A Season Of Known Names
And Unfamiliar Faces
Susan Saint James is yet another actress that I've heard her name for most of my life, but I couldn't point her out in a lineup. After looking at her IMDB page, I think it's because I heard her name thrown around a lot in my youth from all of her appearance in Lifetime-esque made for TV movies back when you had no choice but to sit through the commercials.
I also saw that she was on Kate and Allie. I remember liking that show as a kid, but I don't remember any of the details. I did, however, see that Jane Curtin was the one who played Allie and since I became such a fan of her from the early seasons, I may have to give Kate and Allie another chance.
It's not just Susan Saint James. At first, I thought she was a weird choice for the first host of the season. Then I looked through the cue, and aside from the returning alumni and a handful of non-comedic talent, I'm at best only familiar with a majority of the names, and there are several that I don't know at all.
Of the seasons, this is the one that I am least familiar with even though this was around the time that I started to watch the show on a weekly basis. Oh well, we'll see what happens, but I can't say that my hopes are all that high.
Now it's time to move on from the name game and share what I saw as I give you...
The Wicker Breakdown:
The show starts with a fake ad for Exxico that claims to be, "Yesterday's technology at tomorrow's price." This is another spot that lasts half a minute, if that, then goes right into the opening montage minus the "Live from New York..."
Then Susan Saint James opens the show with a monolog explaining who she is and who she isn't based on who she always gets confused for. She goes on to clear up a few more misconception and rumors. She then tells the crowd that they are going to get to vote on which show that she is known for that they are going to parody.
McDonald And Wife turned out to be the sketch the audience votes for. It's a parody of McMillan And Wife. A show I've always heard referenced in jokes that I don't think I've ever seen. In the sketch, Ronald McDonald and Susan lay in discussing a murder case while making out.
This was followed by Buh-Weet Sings, the famous sketch where Murphy as Buckwheat pitches an album of his greatest hits.
We then go to a cube version of Earth for The Bizarro World where everything has developed backward from how things evolved on Earth. We get a few examples of what that would look like thanks to the twisted mind of Mr. Mike who I'm still not really a fan of but I it's still a pretty good sketch.
Next, we have a short film that starts with a shot of a crosswalk button that says Push Button To Cross, above that button is another one that reads Push Button To Explode Building most people press the correct one until a talk guy presses the top button without reading the sign which causes the build behind him to collapse.
We then go to a restaurant where Sweetchuck is waiting for his fiance when he spots a coworker who joins him for a drink, and the two discuss how little they know of each other outside of work because he had no idea he's engaged and he has no idea she is suicidal. We then meet Sweetchuck's fiance who is an angry prostitute whose level of class is nowhere close to being acceptable for this establishment. After meeting the fiance, the coworker has nothing to say but, "She's a pig," and of course Sweetchuck gets offended. Susan then arrives as Sweetchuck's mom who is much like his fiance.
Let's See What's Bothering Bob is a short film where we meet Bob and learn what's bothering him in the style of an educational film from the time.
The Kinks then hit the stage to perform Destroyer.
Once again Brian Doyle-Murray and Mary Gross host this new news with a horrible name. This week, we go to Senesia following a major flood where they just show footage of nothing but the ocean, as if the flood was that bad. I don't even know if Senesia is a real place, we get a visit from the news's model turned weather lady, Piscopo checks in with sports and Eddie reads a letter that he received from the president who shares a couple racist jokes. (Clip 2) (Clip 3)
Christine Ebersole then takes the stage to sing Single Women.
We then go to Daytona Beach where we meet a newlywed couple on their honeymoon vacation, and they start to celebrate with champagne. They chug their drinks and jump into bed where we find out Susan is a honeymoon virgin which causes a panicked/dramatic response because Tony Rosato is now feeling extra pressure until she reminds him she can't think he's bad because she has no one to compare him to.
We then go to a writer's office where Sweetchuck talks about the writing process in a sketch called Cheap Laffs, where he goes on to give an example of a sketch that was rejected as the rest of the cast acts it out. The rejected sketch from this week is for absorbent underwear the soak up any pee that may leak which is something they now sell in the stores.
The Kinks then return to the stage to perform Art Lover.
Tony Rosato then aggressively tries to pick up on a couple women at the bar, and it goes terribly wrong. The bartender steps in and suggests that he's doing it all wrong and offers him Alan Alda's Sensitivity Training For Men book that teaches men to be sensitive enough to get the girls since they no longer seem to want real men.
We then get a short film where we see a Middle Eastern man sweeping up around piles of what looks to be office furniture. He picks up a chair to find a dove that was shot through the heart and simply throws it in the trash after looking at for a moment with sorrow.
Finally, Susan Saint James closes the show by thanking the audience and saying her goodnights.
It's nice to see that they've gone back to shorter sketches for this episode. It made it so much easier to find these three moments. First, I loved Buh-Weet Sings because I loved The Little Rascals as a kid and I fully remember thinking this was the funniest thing in the world. This was one of those sketches where I was easily able to quote the entire thing as it played out. Next, I really liked the Push Button To Explode Building sketch because it reminded me of a website that was a simple game where you pushed a simple button to trigger an explosion video. Finally, I was a fan of the Bizarro World sketch because of my obsession with parallel universes to the point where this could be something I wrote.