The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

55° Stony Brook, NY
The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

Newsletter

    A Lukewarm SNL Greets the Election

    The pre-election “Saturday Night Live” coverage, as expected, was a shoddy attempt to exploit Senator John McCain’s presence. McCain, who seemed uneasy with the camera, began the show with Tina Fey as her usual Sarah Palin in an infomercial that tanked a little too quickly. The show caught on as Ben Affleck surprisingly saved it, although pitiably with content that was not even drawn from the election.

    McCain proved to be an occasional sport with lines, such as, “I’m a true maverick – a Republican without money.” In fact, in a later segment of “Weekend Update” with Seth Meyers, he defined himself as “The Reverse Maverick,” where he would do everything blindly, “The Double Maverick” where he would just go berserk, “The Sad Grandpa” where he should be given the presidency for having been around so long and even “The Rocky IV,” which would not do much for his presidency.

    Although Amy Poehler was missed, Meyers managed to entertain by bringing in Kristen Wiig as her aunt and TV reviewer. The reviews were not as funny as her delivery or the two voting experts vocalizing to a catchy wordless song about what would happen if the voting machines failed.

    The one brilliant bit on the part of the writers was Affleck donning Keith Olbermann, a sly stab at MSNBC by NBC. Although he didn’t sound much like him, he managed to capture most of Olbermann’s mannerisms fairly well with the extreme analogies describing the “Worst Person in the World.” Taking quotes out of context and shutting down his guests were a nice touch to a pretty long, drawn out segment that got funnier as it went on.

    This was followed by an often overdone stereotyping sketch that brought out a few laughs simply for the genius of Kristen Wiig. Affleck, as a flirtatious UPS delivery man who liked to be called “Sir Cumference”, was not the worst thing on the show, although it was nowhere as enjoyable as the Olbermann bit. Maybe SNL needs to come up with better placement for the order of their sketches because it’s obviously hard to follow up a good act with a bad one.

    Parts of SNL really soured the night’s mood. Andy Samberg’s giraffe rap video from the Staten Island Zoo seemed out of place, juvenile, and just plain bad. The fact that I am from Staten Island does very little for my opinion on this, because the video and all of Samberg’s former ones are just not funny.

    Like Samberg, the parody of “The View” seemed unnecessary and only managed to generate guffaws. To be fair, Kenan Thompson as Whoopi Goldberg and Wiig as Elizabeth Hasselback were very good, but it seemed that the cast was trying too hard and the audience just seemed unresponsive. The Night School Musical sketch on middle-aged people getting their GEDs was amusing, but managed to offend more than entertain.

    Some sketches were just mediocre. Thompson’s Grady Wilson: Put the Fire Back in Your Marriage bit illustrated ludicrous sex positions that would only appeal to a small demographic. The Suleski Brothers pitching a movie relied too much on making fun of weird, awkward people. The slightly funnier version was the ending sketch featuring the Bierhoff Brothers advertising Times Square coats with the tag line “our coats are no nonsense and that is the only thing that makes sense to us.”

    Overall, had it not been for Affleck’s Olbermann sketch, the bulk of the show would have been a bland collection of average, slightly funny bits, and I probably would have turned the show off within the first ten minutes. Maybe the writers are saving the best writing for Monday’s pre-election bash, but if they are not going to put their best content forward for the regular Saturday show, then they should save their audience an hour and consider changing the name of the show to “Monday Night Live.”

    Leave a Comment
    Donate to The Statesman

    Your donation will support the student journalists of Stony Brook University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The Statesman

    Comments (0)

    All The Statesman Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *