SNL: S37E05... HOST: CHARLIE DAY... DATE: NOVEMBER 5, 2011

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or...

It’s Always Sunny On A Saturday Night...

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I love Charlie Day. When I was living in Seattle, I had a group of friends that got along a lot like that gang from It’s Always Sunny In Philidelphia only with more girls and more people in general. We were a fun group of drunks with dreams of owning a bar as a group and banter that could make it seem unclear to an outsider if we were even friends at all. I was the Charlie of the group. The wildcard with a bunch of nervous energy and an enthusiasm towards life, no matter how shitty it would seem. I was also the one who was always hopelessly in love with someone who didn’t love me in return.

I was the one from my group to discover the show about a season and a half into its original airings, and as a group, we marathon watched every episode multiple times, feeling the need to share the show in it’s entirety to any newcomers since it summarized our group so well, of course, in an exaggerated way. This is one of the few television shows that I genuinely thought that I could write for, back in my screenwriting days. In general, I was more interested in writing movies, and I never went as far as to write a spec script/sample episode or put in an effort to reach out to the producers, but I did indeed think that I would have fit in if I were given a chance to work in their writing room.

Part of me is nervous about this viewing because I haven’t even talked to anyone from my group for going on four years. Part of me is afraid that my connection with Charlie as linked to my old group of friends might bum me out more than it might elicit laughter. Especially considering, just yesterday, I met some of my middle sister’s friend from Colorado who brought back many memories of my old group to the point where it kind of messed with my head.

These were the first new people that I’ve met since moving home since I work from home and have literally not left my room except to go to the store or to take part in some sort of family event. I haven’t been social in years, so it kind of rocked my world to see that I not only still had it in me to interact with others, but it made me miss the days when I used to actively try to have a social life.

Hopefully, Charlie will knock it out of the park on this first visit and not just be mediocre like most of the host that I love when they are on the show for their first time. With that, it’s now time to hit play and see how this real-time viewing experience plays out. Right out of the gate, the first sketch bummed me out because I recently saw a documentary about Gaddafi’s efforts to bring water to Africa through this extreme man-made river that tapped into an underground water source that fell by the wayside when he was killed.  Though I still feel like he was a bad guy, it now bums me out that these efforts to hydrate to African continent seemed to die with him.

I wasn’t too let down though because it’s been a quite a while since I’ve consistently enjoyed the show’s opening. That, and Fred Armisen’s energy as Gaddafi was really fun and did loosen me up more than the typical talking head sketches that have been opening the shows in recent years. Charlie Day had the same playful/fun energy during his monolog which is the exact reason that I was excited about tonight’s episode and even with my concerns that it might bum me out, I still have very few doubts that this episode won’t let me down.

Other than constantly seeing their names in the headlines, I know absolutely nothing about the Kardashians so the sketch that made fun of their E! wasn’t all that fun as far as getting the references goes. The same goes for the Dr. Oz show, as far as familiarity with the real show goes, but at least with this sketch being a talk show parody, prior knowledge of the show didn’t seem to matter as much because I still found it to be pretty funny.

I loved the sketch with the Greek Gods because, for one, I’m obsessed with the idea that these “Gods” used to rule the world and somehow a new singular “God” stepped in to steal their thunder away. I also loved how they were all portrayed as average idiots talking about modern day needs. It just would have been nice to see more from Charlie Day. So far, he’s only made two extremely quick appearances outside of the monolog so far. Hell, tonight’s musical guest Adam Levine’s had a funnier role as Yanni than anything our host has gotten to do so far.

That said, the show up to this point has been really good as was the talk show sketch with Kenan Thompson as Cee Lo Green where again, our host got very little screen time as Freakasaurus, but that didn’t stop it from getting me to chuckle several times. As I said for roung one of The Original Kings Of Catchphrase Comedy I’ve always been a huge fan of Alonzo “Hamburger” Jones, who I think had to have inspired this series, so I enjoy each installment every time they come on.

I also enjoyed Maroon 5 because this performance was the second from this season where I actually knew the song being sung so I was able to get into it even though I wouldn’t say that it’s one of my favorites. Since I got such a late start, and the show is barely featuring Charlie Day’s signature manic energy, I’m still entertained by the viewing but am also beginning to lose a little steam, leading me to zone out even more than usual during the news. It didn’t help that it felt like the news went on forever considering the fact that there were only two Weekend Update guests.

I can’t believe that it took this late in the night for Charlie to finally be the star of a sketch and so far, it was the best sketch of the night because it was actual thought out material and not just cut and past silliness like a talk show sketch of a fake commercial. I also really liked it because I always love sketches that take us behind the scenes for the making of movies because it takes me back to the days when I still worked in film, and I’ve experienced sound men just like this in the past, so I found it extra enjoyable to watch.

