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I was kind of excited going into this episode because I am a John C. Reilly fan. The main thing that had me intrigued was the fact that he was on to promote Talladega Nights, which to me feels like the time that he truly crossed over to become a legitimate comedic actor. Up to this point, he may have been cast in funny roles, but I always felt that was based on his looks and not his drive to be known for comedy. I could be way off as far as his drive, but as far as casting goes, I do genuinely feel that this was when he went from being funny in the background to making us laugh in the spotlight.

I figured that since he wasn’t quite yet a full-time funny guy that he would easily mesh with the cast who are in the middle of a crossover during this season as well. With Rachel Dratch, Horatio Sanz, Tina Fey, and Finesse Mitchell, all leaving at the end of last season with no new cast members to refill their roles, this season marks a new era of the show and aside from my disconnect with the references from this time period, the actual shows, themselves, have been pretty good.

I was correct in my thinking because tonight show turned out the third good show from this season in a row. Though I hope to see John C. in a later appearance when he’s more grounded in the goofier side of his career,, it was fun to see this base level where there was a great balance between his acting and the jokes, to where even the less-silly sketches were still really good.

I really hope that this is the turning point to the season because even though I haven’t had the highest praise for the past two shows because I felt that were average, thanks to the above mention reference issue of mine, I feel this average outlook is my own issue and nothing to do with the show. This is another case where I know for a fact that I love the cast but am still struggling to get one-hundred percent on board, but I’m close to somewhere about ninety percent.

As much as I love the cast and the show, this is another season where I have mixed feelings about a lot of the hosts, who are all very talented, but only a little over half are actually known for their comedic abilities. We’ll see how things go, but until then, it’s time for me to wrap this one up by sharing what I saw, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a parody of Special Report With Brit Hume where Darrell Hammond played the titular host to present part one of his special interview with Will Forte as George W. Bush. Throughout the interview, Bush agreed with each of Hume’s statements even though they didn’t put our present President in a good light. Of course, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live From New York…”

  2. John C. Reilly then officially opened the show with a monolog about how he couldn’t believe that he was hosting the show since he felt he didn’t have name/face recognition, thinking people only knew his roles. Before he could go on and explain his reasoning, Will Ferrell as James Lipton joined our host on stage in order to praise our host for his performance in films that he didn’t even work on and then ended the segment with a song.

  3. Colonial Williamsburg took us to the historical site where actors and actors reenacted the colonial life for tourist to learn and enjoy. Jason Sudeikis played the site’s manager who had to fire John C. Reilly for being racist toward his coworkers while claiming it was in the name of historical accuracy. At one point, Sudeikis called Reilly out when he asked if it was all about historical accuracy, why was he also so racist when sending out his emails.

  4. We then went to a Swimming Lesson between John C. Reilly tried and Will Forte where our host strapped Will to his chest tandem parachute-style in order to attempt to teach him the moves before setting one foot in the pool. Keep in mind that Will Forte played a full grown adult who was trying to learn to swim so late in life in an effort to live out his Olympic dreams.

  5. Korean Central Television had Amy Poehler as Kim Jong Il to address the nation of North Korea about how America just setup sanctions as punishment for their nuclear development projects. He then went on to share how the people of his country would have to literally tighten their belts.

  6. Jason Sudeikis and Kristin Wiig then brought back two of my favorite characters for, Two A-Holes Work Out With A Trainer. As with most of their sketches, the title explains it all since their all very similar but take place in different locations. This week the two a-holes played their vapid selves while meeting up with John C. Reilly who played a trainer at their local gym.

  7. My Chemical Romance then took to the stage to perform Welcome To The Black Parade.

  8. Once again, Amy Poehler and Seth Meyers gave us the news. This week, Kenan Thompson dropped by as Flavor Flav in order to make up nicknames for the female members of Congress, claiming it would inspire young people to get involved in politics, playing off the success of Flavor Of Love which was a reality show hit around this time.

  9. We then went to a Mexican Restaurant where John C. Reilly played a heartbroken girl named Jennifer who became emotionally unstable while sharing how she was dumped, while out having burritos with her friends. At one point, all of Jennifer’s new friends bailed out on her while she was in the bathroom because all that she’s done set they met her was wine over this ex which led them to question if he even existed at all. The moment the girls left, Fred Armisen, as the ex, arrived and he and Jennifer made out over the piles and piles of abandoned Mexican food.

  10. House of Carters shared an E! TV-themed tale of sibling rivalry between Jason Sudeikis and Andy Samberg who played Nick and Aaron Carter in a parody of their reality show.

  11. This was followed by another SNL Digital Short called Harpoon Man where John C. Reilly played the man with a harpoon who tracked down the fictional show’s narrator, Andy Samberg, for making negative comments about him during his theme song.

  12. McMillan Family Moment was set up to be a touching segment where John C. Reilly attempt to teach his son, Andy Samberg, the family tradition of how to eat an Oreo, only the ungrateful Andy was too jaded to play along. Though Samberg played a jaded young adult, he barely even resisted before our host completely freaked out on his kid.

  13. Operation Bearshark had a group of scientist burst into a song of woe about their monstrous bearshark creation after finding that their funding had just been cut off because the experiment was far too dangerous.

  14. We then got another installment of McMillan Family Moment where this time John C. Reilly tried to pass on the family’s Oreo eating style to Kenan Thompson, who played a random black boy who he took on through the Big Brother program and was too confused by the situation to play along. Again, it only to a touch of resistance from Kenan to get our host to completely freak out over the situation.

  15. My Chemical Romance then returned to the stage to perform Cancer.

  16. We then got the third and final installment of McMillan Family Moment where John C. Reilly lashed out on Jason Sudeikis who played his dad after learning that his father failed to teach him the proper family technique.

  17. Finally, John C. Reilly closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

Who can complain about a season starting with three pretty solid shows in a row with this one, in particular, being so fun thanks to sketches like these that contained my three favorite moments of the night? First, I loved the Swimming Lesson sketch because the idea of training a grown adult how to swim using a tandem parachute-style gets me to laugh just thinking about the general idea. Next, I really liked Two A-Holes Work Out With A Trainer because the Two A-holes never fail to crack me up. Finally, I was a fan of Colonial Williamsburg because this is the type of racial humor that I don’t think should be thrown out with the bathwater since it’s not racist and makes a funny point about how we handle our questionable past.


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