SNL: S21E05... HOST: QUENTIN TARANTINO... DATE: NOVEMBER 11, 1995

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Destiny Turns On The Sketch Comedy Show

I have a weird history of liking Quentin Tarantino so I was very interested in seeing how this episode hosted by him would play out. I discovered the movie Resivour Dogs just a few months before the movie Pulp Fiction came out, so I was easily won over as a fan. I was such a fan that a couple of months after I turned eighteen, I rushed out to get the A Band Apart logo as my very first tattoo, as much to show my love of Indie Films in general while paying tribute to my favorite obscure film at the time.

Keep in mind; this was at a time where I would describe it as the first movie from the guy who directed Pulp Fiction because this was before Quentin Tarantino was a household name. If I’m being honest, I liked these two movies and a handful of the films that Tarantino has written, but I stopped paying attention around the release of Jackie Brown when I lost interest in all of the glorified violence in cinema.

That’s not to say that I that I changed my tune to be actively against violent films, it was just no longer my cup of tea. As a matter of fact, I’ve always been such a fan of comedy, non-spaceship sci-fi, and quirky dramas that I was never all that into the more violent genres in the first place. Meanwhile, here I sit with a permanent tribute to Resivour Dogs taking up nearly half of my calf.

Other than the fact that my tattoo misled many people in film school into thinking I was an obsessed Tarantino fan, I’ve never regretted getting it because it’s still a cool image to me. Also, even though I never actively seek out Tarantino films anymore, I do think he’s a cinematic genius and respect his storytelling style.

What I don’t respect is his acting. Other than his role in From Dusk Till Dawn, I cringe every time that I see this man attempt to act on any screen especially after watching the movie Destiny Turns On The Radio where someone decided that he should be the star. Though I think that person was crazy, I could also see how Quentin could actually be good at sketch comedy, so I was excited to see if I was right.

It turned out that I was correct, as Quentin Tarantino turned out to be an excellent SNL host. For one, he has a highly energetic enthusiasm that can be distracting in film gut works perfectly in the world of sketch. Next, he was another one of these hosts who felt like he was having so much fun that it was contagious. Finally, this episode makes five shows in, and the cast has settled in to pull off excellent performances as well.

I might even go as far as to say that this was my favorite episode of the season so far. With that said, it’s now time to share what went into the excellent show, as I give you…

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with a visit to the White House Kitchen where Darrell Hammond debuted his Bill Clinton in order to pig out on White House food while he apologized to his supporters over the phone for the fact that he ran as a centrist only to create leftist policies after taking office. Not only did he apologize over the phone but he also tried to make good with Tim Meadows who played a pizza delivery guy by attempting to buy his vote for a hundred bucks.  Of course, this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York…”
  2. Quentin Tarantino then officially opened the show with a monolog about his love of live TV and how live events lead to the most memorable moments. He then went on to sing the song I’m Gonna Blow You A Kiss In The Wind which was a song that Samantha wrote in an episode of Bewitched, in his effort to create a memorable moment of his own.
  3. This was followed by a fake ad for Bug-Off which was a roach motel that was designed to be more of a torture chamber with viewing windows that allowed users to watch trapped pest get torn apart for cheap thrills.  
  4. Spartan Cheerleaders then made their show debut with Will Ferrell and Cheri Oteri as the overly excited C-squad cheerleaders who attempted to amp up the crowd at less popular sports. This week the cheerleading duo cheered at a Jr. Varsity football game only to receive more taunts from the crowd than cheers.
  5. Clara Turley's Bible Challenge was a game show sketch hosted by Nancy Walls who played the titular Christian who was too trusting for her own good to the point where Norm MacDonald is able to lie his way to a victory by tricking her and the other trusting contestants. The game itself involved Nancy Walls asking a biblical question while also providing the answer; she then asked the contestants whether or not they already knew the answer. Norm just blindly said that he knew everything which led to his simple win.
  6. Directors On Directing was a panel talk show where Tarantino played himself amongst a couple of castmates who impersonated other directors, who weren’t known for their looks, in order to discuss their craft. Rather than focus on the art of directing, the interview was more about director’s true intentions to hook up with their leading actresses. Though all of the other directors deny these claims, Tarantino openly admits that he has sex with as many of his actresses as he can since no good looking girl would even look at him back when he was a schlub.
  7. Smashing Pumpkins then took to the stage to perform Bullet With Butterfly Wings.
  8. Once again, Norm MacDonald gave us the news. This week, Tim Meadows dropped in as Don King to deny any wrongdoings in an instance where he was accused of insurance fraud. Fop and Fagin also made their news debut to admit their huge fans of Norm.
  9. Leg Up then returned for another installment with Cheri Oteri as Debbie Reynolds and Molly Shannon as Ann Miller who mistakenly invited Quentin Tarantino onto their dance-themed show because they mistakenly thought that he was a choreographer who directed musicals.
  10. We then went to a Campfire where a group of white trash campers who were first highly entertained by the volume of liquid inside an egg that Tarantino tried to cook for dinner. It then turned out that everything was overfilled from the beer Will Ferrell cracked open that went everywhere to all of the mosquitos that would spray blood everyone whenever a redneck would crush them.
  11. Spade in America also returned for another installment where David Spade introduced Robert Hegyes to Quentin Tarantino through a game of This IS Your Life, in an attempt to inspire a John Travolta-like comeback for the Welcome Back Kotter costar.
  12. Smashing Pumpkins then returned to the stage to perform Zero.
  13. All Aboard! was a sketch where Tarantino played an old train engineer who now enjoys playing with his model train set while sharing old tales of beating up hobos who tried to freeload on his real trains back in the good old days.
  14. Finally, Quentin Tarantino closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

As I said up above, this is my favorite episode of the season so far thanks to these three of my favorite moments of the night. First, I loved the Spartan Cheerleaders Debut because I’m a huge fan of these characters. Next, I really liked Clara Turley's Bible Challenge because it felt like a Norm MacDonald sketch and he really cracks me up. Finally, I was a fan of the Campfire sketch because it cracked me up how everything in the scene was overfilled with liquids.

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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.