz's house. Diaz was completely caught off guard by the visit because she had no idea that she was selected due to the fact that she was dying from a disease and that her husband, Chris Parnell, was fully aware of but refused to share the details. While Cameron spent the entire sketch fearing for her life, Parnell and the kids were very excited that this mystery illness was to thank for their freshly made-over home.
  4. TV Funhouse then gave us a Hana-Barbera-style parody featuring Michael Jackson who was in trouble again because of his love for little boys. The cartoon then went on to show Jackson's handlers' attempt at a solution which was to invent a pair of glasses that made the King Of Pop see grown woman as Emmanuel Lewis from back in his Webster days.
  5. Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake then stopped by as a special guest in order to give us another installment of The Barry Gibb Talk Show. During this visit, the Bee Gee brothers talked politics with Cameron Diaz as Nancy Pelosi, other special guest, Drew Barrymore as Ann Coulter and Horatio Sanz as Bill Richardson.
  6. The Holland Tunnel Hotel had Chris Parnell as the new manager of a one-star hotel who tried to impress Darrell Hammond, who played the Hotel Review Commissioner. To do so, he called on his staff, made up of Cameron Diaz, Horatio Sanz, Finesse Mitchell, and Fred Armisen, to show their good work, only to discover that they are all independently moonlighting as prostitutes while they are also on the clock which actually helped to get them upgraded to be a four-star establishment.
  7. Green Day then took to the stage to perform Boulevard Of Broken Dreams.
  8. Once again, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler gave us the news. This week, Seth Meyers and Fred Armisen then revised their roles as Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles who checked in via satellite to talk about their recent nuptials while Rob Riggle acted as a London Tower Guard who had to keep the two from making out in public. We also got a Weekend Update Dramatic Play where Jimmy Fallon returned to cash in on visitation rights for the young child he had with Tina Fey, while he also attempted to flirt with his replacement, Amy Poehler.
  9. We then got a fake ad for Woo! The Musical which was a new Broadway hit that attempted to capture the magic and splendor that is Spring Break through acting with songs.
  10. The Sofabed had Cameron Diaz as a trendy New Yorker who just bought a heavy ass hide-a-bed for her sixth floor, elevator-less apartment, only to have to contend with Kenan Thompson and Finesse Mitchell who played two lazy movers and were on the verge of quitting to avoid having to move this heavy awkward thing up six floors worth of steps.
  11. Green Day then returned to the stage to perform Holiday.
  12. Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler then put on their British accents for another installment of the British Gossip show, Spy Glass, which was more of the same from this series of sketches that I've never really been a fan of.
  13. Finally, Cameron Diaz closed the show by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.

Once again, we have another show that was far from a favorite but these three sketches that contained my favorite moments of the night helped to make the viewing at least a little fun. First, I loved The Holland Tunnel Hotel because the slow reveal that everyone who worked at the shady establishment also practiced prostitution while on the clock had me laughing out loud. Next, I really liked the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition parody because it cracked me up how Cameron Diaz didn't know that she was dying and how the family was a bit too excited by the fact that their dying mom was the reason for the upgraded home. Finally, I was a fan of the Sofabed sketch because I could relate to the movers who didn't want to carry the monstrosity up six flights of stairs.

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Matt Bunker

I started out with a goal of becoming a paid screenwriter. I had no interest in any other aspect of filmmaking. I received and scholarship to The Vancouver Film School's Writing for Film and Television program where I graduated in 2005. I fell in love with being on set during my first non-school produced short, . I loved being around all the creative people, seeing people having fun while working. The whole liking your job was a new world to me, so I decided to give it a shot. I volunteered for any project I could, doing what ever was needed. The set was my Film School this time. While working as a PA on a feature I was informed that the DP wanted the three tallest PAs to help out in the grip and electric department. That is when I found the department that felt like the best fit for me while I continued to write.