SNL: S09E10... HOST: MICHAEL PALIN... DATE: JANUARY 21, 1984

or...

Another Visit From Palin

With A Perfect Python Blend

I love when a member of Monty Python gets the chance to host SNL. For one, I'm a fan of both shows but mainly I really like when they host because for better or worse they always switch up the structure of the show to where it's almost not recognizable as an episode of Saturday Night Live.

This episode almost felt more like a special partially because of the structure but also because they never officially did the news. The lack of a true news segment made this episode feel kind of like a compilation of clips mixed in with Palin's own show. 

It also felt different because this is the second week in a row without an Eddie Murphy sighting. This goes to what I was talking about the other day when Flip Wilson was the host. It's not that I think that this cast needs Eddie Murphy or that he coasts when he is there but he is the biggest standout star from this season so his inconsistent schedule might be the reason this season is so consistently average. 

Alright, that's all that I've got for now, so it's time to move on and share what I saw as I give you...

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show starts backstage with a confrontation between Piscopo and the make-up guy after he realizes that he was made up to look like Charlie Chan instead of looking like Phil Donahue which is what he expected. As always, the sketch ends with Piscopo yelling, "Live from New York..."
  2. Michael Palin then officially opens the show by bringing out his mother as a gift to her on her 80th birthday. He tries to do his monolog but she keeps interrupting and eventually asks for her knitting gear and book to entertain herself as he attempts to open the show. 
  3. Jim Belushi then played Boy George Burns to promote his upcoming special The Man And His Music by singing Boy George songs in George Burn's voice.
  4. We then took a trip to Mr. Robinson's neighborhood where Mr. Robinson not only introduced us to his new dog but also introduces us to the meaning of the word ransom using said dog as an example.
  5. Joe Piscopo then dresses as Lorne Greene for another Alpo dog food as parody where this time he is pushing Powerful Living, the dog food that allows you to share the word of God with your favorite pet.
  6. Michael Palin then played a landlord who tries to get the couple, that he's showing an apartment to, to ignore the feral man chained to the literal hole in the wall that lives in a giant hole in the wall who comes with the apartment.
  7. We then got a fake ad for a new musical album called Mick Pitwhistle Does It All where Michael Palin plays Mick and does horrible covers of songs from multiple genres.
  8. That's Okay is a talk show sketch where Piscopo interviews three people with amazing personal talents. Jim Belushi claims he can list every state capital in alphabetical order but the host isn't interested in seeing it. Julia Louis-Dreyfus claims she can lick the back of her head and again the host isn't interested in seeing it. Finally, Brad Hall claims he can nail nine-inch spikes into his head and the host is not only interested in seeing this he forces it to happen after Brad admits he was expecting the host to say he wasn't interested. 
  9. This was followed by a short film called Shoplifter where Jim Belushi steals almost everything in a convenience store without the cashier noticing even though they are the only two in the store. When the owner of the store returns to find out that the cashier over charge Belushi for the piece of gum he bought a distraction from his stealing ways, he gets excited to split the extra dim while also not noticing that everything in the store has been taken.  
  10. Would You Believe It? was a futuristic game show that suffers from technical difficulties right out the gate that knocks the show off the air.
  11. The "technical difficulty" was then resolved and we returned to Would You Believe it? that doesn't last long this time either because Michael Palin gets electrocuted while going over the rules.
  12. Joe Piscopo then got a special sports segment to discuss the upcoming Super Bowl.
  13. Would You Believe It? then returned for a third attempt this time we see the interactive game show work where the host asks the home audience 17-2 and it takes the computer forever to collect the answer from an audience member and he manages to get it wrong.
  14. Once again, we got the news, no Brad Hall this week just Sweetchuck as his scientist character to share different types of menopause.  
  15. The Motels then took to the stage to perform Suddenly Last Summer.
  16. House Of Mutton was a restaurant sketch where Palin plays the owner of a sheep themed restaurant that doesn't go over well with the staff or the clientele.
  17. Michael Palin then took to the stage to promote saving the plankton over the whales because of how many planktons die just to feed one whale.
  18. The Motels then returned to the stage to perform Remember The Night.
  19. A Boy's Life On The Mississippi is a Mark Twain tale that plays out to show a young Twain meeting his mentor on an old riverboat who's played by Palin as a very quirky old man.
  20. Finally, Michael Palin closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

If you follow my progress at all you will know that I am very happy to see twenty segments because it made it super easy to find these three favorite moments. First, I loved the Shoplifter short film because it's been a while since they shared a short film and this was a super fun one. Next, I really liked really liked the Man On A Chain sketch because it reminded me of my buddy's short film from back when we were in film school. Finally, I was a fan of I liked the House Of Mutton sketch because it was the most Python-like sketch in the bunch. 

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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.