SNL: S07E20... HOST: OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN... DATE: MAY 22, 1982

or...

A So-So Show That Summed Up The Season 

As a boy raised by a single mother who was an aerobics instructor when Let Get Physical was released and an older sister who was obsessed with Grease, I am fully aware of Olivia Newton-John. Though I fully feel that she was deserving of the hosting role, I'm not sure how I feel about her as a season finale performer. 

Then again, it's kind of the most fitting choice as a way to represent this overall season. Where most seasons seemed to save this spot for alumni or a big name in comedy to finish on a strong note, this season seemed to just randomly fill in the schedule with whatever episode fifteen quality of host that was available for the week.

Here's what I consider an episode fifteen host: a retired sports start looking to get into acting, a politician pandering for votes, an actor/actress from the black and white days who are at the end their career, the hot model/actress that everyone thinks is funny because she always wears a smile, or her counterpart, the male hunk that's too stupid to get the jokes or the talented actor/actress that just isn't known for comedy. Almost every host from this season fell into one of these categories so this was a fitting end. 

Aside from the quality of host, this episode also summarized the season by the way the funniest of the sketches rank right up there with the best of the best while everything else missed the mark with very little in between. The only way that this episode didn't represent the season was, although Olivia Newton-John did a perfectly fine musical performance she didn't stand out at all compared to the rest of the musical guests.

Even though this is my least favorite season so far, I still had fun watching each episode and am excited for season eight... especially after seeing the schedule of hosts is back to the level that I've grown to expect based on my experience with this challenge as well as my memories from the time.

Alright, so now that you know my views on this season, it's time to move on to share what I saw as I give you...

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's episode starts in the women's restroom where the hooker from the Velvet Jones People's Court sketch has a run-in with Olivia Newton-John and pesters her like a crazy fan and Olivia attempts to give her advice. 
  2. They then announce Olivia Newton-John and the cast as if they are supposed to do the lame huddle but then she jumps right into singing Let's Get Physical in place of the opening monolog.
  3. We then get a repeat of the TransEastern airline for what seems to be the third or fourth time. 
  4. This is followed by the classic sketch with Piscopo as Sinatra and Eddie as Stevie Wonder where the two sing their version of Ebony And Ivory.
  5. We then get another installment of I Married A Monkey where Sweetchuck's monkey wife ran off to join the covenant and he and their monkey child try to talk her into coming back home.
  6. We then go to Heaven where Hitler tries to sneak in dressed as Mother Teresa just to get a peek at what it's like up there. The sketch then gets a Monty Python interruption accusing SNL of stealing their style of bit which then sends us into the Twilight Zone.
  7. Not A Record Ad is an ad for something but it's definitely not a record ad.
  8. Olivia Newton-John then returns to the music stage to perform Make A Move On Me.
  9. Once again, Brian Doyle-Murray and Christine Ebersole give us the news with Mary Gross "Out on assignment." This week, Mary Gross interviews "Arnold Schwarzenegger" about the release of Conan only it turns out to be some random guy, we also get a Monty Python ad for their upcoming movie The Secret Policeman's Other Ball, Sweetchuck gets a segment of Looks At Books where he makes fun of self-help books, Olivia Newton-John gets to do a commentary, Piscopo checks in with sports where he shares crazy sports endorsements, and finally, Eddie Murphy checks in give him observations about the upcoming prom night and how it's a night where everyone hooks up in a way to scare the fathers out there viewing the show.  
  10. Michael Davis then takes the stage to perform another comedic juggling act where he juggles ping pong balls with his mouth.
  11. We then go to a business lunch where the guys from the cast talk business while only using jargon and acronyms. 
  12. Next, we got a Grease parody showing how Sandy treats the underclassmen after her cool girl transition.
  13. Sports Organ Classics is a fake ad for a way to bring the ballpark home by selling the music sheet for every generic sports organ song. 
  14. We then get a repeat of The Bird parody called The Clams where a town gets attacked by clams.
  15. Finally, Olivia Newton-John closes the season by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.

Alright, another season down with a little over thirty seasons to go and with that here are my favorite moments from this season's final episode. First I loved the Life's An Eskimo Pie sketch because this is another favorite from my youth to where I knew every single word as it played out and I also loved how Eddie and Piscopo seemed to have a friendship to where they could make racial jokes without being racist. Next, I really liked this week's juggling act because this exact routine is what motivated me to learn to juggle, well, the traditional way. Finally, I was a fan of the Not A Record Ad because of how surreal and quirky it was while it also seem to acknowledge how often SNL goes to the fake album well.

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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.