Saturday Night Live with Justin Timberlake and Lady Gaga: Best and Worst Sketches?

This seems like a cowardly time to bring up my disdain for Justin Timberlake’s Saturday Night Live appearances because last night’s episode, the 36th season finale, was an obvious bomb — but oh well! The Emmy-winning ‘D*ck in a Box’ man plays the same hammy caricatures and embarrassing lovermen with every SNL hosting gig, and the result always feels more like an attempt at “cool” than “funny” to me. Even sketch cameos by …READ MORE

SNL with Ed Helms: Best and Worst Skits?

SNL often feels like The Hangover Part II; fun and nervy, yes, but an unnecessary retread of ideas we already enjoyed years ago. This week was no exception, as host Ed Helms led a night of half-baked sketches and under-utilized ladies, begging the question, “What up with that?” (Yes, Kenan Thompson reiterated the sentiment in song several times.) Luckily, the best two skits of the night were undeniable successes. Let’s review: …READ MORE

SNL With Tina Fey: Best and Worst Skits?

As an unabashed Tina Fey fan, I was probably predisposed to enjoying last night’s Saturday Night Live, and for the most part, I wasn’t disappointed. The opening monologue — a duet between a pregnant Fey and Maya Rudolph about “uterus hogs” and what causes them (rosé wine and unprotected sex on a roller coaster, apparently)  – was more amusing than uproarious, but a couple of skits were pretty genius. My two favorites? …READ MORE

SNL with Helen Mirren: Best and Worst Skits

SNL often lures lovable hosts that it doesn’t know how to work with. Take Jane Lynch or Bryan Cranston, who led lackluster episodes earlier this season, or Helen Mirren, who spent last night’s show vacillating between exactly two types of characters: haughty Brits and vulgar battle-axes. In fact, the episode felt so procedural that it may as well have been a lost episode of Prime Suspect. I’m drawing a chalk outline around the whole thing. Let’s rack up the (very relatively) best and (very obviously) worst sketches: …READ MORE

SNL with Elton John: Best and Worst Skits?

For a self-proclaimed (bleep) who hadn’t been “back” to SNL since 1982, host Elton John invigorated Studio 8H with great sentimentality and sincerity last night. Sure, Horatio Sanz didn’t reappear to dress as Elton for a reunion makeout with Eminem, but it’s fair to say that special guests Carmelo Anthony (!), Jake Gyllenhaal (!!), Tom Hanks (!!!), and duet partner Leon Russell (whose snow-white beard is a waterfall of exclamation points) made up the difference. Yes, Saturday night was all right for funny — and the easiest pun in western civilization. Let’s recap the best and worst skits: …READ MORE