I also knew the second song from Maroon 5 making this the first time in I don’t know how long that I’ve actually known both songs. I usually feel lucky enough to know just one, especially as we get closer and closer to present day episodes. The cop sketch that followed was brilliant because once again, that actually utilized Charlie Day and his frantic comedic energy and didn’t just give us another sketch that could have been performed by any host.

I can’t believe that tonight’s episode not only ended on a fake commercial, but it was a reaired sketch from just a couple of weeks ago. This made me extra happy when Charlie Day took to the stage to say his goodnights because I really want to just go to bed. I think this turned out to be the best show so far this year, but I still feel like the underutilized the host and the second half of the viewing was far better than the first.

With that, I’m just going to jump right into digging deeper into the details of each sketch, as I give you...

The Wicker Breakdown:

  1. This week's show started with A Message From The Ghost Of Moammar Gaddafi where Fred Armisen as Gaddafi checked in from Hell to share how his capture and murder actually went down before sharing his new status in the afterlife. As always, with this being the opening sketch, it eventually led to the announcement of, “Live from New York...”

  2. Charlie Day then officially opened the show with a monolog about his love of the show, having lived in New York up until he was two years old and how he was achieving a dream by hosting. He then shared that his plan was to just relax and not get all spastic like his character from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. At this point, co-star/past show host, Danny DeVito joined Charlie on the stage with the same frantic energy of his character from the show to work our host into a frenzy by telling him how important it is for him to put on a good episode which kicked off a duet between the two.

  3. We then got a fake ad for an E! channel special called Kim's Fairy Tale Divorce that promised lots of glamour and excitement as it televised the “hot” divorce proceeding between Nasim Pedrad as Kim Kardashian and Andy Samberg Kris Humphries, which is a name that I’ve literally never even heard before this sketch.

  4. We then got a parody of The Dr. Oz Show where Bill Hader as Dr. Oz embarrassed Charlie Day as an audience member by offering horrific medical advice for how he should handle his dead rectum.

  5. The next sketch took us to heaven where we met a bunch of Greek Gods. Jason Sudeikis played Zeus who attempt to organize the other Greek Gods, including Charlie Day as a horny God who was late to the meeting after banging a goat that he thought was another God in disguise while at an orgy, to put their heads together to help the 2012 “present day” financial crisis in Greece.

  6. It's Getting Freaky With Cee Lo Green! had Kenan Thompson as Cee Lo to host a talk show where, with the help of Charlie Day as a mascot-looking guy named Freakasaurus, and Bill Hader as Colonel Nasty, the three attempted to offer advice to put the freaky back into the marriage between the show’s guests who were played by Andy Samberg and Abby Elliott.  

  7. We then got a fake trailer for The Original Kings Of Catchphrase Comedy Volume 2 where we got to meet even more catchphrase based comedians like David “Beef Jelly” Winfield, Goran “Funky Boy” Bogdan, Slappy Pappy, Addi “News Flash” Sweeney, Boston Power, and Fur Coat Rhonda.

  8. Maroon 5 then took to the stage to perform Moves Like Jagger.

  9. Once again, Seth Meyers gave us the news. This week, Bill Hader dropped by as Rick Perry to defend allegations that he was drunk while delivering a speech in New Hampshire. Kristen Wiig also returned as her travel guru character that is so unconfident in herself that she sneaks in jokes instead of ever getting around to what she actually trying to say. (Clip 2) (Clip 3) (Clip 4)

  10. Because Of One Dolphin took us behind-the-scenes for the making of a new family film where Charlie Day is frustrated by both his dolphin co-star’s animal trainer and the boom mic guy. The trainer, who was played by Taran Killam, was the source of frustration because he was very distracted by the sounds he had to make for the dolphin. The boom mic guy, Kenan Thompson, irked our host because was extremely hostile whenever Charlie would question if he was pitching up all the trainers sounds. Kenan felt Charlie was questioning his ability to handle his job. When Charlie joking suggested to reverse their roles Kenan jumped right in and started acting.

  11. Maroon 5 then took to the stage with Travie McCoy to perform Stereo Heart.

  12. We then went to a Crime Scene where Charlie Day played a detective who pleaded ignorance to officer, Jason Sudeikis’s Seinfeld references while the two attempted to solve a murder that took place on a set that looked exactly like Seinfeld’s living room, and probably was the actual set considering it was shot by NBC.

  13. We then got a repeat of the Lil Poundcake commercial from earlier in the season which was the doll that injected it’s child users with a vaccine for HPV.

  14. Finally, Charlie Day closed the show by thanking the audience and saying his goodnights.

As I said up above, tonight was the best episode so far this year with the help of these three sketches that contained my favorite moments of the night. First, I loved Because Of One Dolphin because of how it took me back to my days working in film and dealing with sound guys like Kenan’s character. Next, I really liked the Crime Scene sketch because it was cool to see the Seinfeld set being used plus, it was the sketch that felt like it best highlighted Charlie Day. Finally, I was a fan of The Original Kings Of Catchphrase Comedy Volume 2 because of my love for Alonzo “Hamburger” Jones.

 
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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.